I’m constantly looking for good cat toys that my cat will actually play with. It seems to me that a lot of toys on the market are ideal for kittens, and not quite the best for adult cats who are a lot harder to get engaged in playtime. I figured I’d try the Interpet Kat Tikkler because, well it’s a feather toy, and feathers usually get my cat pretty excited.
There are a couple things I wanted to make sure of with any feather wand I bought: that the wand itself wouldn’t snap, and that the feathers would take at least a considerable amount of time before they’d completely fallen off the wand (as, in my experience, all feather wands do end up falling apart given time). The Interpet Kat Tikkler has shone considerably on the first front, and has fared reasonably well on the second, especially if I’m careful when playing with Avery with it. It’s not the perfect cat wand, and it is certainly pricey for one (in my opinion), but it’s a pretty damn good option for those who, like me, are sick of toys that just don’t deliver on the engagement front.
Midway through September, I bought my first Interpet Pet Love Cat Toy. I was frustrated. Avery’s a picky cat when it comes to playtime – not so much when it comes to food or eating – but play time has been absolutely headache inducing for me on more occasions than one.
It’s not that Avery’s a destructive cat – he’s really not. Rather, he’s a little more than annoying about wanting to play and yet not actively playing when I do try to engage him.
It can be exceptionally hard for me to get him started up. And I’m really not exaggerating when I say that. He likes playing with string/yarn, though I usually grab some paracord, gut the inside, and use the outer shell for playing with him instead. Paracord is easier for me to pull away from him, it doesn’t get tangled at all, and he can’t really swallow it and end up choking on it like he could on yarn (or worse, string, which I won’t give him to play with). He’s usually a pretty good cat when it comes to not swallowing things he shouldn’t, but I’m always overly cautious in case.
But back to the Interpet Kat Tikkler Feather Wand…
This feather toy has made my life one heck of a lot easier… sorta.
Why has it only somewhat made my life easier? Well, thanks to this trinket, his obsession with playing has skyrocketed to a whole new level. He now wants to play all the time, and considering I work from home this can get a bit much. I’m hoping he’s just getting his previous lack of play time out of his system, and that he’ll calm down a little with his new found desire to play for hours and hours, but even if he doesn’t, at least this time when I do try to engage him in play time, he does actually play, and it doesn’t take him very long to get into the “predator” mode.
I’ll take that over being unable to engage him any day.
Part of the secret sauce to making this feather toy great at engaging Avery is definitely in the fact that the head doesn’t only consist of feathers. There are little pieces of metallic ribbon within the center of the head, and if I twirl the Interpet Kat Tikkler on the floor (by putting it between my thumb and my hand, then moving the wand back and forth), it causes the ribbons to make scraping and scratching noises: Avery normally immediately turns his head to look.
I’ve always found that scratching noises get him interested in play time. The fact that this feather toy has those metallic ribbons embedded in it means that not only is he being stimulated visually by feathers, but auditorily, by the scratches these ribbons make on the ground. I’m not sure I’d be happy going back to a feather toy that didn’t have something like this in it to create scratching noises, and the fact that the ribbons have never broken in play means I’m a happy camper when it comes to the safety of the item. He’s torn out feathers, of course, but never bit off one of the ribbons, let alone pulled one out. A very good sign in my opinion.
The quality, I’d say, is good for what it is. It’s a feather toy, and like any other feather toy I’ve ever come across, give it to a cat to play with for long enough and you’re going to have to replace it.
Feathers start coming out one by one the longer you play – not too bad considering I’ve had toys where feathers come out in much larger quantities, but again, it’s a feather toy, it’s going to eventually come apart.
That’s okay for me, so long as it gets use. As I’ve said, not much does get good use in this household considering Avery’s such a fussy fur baby. The ability to create engagement is definitely my #1 criteria in a cat toy, valued well above quality, because of how picky Avery is.
It’s worth re-buying a cat toy over and over if a cat is actually playing with that toy. Especially if the cost isn’t too steep. I’m glad the Interpet Cat Tikkler isn’t going for $20 – I would certainly not have bought it again in that case, but at $7.50, the toy hangs in that just-about-lasts-long-enough area to make it worth it. I’m sure I can eventually find a feather toy that’s more bang-for-buck in terms of engagement and how long it lasts, but for now, this feather wand isn’t too bad on that front.
I’d not tried any cat wands before this one where the feathers were just attached to the wand’s head and not to a string. I was wondering whether Avery would take to it as much as those types of feather toys, especially since he’s the kind of cat who likes to jump.
Truth be told, it did take him a little getting used to. When we first got the toy, he really didn’t care for it. Didn’t feel the need to gun for the fluff. But after some time, and I think once I got the hang of using the metallic ribbons to make scratching noises on the floor, he was entranced.
