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pets for cats

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
I've heard that cats love to look at aquariums, so I'm thinking of getting a beta fish (in a covered box!) to entertain my cat while I'm gone. Will she really be interested, or is this just a waste? (I'd really be getting it for her, cause I don't particuraly want a fish)
post #2 of 28
I'm not sure about her being entertained but I've never gotten fish because you have to clean their tanks which I find particularly nasty. I'll take a dirty cat box over a slimy fish tank anyday.
post #3 of 28
Fish Tanks are not really hard to clean, especially if you just have a Betta, but please give him a proper tank, those boxes are cruel.... it's like keeping a cat in a moving crate. They aren't too fussy regarding well oxygenated water, so you could have a beatuful plant filled tank with one (!) Beta in it (about the size of a Juwel96, possibly 1 size smaller). Cleaning the tank takes about 10 minutes a week, possibly less, if you stick to just the one fish...but you know what it is like sticking to just the one cat ? Fish are equally addictive..... I used to keep them, but sadly have moved inot a house with very large windows and not enough wall space for a fish tank, so I can't have them now. The cat will have to make do with the TV.
post #4 of 28
We have 2 fish in a regular fish bowl and Harley looooooveeess to sit and watch them on our counter. Last night even he was laying on his side just watching them swim around, then I was sitting there watching Harley, haha I guess the fish entertain everyone!

I think fish are a great idea for cats, Harley tried to get the fish once in the bowl, but then he realized that there is water in there and he never tried that again! (He HATES water!!) But then again I found him drinking the water yesterday, after I dipped is paw in there, he never tried drinking the water again! He just loves watching them swim around, I'm sure the fish are quite scared tho!

Just a few quick pics of Harley enjoying our fishys!



post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by babyharley



Even when there's no one home, the fish are safe?
post #6 of 28
Yup! Usually when we are gone, he wont go up there, he's usually in our room, he's never tried to get the fish, he doesn't like the water!
post #7 of 28
He is adorable...and has the same type of swirrly black markings as our Toby.
We have a fish tank also...and both cats seem not too intrested in it. They`ll watch it once in awhile...but have never tired to "go fishing".
Linda
post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by stampit3d
He is adorable...and has the same type of swirrly black markings as our Toby.
We have a fish tank also...and both cats seem not too intrested in it. They`ll watch it once in awhile...but have never tired to "go fishing".
Linda
Thanks !! More often than not, Harley is sitting/laying on the counter just watching them swim around, I think its cute, and it gives him something to do rather than terrorize the apartment!
post #9 of 28
Mine prefer to birdwatch. All you need is a bird feeder near a window and window ledge- Voila! kitty tv
post #10 of 28
I used to have a aquarium. My cats used to constantly drink the water! It got to the point where they only drank the fish water . I was concerned with it not being good for them. I finally got rid of the aquarium.
post #11 of 28
Just my opinion, but I don't think it's worth it to get fish for the kitty to enjoy, especially if you're not fond of fish yourself. I'm not a huge fish fanatic, either, but they're still living creatures that need daily feedings, a clean tank, protection (from big kitty paws), etc.

I bought my babies a toy called Cheese Chase and they LOVE it!!! It was $14.99 or so, so more than those little catnip mice, but well worth it! Here's a pic of them sharing it.

post #12 of 28
Are you sure a tv wouldn't work instead of fish?! I keep telling Jacques not to sit so close but you know how kids are... He likes to watch cooking shows with his dad (my bf).

post #13 of 28
we have 2 aquariums in our home-- one is a 55 gallon tank with tropical fish and a huge koi i have had forever ( the koi is about 7 years old and about a foot long). The other is a 30 tall in my sons room that has 3 comet goldfish in it with tons of live plants. Peanut Butter is at that tank all the time watching-- i see PB watching the big tank every now and again but there arent enough schooling fish to keep his interest. The tank is just too big and since i have a huge koi in there, i am limited on how many other fish i can have in the tank-- Im trying to give my koi away to someone with a pond so i can get a bunch more tropicals and get some schooling fish.

oh BTW the larger the tank the easier it is to clean-- I honestly havent done a full out tank cleaning of my 55 gallon in over a year and its pretty darn clean-- now the 30 gallon talll tank i have to do at LEAST once every few months if my snails keep dying. ( need to clean it this weekend) and goldfish are nasty dirty fish-- they poop everywhere and tons of it too
post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by abnihon
I've heard that cats love to look at aquariums, so I'm thinking of getting a beta fish (in a covered box!) to entertain my cat while I'm gone. Will she really be interested, or is this just a waste? (I'd really be getting it for her, cause I don't particuraly want a fish)
She would probably love it!!! My cats love my fish tank!!!
post #15 of 28
i have a 10-gal with neons and catfish, and a 2-gal with a betta. like previous posters, i wouldn't recommend getting fish if you don't like them yourself.

