The year of the cat

Posted by Marlinee on Jan 25, 2015 in Middle Age |

I have found my new career: reviewing cat toys. I think it is a very underserved market. Surely I am not the only person who has bought perfectly good toys that languish in the toy basket because they have been found wanting. I’m not sure I will be able to discover the reasons behind why a toy falls out of favour after being played with for days and days, or maybe even cats have a maximum threshold for cat spit, but I will leave that off my job description. My mission will be to tell people how to spot a good cat toy at 20 paces.

I want to be the guy who invented the Cat Dancer. For those of you unfortunate enough not to have a cat (because if you have a cat, you will have gone through about 10 Cat Dancers so far), a Cat Dancer is a piece of wire with rolled up cardboard attached to the end. According to the fine folks at Cat Dancer Products Inc., “All of our handheld toys are manufactured in our factory in Neenah, Wisconsin. Our toys have been independently tested and certified safe. They have passed all the tests necessary for children’s toys in both the US and the EU.”

Now the fact that apparently reputable cat toys need to pass safety standards is news to me. I don’t think the powers that oversee this requirement are aware that cats do not make it a habit to bother with safety. Or at least my cats don’t. Otherwise they wouldn’t be busy jumping into random cars just because a door is open or climbing trees or relaxing on railings that are a good 40 feet off the ground. But at least I can rest assured that no peril will come to them from toys that have a cat safety seal of approval. But I digress.

The Cat Dancer retails for about $4. I would place the material costs at about one cent, and if we factor in the hourly wage of factory worker who crafts it, plus packaging and shipping, I still don’t think we can get much north of seventy-five cents in cost of goods sold. It is pretty much a license to print money because no cat can resist a Cat Dancer and it has built in obsolescence because both cat slobber and cat claws are kryptonite to cardboard. I’m guessing the grand poobah at Cat Dancer Inc has the fanciest house in all of greater metropolitan Neenah (which apparently graces the shores of Lake Winnebago and has exactly 25,501 people).

So this takes care of recommendation number one. Number two, no one ever went wrong with catnip. Just make sure you buy your catnip toys in shapes and colours that amuse you or go with your decor because they will be constantly under foot. Even though they seem to be more irresistible than the DayGlo green ones, do not buy the brown ones that look like cigars because after they have been mauled for a few days they start to look like something that ought not be lying underneath the coffee table. You’re welcome.
Next week, we’ll discuss the Turbo Scratcher. Scratching area and toy all in one? And they said it couldn’t be done…

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