->''"Offscreen cat noises are funny. Period."''
-->-- ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek 2}}'' DVDCommentary


Every time a vehicle crashes, trash cans fall over, [[StuffBlowingUp something blows up]], or any chaos [[OffscreenCrash occurs off-screen]], after the sounds of [[DramaticShattering breaking glass]] and other StockSoundEffects, we hear some poor cat yowl, in pain or perhaps just startled. Just like that poor Wilhelm fellow of StockScream fame, this unfortunate feline is ''everywhere'', attracting disaster and voicing its unhappiness even in areas where a cat couldn't or wouldn't be present.

The most used cat sound is Disc 2, Track 26 from The Hollywood Edge's "Premiere Edition 1" released in 1990 labeled "Cats, Two; Angry Yowls During Cat Fight, Close Perspective" or "Angry Cat Yowls; Cat Fight".

Very much an UndeadHorseTrope. Often falls under DudeNotFunny

On the other hand, it's okay to be amused by the thought of a discomforted kitty, of course, because CatsAreMean. (And they've got nine lives, so they can probably afford to spare a few.) Might very well have to do with TheCatCameBack, considering it sounds like the same cat each and every time. Avoids OffscreenInertia by occurring [[RuleOfPerception out of the audience's line of sight]], no matter how tortured that poor cat may sound.

Compare with KickTheDog, which on rare occasion overlaps. Should not be confused with ThatPoorCar, which is an entirely different trope. Also not to be confused with the movie ''Film/ThatDarnCat'', or with CatScare (which is when the cat is the scarer instead of the scare-ee). See also CatConcerto, where the cat's yowling is a musical performance on the back fence.


* There's an ad for Barclays Bank that has a man chasing a pallet of gold bars on a tilting floor. They keep sliding away. At the end of the advert, with the help of Our Product, the bars slide downhill towards him and there's a [[OffscreenCrash crash as they collide offscreen]]. Then a yowling cat ([[RuleOfFunny out of nowhere]]) slides past too.
* There's an ad for a Louisiana lawyer called Patrick Daniel that uses blue screen effects to make it look like he's driving a car that's falling apart. He throws the steering wheel off screen and we hear a cat yowl.
* Koodo had a radio commercial where El Tabador tries to fly. He crashes and, upon hearing the cat sounds, [[LampshadeHanging points out]] that his neighbor owns a lot of cats.
* Back in 2013, there was a commercial for Ally Bank where a woman was trying out a robot vacuum, she turns it on and it hits the cat, leading to this stock trope.
* A commercial for POM Wonderful (a pomegranate drink) shows a man joined by a quartet of archers when he drinks the product. After they draw their bows, the doorbell rings and one of them shoots an offscreen cat.

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* ''Anime/DigimonAdventure'': Shows up in the Digital World when Jou briefly skids offscreen in Episode 11, hitting what is presumably a cat-like In-Training/Baby II stage digimon.
* In an example of "why was there a cat there?", when the Fine Arts club from ''Manga/GAGeijutsukaArtDesignClass'' has to get supplies from the adjacent storeroom, after the crashing and screaming we hear the cat... in a sealed-off, unused art room.
* In the first episode of ''Manga/MidoriDays'', a cat gets hit in a blind panic by a character not once, but ''twice'', in front of the same house. By the end of the episode, the cat is on a roof covered in bandages.
** The same cat gets hit at least once per episode, during the entire series. He still gets a very happy ending, though.
* Subverted in one of the shorts for ''[[LightNovel/NyarkoSan Haiyoru! Nyaru-Ani]]'', Nyarlko's beat her pet Shantak and you hear a cow yelling.
* A ''Anime/SailorMoon'' episode had a variant: when Usagi decides to ditch her diet, her cat Luna taunts her by drawing a picture of her looking puffed up like a pig and telling her this is how she'll look a year from now if she keeps stuffing herself that way. As the "camera" tilts up away from Usagi's bedroom from outside the house, we hear her yell "Luna!!!" and hear Luna yowling in terror.

