The cat door with a catch
Reporter: Tanya Spinka
Siblings Blair and Maree Harper own brother and sister cats, "Inca" and "Toby". Maree's cat Inca was being tormented by male cats, who were chasing her into the house and spraying everywhere. When Maree found that a cat had sprayed in her bedroom, that was the final straw... Round at Blair's place, Toby's food kept disappearing, but Toby wasn't the one eating it. Something needed to be done.
Blair and Maree both had "Transcat" cat doors, which their cats had been using without any problems for the past two years. But when they both puchased an extra "Transcat" magnetic switch their problems did start. Magnetic cat doors are supposed to activate and unlock when your cat, with a special magnet on its collar, approaches the door.
But despite Toby and Inca's best attempts, ever since the magnetic switches went on, neither of them can get into their homes. Inca's run head-first into her cat-door, and Toby's got a sore nose from continually tapping and pushing to get in.
Blair and Maree have tested the system and they reckon their "Transcat" magnetic switches simply don't work... They can get the doors to open, but they say they're completely inconsistent; sometimes the magnet will release the catch and sometimes it won't; sometimes the magnet will work from three or four centimetres away - but other times it need to sit right on top of the catch. Now they're asking how on earth their cats are supposed to learn how to use the system when even they can't work it out.
Blair and Maree want their money back - but the owner of "Transcat", Roger Powell, is standing by his product. Roger says he's sold thousands of these switches over the last 12 years and never had a problem. He says that proves that his product does work. Roger's promised to work with Blair and Maree to prove that the switches work. But if he can't prove it soon, then we reckon Blair and Maree should be entitled to their money back under the Consumer Guarantees Act.