PDX Pet Design SHRU the Intelligent Cat Companion
|Price:||$119.00 + $4.67 shipping|
- With a sleek and modern design, shru mimics and responds like a living animal, keeping kitties active and engaged while you're out
- You can tune shru's settings to your cat's unique play style and sound preferences
- Shru is fully rechargeable via USB so that you need not go hunting for batteries when it dies
- Ideal for hard surfaces and low-pile rugs, comes with one fluffy feather tail
- Support the entrepreneurs: Look for the PDX Pet Design listing
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SHRU - The Intelligent Cat Companion brings the next generation of cat entertainment into your home. Designed to be your cat’s new best friend, SHRU entertains your cat while you're away for the day by mimicking a small animal’s erratic movement and sound. It's rechargeable by USB and you can configure SHRU to operate in three different play modes to keep kitty on her toes.
SHRU detects obstacles and even struggles when trapped, giving kitty the satisfaction of the hunt. By automatically turning on and off throughout the day, kitty's new SHRU BFF exercises all of kitty's innate hunting phases -- the stalking, the planning, the flirting, and the final pounce. Turn SHRU on before you leave the house, and SHRU will do the job of keeping kitty mentally and physically fit.
From the Manufacturer
There are several phases to kitty play -- planning, stalking, flirting, and the pounce. SHRU mimics a small rodent's erratic motion and stop-and-go play, igniting your feline’s hunting instincts. It evades your kitty and even struggles when trapped, giving kitty the satisfaction of The Hunt.
It’s well known among feline behaviorists that non-stop toys wear your cat out, which leads kitty to ignore the motion. What’s more, non-stop toys can frustrate cats as the cats do not achieve the satisfaction of capturing and stopping the toy. That’s why SHRU is designed to play for a short period every hour for a total of 5 hours. SHRU struggles and "plays dead" when trapped to satisfy kitty's yearning. Turn SHRU on in the morning, and leave the house guilt-free, knowing kitty will be mentally and physically busy throughout the day!
SHRU interacts with your kitty like a living animal, playing more frequently as your cat engages. SHRU mimics a small rodent’s behavior and even struggles when trapped.
Use SHRUPlay to choose from three different play modes (Frisky, Sneaky, and Scaredy) and various cute sounds while your SHRU charges. SHRUPlay is an easy-to-use desktop application and is supported on Mac OS 10 and later and Windows 8 and later.
SHRU’s rechargeable battery retains charge for 4-5 days of active play. Rechargeable by USB, you'll never have to replace the battery.
At PDX Pet Design, we create products your pet would design if she could. We believe in the superior nature of our furry friends and strive to offer them thoughtfully designed products that truly enhance their lifestyle while strengthening the human-pet bond.
Describe your product in 3 words.
Next-Gen Cat Entertainment
How did you come up with the idea for this product?
Anyone who owns a cat knows that the typical pet store offers you cheap and rather uninteresting balls, things-on-strings, and noise makers that entertain for a few minutes, and then end up under your couch, ne’er to be seen again. We’ve bought many of these toys ourselves, and — just like you — faced the disappointment on our cats’ faces. We figured it was time to bring kitty entertainment into the 21st century, so we built the ultimate cat toy. After testing early prototypes on our three finicky resident cats, we knew we were onto something.
What makes your product special?
SHRU is truly designed to be your cat’s new BFF. We worked with cat behaviorists to develop various play modes so that you can find at least one mode that will appeal to your kitty’s unique personality. SHRU is designed for the modern household and is virtually indestructible. We stand behind the quality of our products and if you ever have a problem, we’ll happily replace your SHRU. No questions asked.
What has been the best part of your startup experience?
The best part of running a pet startup is the love we receive from pet-lovers around the globe. When our customers send us stories, photos, and videos of their kitties stalking their SHRU, it warms our hearts and makes it worth all of the late nights we've had running our pet startup.
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Safety InformationFor cat use only
Legal DisclaimerSHRU is intended for cat use only.
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|Sold By||PDX Pet Design||Amazon.com||Bellemusique||Amazon.com||B Bascolor|
|Item Dimensions||3 x 2 x 2 in||2.88 x 2.88 x 9 in||9.25 x 7.87 x 2.56 in||0.38 x 3.5 x 8.5 in||6.7 x 6.7 x 8 in|
Top customer reviews
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The SHRU is about double the size of an egg, and similarly shaped. It's made of a white plastic that feels pretty substantial (though I wouldn't drop it on hard floors). It has one button to turn it off and on, a USB port for charging and setting preferences, and a keyhole of sorts to attach the feathery tail.