[[folder:Film - Animated]]
* In ''Disney/BigHero6'', Hiro tries to excuse the antics of a [[DrunkOnMilk low-battery Baymax]] by blaming them on the family cat, Mochi. When he looks down and finds Mochi at his feet, he grabs him and throws him upstairs, leading to this trope. Later, when Hiro finally arrives upstairs, Mochi looks over at Hiro and is clearly aggravated with his human for throwing him and quickly runs downstairs.
* ''Disney/{{Bolt}}'' has a small bit on this. Bolt is begging for food at a trailer park, and when Mittens decided to step in, she almost got hit with a frying pan.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheBoxtrolls'' features this among other sounds produced by a giant cheese wheel crashing through the town of Cheesebridge.
* ''WesternAnimation/FreeBirds'': A cat screams when Governor Bradford tosses a pitchfork aside.
* Done three times in ''WesternAnimation/InsideOut'': It is first done by a cat who comes out of Bing Bong's [[BagOfHolding Bottomless Bag]]. The second one is done by Bing Bong, a character who is part cat, when a set falls on him at Dream Productions. The final one is [[spoiler: the last thing we hear during the movie, as during the CreativeClosingCredits we see the emotions of an actual cat, and it yowls in terror and runs away when its Fear starts randomly fiddling with the emotion controls.]]
* Variant: in ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'' during the final battle, after twirling Tai Lung around by his tail for several minutes, Po forces him to bite down on it. We then receive the ''on-screen'' sound-effect of a piteous, kitten-like mew. Rather demeaning for the proud warrior, but that was probably the point.
* ''WesternAnimation/MonstersUniversity'': When Sully tosses Mike's textbook out the window, there is the shriek of a cat from outside.
* ''WesternAnimation/ThePiratesInAnAdventureWithScientists'': When the pirates were parking their ship with a crash, there was a cat shrieking.
* ''WesternAnimation/RiseOfTheGuardians'': A poor cat that lives in a building Jack and Sandy crash through while chasing Nightmares.
* This happens at least once during any scene involving cats in ''WesternAnimation/TheSecretLifeOfPets''.
* ''WesternAnimation/PussInBoots'' from ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'' movies often had this trope invoked on him.
** ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek 2}}'': When the "Happily Ever After" potion takes effect on Shrek and he faints, we hear a cat screaming... presumably because Shrek landed on Puss-In-Boots when he passed out. Look closely that the following scene, and you can see Puss pulling his hat out from under Shrek.
** ''WesternAnimation/ShrekTheThird'': Puss-in-Boots does his cat screech when Shrek throws him out to the window.
** ''WesternAnimation/ShrekForeverAfter'': Donkey startled Puss-in-Boots.
* In ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'', Rex is pointing a flashlight at the bushes, in order to search for Buzz from the window (Buzz fell into the bushes earlier after a stint Woody pulled backfired horribly), Rex spots something in the bushes and inquires if it's Buzz. The response is a cat screeching. All the toys then groan and Rex says in a sharp whisper "Whiskers, will you get outta there?! You're interfering with a search-and-rescue!"

