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Instructables user hatstand4510

15 Pieces of Seriously Geeky Cat Gear

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Instructables user hatstand4510

If you’re like 99 percent of other people surfing online right now, you love geeky stuff and cats. So what better way to enjoy both at the same time than with some geeky cat toys like these?

1. Time and Relative Dimension in Cat Nip

Tardis Builders user astromark’s cat loves boxes, so he built a half-scale replica for his kitty, Kaylee. He even incorporated her name into the lock design.

2. Doctor Mew, I Presume

This TARDIS cat house by Etsy seller The Cat Ball might not be as big as the first, but on the plus side, it doesn’t take up that much space. Also, just as some cats prefer bags over boxes, some felines enjoy a small, crushable space more than a massive, sturdy cat condo.

3. Go Ahead, Attack The TARDIS

Is your kitty a bigger fan of Daleks than of The Doctor? Is he bent on world domination? Then don’t give him a TARDIS to hang out in—give him one to beat up, like this toy by Etsy seller Kanga23, so he can pretend like he’s putting The Doctor in danger every time he pounces.

4. Boldly Going Where No Cat Has Gone Before

Is your cat a total Trekkie? Make his playtime out of this world with this U.S.S. Enterprise amazing cat tree! Best of all, thanks to Instructables user hatstand4510, you can even follow the instructions to make your own.

5. The Trouble With Kitty Tribbles

Etsy seller Kitty of Mine offers another great surprise for any Trekkie kitties out there—Tribble cat toys. While they don’t repopulate like the ones in the show, they are made from recycled fur coats, so your cat is certain to love them.

6. CAT-AT

It might not actually walk, but this cat condo by Redditor BillyAppletini is a pretty spot-on replica of an AT-AT Walker—at least on the outside. The inside actually looks more like a little kitty mancave with tiny bird head trophies on the wall and a full bar with airplane-sized booze bottles on the wall.

7. Use the Force, Fluffy

What kitty doesn’t want to be a Jedi master? Thanks to Etsy seller GEEKitty, every cat has the chance to learn the way of the Force. Just remember not to give these to skittish kitties as fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, and hate leads to suffering.

8. Is Your Fluff Ball A Rebel or A Loyalist to the Empire?

Head to your local Petco any time after mid-September to get your hands on their new line of Star Wars toys. While most of the products are for pups, they do have a Princess Leia headband for cats; mice toys that look like Yoda, Darth, Chewie and a Stormtrooper; cat teasers with Yoda, Darth, a TIE fighter, and the Millennium Falcon on a string; and feathered ball toys that look like Darth, the Death Star, C-3PO, and R2-D2.

9. Angry Cats With Angry Birds

Another of the handful of commercially-available geek toys for cats are those featuring the characters from Angry Birds. Hartz partnered up with the gaming company to release vibrating plush toys, plastic balls, and a wand toy all featuring your favorite angry avians.

10. Level Up, Kitty

With a piranha plant and a question box, this cat tree by Instructables user Geckoo_Designs is perfect for any cat fascinated by the Mario Bros. series. Unfortunately, while it is posted on Instructables, only the materials, tools and a few tips have been included, so you’ll have to use your imagination if you want to create your own.

11. So Many Questions to Bash Open

If you don’t have the skills or space for a Mario cat tree, you can always get a question box cat toy for your kitty instead, courtesy of Etsy seller GEEKitty.

12. The Dungeon Kitty Master

If your little bundle of fluff prefers old-school games to video games, this D20, also from GEEKitty, is just what she’ll need to host an all-feline D&D session.

13. Gotta Catch ‘Em All?

If your cat seems to kill mice and lizards just so she can build a collection of all the dead animal species in your area, then perhaps she secretly wishes they were Pokemon. If that’s the case, these Pokeball cat toys by Etsy seller ShyLemon might curb her killing spree—at least, until she figures out how to trap the creatures inside the balls.

14. Night of the Living Cat Toys

Speaking of dead things, maybe your little fluff ball just wants to kill something in the hopes that it will come back to life. If she’s obsessed with the living dead, then she’ll certainly love this zombie cat toy by Etsy seller misohandmade.