Setup was easy: plug it into your computer with the included USB cable (though the cable is only about eight inches long, so it's utility is limited), use the SHRU app to change any preferences you want changed, let it charge for an hour, and plug in the tail. Even if you're not tech savvy, this is easy to use and straightforward.
So what about when you turn it on? The SHRU vibrates, rolls around, and can make a variety of noises (these can be turned off, if they start driving you up the wall). It behaves erratically, stopping for minutes at a time, then rolling around and chirping. I think this is actually a good thing, since the unpredictability is more stimulating for a cat.
I was impressed by the logic the SHRU uses to extricate itself from tight spaces. Mine went under a bookshelf, then re-emerged a few minutes later after it figured out how to avoid the walls. This is a great feature to engage a cat, as well as so you know you can leave it alone for an hour and won't just find it stuck in a corner.
My house is mostly hardwood floors, which the SHRU moves easily on, but it also had enough power to roll up onto area rugs. One downside is that though tile or wood floors are ideal for the SHRU, it's quite noisy on hard surfaces, since it's basically plastic clattering against wood or tile. Something like a neoprene sleeve would make this much less noisy, though perhaps the noise is something a cat enjoys (what with being jerks and all).
In the case of my cat, he found the SHRU somewhat interesting to look at and observe, but only twice did he actually approach it and give it a swat. He's quite a playful cat, so I found this surprising. I will say he much preferred the 'frisky' setting on the SHRU versus the 'scaredy cat' they recommend to start. Every cat is unique, but I will say that he personally seemed to enjoy SHRU less than a cheap wand-style cat toy you can get for a few dollars at any pet store.
SHRU is a great idea and I hope they keep improving it. For some cats, it might be hugely fun and a great way to keep them entertained, but for me, it just turned out to be a novelty.
-SHRU's logic really does keep it from getting stuck in corners or under things
-Customizable noise and behavior settings
-Noisy on wood and tile floors
-Charging cable is too short unless you want to charge it right next to a laptop
-Feathers had been pulled out in under 30 seconds
-No light to indicate if it's off or on
At first my cat appreciated some freshly trapped prey; he pounced it twice on the first day. But very quickly, he became bored. The Shru would obediently do its best to entice my kitty into yet another round of play time, only to get scornful glares. Those two pounces were the start and end of what I had hoped would be a great companionship.
I did try this on some linoleum flooring as well; we have two small sections (approx 4' x 6' each) in my apartment. It was very, very loud! So loud, you could not hear the chirps it was trying to make. A clattering of hard plastic mixed with the loud buzz of the motor. Cat did not approve, not at all! Ears flat, he immediately walked away upon seeing/hearing Shru on linoleum. Did not even care that it was now a nice rolling target.
It is entirely possible that the Shru just isn't good for us apartment dwellers, so I don't want to judge it too harshly. The app did work, and the AI did act out in the expected manner based on the various settings. The sounds are extremely cute and made my cat's ears perk up. But if the toy is not played with (or at least stared at with some interest), then it's just not worth the luxury price tag.
The idea is pretty awesome, and I think can be improved upon. For example, a silicone coating on the hard plastic shell could potentially be helpful. It would reduce the clattering noise on harder floors while providing friction for improved rolling on carpets. Covering the Shru's body with real fur or leather could similarly improve grip and manage noise, while also adding a scent element to attract kitties. Or perhaps giving it a lumpy-bumpy surface so that when it rolls the ridges can help move it forward (kinda like how dirt bike tires are lumpy).
Though far less important, I was personally frustrated by how difficult it was to tell if Shru was on or off. This was especially hard when I used the app to disable the chirping sounds to see if my cat would like that setup better. Turning off the general sounds means you get no chime telling you when it has been turned on. So you have to move the Shru and see if it responds after trying to turn it off or on... which can take longer than expected while set to Scaredy.
I returned mine after 4 days of trying the different settings and getting nowhere, literally... and with its feathers still fully intact. That is how little attention my kitty gave this toy. I swear, based on the baneful look in his eyes, if he could have given 'the bird' to the Shru, he would have!
Most recent customer reviews
Need to return it. It works ok but it's too noisy on our tile & wood floors for my wife. PDX Pet Design is gone.Read more