Okay with cats? I have two cats, and would like to purchase this for my son but am afraid that the cats would go crazy and knock over/kill the caterpillars. Anyone own this and one or more cats and have any comments/suggestions?
asked by In My Life on March 4, 2008
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I've done this kit 3 times with my 3 children, and, coincidentally, I have 3 cats. The caterpillars grow in a sealed vial, so there's no problem there. The mesh habitat for the adult butterflies can counter-stand (we just put it where the cats couldn't really see it) but also has a velcro strap atop if you want to hang it like a chinese lantern out of reach. The two-year old human was a bigger worry for us than the cats - he just wanted to hold the caterpillars and then the butterflies all the time!
Hedge answered on April 18, 2008

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The first time we did this, we left our hunting-prone cat alone in the house just as the butterflies were emerging--and came home to find the habitat knocked on the floor and the butterflies killed. We did this again, without a cat in the house, and it was a very fascinating and enjoyable project for all. So your question was well-founded, but if you can keep an eye on the butterfly habitat or out of the reach of cats (you can even hang it up by its handle), you should do fine.
Tricia Robertson answered on April 29, 2008

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So, our caterpillars have formed their cocoons and have been moved into the net. So far, so good. We kept the caterpillar jar on a bookshelf and then the net is on top of the bookshelf, and the cats have not gone near it. I'll update when they "hatch" into butterflies to let you know if the cats go after the net.

UPDATE: The caterpillars successfully grew into butterflies without being mangled by our cats. The key was as P. Robertson suggested- keep it out of the reach of the cats. Ours stayed on top of a high bookshelf that had no climbing mechanisms around it. Cats would watch the butterflies intently and lick their lips, but could never get up there. Good luck!
In My Life answered on May 27, 2008

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I was wondering the same thing. I also have two cats and haven't ordered this for that very reason. My daughter really wants one for her birthday, so I may try it out to see.
Angela answered on April 9, 2008

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Thanks so much for the info- that helps a lot!
In My Life answered on April 18, 2008

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Thanks for your help! I just ordered our first set of caterpillars, so I'll keep them out of reach based on yours and others' advice.
In My Life answered on April 30, 2008

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We have 2 cats and 2 dogs and have raised many butterflies....mostly Monarchs found in the garden. We've never had a problem with the cats or dogs.
D. Rawls answered on September 28, 2010

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You can always put things in another room and close the door. The larvae are enclosed in a sealed container. I hung the house from a chandelier so nothing can reach them. And yes, the larvae will survive extra days of shipping. Their packaging/food delivery during this time is great.
Henrietta Bagsley answered on May 6, 2011

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Ouch! That was a naughty kitty you had :P
wile_e2005 answered on July 19, 2012

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Our cats were as interested in the net butterfly container as they were in the insects. We had to give it its own room with the door closed. I don't think there's anywhere else in the house (at any height) the cats wouldn't have gotten to them otherwise.
DEMom answered on September 19, 2012
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