Frequently asked questions

I want to take part in the study, do I need to register for each component separately?

You can register for all components of the study by completing just one online registration form. The form takes on average 15 minutes to complete, although it will take an additional 5 minutes for each additional cat you want to register.

I have an indoor cat can I still take part?

Yes! If you have an indoor cat we would still love to hear from you. An estimated 1 in 10 cats are indoor only, so we are just as interested in their personality and their diet compared to their outdoor counterparts.

I don’t live in Cornwall can I still take part?

Unfortunately, we are unable to provide GPS units outside of Cornwall at this time.

We would still love to hear about you and your cat in our registration form and we can send you a survey so you can find out about your cat’s personality.

If you are interested in the tracking and/or diet aspect of our study, then by ticking the relevant boxes on our registration questionnaire, we will keep you informed should the project become available in your area.

Can I take part in in some, but not all, the components of the study?

Yes!

If you have an indoor cat you can still take part in the diet and personality study.

If you don’t want to have your cat tracked you can take part in the personality aspect of the study.

If you live outside of Cornwall you can still take part in the personality aspect of the study.

Register here to take part in the study .

Am I eligible for the study?

If you own a cat, live in the UK and aged 18 years or over we would love to hear about you and your cat, via our registration form (~15 minutes). You are also eligible for the personality study.

The movement and diet study are only taking place in Cornwall at this time. However, if you live outside Cornwall, by registering we can keep you informed should the project become available in your area.

 

Is tracking harmful to my cat?

To understand where your cat goes, they will need to wear a harness with a GPS tag on. This approach has been used across hundreds of cats previously, with most cats tolerating the harness well.

The risks involved with the project’s harness are similar to the risks of a collar.  If your cat experiences marked behavioural differences after the acclimatisation period, or is having difficulty eating or drinking, the harness should be adjusted or removed immediately.

I registered a few weeks ago but haven’t heard anything. Has my application been received?

Thanks for signing up! You will receive the personality survey within a fortnight of registering. We have a limited number of GPS units to loan out, therefore depending on demand it may take a few weeks for us to contact you regarding suitable times to track your cat. You are welcome to contact us regarding the status of your application at any time meow@thesmallcatproject.com.

We look forward to learning about the secret life of your cat soon!

I completed the personality survey when can I expect the results?

Our researchers analyse survey results fortnightly, you will receive your cat’s personality report within two weeks. If you haven’t received it then please get in touch meow@thesmallcatproject.com.

I've signed up for the dietary analysis, do I need to provide a food sample?

Our researchers will be testing a range of cat food for their isotope signatures. Consequently, we may require a small sample (1 tablespoon) of your cat’s dry food, we will let you know following registration if this will be necessary.

We will not require any samples of wet food.

I've signed up to the isotope analysis, what can I expect to find out?

We will compare the isotope signature of your cats meals to the signature of their fur. A discrepancy between the two will indicate whether your cat is eating away from their food bowl. You will be emailed results from this analysis.

We note, that the ability to distinguish between pet food and wild caught prey, will depend on the isotope signature of their pet food. Therefore in some circumstances the results may be inconclusive.

How can I keep up to date with the project?

Our researchers will email you all findings regarding your cat. Project developments will be posted on our website. If you wish to ask any questions about the project at any time please contact us meow@thesmallcatproject. com.