FOR BETTER OR WORSE, humankind has made some frighteningly impressive technological advances. However, I have discovered one area of progress that is seriously lacking: the cat-cam department.
When you wanna know, you wanna know, and I wanna know where my tomcat goes, so I bought a cat-cam off the internet for about 40 bucks. It didn't work. Like, it didn't even turn on. There was a bit of a language barrier with the supplier, who simply refunded the money. Buuut, I didn't want the money. I wanted a cat-cam.
There are a number of such products on the market that take still shots, video, or both. But they tend to run on the bulky side, and better quality ones can cost more than $100. When you start considering triple digit pricing, you may as well just buy a GoPro that you can use for many other things, and attach it to a collar. But then your cat—who sometimes loses his collar altogether—is walking around with some pretty nice, and pretty obvious, equipment. You might even be setting your cat up to be mugged like he's wearing a new pair of sneakers, and using your kitters as bait to attract a criminal element is not at all the objective.
Besides, discovering whether someone else has a relationship with your pet is one of the things cat-cam customers are most curious to know. Subtlety is key. You want to know how and who your cat interacts with on a normal basis, not just when he's wearing a doorknocker that screams, "You're on camera!"
What you need is something a little smaller than a keychain spy camera—one that can be set up to take intermittent still shots or that you can set to record video right before he goes outside—and it has to stay oriented in the right direction, too. It's possible—look at Google Glass!—if you're really determined, but it's probably going to be cost prohibitive for most people (look at Google Glass!). So until the day when a truly subtle, small camera that can take high-quality automatic footage that can be easily mounted to a cat collar can be purchased for less than $100? I'll just keep using my imagination.