[[folder:Film - Live Action]]
* "King of Comedy". One of Scorsese's many classics includes a cat going "REOWWR!!!" when Sandra Bernhardt tells Jerry Lewis that the two of them are going to have some "Good, old-fashioned, American, fun!". She swipes the kitchen table clear so they might have room to 'do the do', and a cat becomes the unlucky recipient of some chinaware before she delivers her iconic line. - Bonus points: This scene is mimicked in an episode of Family Guy.
* ''Film/TheManWithTwoBrains''. "Get that cat outta here!" "REOWWR!"
* Possible reference in ''Film/BillAndTedsBogusJourney'': the "evil robot usses", while landing the time machine, intentionally aim for a cat on the ground below. The cat escapes.
** They do it again later, this time in a stolen hot rod -- and miss again.
* Borderline LampshadeHanging in the comedy ''Film/BabysDayOut''. One of the criminals says as their van speeds through an alley, "I think we hit a cat."
* Possibly related: The BMovie ''Curse of the Queerwolf'' uses accidental ''dog'' deaths as a RunningGag.
* During the famous darts scene of ''Film/YoungFrankenstein'', Creator/MelBrooks improvised one of these.
* In the ''Film/AlvinAndTheChipmunks'' movie, Dave elicits one of these when he throws his music equipment into the yard. Unnervingly, he proceeds to throw the rest of his equipment in the same general direction.
* ''Film/HotShots'' uses a small dog that somehow constantly manages to be sat on no matter where people are. He gets lucky at the end of the movie when two slabs of beef are dropped on him.
* Dark variant in the ''Film/{{Daredevil}}'' movie, where a woman screaming offscreen after Bullseye misses his mark is used for this same effect.
** ''Film/APrairieHomeCompanion'' does a more humorous version, where the cork from Guy Noir's champagne bottle goes shooting away and hits someone off screen. [[ThrowItIn It was director Robert Altman who got hit in the forehead.]]
* ''Film/{{Borat}}'' contains a [[CrowningMomentOfFunny fantastic version]] of this; it's established early on that Borat inexplicably has a chicken with him on his trip. Toward the end, in despair, he drops his one piece of luggage on the ground. Cue a loud ''buckaw'' sound.
* In ''Film/KungFuHustle'': After the three kung fu masters spar, one of them falls off a balcony onto a cat. The Musical Assassins also cut a cat in half off screen (in silhouette), but it's silent.
* In ''Film/MuppetsFromSpace'', this sound is heard while Gonzo is mowing the lawn... so yeah.
* ''Film/MuppetTreasureIsland'', on the other hand, has a completely justified version of this, when Blind Pew is leaving the Benbow Inn after delivering the Black Spot to Billy Bones. As he leaves, he crashes into what are presumably rubbish bins, which topple, followed by the cat's yowl, and Blind Pew's exclamation "Out of my way, you stupid cat!" There is no reason a cat wouldn't be hanging around in trash outside an Inn, and Pew is...well, a ''blind'' fiend. The commentary reveals that they stuck in the cat noises in post production and the actor for Pierre improved the line.
* In ''Film/AKidInKingArthursCourt'', a pathetic attempt at archery sends an arrow flying offscreen. Cue stock cat sound effect.
* In ''Film/TheMask'' when the eponymous character tosses away a [[RareGuns Tommy gun]] he's just been firing.
* The movie ''Film/{{Postal}}'' has the main character ''using a cat as a silencer for his handgun.'' Thankfully, miraculously, and hilariously, the cat is totally unharmed afterwards.
* In the original movie version of ''Film/TheFly1958'', a cat is the initial test subject for the teleporter. It does not rematerialize, but we hear its pitiful meow for a moment. (In the original story, it turns up again -- sort of -- in a rather disconcerting way.)
* In ''Film/TheFly1986'', there was a deleted scene where a cat gets fused with a baboon.
* Inverted in ''Film/TheBoondockSaints'' when a gun discharges by accident when Rocco bangs his fists on the table to make a point, and ends up splattering his girlfriend's cat all over the wall.
* In ''Film/MontyPythonAndTheHolyGrail'', Arthur and Bedevere pass someone swinging something furry against a post, that makes a "RROWRR!" sound with every hit. In the Lego version of this scene included on the DVD, the cat is replaced by a parrot. According to the (long gone) LEGO Studio website, that scene actually ''did'' have an alternate "cat-squish" version that was even filmed, but the parrot was used instead because "LEGO cats don't squish well."
** Cat abuse is a running gag throughout the movie. While this is normally a horrible thing to joke about, it actually is funny because the cats are clearly fake and all the characters are completely nonchalant about it.
* When the Blue Raja is practicing his [[ForkFencing fork throwing]] at a target but missing in ''Film/MysteryMen''.
* ''Film/{{Alien}}''. Averted by Jonesy, who watches calmly as [[spoiler: Brett is attacked by the xenomorph.]]
* In ''Film/HistoryOfTheWorldPartI'', a cat is picked up, swung by its tail and thrown.
* ''Film/JulieAndJulia'': Protagonist Julie Powell has a tantrum and throws things. Unusually for this trope, the cat heard yowling is actually an established character, Julie's beloved pet, so this doubles as one of Julie's {{Jerkass}} moments.
* In Film/TheThreeStooges short ''Malice in the Palace,'' Larry prepares hot dogs and rabbit for two ominous patrons. A dog and cat invade his kitchen as he is cooking and as Larry chops the food, as the animals howl over various accidents. When he brings out the food, everyone including Moe and Shemp are convinced it's roasted Rover and Kitty. [[spoiler: It's not.]]
* In the sex spoof ''Live Nude Shakespeare,'' one of the actresses recites a line of Shakespeare while wielding a large sword. As she finishes, she lets it drop down point first. Cue cat yowl.
