Laser pointers for cats make excellent toys that allow them to chase and work their natural hunting instincts. But there are a lot of different choices. You have some which are made in a simple torch design and others that standalone and work automatically. To help prevent you from scrolling through hundreds of options, we have selected our top 10 and displayed them along with their key features to help shine some light on your choice!
This laser pointer for cats is especially made for self-play. The concealed laser auto-rotates, and you can choose the speed based on your cat’s ability level. There is a 15-minute timer which automatically shuts off the device, preventing your kitty from getting overstimulated. The toy can point the laser over larger distances, which makes it ideal for either indoor or outdoor play. It is battery-operated, so you are not limited by any cords keeping it tethered. Designed in the USA, you can be assured that quality is behind the design.
Can be played across a large area
Suitable for outdoor play
Encourages exercise and promotes health
Designed in the USA
- BrandFriends Forever
- Weight10.4 ounces
This two-pack of cat laser pointers also includes a little mouse toy for your kitty to chase. The pointers have a sliding button design that means that you don’t have to keep it held down the whole time. They operate using regular AA batteries, which are easier to obtain than the mini batteries. Made of high-quality stainless-steel, these are durable pointers, while they are still comfortable to hold. You can also use them as LED flashlights if you need to shed a bit of light on something else. And since there are two, these are the perfect option if you have multiple felines.
- Weight1.6 ounces
Another automatic laser game, you can adjust the mirror to customize the direction it shoots in. It moves randomly in an effort to mimic the movement of prey, but it shuts off after 15 minutes to prevent overstimulation. You have the option of setting the device to automatic or manual mode, which is great as you have the choice of letting your cat enjoy a game on their own or holding the toy and choosing where to point the laser.
Random moving laser across walls and floors
Automatically turns off after 15 minutes
Usable on automatic or manual mode
- Weight7.8 ounces
This interactive LED toy is rechargeable via a USB port, which means that you don’t have to worry about continually replacing the batteries. The brightness is good enough that you can use the toy during the day or at night as you prefer. This is a high-performance and high-quality device that is made of an aluminum alloy body with an integrated microchip on the inside. It has been very highly rated by previous customers.
Good enough brightness to use during the day or at night
High-performance with aluminium alloy body
Guaranteed for three months after purchase
- Weight4.8 ounces
With a maximum 5mW max power output, this laser cat toy is safe for cats and runs automatically to encourage independent play. You can operate it with the touch of a button, and it will shut down after 10 minutes to stop your cat from getting too stimulated. The patterns that the laser game creates are designed to be interesting to your cat to keep them engaged in the game. Again, it is battery-operated, so you can choose the best spot for a game.
Automatically turns off after 10 minutes
Operates with three AA batteries
Max of 5mW of power output for safe operation
- Weight10.4 ounces
In a funky wireless cube design, you can direct the laser to shine on the ground or the wall to keep your cat’s playtime constantly interesting. There are three speeds to choose between depending on how quick your cat moves, and you can also pause it. The random motion is designed to stop the toy from becoming too predictable, while there is also an off timer that will shut the device down to save on the battery life and stop your cat from playing for too long.
Adjustable circling speed
Flip the cube onto any surface
Moves in an unpredictable manner
Off timer setting
- Weight7.8 ounces
This toy is designed to be put up on a wall or window, so you can simply press a button when you want your cat to play. There are three different methods that you can affix it to a surface, whether by pothook, suction cup or a nail. It will move across walls and floors in a random manner, making for an exciting game for your kitty. You don’t have to worry about playtime going on for too long as the device will turn off after 10 minutes.
Randomly moving laser
Three attachment methods
Three AAA batteries for operation
Auto turns off in 10 minutes
- Weight7.2 ounces
You can place this cat laser toy up on high ground to widen the scope of the game. This is another USB charging device that saves you money on continually having to buy replacement batteries. There are five adjustable circling patterns, so you can pick the one that most suits your room or mix them up for your kitty’s entertainment. Like many other devices, you can set it to turn off after 15 minutes, but you can get it to automatically turn on again every three hours, so your cat can continue playing without you being there. The silent motor inside ensures the noise will not be a distraction.
USB charge saves batteries
Super silent motor
5 adjustable circling ranges
- Weight8 ounces
This clever interactive device combines a laser toy with a feather toy. There are four rotating modes and three types of play options to choose between. It charges through a USB fast port for convenience, and it can work between 8 and 12 hours without interruption. The light of the device has been FDA-approved to not hurt the eyes of your kitty or members of your family. This ingenious toy can entertain two cats at the same time!
Laser and feather toys combined
Four rotating modes
Three play options
Fast USB charging port
- Weight1.5 pounds
The final choice on our list is a hands-free device that you can mount using a suction cup or by screws. It will turn on when it detects movement and turn off again after five minutes to prevent it from becoming too stimulating. The battery is chargeable via USB and will work for three hours continuously. You can choose between slow and fast modes at the touch of a button.