Nowadays, I only have to sweep the wand back and forth under a chair (like any cat, he loves peeping out from hiding places and grabbing things from under objects) and he’s game for starting to play. It does take a few minutes of warm up (a.k.a. intent staring) before he’s fully ready to make a pounce, but he’s not just standing there staring at me for 10-15 minutes like he used to with other toys, and even with string sometimes.
When he’s fully up and going, he’ll do flips and jumps and sprint to catch the feather head. Because it’s something that’s so easy to control compared to the ones with string on them, he never ends up in places he shouldn’t be either. Excellent since space is a premium in our studio flat. If I don’t want him up on the bed because I don’t want him scratching up the bedding, he has no problem sticking to playing on the floor; all I have to do is make sure that’s where I aim the feather wand.
Below you’ll find a picture of the head of the Interpet Pet Love Kat Tikkler I bought back in September versus the head of the new Interpet Kat Tikkler I bought recently. You can see that damage does get done over time – serious damage, making it so it does have to be replaced with enough use, but at the same time, even with that amount of damage done to the old cat toy, Avery still plays with it.
He doesn’t just play with it because there’s no new one to play with. I’ve tried using the new feather wand and then going back to the old, well-used one; he genuinely doesn’t care which he plays with. In fact, I’d venture to argue he almost prefers the old one, because there’s a lot more scratching noise from the metallic ribbons when I drag that one along the floor. He also likely prefers it because the smaller, more used up head moves a lot faster than the big one when I’m playing with him (the head is one hell of a lot lighter, so this makes perfect sense).
I definitely can get more use out of the old Kat Tikkler than I have. That being said, I like being prepared and having backups in case the old toy gets to the point of no return.
Another great thing about this feather wand I haven’t mentioned yet is the flexibility of the plastic of the wand. It’s great. There are so many times I’ve snapped wands in half because they’re made of hard, inflexible plastic. This plastic can take a beating, and barely gets bent out of shape even after a great deal of use.
You can barely tell the difference between my old and new wands if you’re just looking at the wand itself and not the head.
While I bought my first Interpet Pet Love Kat Tikkler in mid-September and it lasted me nearly to mid-October of daily or twice daily use, this lifespan I’m sure will definitely not be the norm. I started out being a little silly with the cat wand, tearing it away from Avery instead of getting it from him gently during playtime. If you’re more careful about how you get the wand back from your pet, chances are this thing will live at least double the length of time than if you’re not careful with it.
It also hasn’t quite lived out its full life. Like I said, Avery will still play with it. The fact that I bought 3 more brand new Interpet Pet Love Kat Tikklers means I likely won’t be using this one as much, but not because I couldn’t, just because I find it nicer to see the new toys being used than to keep using this old one over and over.
I’d say the lifespan of an Interpet Pet Love Kat Tikkler should be around one month, or maximum two if you stretch out the lifespan by being extra careful. This is assuming regular daily use where this is the only toy being played with by one not-overly-aggressive cat. It’s definitely the head that will go, I can’t really see you snapping the wand unless you’re really not being careful at all. Once about a quarter of the feathers are gone, they will start going a little bit faster, so be as careful as you can with this toy from the moment you get it if you want to extend its life.
But all in all, spending around $7.50 on a toy every month or two – that’s not too bad in my books for a toy that gets daily use. That being said, I’m saying this from the perspective of a person with a cat who simply will not engage with just any toy. If you’re like me, you’ll get the frustration, and you’ll probably think that’s hella worth the cost. If you’re not, and you have a pet that’s pretty easy to get to play – well count yourself lucky and be glad you don’t need a toy like this to make your cat happy to play.
All in all, the Interpet Cat Love Tikkler Toy is definitely a good product. Would I say it’s the best feather toy on the market? No, because it probably isn’t. I haven’t tried all the feather toys out there, and I’m sure there will be a handful that are considerably better than this product.
That being said, I don’t care: I liked this product enough to buy three more of it. Why? My cat’s fussy. Very fussy. Doesn’t play with just anything, and he plays with this: consistently and without getting bored of it. He’s played with it every day for nearing a month now, and while it took him a while of to get him used to it (or rather, for me to get used to knowing how he prefers to be played with with it), it’s definitely keeping his attention now. So much that he never seems to have enough of it and constantly wants play time.
If you want a wand that has a high chance of delivering an engaged play time, even if your cat is fussy – this is likely it. If you’re looking for something that’s better budget – that will live a long time and will barely ever have to be replaced, sorry but you’ll probably need to look elsewhere. Is it worth the money? Definitely for me. Maybe not for you. Really depends on your cat. But this toy is 100% worth a try.