* ''Film/FatalInstinct''. Occurs twice: once when Laura Lincolnberry punches and breaks the cookie jar, and again when she shoots Lola Cain and Lana Ravine at the same time.
* During the opening flashback sequence from ''Film/BatmanReturns'', the Cobblepot family's cat wanders too close to the cage/playroom where baby Oswald (a.k.a. The Penguin) is being kept and is yanked right through the bars and into the cage before presumably being killed. Later, a cat is heard during the scene where Selina has her FreakOut and trashes of her apartment before her transformation into Catwoman.
* In ''Film/SnakesOnAPlane'', the snakes' first victim is a cat in a pet carrier that's sitting beside their crate in the cargo hold. Dog variant happens later with the chihuahua that gets eaten by the anaconda
* Seen onscreen in ''Film/NationalLampoonsChristmasVacation''. The cat, [[spoiler: a gift packed by their senile, great-aunt, is let loose in the Griswold's home. Cat plays with tree's lighting wiring, the lights come off, Clark goes to plug them back in. That Poor Cat presumably still has the cord in his mouth, as a loud stock yowl is heard, and cuts to a burn in the carpet the shape of the cat.]]
* In ''Film/MrAndMrsSmith2005'', when John is thrashing through the bushes prior to invading their house.
* In the original script for ''Film/AFishCalledWanda'', there was a running gag in which Otto would randomly shoot the tails off of offscreen cats for no reason other than that, well, he's Otto. These scenes were cut in post-production because they didn't really contribute to the rest of the film. Besides, the film has plenty of gratuitous (yet hilarious) animal cruelty without the cat scenes.
* When ComicBook/{{Hellboy}} punched a troll disguised as an old lady in ''Hellboy II: The Golden Army'', there is a cat screech heard, which makes sense seeing as she had a cart of cats she was about to eat.
* Sassy, the cat from the ''Film/HomewardBoundTheIncredibleJourney'' movies, often had this trope invoked on her. The first time was when Chance chased her around the house when she kept piling on the insults on Chance during the wedding (which apparently ruined it slightly), the second time was when Chance catapulted her with the see-saw (which later turns out to be a ChekhovsGun against a much bigger Mountain Lion), the third time was when Kate was busy feeding Chance, she accidentally stepped on Sassy's tail. The last time it happens is when the dogs rebounded when trying to escape a pound.
* Used repeatedly in ''[[Literature/DifferentSeasons Apt Pupil]]'' when Dussander is trying to force the cat into the oven.
* Turns up, of all places, in the Creator/MichaelMoore documentary ''Film/CapitalismALoveStory''. In the scene replaying President Bush's [[http://articles.cnn.com/2008-09-24/politics/bush.transcript_1_markets-financial-assets-economy?_s=PM:POLITICS Our Economy Is In Danger]] speech, animation in the background shows the White House wrecked by earthquakes, tidal waves, fire, lightning and hurricanes, which blow that same old poor cat through the air right behind ol'El Presidente.
* Done in the french film ''Film/LaCiteDeLaPeur''. Notable in that, because of a "low budget gag", a whole part of the film has sound effects done by the actors in the dubbing. And, yes, the cat scream was done by an actor, and the others comments "Wow, you do quite a good cat impression".
* In ''Film/TheBenchwarmers'', Clark's bat flies out of his hands and hits 3 squirrels out of a tree.
* There's a cat screech during the truck steal scene in ''Film/FreeWilly''.
* {{Inverted}} and PlayedForDrama in one of the MoodWhiplash scenes in ''Film/HocusPocus'': the black cat Binx (one of the good guys) is run over by the bus. Fortunately, [[spoiler:being immortal, [[DisneyDeath he gets better]].]]
--> '''WebVideo/TheNostalgiaChick''' in an angry tone: "This is a [[WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids kid's movie]], right?"
* ''Film/TheEgyptian'' has Nefer's cat. She is a Babylonian, so she has a Persian cat with a huge heavy coat. In Egypt. When we first see it it is panting heavily. You keep wishing one of the "gifts" she asks of Sinuhe would be "Shave my cat." When she dismisses him, he goes mad and walks slowly toward her with murder in his eyes. The cat screeches in warning and she drops it.
* Happens in ''[[Film/TheMightyDucks D3: The Mighty Ducks]]'' after one of Fulton's slapshots.
* ''Film/TheToothFairy'': When Derek tries to get out from the house, he ran into an angry growling cat. The cat goes after Derek while trying to get out of the house. When Derek gets close to the door flap, he uses an airhorn, and the cat jumps up like crazy, then goes off.
* As pointed out in Creator/LloydKaufman's book ''Make Your Own Damn Movie,'' the cat screech is one of the three staple sound effects used in nearly every Creator/{{Troma}} film (the other two being a fart sound and a cowbell). He specifically advises that the cat sound be used whenever a character throws something and it lands offscreen, implying that the thrown object somehow managed to hit a cat even if no cats are present.
* In the live action adaptation of ''Literature/HowTheGrinchStoleChristmas'' one of the things sucked up by the Grinch's large vacuum tube is a large cat, which the vacuum then blows out into his face. A few scenes later the cat reappears, this time jumping onto the Grinch himself.
* One scene in the first ''Film/PoliceAcademy'' has a cat stuck in a tree. Unfortunately, the responding officer is Tackleberry who gets the cat out of the tree by shooting it.
* In the film adaptation of ''Film/HarryPotterAndThePrisonerOfAzkaban'', as the Knight Bus skids to a screeching halt in front of the Leaky Cauldron, the last sound heard after various crashes is the distinctive loud wail of this cat.

