The Caring Meter is a device utilized by the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Caring to detect the levels of positive emotions present in others, including those on Earth and in Care-A-Lot.
The meter can lower through various ways, including:
- Someone who is troubled or is feeling down on Earth.
- An evil scheme (usually planned by No Heart) taking effect that causes people to act in an uncaring way.
- Any kind of quarrel happening in Care-A-Lot.
If the meter gets to a point where there's a low amount of caring in the world (or Care-A-Lot itself), disasters such as thunderstorms and rainbows crumbling, and sometimes the colors turning black and white will occur. If the meter were to reach all the way to zero (meaning that there's literally no caring anywhere), then Care-A-Lot will disappear completely.
Not much is known about it, although it is shown to have mechanical inner workings. Dark Heart once attempted to ruin the Care Bears by posing as a "Caring Meter Reader", to which he sabotaged the mechanisms of the Caring Meter.
In The Care Bears Movie, The Caring meter is shown with 8 hearts, along with 3 colored zones: Red (0-3), Yellow (4-6), And Green (7-8). It has shown to be cracked in some areas due to the cloud-quake that was caused by The Spirit.
In Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation, as well as The Care Bears Family television series, The Caring Meter is shown to have 12 hearts, in an unnumbered clock like fashion. Unlike the first movie, this meter has a bell inside, and is much larger. The pointer will move counter-clockwise as the pointer as it drops. Depending on the number of bells the Caring Meter has tolled, the pointer will move the amount of hearts per toll. (Example: 3 tolls will equal 3 hearts.)
In The Care Bears' Big Wish Movie, It is dubbed "The Care-O-Meter", and has two sides: Raincloud, (Less caring) and the Rainbow. (More Caring) If the meter gets too close to the raincloud side, the Care Bears must try and prevent the meter from going even lower by going on caring missions.
The Caring Meter has been shown to malfunction in the series.
In Care Bears Movie II: A New Generation, while the Care Bears are setting up for a party, the pointer is spinning uncontrollably. It is unknown what caused the meter to malifunction this way.
In the television series, the meter has malfunctioned 2 other times:
- In the episode The Factory of Uncaring, the spike from Beastly's helmet stopped the pointer from moving (thinking that the Care Bears won't notice any problems), which caused the mechanics to stop up and smoke began to emit from the meter itself, and once Champ Bear pulled the spike out, the pointer dropped to the 6th and bottom heart, causing the alarm to sound with bells and whistles.
- In the episode Songfellow Strum and His Magic Train, the Meter suddenly malfunctioned after Brave Heart Lion and Hugs & Tugs argued. This time however, the alarm didn't sound. The meter could have possibly malfunctioned due to the arguing Brave Heart and Hugs & Tugs caused.
- "The Caring Meter dropped two whole points!" - Funshine Bear alarming Tender Heart about the Meter.
- "The Caring Meter has fallen to 3. In no time, it'll fall to zero, and that's the end of Care-A-Lot!" - Good Luck Bear noticing the Caring Meter in the dangerous level.
- The Caring Meter has only dropped to zero one time, that being in the first movie.
- In the episode 'Under the Bigtop' of the television series, the pointer moves clockwise rather than counter-clockwise.
- Dark Heart wasn't the only one who tried to sabotage the Caring Meter for one's gain. In the previously mentioned episode 'The Factory Of Uncaring', Beastly tried to chop down the meter with an ax in order for No-Heart's plan to work, but ironically his plan became sabotaged when Bright Heart's remote-controlled airplane began to chase after him, causing a sequence of events that led to what happened in the previously mentioned malfunction.