George was the pet of Nancy Brennan and her husband, and he was a cat with big bird-hunting problem (and a cat door). Being a birdwatcher and bird lover, Ms. Brennan hated to see him bring his captured birds back home. She had previously committed to keeping her own cat indoors. But, George was accustomed to going outdoors, a habit that pre-dated Ms. Brennan's becoming his pet owner. As many cat owners experience, it can be very difficult to corral such a cat indoors
Ms. Brennan ached to see the birds that George could catch. She put more bells on his cat collar, but it mattered not at all. What could be done? One day, George brought in a Ruffed Grouse that he had caught, and it was the last straw.
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. Ms. Brennan found inspiration in that moment of seeing George and the grouse. An idea popped into her mind. "Didn't birds see bright colors super well? Bright colors could make him easier to see. Would birds have enough time to fly off?" It was certainly worth a try.
Why bright colors? Ms. Brennan had been reading about birds that winter, and had stumbled on to the fact that songbirds have a special ability to see bright colors well. Their eye anatomy was unique. This was the germ of the idea!
Ms. Brennan wasted no time and sewed a tube of brightly colored fabric to put around George's cat collar. The hope was that it would make it easier for the birds to see him when he was stalking. Wearing bright colors, George didn't catch any birds for the first day, which turned into a week, which turned into a month, which turned into a summer. He had always brought his prey indoors, so the difference was dramatic and very clear.
There was peace and quiet at home, and George didn't miss being scolded. No more feathers; no more guilt! And George didn't seem to mind wearing the collar cover or the change in his hunting prowess. After a year, he even started sleeping in at dawn, instead of hunting. He may have figured he had lost his hunting prowess!
In the next 18 months, over two summers, George caught maybe 2 or 3 birds. He never brought another one in through his cat door. The trick of using bright colors was an astonishing success! With this innovation, Ms. Brennan had figured out how to help the birds be safe from George.
Birdsbesafe LLC began in 2009 with a two-part mission: Test the product with cats across the U.S. and see if it worked well for other cats, and, then, work towards making it a well-known, widely marketed solution to outdoor cats preying on birds.
Our important work in the first five years included carefully determining the best fabrics (colors and patterns) that are most effective for bird-protection. Our customers and their cats from around the globe provided important feedback, and we developed a strong "formula" for our effective Birdsbesafe® products.
There are about 65 million outdoor-going pet cats in the U.S. alone. Our company goal was to help many of those cats become ineffective bird-hunters.
Birdsbesafe LLC markets our home-grown and carefully designed solution to cats killing birds available to you, in stores, on this website and on Amazon. Our solution is popular in Europe, as well as in the U.S. and Canada.
In Stores. To see a list of stores that sell Birdsbesafe, go to the "In Stores" submenu. Our list is growing every week, now. If you are the owner or manager of a pet store or nature shop, please see our Wholesale page for ordering information. The Birdsbesafe® solution is well-regarded and has received much publicity, nationally and internationally. (Read our blog posts for information on recent events and news.)
Scientific Validation. In early 2015, a major milestone arrived when an independent scientific study was published confirming that Birdsbesafe cat collars work very effectively to reduce the numbers of birds killed by cats. The St. Lawrence University based study showed about an 87% reduction expected in birds caught when cats where Birdsbesafe® collar covers. Great! Publicity about that study and an Australian study, surged in March 2015, as did Birdsbesafe® cat collar cover orders. We are confidently selling our products to more individual customers and more stores than ever.
We're in Vermont. Birdsbesafe® LLC is in Duxbury, Vermont. Product inventor and business owner, Nancy Brennan, is an intrepid entrepreneur who enjoys saving birds. She holds a bachelor's degree in biology from Middlebury College in Vermont, and a master's degree from the Univ. of Massachusetts in regional planning.
Ms. Brennan is a lifelong nature-lover, a birdwatcher, and an environmentalist. Once a fledgling small business owner, Ms. Brennan now proudly oversees a growing business, with international patents and a widening market for its innovative product.
Made in the U.S. Our Birdsbesafe® cat collar covers are proudly sewn in the U.S. Our company mission includes a commitment to good wages for those who sew our product.
The success of Birdsbesafe® LLC has been built with the help of our customers. We appreciate each and every social media post, word-of-mouth recommendation, and informal plea to your local pet store owner to carry the product. You, the cat-owners and bird-lovers, have helped us take our idea for an innovative product and make it a valuable tool for bird conservation.
Thank you for caring about cats and birds!