Is it cruel to make my cat wear a bell?

(23 Posts)
Jenda Thu 06-Mar-14 20:48:14

My boy is a hunter and we are used to him bringing us presents but this week he has bought in a live baby mouse every day! He won't kill them just stalks them in the lounge for a while but he's a bit thick so he loses track of them grin

Can I make him wear a bell? It would be on a collar with a quick release of course and I know it would ruin his fun but I cannot cope with any moee rodents!

WakeyTryingAgain Thu 06-Mar-14 20:51:24

You may find the bell is more annoying than the mice!! Can't stand the sound personally but then my girly isn't a hunter yet

Lucycat Thu 06-Mar-14 20:51:42

Absolutely yes I think he should - we have one who is a bird hunter and the other boy is a mouser. I don't mind the mice so much as they are played with and therefore broken hmm but I do object to birds. Both of ours wear a bell on a collar but I'm never quite sure how useful they are.
Rhubarb has had 14 collars in just over a year grin he's a lithe boy though so we've resorted to kitten collars and he's had this one for a few weeks now.

Sheldonswhiteboard Thu 06-Mar-14 22:09:01

My cat with a bell is still a murderous git, don't think it makes any difference.

EvansOvalPiesYumYum Thu 06-Mar-14 22:16:22

If he's used to wearing a collar anyway, then a bell probably wouldn't be too much of a transition (I expect he'd find it annoying to begin with, but would get used to it fairly soon).

Know what you mean about rodents - we've had mice living in the sofa in the past, one in the bedroom and currently have had one in the kitchen for a couple of days (he seems particularly fond of bananas)!! Pesky felines bring them in, then let them go! Unfortunately, our cats have never had collars, so I can't use bells, just have to set "mouse-friendly" traps.

Jenda Fri 07-Mar-14 17:51:23

Thanks everyone, now he is chipped he doesn't wear a collar but it didn't bother him before so I might try one with a bell and see how he does. I will be prepared for it not to work though! . I have decided to give him one more chance because when I got home today he dribbled and gave me lots of nice nuzzles and then put his paw on my hair and groomed me! He's never done that before, awww grin

EddieVeddersfoxymop Fri 07-Mar-14 20:04:26

I have two elderly puss cats, both wear bells. Well, truth be told, my oldest one, who is 14, wears two bells, a tag and a blank tag so there's heaps to jangle together. She's a nightmare for catching birds and presenting them to me.....plus when they wear a bell they can't sneak up on me!!!

Ledkr Fri 07-Mar-14 20:07:28

Do the bells work? I'd live another cat but the last one was nicknamed killer and its so distressing to be presented with half dead wildlife when you get up in the morning.
I was thinking of not having a cat flap so she can't bring them in at least.

lljkk Fri 07-Mar-14 20:12:39

cruel to you if it keeps you awake in middle of the night. Bells let me know where the cat is in house. Cat won't care.

The bells must cut predation a bit but not entirely. Won't stop him from hunting but by golly bells are useful to help me find them in the dark (I have black cats & live on a lane without street lights).

lljkk Fri 07-Mar-14 20:13:34

ps: curfewing them at night cuts down on predation, too, although even more ideally they'd only be allowed out 10am-4pm.

Foxsticks Fri 07-Mar-14 20:17:06

I'd recommend three bells! With one they often learn to move without jingling but with three they can't not make a noise! Our boy hasn't bought any birds in, and only two mice since he was made to sound like Christmas grin

lljkk Fri 07-Mar-14 20:19:17

good tip, Foxy.

Ledkr Fri 07-Mar-14 20:50:40

Ooooo I'm excited at the thought that we might get a cat then, just with multiple bells and a curfew grin

Lovethesea Fri 07-Mar-14 21:08:15

I differ and in my eyes they are cruel. My cats can hear the tiniest sounds from a long distance, the mere opening of their food cupboard brings them from sleeping upstairs on a bed to my kitchen downstairs in seconds.

I have had a bit of tinnitus at times and it is horrific. The thought of inflicting a permanent jangling noise on a cat with awesome delicate hearing is unpleasant to me.

sussexmum38 Fri 07-Mar-14 21:21:45

It's a cat for god sake. Bells are hardly cruel. If it keeps some other poor innocent creature alive to save them from being a plaything of your pet let them where bells.

Foxsticks Fri 07-Mar-14 21:25:20

I have tinnitus too, but the times it drives me mad is when I am craving some peace and quiet, trying to read, trying to fall asleep or even just trying to sit quiet and still and all I can here is this awful high pitched whine. My cat doesn't have that problem because when he is just sitting and chilling or trying to go to sleep he is still so his bells don't jingle. I really think the two things are very different. My cat doesn't seem at all bothered by his multiple bells and I am happy that the local wildlife isn't being hunted by him.

Thesimplethings Fri 07-Mar-14 21:31:13

I had six bells on my cat... bunched together in threes in two places on his collar so they make a right racket. Never stopped him bringing home prizes.

Foxsticks Fri 07-Mar-14 21:34:45

That was one hell of a clever cat simplethings smile

Ledkr Fri 07-Mar-14 22:22:26

I might get one of those retractable leads and wind my cat in if I see it stalking, just like the Hoover flex when you've finished hoovering, whoosh!

Jenda Fri 07-Mar-14 22:49:51

6 bells! Brilliant. Ill try one tomorrow. Now I just need to stop him SHOUTING when he's wet/hungry/tired/wants a cuddle/wants to find us etc. He wails constantly at the moment even though hes happy. hmm

Thesimplethings Fri 07-Mar-14 23:28:45

Yes he was something... Opened the fridge on a regular basis and helped himself too. Daft bugger liked to come on walks with the dog and sit in the middle of the road to halt the traffic shock favorite past time was playing fetch with scrunched up foil from kit kats.

I swear that cat was part tiger/wolf/dog/stealth plane.

Lovethesea Sat 08-Mar-14 18:28:26

It's just a cat I agree, but it's nature is to hunt, kill and eat. What it eats are just small mammals and birds doing what's in their instinct, eating and dodging predators.

If I didn't want to see the odd corpse I'd have got a different pet.

I think keeping birds where they can't fly is cruel, or dogs never allowed off lead to run, or guinea pigs or rabbits kept alone, or cats never allowed to hunt silently as they are designed.

Obviously plenty of people disagree but it's my opinion. The possible benefit of saving a few mice is outweighed for me by the risk of making the cats life bloody unpleasant in a background annoying noise kind of way.

FreckledLeopard Tue 11-Mar-14 11:09:28

I heard about a cat with a bell on its collar who had learned to hunt with one paw pressed against the bell to silence it! I have visions of a three-legged cat sneaking up on an unsuspecting bird grin

We tried bells, but the cats went through so many collars I gave up.

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