I’m sure no one would be surprised to learn that, out of the masses of cat toys out there, a large quantity are based on the look and feel of the humble mouse.
All the same, I really didn’t clue into just how many varieties of toy mice for cats were actually available until I started doing some digging.
Now let me explain – I’m not just talking variations of the regular ol’ swat-a-mouse style toys here. You know, the kinds you can buy at the dollar store, and end up with a number of when you buy those really affordable 10-20 piece variety packs that are perfect for starting or buffing up your cat toy collection with.
Obviously, I knew there were a tonne of those out there. There are swat-a-mouse toys for cats made of sisal rope, ones that are fluffy or furry, ones made of soft, colourful rope, ones with tails and without, others with tails made of feathers… some resemble balls, others look like real mice or even rats… you get the drill completely because chances are you can personally add around 30 variations to the list I’ve already started without hesitation.
No, I’m talking about actual, genuinely unique types of cat toys here. Wand toys that have mice dangling at the end of them, automatic self-moving electronic toys where your cat tries to chase a mouse tail, chew toys that resemble little mice, and even scratch posts that have dangling mice integrated into them. I mean if I really think about it, of course these things would exist. It’s no surprise to anyone that cats love hunting mice. Still, I think I expected maybe half the variety that’s actually out there.
I could go on, but you definitely get the picture. If you’re in the market for toy mice for cats, you’ve got one heck of a lot to choose from. So let me just show you some of the most popular types of mice-themed toys for cats, many of which I need to personally get my hands on for Avery.
Popular Mouse Toys for Cats: Simple, Electronic, & Everything Between
There are a lot of cat wands on the market, but considering the massive number of reviews and the high rating, I’d consider the Go Cat Teaser one of the most popular out there. It also seems to be a nice “investment” piece since, rather than watch the mouse on the end of the wand fall to pieces and have to chuck the whole thing, you can buy replaceable Cat Catcher refill mice to keep the good times going without so much waste.
In terms of other popular cat toy wands based on mice, there’s also the Neko Flies Small Kittenator with Rod, which is yet another investment piece that you can buy replaceable heads for. That one’s more expensive, but it does also look more durable, so it may be worth the trade off.
I wouldn’t hesitate to try either of these options with Avery, especially since – while he loves his feather toys, those never stay in tact long and rarely can the head be replaced on feather wand toys. I’m definitely into long-term products over ones that fall apart quickly or can’t be maintained, so I’ll be doing my best to get my hands on something like these wands in the next few months, especially before I get a kitten who will almost certainly tear the ends of wands to shreds.
There are so many catnip toys out there, I wouldn’t be surprised if I learned there were nearly as many cat toys that implemented catnip than varieties of cat toys without.
I do think they’re not ideal for all cats, considering my Avery literally has zero interest in catnip toys past the first five minutes. That spurred me to write an article about how there are so many cute catnip toys I’d like more than my own cat would. Still hoping my next cat loves catnip so I can buy sushi-shaped kitty toys and feel they might actually get some good use, but at least Avery uses his Jeepers Creepers toy rat as a kick toy, so not everything I’ve bought in this department has gone completely unused.
If your cat’s into catnip & mice, you may want to take a peek at the following alternatives to the SmartyKat catnip mouse, in case there’s a version you think your cat would like better:
- Petlinks Compressed Catnip Toy
- SmartyKat Value Pack Cat Toys
- Petlinks Lil’ Creepers Refillable Catnip Cat Toys
- SmartyKat Rat Pack Catnip Cat Toys
- Petlinks Jeepers Creepers Refillable Catnip Cat Toys
- SPOT Skinneeez Mouse Cat Catnip Toy
I absolutely believe that this motorized cat toy where your cat chases a battery-operated mouse tail around and around in circles is better as a kitten toy than it is as an adult or senior cat toy.
SmartyKat’s Hot Pursuit is based on the same sort of idea, but with a more furry prey than the Cat’s Meow automatic toy. It seems to get more positive reviews, though it’s definitely less well known than Cat’s Meow. It’s worth a shot if your cat is easy to please, in my opinion, but if you’ve got a cat who’s anything like mine (i.e. super lazy), you’ll probably want to try the next type of battery operated cat toy instead…
I lucked into discovering movement activated electronic squeak or chirp cat toys a while back when I just happened to add one to my cart because of some positive reviews right before I checked out.
I could not believe how Avery’s taken to this simple toy. He’s usually really, really hard to engage in play, and though I always suspected sound might make him more likely to dive into prey mode, none of the crinkle toys I tried ever did enough to get him to leap in – just piqued his curiosity enough to watch.
These types of cat toys have been so good for him, I’m doing my best to test out a few more. They come in a few different varieties – some actually coming on rods, or integrated into balls (which are not his favourite types of toys) – so I can’t wait to see if the squeak is enough to make him play with toys he doesn’t usually go for.