15. Technological Kitties Only

Looking for something free for your cat to play with that won’t clutter your home? Then download some of these great Games For Cats on your tablet and let your kitty go wild thanks to Friskies.

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Animals
Watch a School of Humpback Whales 'Fish' Using Nets Made of Bubbles 

Just like humans, humpback whales catch many fish at once by using nets—but instead of being woven from fibers, their nets are made of bubbles.

Unique to humpbacks, the behavior known as bubble-net feeding was recently captured in a dramatic drone video that was created by GoPro and spotted by Smithsonian. The footage features a school of whales swimming off Maskelyne Island in British Columbia, Canada, in pursuit of food. The whales dive down, and a large circle of bubbles forms on the water's surface. Then, the marine mammals burst into the air, like circus animals jumping through a ring, and appear to swallow their meal.

The video offers a phenomenal aerial view of the feeding whales, but it only captures part of the underwater ritual. It begins with the group's leader, who locates schools of fish and krill and homes in on them. Then, it spirals to the water's surface while expelling air from its blowhole. This action creates the bubble ring, which works like a net to contain the prey.

Another whale emits a loud "trumpeting feeding call," which may stun and frighten the fish into forming tighter schools. Then, the rest of the whales herd the fish upwards and burst forth from the water, their mouths open wide to receive the fruits of their labor.

Watch the intricate—and beautiful—feeding process below:

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Big Questions
Why Do Dogs Love to Dig?
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Dog owners with green thumbs beware: It's likely just a matter of time before Fido turns your azalea bed into a graveyard of forgotten chew toys. When dogs aren't digging up your prized garden, they can be found digging elsewhere in your yard, at the beach, and even between your couch cushions at home. But what exactly is behind your dog's drive to turn every soft surface he or she sees into an excavation site?

According to Dr. Emma Grigg, an animal behaviorist and co-author of The Science Behind a Happy Dog, this behavior is completely normal. "When people say 'why do dogs dig,' the first thing that always comes to mind is 'well, because they're dogs,'" she tells Mental Floss. The instinct first appeared in dogs' wolf ancestors, then it was amplified in certain breeds through artificial selection. That's why dogs that were bred to hunt rodents, like beagles and terriers, are especially compelled to dig in places where such animals might make their homes.

But this tendency isn't limited to just a few specific breeds. No matter their original roles, dogs of all breeds have been known to kick up some dirt on occasion. Beyond predatory urges, Dr. Grigg says there are two main reasons a dog may want to dig. The first is to cool off on a hot day. When stuck on an open lawn with little to no shade, unearthing a fresh layer of dirt untouched by the sun is a quick way to beat the heat.

The second reason is to stash away goodies. Imagine your dog gets bored with chewing his favorite bone but knows he wants to come back for it later. Instead of leaving it out in the open where anyone can snatch it up, he decides to bury it in a secret place where only he'll be able to find it. Whether or not he'll actually go back for it is a different story. "There's a disconnect with modern dogs: They know the burying part but they don't always know to dig it up," Dr. Grigg says.

Because digging is part of a dog's DNA, punishing your pet for doing so isn't super effective. But that doesn't mean you should stand idly by as your yard gets turned inside-out. When faced with this behavior in your own dog, one option is to redirect it. This can mean allowing him to dig in a designated corner of the yard while keeping other parts off-limits, or setting up a raised flowerbed or sandbox especially to satisfy that urge. "You can get him interested in the area by burying a couple bones or some interesting things in there for him to dig," Dr. Grigg says. "I like the idea of buried treasure."

If your dog's motive for digging is more destructive than practical, he may have an energy problem. Dogs require a certain amount of stimulation each day, and when their humans don't provide it for them they find their own ways to occupy themselves. Sometimes it's by chewing up shoes, toppling trash cans, or digging ditches the perfect size for twisting ankles. Fortunately, this is nothing more walks and playtime can't improve.

Have you got a Big Question you'd like us to answer? If so, let us know by emailing us at bigquestions@mentalfloss.com.

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