* ''Literature/TheAdventuresOfTomSawyer'' starts its first chapter with a cat being hurt, and gleefully continues hurting them for the rest of the story.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In an episode of ''Series/{{Alf}}'' the title character is using the family's cat, Lucky, as a stepladder. When Willie tells him to get down, he lets go of the windowsill, making Lucky shriek.
* Used at least once in ''Series/BabylonFive'', when G'Kar tries out Marcus' Minbari Fighting Pike. He accidentally opens it, one end smashing into a pile of garbage, complete with the sound of a shrieking cat. Creator/JMichaelStraczynski admitted he put in the cat noise because cats are hilarious like that.
* This sound effect was one of the RunningGags in ''Series/BigTimeRush''.
* Variant in the first episode of ''Series/TheBradyBunch'' where Tiger was chasing the Brady Girls' cat Fluffy during the wedding which causes a big mess.
* A moment of silence now for Miss Kitty Fantastico, from ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. We don't see its demise, but it's easy to imagine it made this sound, and, when its fate is mentioned, it's played just a bit humorously.
* On one episode of ''Series/{{Castle}}'', Beckett's team and a SWAT team break down an apartment door, thinking there's a terrorist named S. Nadal Matar on the other side of it. One of the apartment's owner's cats goes diving off the top of a nearby refrigerator and lets off the screech.
* In ''Series/{{Community}}'''s [[ZombieApocalypse zombie outbreak]] homage episode "[[Recap/CommunityS2E06Epidemiology Epidemiology]]," the noise effect is used more and more until the (already very high strung) characters start taking issue with it.
--> '''Jeff''': What is ''up'' with that ''cat?''
--> '''Troy''': Is someone ''throwing'' it?
* ''Series/DoctorWho'': In [[Recap/DoctorWhoS31E1TheEleventhHour "The Eleventh Hour"]], the newly-regenerated Doctor takes a single bite of bread and butter, then emphatically rejects the meal by Frisbee flinging the entire plate, bread and all, out of the front door, cuing off-screen shattering sounds and a cat yowling in protest.
-->'''The Doctor:'' '''AND STAY OUT!'''
* In ''Series/TheDrewCareyShow'', Lewis and Oswald's attempt to [[TooDumbToLive teach a baby how to operate a crossbow]] goes horribly wrong:
-->'''Oswald''': Whose cat was that?\\
'''Lewis''': Well, it's God's cat now.
* ''Radio/TheFrantics'' used it to great effect in the "Last Will and Temperament"-sketch.
--> And to my cat Mittens, I leave my entire, vast... ({{Beat}}) [[CatchPhrase boot to the head.]] MEEEOOOW!
* Heard in ''Series/{{Hardware}}'' after Anne throws her ironing board out the flat window in frustration.
* In ''Series/KidsSayTheDarnestThings'' the cat screech was edited in OnceAnEpisode whenever a kid made a violent or loud movement, or exceptionally loud sound bit.
* In the second season of ''LazyCompany'', Niels kills the camp cat and uses it to raise the dead (ItMakesSenseInContext). Cue an incredibly awkward scene in which Niels alternates between fighting the cat off him and [[CrossesTheLineTwice banging its head on the table]], all of which is mostly off-screen.
* In an episode of ''Series/MarriedWithChildren'', Al is participating in a decathlon for senior citizens. Every time he participates in a throwing event, his toss is followed shortly by That Poor Cat.
* Sort of related: In a recent episode of ''Series/MeetTheBrowns'', the father and son try to retrieve a Cockatoo for their neighbor. They throw something at the bird. It then shows their horrified expressions as well as the cockatoo making screeching sounds.
* That Poor Cat is used slightly differently in ''Series/MontyPythonsFlyingCircus''. During an episode where they'd been blowing up animals the entire show, the camera follows two people and you can hear meowing offscreen. Just to make it clear, an arrow points to the edge of the screen, saying "cat." You can guess [[StuffBlowingUp what came next]].
** They also do it with pigs in one episode, along with a hand crossing cartoon pigs off a blackboard.
** Heard second-hand as Mrs. Premise tells Mrs. Conclusion about the trouble she had burying the cat - "Well, 'e wouldn't keep still. Wrigglin' about, 'owlin'..."
* Every single time something crashes in ''Series/NedsDeclassifiedSchoolSurvivalGuide'', whether it's a scooter or a pencil someone threw, to the point of being a RunningGag.
* The second episode of ''Series/NewGirl'' sees Jess go to get her stuff back from her douche ex-boyfriend. After she gets angry, she goes inside to grab all of her stuff at once, and you hear that poor cat.
* The ''Series/OneFootInTheGrave'' episode "Timeless Time" features this, when Victor throws a dead hedgehog which had gotten stuck on his foot out of his bedroom window (though the presence of the cat had previously been established, setting off Victor's car alarm by sitting on the car bonnet).
* In an episode of ''Series/PushingDaisies,'' Emerson Cod is caught in a graveyard with a shovel. He quickly tosses it off-camera, only to look at it in bewilderment when it apparently hits a cat.
* Practically the kickoff trope in ''Series/SeaChange''. Laura almost killing her cat while getting out of bed in a hurry is the start of a long and horrific day.
* Heard frequently on the children's show ''Series/SirGadabout'', as it is used in the conclusion of the theme song, and every time Gadders falls over.
* Variation in the first episode of ''Series/SonnyWithAChance'', where two stuffed toy cats wind up getting crammed into Tawni's fanmail shredder. The toy cats inexplicably unleash tortured yowls as they become flying fluff.
* ''Series/SugarRush'' has this in episode 7 when Kim gets rid of her toothbrush by throwing it out of the window. That Poor Cat indeed!
* In ''[[Series/TheSuiteLifeOfZackAndCody The Suite Life on Deck]]'''s third season episode ''The Silent Treatment'', Emma's cat attacked London.
* In a ''Series/TwoAndAHalfMen'' episode, Charlie is trying to drive Jake somewhere (refusing to let Jake drive), when they hear a cat screech, presumably from Charlie running it over. Jake has blackmail material when Charlie believes that he accidentally ran over Chelsea's cat, only to lose it when Chelsea's cat returns, only for Jake to get the blackmail material back by chance when one of his neighbors arrive to inquire about their missing cat that just so happens to resemble Chelsea's cat.
* ''Series/XenaWarriorPrincess'' uses this several times, most notably when Autolycus is rummaging around in his sleeve.

