Advances in animal-training technologies and research into feline instinct have led to the development of a variety of electronic collars for cats. Whether you want to locate your cat, confine your cat within the boundaries of your property, or prevent your cat from preying on birds, rodents and other small wildlife, an electronic collar just might be the answer.
Electronic collars that provide confinement are typically best suited for cats that often wander far from home. A hidden cat fence couples a collar with an underground wire that runs along the perimeter of your home or property. When the cat nears the wire, a warning tone sounds inside the collar. If the cat crosses the boundary, the collar emits a mild electronic pulse that prompts the cat to turn back. Most invisible fences come with temporary flags that you can plant along the fence perimeter to train your cat.
Electronic collars that provide predator restraint are best suited for cats that often prey on birds and other small animals. These collars emit sonic beeps every few seconds to warn birds and animals when a cat is approaching. A light sensor on some collars enables the beeping to stop in the dark.
Some electronic-cat collars provide the Global Positioning System (GPS) or radio-signal location if the cat is missing. In the case of a lost cat, the owner can switch on a home system that picks up a signal that is emitted from the cat's collar. The technology enables owners to track down their cats in a timely fashion. Similar collars also enable cats to electronically open a home's cat flap when the cat approaches.
A few fundamental questions should be answered prior to buying an electronic cat collar. First, measure your cat's neck to ensure you buy the right-size collar. For a typical collar, one finger should fit comfortably between the collar and the cat's neck. The same should apply to most electronic collars as well. However, an electronic collar with electrodes should be slightly tighter, allowing the electrodes to lightly make contact with the cat's neck. For younger cats, make sure you leave extra room in the collar to allow for future growth.
Price is another consideration when determining what kind of electronic collar to buy for your cat. Electronic collars can typically retail for a fifty pounds to hundreds of pounds, depending on the type and whether they are included in a larger system, such as an invisible fence. Many electronic collars can also be bought online, often at a discount.
Just as an electronic-cat collar provides security to a cat and peace of mind to its owner, it can also be potentially dangerous. Try to find a collar that features a breakaway function. Breakaway collars essentially snap apart when the collar gets stuck on an impediment, such as a tree branch. This enables the cat to safely and quickly leave a potentially hazardous situation.
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