Four hanging options
Shuts off after five minutes of play
Works for three hours continuously
Activates via thermal sensor
- Weight8 ounces
Best Laser Pointer for Cat Buying Guide & FAQ
What to Look for in a Cat Laser Pointer
- Automatic or Manual
Some cat laser toys are designed for your kitty to play on their own while others have to be operated manually. Some have both manual or automatic settings. Ultimately, this comes down to your personal preferences and how your cat enjoys playing.
- Battery Operated or Chargeable
Many of the cat laser toys available are battery operated, so you need to think about buying and replacing these every few weeks. There are also those that are chargeable, but you have to remember to continually keep them ready to use.
- Adjustable Features
Look at the different adjustable features that allow you to change up the game with your cat. For example, there are those with several different speed settings to choose between. You may also be able to set the direction or movements of the lasers.
- Automatic Shut Off
While it is great for your cat to be enjoying themselves, there is such a thing as too much fun when it comes to these types of games. Many of the devices listed above come with an automatic shut off feature after a given amount of time – usually 10 or 15 minutes.
Different Types of Cat Laser Toys
- Handheld Pointers
These are small lasers that you operate by hand. Generally, they are made of stainless-steel or similar with a button to turn the laser on or off.
- Standalone Lasers
This variety comes in different styles like cubes or towers, but they are grouped together by the fact that they stand on their own and run automatically. Often, the laser moves in a random pattern and you can choose the speed setting.
- Wall-Mounted Lasers
Next, you have the type of lasers that can be mounted to a wall or window using a screw or suction cup. These stay in one place, are operated by a button, and usually have an auto shutoff feature as well.
How to Use a Cat Laser Toy the Right Way
Rather than just setting letting your cat get on with playing by themselves, you should set up the environment properly. If you are using an automatic laser, it is better if you move objects out of the way that your cat could bump into or hurt themselves on. Test the laser before use so you know where it is going to point. Set the timer if required so that the game doesn’t go on for too long. Follow any instructions that you have along with the pointer.
One of the problems that critics of this type of toy have is that it simulates hunting without providing the thrill of catching the prey. You can help to get around this if you have a manual laser pointer and some stuffed toys to hand. Start by zigzagging the laser in a normal fashion, encouraging your kitty to chase after it. You can then shine it on one of the stuffed toys to encourage your cat to go for it. You should choose the intensity and length of the playtime session based on your cat’s age, physical state, and interest levels. Rather than ending the game to quickly, you can start to slow it down until it comes to a natural stopping point. You can reward your cat after a session by offering them some treats or even a full meal. At which point, they may decide that the time is ripe for a well-earned nap!
Remember, you should never point the laser directly at your cat’s eyes. While they are generally not strong enough to cause permanent damage, you still risk dazzling your cat in the light. Don’t just rely on the laser pointer as your sole cat toy. Choose some other options as well to keep your kitty on their toes.
Best Laser Pointer for Cat FAQ:
Q: Why do cats like laser pointers so much?
A: The main reason why cats like laser pointers is simply that they trigger their natural hunting instincts. Cats have an inbuilt desire to stalk and hunt their prey, which is a desire that can sometimes not be fulfilled in domesticated felines compared to their wild counterparts. This is part of their nature, and even if your cat remains indoors, these playtime sessions give your cat the opportunity to be the hunter they were born to be.
Another reason why cats like laser pointers is that they allow them some much-needed mental stimulation, which is particularly important in house cats as they can become bored just like us. Laser pointers are just one of many toys that can be used to provide your kitty with entertainment. And they also provide an excellent opportunity for your cat to get some exercise as well.
Q: Can a red laser light harm my kitten’s eyes?
A: Laser pointers are unlikely to cause permanent eye damage unless you shine them into your cat’s eyes directly for an extended period of time. Still, you should avoid shining them around your cat’s eye area altogether.
Q: Are laser toys bad for cats?
A: Beyond the potential for eye damage that we discussed above, another potential problem with cat laser toys is that they can frustrate and tease your cat without giving them the ultimate satisfaction of catching anything. This frustration can boil over into aggression, which is why it is important to mix up your laser toys with some fake mice or similar to give your cat the thrill of catching their prey as well as hunting it.
Our Top Pick
Friends Forever Interactive Laser Cat Toy
Returning to our top pick of the bunch, it is this one that conceals the laser inside a diamond for added mystery. There are also three-speed settings that ensure that they are not going to become bored with the game. With a quiet operating volume, your cat can happily play without distractions before it shuts off again within 15 minutes. The 360-degree playing area can expand as much as needed, so it is great for outdoor use as well as indoor games – there is no plug required. All of these reasons add up to making it our top pick.