Lifestyle

Revealed: The secret life of the household cat after dark

The Secret Life of the Cat: BBC's Horizon programme finds out what household cats really get up to after dark.
The Secret Life of the Cat: BBC's Horizon programme finds out what household cats really get up to after dark. BBC

FAREWELL, Macavity.

The age when cats could lead secret lives among the gardens, allotments and flower boxes of middle England is over.

Intent on solving one of the last mysteries on the planet - what cats do when we can't see them - a team of experts (and television producers) fitted 50 felines with GPS tagging devices to monitor their movements around the quaint Surrey village of Shamley Green.

The results of the Horizon documentary The Secret Life of the Cat revealed that, yes, cats do spend a lot of time in other people's houses, eating food that wasn't intended for them.

The buzz surrounding the show obviously inspired a number of cat owners to start snooping - sales figures show that G-PAWS GPS Data Recorder pre-orders are up 350 per cent on last week and it is the fastest pre-selling pet supplies product on Amazon.co.uk.

And if the flourishing pet-tracking industry is anything to go by, it seems that many of us are harbouring real suspicions of our pets' activities.

One such company, Pawtrax, has sold around 600 GPS tracking devices for cats and dogs since setting up shop three years ago.

The devices fit around the collar and work in real time using a mobile SIM card.

Simply text your pet, as it were, and receive a reply with a link to a map showing you where it is.

"The main reason [people buy Pawtrax] is many owners have a cat that disappear for a long time and they want to know where it's been," says Pawtrax owner Peter Callaway.

"There was one cat that  kept coming back  smelling of ladies' perfume and they used our device to track it down to a neighbour's house."

Lee Martin, a picture editor at The Independent, bought a Retrieva tracking device for his German Shorthaired Pointer, Dieter, after hearing about a spike in pet thefts in his area, but ended up using it when the dog went missing of its own accord.

"I got this phone call at work from our dog walker, saying they couldn't get Dieter back on his lead," says Martin.

"So I got the tracker up on my computer screen and saw him run off into an estate.

"He kept changing directions and I spent the next 20 minutes directing our dog walker to find him. It was like something out of an episode of 24. Without the GPS we never could have found him."

As for those who want to shoot a pet's-eye view documentary of their own, Sony Japan has recently released a dog harness you can clip its High Definition action cameras to.

Although don't be disappointed when you end with up several hours of footage focused on the rear ends of other peoples' pooches.

Topics:  animals cats editors picks gps lifestyle pets



NABBED: ninja stars, credit card knives, machetes in Lismore

Richmond Local Area Command officers and the Australian Federal Police (AFP) National Anti-Gangs Squad seized more than 70 prohibited weapons in Lismore in a joint-operation. February 21, 2017.

Joint police strike force pounces on illegal weapons in NR

Fundraiser for dearly departed mum Shanelle Bull, 33

DEARLY DEPARTED: Shanelle Bull pictured in January 2016, with husband Jimmy, son Braxton, then aged four, and newborn daughter Halle.

Special event to support the family of a young mum who passed away.

Lismore to be over run by flourescent joggers

Everyone is welcome to participate in the fluro, fun and free weekly Lismore Parkrun at 7am on Saturday April 1.

"Community enterprise” to celebrate Parkrun birthday

Local Partners

Bliss N Eso announce tribute show for stuntman

AUSSIE hip hop outfit Bliss N Eso have announced they will play a tribute show for the stuntman killed during the filming of their music video.

Neil Finn to headline Bluesfest

Neil Finn, of Crowded House fame, will play in Byron Bay with his wife Sharon and their band The Pyjama Club on June 11.

DON'T dream, it's not over, Neil Finn to hit the stage

MOVIE REVIEW: Trainspotting sequel as good as original

Ewen Bremner in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

Director Danny Boyle proves sequels can be done well.

How Karl Stefanovic's wife, kids found out about girlfriend

Karl Stefanovic and Jasmine Yarbrough after their day on Sydney Harbour. Picture: Jonathan Ng

Pictures splashed across tabloid were shock to family

Julie trumpets her career in music

MAKE SOME NOISE: Julie Payne played trumpet in the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra for 27 years and is retiring. She grew up in Casino.

"She has the potential to become a first-class instrumentalist.”

WATCH: Toowoomba opera hopeful's incredible voice

Kaitlyn Orange attends Opera Queensland auditions at Empire Theatres for Opera at Jimbour, Saturday, February 18, 2017.

Opera hopefuls vie for parts in performance at Jimbour House

MKR turns spiteful in suddendeath elimination

Alyse and Matt battled Josh and Amy in a spiteful elimination cook-off.

Bottom of the ladder faces off in spiteful sudden-death cook-off.

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Potential home buyers punished for doing the 'right thing'

Should I go to university or buy a house?

Proposed $21 million airpark in holding pattern

A front view of the proposed new aviation museum at Evans Head.

Late businessman's dream on hold ... for now

Clarence River island paradise selling for $5M

Former Ballina councillor Margaret Howes is selling her island getaway.

GALLERY: Tropical getaway with beaches and airstrip put on market.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!