Shock collars: chances are you’ve heard of them. A device more commonly associated with training dogs, shock collars are used as a way of training an animal to stop a certain behavior.
Some swear by them, while others swear that it’s a form of animal cruelty.
Are cat shock collars really safe? Though it’s not a totally definitive answer, no, they most likely are not safe for cat use. Let’s find out why.
Do Shock Collars Work For Cats?
Maybe your cat is getting on your nerves with annoying behavior like incessant meowing, scratching up your furniture, or running away. You’d like to know if they make shock collars for cats. In fact, some companies have developed shock collars for cat use. Usually, though, people who want to get their cat in line through shocking opt to put collars made for small dogs on their cats.
But just because something is out on the market, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s safe, or even legal!
Electric shock collars have been banned in Scotland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and some parts of Australia. While they are not illegal in America, some stores like Petco have stopped selling shock collars altogether. This could be warning enough to steer clear of this method of training your cat.
However, there are always two sides to an argument. Read on as we reasonably look at the facts regarding whether cat shock collars are safe for cats.
Cat Shock Collars
A shock collar is a piece of webbing worn around an animal’s neck that delivers an electric shock to the pet. This shock is delivered in one of two ways: through a manned device or when an invisible barrier is crossed.
How Do Cat Shock Collars Work?
Shock collars are used as a form of “positive punishment,” as some behaviorists call it. The collar itself has two prongs on the inside that touches your cat’s skin. Depending on the type of shock collar, a shock is activated through an electronic feature on the collar.
Some shock collars are specifically designed for cats. Most of the time, though, these are rare, and most people put collars made for small dogs on their cat.
Are Shock Collars Safe for Cats?
The evidence is pretty strong that shock collars are not safe for cats. Most collars deliver a shock that’s between 100 to 6,000 volts – 300 volts of current feels like an intense burn to a human, imagine what it feels like to your small cat.
Not only is it possibly cruel to send pain to your cat through electric shock, but the shock administered from a shock collar can also be fatal for cats. Even a less intense current can mess up a cat’s cardiovascular or nervous system, no matter what your cat’s age is.
Shocks can also prevent a cat from defending herself in emergencies. Perhaps she needs to get your attention with loud noises or get away from a predator, but a shock collar is inflicting pain on her instead.
Additionally, manufacturers are typically not transparent about the amount of shock their collars deliver, or the intensity of their vibrations or beeps. So, you are at the will of the device when it comes to the intensity at which you are punishing your cat. You could be sending a way stronger shock than you intend to.
Should You Use a Shock Collar On a Cat?
The consensus with most vets and cat behaviorists is that cat shock collars can be dangerous and are ineffective in training a cat. We already have discussed why they are unsafe, let’s talk about how they don’t work for cat behavior training.
More Humane Alternatives to Consider
While shock collars for cats can be unsafe, ineffective, and difficult to find, there are other options when it comes to behavior training your cat. Keep in mind that punishing your cat for bad behavior typically doesn’t work for most cats. However, some cats might have the right personality for this kind of training.
Conclusion: Shock Collar For Cats
Cat shock collars are increasingly rare to find due to legislation in certain countries banning them, animal rights activists declaring their cruelty, and large pet chains discontinuing the products. We’ve learned why: the shock delivered to a cat could be harmful to their health and cause them to act out in other ways. Shock collars for cats can be unsafe and ineffective, so it’s best to try one of our other methods to change your cat’s behavior.
Featured image credit: Pixabay
- Do Shock Collars Work For Cats?
- Cat Shock Collars
- How Do Cat Shock Collars Work?
- Are Shock Collars Safe for Cats?
- Should You Use a Shock Collar On a Cat?
- More Humane Alternatives to Consider
- Conclusion: Shock Collar For Cats