High-tech for pets keeps animals safe, healthy and connected
High-tech for pets keeps animals safe, healthy and connected In this Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2016, photo, Russell Gipson Shearer displays the Whistle pet tracker, a GPS-enabled device, on his dog Rocket at Dolores Park in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
High-tech for pets keeps animals safe, healthy and connected
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Technology isn't just for humans anymore. It's also for their furry friends.
 
In California's Silicon Valley and beyond, a growing number of new companies are selling devices. These keep pets safe, healthy, entertained and connected when their owners are away.
 
"Pet tech" entrepreneurs and investors see a big opportunity. This is as pet ownership grows and owners show a willingness to spend serious money on their four-legged companions.
 
Nearly two-thirds of U.S. households, or 80 million homes, have pets. Americans spent more than $60 billion on them last year. That is according to the American Pet Products Association.
 
"The number of pets in the world is growing extremely fast. And that opens up the market," said Peter Harrop. He is chairman of IDTechEx. It is a technology market research firm. "I'm sure five years from now there will be all sorts of things we can't imagine."
 
Already, there are devices that let your pets call you (PetChatz). There are devices that let your pets play games and win treats when they're home alone (CleverPet) and even speak with a human voice (Petspeak).
 
But as more pet-tech gadgets come to market, experts caution owners. They should not rely on them too much.
 
"The technology can be useful as an adjunct, a way of enriching your relationship with your pet. But certainly not a substitute for time spent with your dog," said Pamela Wyman. She runs the DogEvolve training school. It is in Oakland.
 
The Petzi Treatcam lets Anne Ryan check on her dogs Oscar and Reggie at her home in Berkeley, Calif.  She does it when she's working in San Francisco or traveling out of state.
 
The Internet-connected device lets her see her dogs. She can talk to them and take photos. She even can dispense treats. She does it by using an app on her phone.
 
"I turn it on, get to see them, get to talk to them and it changes my mood. And puts me back in a positive frame," said Ryan said. "I didn't know that I needed it. But now I don't think that I could live without it."
 
The TreatCam was created by San Jose-based Petzila. The company was founded by two technology executives. They wanted to get their pets online. The startup also created a social media app. It lets owners share pet photos.
 
"All of the most current crazes and fads in technology were touching everything but the pet," said CEO David Clark.
 
Whistle is a new San Francisco company. It sells a GPS-enabled Pet Tracker. It alerts owners when their pets have left their "safe zone."  It helps find them if they get lost. The device also lets owners track how much exercise and sleep their animals are getting.
 
Ben Jacobs is Whistle's CEO and co-founder.  He said the pet-tech market is expanding fast. Pets are moving up the household hierarchy, he said.
 
"From the yard to the home to the bed - the dog is no longer out as part of the farm. But they're actually sleeping in bed with you as part of the family," Jacobs said.
 
For owners who want their dogs and cats to be more active during the day, the Petcube Camera lets them see and speak to their pets. Owners even can play with them, using a laser pointer.
 
Petcube's Ukrainian founders started the company in Kiev. But they moved its headquarters to San Francisco. They wanted to reach a global market.
 
"If we can connect all the pets to the Internet and basically digitize this space, it will be nothing short of disruption," said Yaroslav Azhnyuk. He is Petcube CEO and co-founder. "It will be very big."

Source URL: https://www.tweentribune.com/article/junior/high-tech-pets-keeps-animals-safe-healthy-and-connected/

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
How might technology compromise the relationship between pets and pet owners?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (43)
  • zane-hym
    3/23/2016 - 09:11 a.m.

    People might use technology to compromise the relationship between pets and pet owners because pet owners what'd there pets to go online.

  • caleb-hym
    3/23/2016 - 09:14 a.m.

    One thing that a don't think is positive about technology's is that it controls the pet so that not better than just training a dog al though it's easier without training the dog.

  • cooper-hym
    3/23/2016 - 09:16 a.m.

    One thing that is good about the new pet devices is dogs will not be lonely anymore.One bad thing about the new pet devices to is the users should not rely on them to much. Another good thing about pet devices is the owner can use a laser pointer to play with there pet. The last thing that is good about the pet devices is the owners pet will not get lost anymore.

  • giovanni-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:35 p.m.

    3 good results in the technology for pets are
    1. Pet owners can see what their pets are doing,
    2. Pet owners can tell their pets to do tricks and can give them treats,
    3. The people can find their pets if they are lost.
    1 thing that's not good about the technology is that people might pay more attention to other peoples pics of their pets that are on petchazt and other pet devices then their pets.

  • zaire-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:36 p.m.

    3 results in the technology for pets are
    1. The owners can see what the dog is doing.
    2. The owners can see if the dog is lost.
    3. The owners of the dog can tell them to do tricks to get a treat.
    One thing that is not good about technology is that the people that own the dog has to keeps eye on the dog pics.

  • christopher-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:44 p.m.

    Here are 3 things that pet tech can do
    1. You can take pictures of your pet
    2. You can dispense treats
    3. You can even talk to your pet when it is speaking in human language

    Something that is not positive about the pet tech is that the companies don't now what to do if something goes wrong with there tech.

  • arianna-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:45 p.m.

    I think technology is the relationship between pets and pet owners because there is a app for the owner and there pet to comutmat. Three good things that are a rusult of using technology with pets is,first,When the owner is at a meeting or a buisness trip the owner can see his or her pet from a far away place.Second,the owner can go some where with out his or her pet. Third, the owner can also hang out with a friend and the app can watch the owners. A not positive result in using technology with pets is not having the app and no one there.

  • john-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:45 p.m.

    A few good things that are a result of using technology with pets is, you can understand them, you can play with your pets when you aren't home, your pets can call you. One thing that might not be a positive result in using technology with pets is, your pet won't be a normal pet anymore.

  • keyshawn-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:55 p.m.

    3 ways it's a good thing that pets can a technology is it can keep it healthy,safe and,entertained.A bad thing is when you play with your pet it can't that active

  • hannah-hym
    3/23/2016 - 01:55 p.m.

    3 good things that help dogs with technology are:
    1. It's safe and healthy.
    2. It keeps them entertained when there owner is away
    3. You can know if your pet is eating enough or getting enough sleep.

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