we also have a gerbil that we adopted when i worked at a shelter, and he's kind-of "cat-tv." i don't really handle him, he was caught in a mouse trap and running loose in someone's house before coming to the shelter. he's never really liked being handled much. it's ok. he lives in glass aquarium reinforced with books, etc on a shelf. quite safe from cats. but they can watch him. i REALLY don't recommend a rodent unless you like them as pets. i think gerbz is adorable. we had a mouse (similar circumstances) for a couple years too. i think gerbz is going on 4 years with us now. we have no idea how old he really is. in exchange for the best in gerbil care he gets to be "cat-tv." he really isn't stressed about the cats anymore, he was really nervous when we first got him. he's quite the little character. i think he's gotten used to them (a bit). and they NEVER have access to him. as i said before...don't get a rodent unless you like them and can ensure their safety. i am soooo careful with gerbz...i don't want the guys to get him.
post #16 of 28
I have a 10 gallon fish tank, a 20 gallon hermit crab tank and a desktop tank with an aquatic frog it in and Oliver loves all of them! The critters are his "little brothers and sisters" and he adores watching them! He knows the only time he's allowed on the kitchen table is when the crabs are out of their tank and in their holding tub when I'm cleaning the tank... he hops up, lays down and watches them through the side of the tub - i look over and ask "is everyone behaving?" and get a mew in return - he's like the crabby nanny! I have one of those hampster balls that I'll put one of the crabs in and Oliver will watch them roll it around the apartment and get up and mew whenever they get stuck in the corner!

My dog also had her own betta at home with my parents since she kept staring at the empty space when I took my fishtank back to school with me! (The fish has since died though and my mom hasnt gotten another yet...)

Bettas are easy to care for, so I'd say it's a great idea! (You can PM me if you'd like some care instructions)
post #17 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by babyharley
Thanks !! More often than not, Harley is sitting/laying on the counter just watching them swim around, I think its cute, and it gives him something to do rather than terrorize the apartment!

Harley is toooooooooooooo cute!!!!! I love seeing pictures of him!!
post #18 of 28
My old roommates decided to get a pair of gerbils to act as "Kitty TV." Things we learned from this experience:

1) Habitrail is not intended for gerbils. They chew right through the plastic tubing.
2) Don't believe the pet store when they tell you that you're purchasing a same-sex pair.
3) Gerbil babies look like jellybeans.
4) Gerbils become sexually active around the same time it's possible for you to determine their gender. This means that once you can reliably figure out what sex your gerbil is, she's probably already pregnant. And so are her sisters. And so is Mom ... again.
5) Gerbils are very stupid, and may not run away from your cat.
6) Your cat is faster than your gerbil, anyway.
7) A gerbil's spinal cord looks pretty much the way I thought it would. Ewwww.
8) It turns out that despite owning hamsters and rats, I don't really like gerbils.
9) Cats don't really need "Kitty TV." At least, not this kind of Kitty TV.
10) You certainly don't need the hassle. I know I didn't.
post #19 of 28
I don't know about a fish tank. I have a big 10 gallon aquarium with my daughters gold fish that we have had for 4 years. Buddy keeps trying to get them, not watch them. We put a metal cover on it, which is pretty heavy, but he still trys to get into it when he thinks no one is watching. And he is not afraid of getting wet. If Buddy was strong enough to get the cover off the aquarium, I know the fish would be lunch.
post #20 of 28
My cats love watching our fish. Just make sure the fish are safe from the cats and not in a tank that the cats can disturb.

And remember, the fish will be your pets too so make sure you are committed to maintaining their environment to keep them healthy. A good thing to keep in mind when choosing an aquarium is bigger is better. The more water it holds the more stable the conditions. Avoid fish bowls at all costs and make sure your tank has a filtration system.
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Luvmysphynx
Harley is toooooooooooooo cute!!!!! I love seeing pictures of him!!

Awww...thank you so much! I love your babies too, they are so unique!

