Gadgets for cats and dogs: 6 best wearable pet tech and innovative toys

Smart dog collars now allow pet owners to track their pet’s behavior and interpret that data to help them with health care (Image: Whistle)

Last year 3.2 million Britons became first-time pet owners, and the number skyrocketed with the pandemic. According to data from Insights specialist Consumer Intelligence, there are now more than 17 million animals scurrying through homes in the UK.

And with the reopening of offices and the change in our work patterns, it also means that millions of pet owners – some of whom are new to pet care – face leaving their new animals alone for the first time during the work day.

It has never been a better time for the tech world to step up – and it is. Enter a new wave of portable pet technology and pet-friendly devices to help pet owners care for their new family members.

Here is a roundup of the radical new innovations that are making it easier for us to raise our pets.

The whistle

The whistle collar allows owners to track their dog’s behavior and interpret the data to monitor and treat their health (Image: whistle collar)

This smart collar for your dog doubles as a behavior tracker to diagnose a health problem before it starts.

It comes from a three-year study conducted by veterinarians, researchers, and scientists at Mars Petcare Veterinarian appointments – summed up.

The Whistle device analyzes your dog’s daily activities such as eating, drinking, scratching, licking or shaking to determine “normal” behavior and then notifies you when your dog’s individual activity has changed.

Based on data from many other pets who have done the same thing, it predicts what this could mean for health and allows owners to research if necessary.

Dr. Darren Logan, research director at Mars Petcare’s Waltham Petcare Science Institute, compares it to “a fitness tracker with medical analysis.” “This is a new era in proactive, preventive care,” he says. “Today we live a lot of connected life, which includes our pets and how we take care of them.”

For now, only dogs can benefit from this, but the team is planning a feline phase very soon.

Pipe collar, from £ 143, whistle

The cat robot

The Enobot sends clear pictures of your pet playing with their robot friend back to your smartphone

The Enobot sends clear pictures of your pet playing with their robot friend back to your smartphone

Guess what? It turns out that cats get lonely too. This nifty gadget, known as the “intelligent robot companion for your cat”, is designed to prevent loneliness and boredom. Ebo is a small, round robotic ball that meanders around with the call “Ebo” while filming your cat and delivering clear images back to your smartphone so you can check in. Audio feed, works similarly to the Petcube.

Thanks to AI technology, it adapts its game to your cat’s personality, while the self-timer allows you to set the game time around the nap.

The robot wakes up to play and then returns to its charger. Ideal for indoor cats in need of entertainment as they can be used to exercise and track their movement.

Ebo Pro, £ 259, Ebo Pro

Interactive dog bone

The interactive dog bone will keep your dog entertained when you are not at home

The interactive dog bone will play with your dog and will keep him entertained when you are not with him

This smart bone will play with your dog to keep him entertained when you are not home or to keep you all entertained when you are there.

Many pets are used to having their owners at home to play tug of war with them. So if you need to return to the office, you can leave their bones to give them time to play while they work.

Works just as well indoors on carpet as it does outdoors on grass. Nice and sturdy – and at the end you can add a few goodies for additional enjoyment. Charge the bone with a USB cable.

Interactive Dog Bone, £ 39.99, amazon.co.uk

The DNA decoder

Now you can find out more about your dog's health and heritage with DNA testing

Now you can find out more about your dog’s health and heritage with DNA testing (Image: Shutterstock)

Building on industry-leading Artificial Intelligence (AI) methods and the largest canine DNA database in the world, this test is the most accurate canine DNA test on the market.

Developed by the world’s leading geneticists, the easy-to-perform saliva test enables you to find out more about your pet’s health and history – for example, if your pet has genetic disorders related to drug sensitivity, eyesight, weight, mobility, and more.

Over 200 health tests are included – including those to help determine the ideal weight range, reduce mix mix to 1%, and trace your dog’s ancestry back to its great grandparents.

DNA test for dogs from € 89.99, Wisdom Panel

the Video vet

Video counseling has become the norm for all of us during the lockdown – and it gets nowhere when it comes to pets. A new web-based app called Dogtastic provides instant access to affordable, personalized veterinary advice. Members can chat with qualified veterinarians via live video or text for quick advice and avoid costly in-person visits.

Dogtastic Video Vet, Unlimited First Year Digital Visits, £ 24, Dogtastic

Sleep and step tracker for pets

The FitBark2 can send details about your pet's sleeping habits directly to your phone and also track their steps

The FitBark2 can send details about your pet’s sleeping habits directly to your phone and also track their steps

FitBark2’s activity and sleep monitor your dog’s daily activities and convert this data into actionable health information.

Have you ever wondered how much your dog really sleeps in a day? FitBark will tell you. It will also let you know if they are sleeping more or less than usual to alert you to possible health issues. The activity tracker tells you how many steps your pet is taking – and can sync this information with FitBit, Apple HealthKit or Google Fit devices so you can both compete with each other.

Has a battery life of 6 months and weighs 10g.

FitBark2, £ 59, fitbark.com

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