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Old 02-06-2019, 09:58 AM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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question about static

static can be fun [one customer service job I had we played X-Men, newish carpeting, scuffing feet, static-zapping the unsuspecting ... great fun]


so, i vaguely understand the principals of grounding by touching something then working with something to keep from static damaging the components, but with my feline overlord sitting in my lap, and touching her, why do i still zap her occasionally?
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Old 02-06-2019, 10:25 AM
Joey P Joey P is offline
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For the few seconds previous to that, you weren't making good enough contact with her to make sure you're both at the same potential. You keep petting her, probably not making skin to skin contact, when there's enough of a difference to bridge the gap, you get a shock.
I'd bet if you kept a finger on her nose or eye or tongue or in her ear, not that either of you would want that, it wouldn't happen.
Like pushing a shopping cart. Sometimes everything is just right that I get a zap every few seconds. When that happens I'll move one of my hands off the plastic handle on top over to the side so it makes contact with the metal. I'll still get a shock here and there, but nearly as often or as bad.
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Old 02-06-2019, 03:43 PM
carnivorousplant carnivorousplant is offline
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Does the shock annoy the cat?
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Old 02-07-2019, 09:12 AM
jjakucyk jjakucyk is offline
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If it's very dry when I pet my cat, usually I'll give her a little shock when touching her ears. The fur is very thin there and you're basically touching the skin, whereas on the rest of the body the fur is too thick and you're building a charge there, like Joey P said. So you could theoretically pet just from the neck to the tail over and over and not cause a shock, but if you then touch the ears, nose, lips, and maybe the feet (not sure about the pads, they seem like they could be somewhat insulating), then you'll discharge and get bitten for your trouble.
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Old 02-07-2019, 09:18 AM
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Chronos Chronos is offline
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Cat ears are also very well-shaped for giving/receiving static shocks, because those happen most easily at points.
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Old 02-07-2019, 11:47 AM
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Inigo Montoya Inigo Montoya is offline
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Find a way to get skin/skin contact. I go for a subtle paw hold where I can get my fingertip on a pad.
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Old 02-07-2019, 05:42 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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ah, wonderful answers!


She doesn't seem to mind the smaller shocks, but looked at me with a sort of 'why did you zap me mommy' look when I really zapped her on the nose.


I will go for the subtle paw pad grounding next time she gets really snuggly =)
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Old 02-07-2019, 08:16 PM
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Cats do not like electron to nose contact. They will often jump back. That first spark can be half an inch long.
If you pet a cat on a dry day, you'll occasionally feel a static discharge through your fingers. The cat notices this too, and responds as it feel appropriate.
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Old 02-10-2019, 10:08 AM
Napier Napier is offline
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I don't think the relationship between grounding and your lap-sitting overlord got clarified. It's important whether there's a voltage difference between your body and her lithe, elegant feline body. The petting keeps generating this voltage, and the unpleasant sparks discharge it. Whether one of you is grounded or not makes no practical difference. If you were both grounded, then there'd be no spark, but as she's using you as her only throne, she wouldn't be.
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