The "Phil Athans" Rule - Combat With Weak Creatures

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(You can view this article in Hungarian on the Rejtett Uradalom site.)

"Cat's aren't domesticated, they're just not big enough to kill you." - Phil Athans, former WotC book editor

It seems strange to be that four housecats have a decent chance of killing your typical 1st-level wizard. After all, a housecat has a claw/claw/bite routine, +0 BAB with its natural attacks, and though it has a -4 Strength penalty to damage it still has a minimum of 1 point of damage, and 3 attacks per round can spell doom for an unlucky wizard.

My solution is the rule I dub the "Phil Athans Rule," based on the above quote by Phil.

The Phil Athans Rule
If a creature with a Strength penalty to damage makes an attack, and the damage rolled would be adjusted to 0 or because of the creature's Strength penalty if it weren't for the "1 point of damage minimum" rule, the creature's attack deals 1 point of subdual damage instead of normal damage. This rule does not apply if the creature takes a -4 penalty to its attack rolls (just as if it were trying to deal normal damage with a subdual-damage weapon).
(If you're using the 3.5 rules, replace "subdual" with "nonlethal" and "lethal" with "normal.")

That solves the problem of killer cats, rats, and 5-year-old human children.