* Music/WeirdAlYankovic's music video for "Handy" features a poor cat immediately after a line about mowing the lawn. He looks off screen in the direction of the poor cat he's just hit.

* A cat screech is heard every time the player shoots the left airport lane in Creator/WilliamsElectronics' ''Pinball/{{Taxi}}''.

[[folder:Print Media]]
* Years ago, ''Sports Illustrated'' magazine printed an issue with a black cat on the cover. Given its infamous cover curse where the person or team featured on it would soon have misfortune of some sort, no-one was willing to pose for the issue. This was subsequently covered by NBC's ''Today Show'', and the newscasters pondered out loud if something was going to happen to the cat. Cue offscreen cat yowl.

[[folder:Puppet Shows]]
* In the opening titles of ''Series/CaptainScarletAndTheMysterons'' (the original marionette version), it's the sound of a bottle being knocked over and a cat screeching that alerts Scarlet to the presence of an enemy.

* In the sketch "Last Will and Temperament" by Canadian comedy troupe Radio/TheFrantics, a will reading contains the sentence "And to my cat Mittens, I leave my entire, vast... boot to the head." Cue an audible thump, followed by an anguished yowl. A later television version kept the cat completely off-screen, but abused it nonetheless. It isn't simply a stock sound effect of the cat screaming either, but is rather long and draws itself out for a few seconds. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFldBVWFgWo Watch it here]].
* Subverted by the ''Creator/ReducedShakespeareCompany'' in their radio show. In a discussion of how pain was funny, they have sound effects of a cat and a frying pan. They receive a phone call where the caller tells them that frying a cat is over the line. Cue "Well, is it ok if I stick Adam's face in the frying pan?" "Sure, that'd be funny." "AAAAAHHHH!"
* Used in ''Radio/ImSorryIHaventAClue'' when they play RussianRoulette and Andy Hamilton fires over his shoulder. "Look, I'm sorry, but that cat was really annoying me."

* PlayedForDrama in ''Film/IRememberMama''. Uncle Elizabeth gets badly wounded, and his offstage howls of pain make Mama decide it's best to put him out of his misery.
* The musical version of ''Film/TheProducers'' has one of these - in the number "You Never Say Good Luck on Opening Night" Bialystock takes a cat and swings it by its tail out of sight. Obviously, the scene is PlayedForLaughs (and Creator/MelBrooks's voice is used for the cat's offstage yowl).
* The Broadway cast recording of ''Film/{{Hairspray}}'' features one on the bonus track at the end of the album - the cast sings a ditty urging their teen audience to avoid drunk driving, and the final note causes an unseen cat to yowl with displeasure.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The cat in the locker in ''VideoGame/SilentHill1'', which gets squashed or eaten by something after leaving the room.
* ''VideoGame/HalfLife2'': "I still have [[NoodleIncident nightmares about that cat]]."
* If you select File 1 of ''VideoGame/BanjoKazooie'', there is a chance that the bed will flip Banjo out the window, where his landing presumably squishes a cat. Cue noise.
* In another Rare title, ''VideoGame/KinectSports'', you have the option of sending your bowling ball wildly off course into the stands if you exaggerate a throw too far to the left or right. Screams, shattering glass and howls are heard, but the strained wail of an unfortunate cat have also found its way into the title.
* In the ''VideoGame/SyobonAction'' games, your character is a white cat playing in an extremely cruel PlatformHell ''VideoGame/SuperMarioBros1'' clone. Many players [[EverythingTryingToKillYou die hundreds of times]] while playing in [[TheManyDeathsOfYou tons of different ways]]. The cat sure takes a lot of abuse...
* In the 1992 version of ''Where In The World Is Franchise/CarmenSandiego'', apprehending the culprit could get a bit messy. In at least one of the animations, there was a cat that flew out of the mess meowing.
* A small but probably well remembered FMV-based game, ''Hot Wheels: Stunt Track Driver'', has you crash your (toy sized) car into the TV at the end of the living room level but it has the StockSoundEffect of any car crash, including this trope. The same sound is used earlier on in the level when you buzz right past the cat's tail as well.
* In the intro cinematic for ''VideoGame/{{Battlefield}} 2: Special Forces'' expansion pack, the Spec Ops class's zipline is showcased, and the end of the commando's zipline trip results in this. It is not possible in game.
* In ''VideoGame/SecretOfEvermore'', the Hero's dog chases after a cat at the beginning of the game. [[spoiler: Later in the game, when the dog becomes a robotic toaster-dog, he chases the (same?) cat off-screen. Cue the sounds of Laser Fire and said cat yelling. Ouch.]]
* A couple times in ''VideoGame/{{Siren}} 2''. You either hear the cat or see one running off.
* On-screen example in ''VideoGame/ChronoTrigger''. When you defeat Ozzie by dropping him down a pit, a cat runs into the pit as well.
* The 2010 Halloween Update for ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' included "noisemakers" you can set off that play Halloween-themed sounds to the entire map. One of them is "Black Cat". In theory, it's supposed to be creepy. In practice, considering all the offscreen gunshots and explosions that occur during any given round, it devolves into this trope very quickly.
* ''VideoGame/Sly2BandOfThieves'' has a cat frequently screaming for its life in Episode 1 (which takes place in Paris), although it's just ambient noise and not player-influenced.
* In one of the Rave-based ''[[VideoGame/BlasterSeries Blaster]]'' games,going into certain rooms will result in a pitch black screen with distressful sound effects including this one, after which Rave comes out saying [[TakeOurWordForIt "You do NOT want to go in there!"]]
* In ''VideoGame/SplinterCellConviction'', pulling someone out of the window of Kobin's mansion (the first guard in the room before Kobin's) will cause this.
* In the 'deleted scene' for ''VideoGame/WorldOfWarcraft'' video for ''Mists Of Pandaria'', the human [[BlindShoulderToss tosses an empty mug over his shoulder]], generating this trope.
* In Roger Wilco's trial at the start of ''VideoGame/SpaceQuestVIRogerWilcoInTheSpinalFrontier'', he somehow causes a series of accidents on the way to the front of the room, including a feline yowl.
* In the opening of ''VideoGame/WarioLand4'' a black cat crossing the street is nearly run over by Wario's car as he drives in a hurry to the Golden Temple. At the end of the game [[spoiler: a white cat is nearly run over in the same way as Wario drives out to get All-you-can-eat steaks for $10.00]]
* One puzzle in ''VideoGame/ResearchAndDevelopment'' involves a laser beam being redirected through a bunch of mirrors towards its target. Due to one of said mirrors being misaligned, it ends up blasting a cat that's stuck in a nearby vent. [[StupidityIsTheOnlyOption No, you can't preemptively rotate that mirror.]]

