On January 19, 2017 I ordered a battery operated toy for my spoiled fur babies, Miggy and Midnight. They were getting bored with their current toys, mama was too. I started looking into some battery operated cat toys. My thought was something to liven up the fun and started researching for the perfect toy for my cats. I decided to buy the SmartyKat Hot Pursuit Cat Toy from Amazon.com. If you have cats, I would recommend this toy.
Hot Pursuit Cat Toy
This toy mesmerizes cats by replicating the erratic movements of hidden prey. The two interchangeable wands zip around unpredictably changing directions with only a teasing bit visible from under the fabric cover. This fascinating movement encourages healthy activity through the fun of play, and the four speed controls allow you to customize the action for your cat(s). SmartyKat is grounded in the principles of pet safety, customer satisfaction, and environmental responsibility.
My Honest, Personal Review
I really think this toy was a great purchase. It was easy to assemble, affordable, and durable. Keep in mind though that my cats haven’t played with it more than 3-4 times yet. So that may change with time. It is entertainment for all (pets and humans), and it’s both my cats’ favorite toy. When I put it away, they look at me like “mom, we weren’t done yet!” For fear of it breaking down too fast or constantly having to buy batteries all the time, I do limit play time with it. I can’t afford that and my babies are so spoiled as it is!
It’s not a set it and forget it toy and if you are looking for one of those, you will never find it. Here’s why: first, that’s probably not wise with ANY kind of toy, for humans or not. Accidents happen occasionally. Have you ever watched Ridiculousness, America’s Funniest Home Videos, or even YouTube? I’m sure a lot of those failure videos were all accidents. Second, that doesn’t say “good pet owner” if you never bond with your pet. I want to be involved in my cats’ life. They are my “kids”. I want to play with them, cuddle them (when they will let me), and care for them. What is the point of having a pet if you aren’t going to care for it and love it like it’s human?
Overall, I think it’s a great invention and would recommend it. In my summary box, I gave it a low support score because I have a few improvements I would like to see with this product. One: a rechargeable feature and two: replacement wands. Batteries are becoming a thing of the past. I don’t think they will ever be completely obsolete, but they are less popular than they were 20 years ago for sure! I am not an engineer of any sort, but I think that would help with the battery issue and help the motor issues.
Replacement wands would also be smart. Cats have a tendency to destroy things after a while and there is going to be the usual wear and tear with excessive amounts of play time. There is record of great success with this toy, but the creators need to do their part and make it durable. No one wants to waste their money, replacing things all the time.
When you unbox the toy, you will find a circular motor, a purple skirt, and two wand attachments. One wand has feathers attached, the other has a plastic piece.
To assemble, unscrew the battery compartment to the motor and insert three AA batteries. Screw the cover back in place and the toy is almost ready for play!
Next, attach one of the wands. There will be a little arm like thing that sticks out from the motor. This is where the wand attaches.
To put the skirt on, twist off the circular part that goes around the buttons. Slip the skirt on and twist the cap back on to secure the skirt in place.
Set the toy down and press the big center button on the top of the toy to watch it come alive! To change the speeds, press the middle button again until the desired speed is lit up. It’s pretty simple.
The video below shows the toy in action and also my cats’ initial reaction to the toy. Miggy is the tiger cat and Midnight is the black one.
To assist you with your decision to buy this toy or not, below you will find other customer’s review about the toy:
Review #1: Fur Baby Favorite
This is the one! I researched all the toys like this and this seems to be the preferred one and I agree. Even the dog gets in on the action! It is supervised play and they all love it!
Review #2: This is Awesome for Cats (and Humans)
I was skeptical, but this toy was worth the money! My two cats are definitely those “attack your toes under the covers while you sleep at night” felines. So this fired up their instincts immediately. So far it’s already taken a beating and still keeps going.
What I like best about it is when either cat gets bored, it always pulls their attention back. Although, many people have said theirs shuts off if the cat holds it for a while…mine doesn’t do that which worries me about burning out the motor. One small downside is, if your cat is smart enough to figure out that by sitting on it, with both paws on either side of the wand, they can trap this “prey” and it can’t go anywhere. That defeats the purpose.
I say awesome for humans in the title because it’s entertaining to watch cats play with this. My husband jokes that with this toy, I can be “lazy cat mom”…but sometimes it’s nice to be able to just press a button, walk away, and let the good times roll!
Review #3: Much Better Than the Cat’s Meow Similar Toy!
Wow, this is so much better than the Cat’s Meow toy. I was pleasantly surprised at how quiet the toy is. My kitten seriously played with this toy for an hour non-stop. I finally had to shut it down because he looked exhausted, but he couldn’t stay away from it. IT has 4 different speed, but the random speed is more exciting than the others. The only downside is that the wand comes off if my kitten pulls on it too hard when he grabs it. It does click when it’s placed on, but will still come off. I will just have to glue it on, not a deal breaker. Please don’t buy the Cat’s Meow and buy this one instead.
Review #4: Cat Loved it…Until it Stopped Working
First off, my cat was obsessed with this thing. If you cat pounces around when your move your hands or feet under the covers, then your cat will love this too. It combines hunting with chasing and it’s really an awesome idea for a cat toy.
That being said, my unit broke 2 weeks after I got it. I think the reason is that my cat would chase it around for a few minutes, then pounce on it, and sit on the arm while the motor still tried to keep it moving. This burned out the motor VERY quickly. I can’t recommend this product because you will have to watch your cat like a hawk to make sure it doesn’t sit on the arm…and that defeats the purpose of having an electronic cat toy right?
Review#5: Don’t Buy Until Feather Replacements Available
Cat loves it BUT he defeathered the arm within a couple of weeks and NO REPLACEMENTS ARE SOLD.
Review #6: My Cats LOVED it, but Unfortunately It Consumes so Many Batteries…
My cats LOVED it, but unfortunately it consumes so many batteries to stay alive. I’ve bought packs and packs of batteries. It’s crazy. Eventually, they tore out the feathers on the feather option, which is expected I suppose. But then it just stopped moving. The light is on, and if I push the stick around, it moves with the force of my hand, but not the machine itself. Very unfortunate demise, it was a favorite in my house. Will not purchase again from this company, but will look to another maker.
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