In case you think your cat would be interested in squeaking mouse toys like mine is, but want to look through a bunch of options before committing to one first, take a look through these alternatives:
- OurPets Play-N-Squeak Twice the Mice Cat Toy
- OurPets Play-N-Squeak Wee MouseHunter Kitten Toy
- OurPets Ball of Fury Cat Toy
- OurPets Play-N-Squeak Dangle Mouse
Okay, I had to give the swat-a-mouse types of cat toys their moment in the spotlight, though I did my best to feature a few more interesting varieties before they got a chance to shine.
These types of cat toys make absolutely amazing home alone cat toys since cats can so easily play with them by themselves. Still, I do find cat springs like the ones by Ethical Pet to have the edge over them in terms of their appeal to cats.
Some of the popular swat-a-mouse cat toy variations include:
- Penn Plax Play Fur Mice Cat Toys
- Zanies Rattling Hypno Mice Cat Toys
- Catit Eco Terra Natural Cornhusk and Raffia Cat Toy
Let me know which styles and variations your cat likes best in the comments down below!
This is a sort of self-play cat toy that’s a bit like a dangle cat wand, as it’s a mouse on a string, but that’s attached to the top of the door (for instance) and when your cat yanks on it, it’ll jump up for him or her to catch and play with again. Definitely a great option for those looking to entertain their cat without lifting a finger themselves, though if your cat is aggressive with toys, I’d be sure to supervise a cat playing with toys like this as they can be choking hazards.
An alternative along the same lines in case this is something you find your cat is into: Our Pets Batting Practice Interactive Cat Toy.
This is one cat toy I didn’t imagine existed – a scratcher pad/cat cave home that actually looks like a mouse. I love the pictures of reviews of this product – seeing cat heads popping out of a mouse’s eye socket and kitty naps with a mouse twice the size of them is just too much fun! Hope there will be more animal-shaped cat scratcher houses as time goes on. Who wouldn’t want to see a cat sleeping in an elephant?
Chew toys like these catnip chew mice by Petstages are so good for kittens who are teething and adult cats who can’t help but nibble on everything in their sight. This particular chew toy is really popular amongst cats and their owners. They definitely aren’t unstoppable or long-life types of cat toys for most kitties, but when they’re meant to be nibbled and chewed, who could expect otherwise?
There are actually a number of mouse toys for cats made of real animal hair. Definitely not for everyone, but for anyone who wants to give these types of toys a try in case the smell or texture of real fur makes their cat highly engaged, take a peek around because there are quite a number around. Besides these CoolCyberCats ones made from real buffalo hair, Kats’N Us has ones made of real rabbit fur that also seem to be quite popular.
An automatic whack-a-mole style cat toy that’s got an electronic mouse that whizzes above and below a platform. I have a feeling this is one automatic interactive cat toy I really need to try, as Avery loves it when things go in and out of his line of sight while playing. A couple other noteworthy interactive electronic automatic cat toys similar to this one include:
- FYNIGO Cat Interactive Toys with a Running Mice and a Scratching Pad
- Cat Toy Interactive Training Exercise Cat Kitten Mouse Play Toys with Turbo Scratching Post Pad
A scratching post with a little mouse dangling from the top. Super fun if it appeals to kitties. A tonne of small cat trees and inexpensive cat towers of all different sizes have little pom poms dangling from them for cats or kittens to play with, but this Downtown Pet Supply and Partysaving Pet palace’s Cat Claw Scratching Post are some of the few posts I’ve seen that have actual mice dangling from them.
I wish there were a lot of remote control mouse cat toys out there, but there don’t seem to be, and currently the ones that are out there don’t get very many high reviews. Quite a shame as I’m sure a lot of people would be interested in a highly engaging electronically moving mouse toy for their cat, but hey, some things just don’t appeal to our furry friends as much as we want them to.
This is a ball track toy, similar to the ever-so-popular Petstages Tower of Tracks, but with an ever so cute little red mouse sitting on top that cats can whack and pull at. I definitely think this would have a different appeal than the Tower of Tracks, which I’m hoping to buy soon, so if he likes that toy, I will be adding this one to my list to try as well.
Another whack-a-mole style mouse toy, though this one comprising of a cat toy box and a mouse on a stick that you control manually to pop in and out of holes for your cat to go after. I know this would be up Avery’s ally – or well it should be, you never know sometimes. I need to give it a shot. Truth be told, he’d probably enjoy me poking the end of the stick rather than the mouse side through, but hey, a cat likes what he likes!
Your Opinions on Mouse Toys for Cats?
What are your thoughts and opinions on toy mice for cats?
Does your cat love mouse-shaped cat toys? Which types are his or her personal favourites?
If your cat enjoys the standard swat-a-mouse type, which variations does he or she like? Ones with tails? Furry ones? Heavier ones? Ones that look like real mice?
If your cat likes another type of cat toy, which? Have you seen any on this list you think might also appeal?
Can’t wait to hear your thoughts in the comments down below!