[[folder:Web Animation]]
* ''WebVideo/AvatarTheAbridgedSeries'': On top of causing massive property damages, the Gaang apparently hits a cat at the end of their mail chute ride in Omashu.
* ''WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries'': The first time Yami uses his Duel disk he seems to hit a cat.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In [[http://megawolf77.deviantart.com/art/Think-Mink-Offscreen-Cat-170498668 this episode]] of sporadic webcomic ''ThinkMink'' a talk show guest Offscreen Cat tells how he isn't safe in any media. The host consoles him as best as she can and then accidentally hits him with a microphone.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''Series/IAmNotInfected'': During their journey to Compton, Hartley sees a cat (which remains off screen). He proceeds to empty all his ammunition shooting at it, while it responds with the familiar yowling sound effect.
* [[WebVideo/TheSpoonyExperiment The Spoony One]] accidentally hits a cat when he throws away [[Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda the Triforce]] in his VideoGame/UltimaI review.
* WebVideo/ToBoldlyFlee uses this as a joke in a Death Star spoof. Now why there was a cat in a Death Star shaped like a bomb is totally unknown.
* [[http://www.youtube.com/user/JitteryDragon#p/u/12/YB0P--miC8c JitteryDragon]] loves using this trope in his ''WesternAnimation/TheLandBeforeTime'' spoofs. Whenever someone trips, runs into something, or something falls or rolls offscreen, That Poor Cat is heard.
* At the end of his ''[[http://screwattack.com/videos/Classic-Ending-Credits-WITH-LYRICS Classic Game Endings]] WithLyrics'' video, Music/{{Brentalfloss}} falls offscreen, and we hear a crash and That Poor Cat.
* WebVideo/RedLetterMedia's ''WebVideo/HalfInTheBag'' makes abundant use of this trope.
** One trailer for Mr. Plinkett Reviews has this happening when he throws a DVD way. [[BuriedAlive In a coffin]].
* In the ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' fan-made short, ''[[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggzikAPENqg Your Eternal Revenge]]'', the Spy sabotages the Demoman's grenade launcher by replacing a grenade with a modified Your Eternal Reward. Tossing the replaced grenade aside, it explodes and we hear the Heavy's "[[http://www.tf2sounds.com/569#q%3D*sharp%2520pain*%26w%3Dheavy ughha]]"
* Noted upon in [[http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-worst-comedy-tv-explained-to-deaf-people/ this]] Website/{{Cracked}} article written by Creator/{{Seanbaby}}.
-->"Did you know? Every off-camera crashing sound in the history of comedy television has been accompanied by the sound of an angry dying cat! We hearing people love it!"