Thanks again, I feel so proud of my little terror!
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirinae
My old roommates decided to get a pair of gerbils to act as "Kitty TV." Things we learned from this experience:

1) Habitrail is not intended for gerbils. They chew right through the plastic tubing.
2) Don't believe the pet store when they tell you that you're purchasing a same-sex pair.
3) Gerbil babies look like jellybeans.
4) Gerbils become sexually active around the same time it's possible for you to determine their gender. This means that once you can reliably figure out what sex your gerbil is, she's probably already pregnant. And so are her sisters. And so is Mom ... again.
5) Gerbils are very stupid, and may not run away from your cat.
6) Your cat is faster than your gerbil, anyway.
7) A gerbil's spinal cord looks pretty much the way I thought it would. Ewwww.
8) It turns out that despite owning hamsters and rats, I don't really like gerbils.
9) Cats don't really need "Kitty TV." At least, not this kind of Kitty TV.
10) You certainly don't need the hassle. I know I didn't.
Wow, sounds like you had quite the hassle here, thanks for the warnings!

Note to self- never get a gerbil! I used to have hamsters, 2, same thing with the gerbils, they got pregnant...2 times...ate the babies that looked like jelly beans, I felt so bad, we seperated them all that were still alive and gave them away to loving homes. I never owned a hamster again!
post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by babyharley
Note to self- never get a gerbil! I used to have hamsters, 2, same thing with the gerbils, they got pregnant.
guess i'm lucky my gerbil was alone when i got him...and a boy! i like my gerbie, but i don't recommend getting one if you don't like rodents.
post #24 of 28
I want to get a 40-50 gallon aquarium. I actually can't wait to get one! What we do for our cats . Well I used to have a 10 gallon but it was awful - very messy and I only had really cheap equipment that broke all the time. Anyway I'm ready to embark on this adventure and I heard bigger aquariums are easier to maintain and this time I've done my research and I'm buying high quality equipment to go with it.

I like fish anyway. I can sit there and watch them with the kitties .
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mirinae
My old roommates decided to get a pair of gerbils to act as "Kitty TV." Things we learned from this experience:

1) Habitrail is not intended for gerbils. They chew right through the plastic tubing.
2) Don't believe the pet store when they tell you that you're purchasing a same-sex pair.
3) Gerbil babies look like jellybeans.
4) Gerbils become sexually active around the same time it's possible for you to determine their gender. This means that once you can reliably figure out what sex your gerbil is, she's probably already pregnant. And so are her sisters. And so is Mom ... again.
5) Gerbils are very stupid, and may not run away from your cat.
6) Your cat is faster than your gerbil, anyway.
7) A gerbil's spinal cord looks pretty much the way I thought it would. Ewwww.
8) It turns out that despite owning hamsters and rats, I don't really like gerbils.
9) Cats don't really need "Kitty TV." At least, not this kind of Kitty TV.
10) You certainly don't need the hassle. I know I didn't.
That's a Top 10 list to rival David Letterman's! Sounds like you had quite the experience.
post #26 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by abnihon
I've heard that cats love to look at aquariums, so I'm thinking of getting a beta fish (in a covered box!) to entertain my cat while I'm gone. Will she really be interested, or is this just a waste? (I'd really be getting it for her, cause I don't particuraly want a fish)
Rule #1 for getting any kind of a pet: don't do it unless you want it.

Fish are definitely not hassle-free pets. Just like cats, they require care. And unlike a cat, who will be merely annoyed by a dirty litterbox, a dirty fish tank means dead fish. So you have to be 100% on board with the upkeep of the tank before getting a fish.

I know it's not something I would want to be bothered with.

They do make special videos/DVD's designed to entertain cats. It might be worth trying one of these. And $20 for a video is probably a lot cheaper than a setup for a fish tank, and the video isn't going to care if your cat hates it and it ends up in the trash!
post #27 of 28
good luck if you decide to keep a fishtank! i used to have a 55 gal one too, filled with tropical fish and plants, and it was great... and i did a half-cleaning once every two months, and had a good filter running 24/7 so the tank was really quite clean. it wasn't until after an attack of fish disease and complications with my going on vacation, where i came back to find my 4-year old pair of angelfish floating belly up, that i decided i didn't want to keep fish anymore.

i have a few baby turtles in a 10 gal tank at my apartment. pouncer's never been around them- i don't know how she'd react. i think they might be too slow to be entertaining. :P she doesn't like television either... she's a nerd, and prefers to swipe at the mouse pointer on the computer monitor, especially when i'm trying to play games. lol :P
post #28 of 28
We used to have a tank of tropical fish the cats loved it... so much that one of them steped on the heat control, The next day I could smell fish. The cat's had boiled the fish to death.
The moral of the story don't get tropical fish to entertain the cat and make sure the tank or bowl is secured to whatever serface it is on.
My cat's now just watch my Hampster from a distance, he lives on a high shelf. But every day he gets to torment the cat by going into his little ball and running after the cats.
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