Fishing Cats prefer Calvin Klein’s Obsession for Men
If you want to pull at the olfactory heartstrings of a fishing cat, only one perfume will do — Calvin Klein’s Obsession for Men. Spray a little of that in a fishing cat’s enclosure, and they’ll make like Pepé Le Pew to whatever’s been dowsed.
“The perfume has often been used to help enrich a fishing cat’s enclosure,” said San Francisco Zoo’s small cat zookeeper Barbara Palmer. “Obsession for Men is the best perfume for fishing cats, but I just don’t think they’ve tried the other stuff.”
Turns out fishing cats aren’t the only ones who flock to the scent, and the perfume preference has undergone a rigorous product testing. All sorts of big cats from Siberian tigers, cheetahs and even jaguars can’t get enough. They love the smell so much, they’ll spend more time rolling in Obsession for Men than they will savoring a meal. Take this excerpt from a 2010 The Wall Street Journal article profiling a Wildlife Conservation Society study to see which perfumes cats preferred.
In 2003, Pat Thomas, general curator for the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo in New York, decided to get scientific about it. Working with 24 fragrances and two cheetahs, he recorded how long it took the big cats to notice the scent and how much time they spent interacting with it.
The results left barely a whiff of a doubt. Estée Lauder’s Beautiful occupied the cheetahs on average for just two seconds. Revlon’s Charlie managed 15.5 seconds. Nina Ricci’s L’Air du Temps took it up to 10.4 minutes. But the musky Obsession for Men triumphed: 11.1 minutes. That’s longer than the cats usually take to savor a meal.
Read the thoroughly entertaining WSJ article here.
Now researchers not only use the cologne to make life a bit happier for animals in the zoo, but to learn about behavior in the wild. Scent marking with the perfume brings out the curious in the wild cat. Scientists have used the cologne to help conduct population surveys of jaguars in Guatemala.
So, let that be a lesson to all you perfume wearers out there. If you’re walking in the jungle spritzed in Obsession for Men, you might find yourself followed by a menagerie of lions and tigers and maybe even a fishing cat or two.