ONOCAT, innovation to deter stray cats


CATS are cute, making them pets among people. Yet many people feel uncomfortable or are extremely scared when cats approach them even though these cats are not stray cats. The uncomfortable situation with the presence of cats exists because of physical annoyance and psychological annoyance.

Physical annoyance is directed to people with allergies, such as asthma, skin allergy, or disease because they are worried that the cats can affect their health.

For others, the psychological or mental annoyance is the main cause. People who are labelled as ailurophobia or gatophobia have extreme anxiety towards cats even when the animals are just passing them.

They have extreme fear towards the animals, and some people will react subconsciously such as screaming without considering others although the cats do not harm them. Now, a researcher from the Industrial Design Department, Faculty of Design and Architecture, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), Dr. Siti Mastura Md. Ishak, said the ONOCAT’s product is designed using biodegradable material from natural resources infused with a unique odour to deter cats from approaching the wearers.

She added that the biodegradable material of ONOCAT as repellent is produced through a combination of waste (by-product) from local plants, and she and her co-researchers are now at the final stage of the experiment.

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The Petri Dish is malaysia’s first dedicated science newspaper. Through The Petri Dish we aim to engage the public on the latest developments on biotechnology.