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/DrawnTogether'', whenever someone or something falls or is thrown offscreen, a cat is heard yowling, despite no cat ever being shown on-camera or even mentioned on the series. The characters make no mention of this.
** ''WesternAnimation/FanboyAndChumChum'' has a similar gag.
* ''WesternAnimation/CloneHigh'' substitutes dolphin noises.
* Played with in ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'': During a neighborhood rampage by Dale, who has acquired a suit of medieval armor and now [[AGodAmI sees himself as invincible]], we actually see the cat sitting on a trash can before it cuts away and we hear the standard yowl.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/DuckDodgers'' episode ''Hooray for Hollywood Planet'', Dodgers is swirling nun-chucks, until they slip out of his hands and crash off-screen with the stock crash and cat screech.
* In an episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheCritic'', President Clinton at one point falls through the floor of the Oval Office, a cat yowls in the room beneath and the president says, "Sorry, Socks".
* ''WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants'' has a similar RunningGag, with some random injured guy shouting "My leg!" instead of a yowling cat.
** Made more funny if one thinks about it, as fish have no legs. In TheMovie it was [[EyeScream "My eyes!"]] as a RunningGag.
** There really was a poor cat sound effect which was heard two times in the first season episode "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy II". Also after TheMovie, Gary and other snails now have this trope invoked on them.
** Gary does it in "Rise and Shine" when Patrick trips on a lamp and falls down the stairs.
* Similarly, ''ThePenguinsOfMadagascar'' have a guy off screen shouting "My car!" at some point pretty much whenever the penguins leave the zoo.
** There's a similar running gag in ''WesternAnimation/MakingFiends'' with [[ButtMonkey Marvin]] who always yells "My ___!" Once it was "My pencil!"
* In one episode of ''WesternAnimation/QuackPack'' there's a poor cat in a garbage chute.
* Heard in the "Bridle Gossip" episode of ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' when Rainbow Dash tumbled through some bushes in the [[TheLostWoods Everfree Forest]]. What's that? Why's there a cat in the Everfree Forest? [[RuleOfFunny Well, why not]]?
** Later appears in part two of the season two premiere, during a BigBallOfViolence. No cat was seen before the dust kicked up, and none was seen after.
** In "Spike At Your Service", Spike kicks a mushroom that hits a cat off-screen.
** An interesting example is heard earlier on in "Sweet and Elite". Rarity is packing up to head back to Ponyville from Canterlot, when she gets a letter asking her to come to a garden party at that day. She changes her mind. Turning to the bagpony that has all her things (and I mean ALL her things), and her cat, Opal, in her cat crate, piled onto his back, she tells him that she won't be leaving, but will be needing help to re-unpacking them. The poor guy then subsequently collapses, and we hear what is assumed to be Opal yowling as all the luggage comes crashing down. We never see Opal during the collapse, but she was the only cat in that pile.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'' episode "Walk of Doom" Zim and Gir startle a dog--and the traditional cat yowl sound is heard.
* Pops up in an episode of ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'' when Doofenshmirtz throws a bear trap offscreen, and in another episode where a glass of lemonade is kicked offscreen. It also appears in "Der Kinderlumper" when Linda leaves the vacuum cleaner on and it crashes, which is weird since the Flynn-Fletchers do not even ''have'' a cat. Also in "Mission Marvel", when the immobile Iron Man falls on the floor.
* ''WesternAnimation/KickButtowskiSuburbanDaredevil'' gives us too many to count, it's practically in every episode. It appears to be the writer's favorite gag.
** One that's sort of off-screen appears in "Hand in Hand" when Kick picks up a cat and flings it over a house over to the street on the other side only to land in Ronaldo's face. We don't really see much of it as the houses are in the way, but Ronaldo makes it very clear that this is what is happening.
-->'''Ronaldo:''' Ah! CAT ON MY FACE!
* This becomes a RunningGag in ''WesternAnimation/BarbieInAChristmasCarol''.
* If a character throws something off-screen in ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'', it is guaranteed to hit [[ButtMonkey Zoidberg]].
* Inverted in the first episode of ''{{WesternAnimation/Gargoyles}}''. Hakon throws a bone with a bit of meat on it off screen. We then hear a dog barking happily. That Lucky Dog!
* ''Literature/LittleBear'': Cat had this in earlier episodes.
* ''WesternAnimation/HeyArnold'' loves this trope, especially considering the cast lives in a working-class NYC neighborhood (most likely Queens or the Bronx).
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Rugrats}}'': Angelica's pet cat Fluffy had this in earlier episodes.
* Happens in one episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheMrMenShow'' right before [[spoiler:Miss Whoops enters]].
* In the ''WesternAnimation/TheAmazingWorldOfGumball'' this literally happens to Gumball (a cat) when he starts chasing a laser pointer and the scene cuts away with him still going around, breaking things in the background while a cat's hissing can be heard ([[FurryReminder which he usually doesn't make]]).
* A RunningGag in ''WesternAnimation/RockosModernLife'' is offscreen animal noises being a sheep bleating, or any other animal but a cat.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheLoudHouse'' has Cliff, the family cat, who is always caught in the crossfire of the kids' antics even on-screen.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'' episode "Know Your Fusion", Sardonyx throws a microphone off screen and causes a yowling cat noise, even though she and [[spoiler: Smoky Quartz]] are the only ones in Sardonyx's room.
* In the Veggietales in The House episode, "Larry Gets a Bulldozer", Larry uses his bulldozer to push trash off the coffee table. After they fall we hear crashing and a screeching cat noise. Prehaps it must have been Mrs Fluffy Face.
* One short of ''[[WesternAnimation/WallaceAndGromit Wallace and Gromit's Cracking Contraptions]]'' had a horse sound effect.
* A RunningGag on ''WesternAnimation/{{Kaeloo}}'' is to have this happen, and then for it to be revealed that it was Mr. Cat who got crashed into.
* Used many times in ''WesternAnimation/SonicBoom''.