Note from Con Slobodchikoff: This is a guest post by Nikki Longo, @NikkiDLongo, about.me/NikkiDLongo. Nikki has previously written about pet safety on the Dog Behavior Blog.
The High Tech Pet
Technology doesn't have to be limited to the two-legged human crowd. Nowadays, more and more technology is being applied to the hairier members of the family, making it easier to stay connected to pets, as well as come up with new and improved ways to keep track of their health, accelerate their training, or just keep close to them when away for long hours.
Even when pets are fine with their owners being away for extended amounts of time, that isn't always the case with the owners. There isn't a pet owner in the world who hasn't wiled away time at their desk, wistfully wondering what their pet is up to. Then there are the pets who pine all day for their owners, woefully wishing their favorite human was there to play with them. The PetCube is a small, compact bundle of technology that encompasses a camera, a microphone, and a laser pointer on movable platform. The camera streams HD-quality video to users on a wireless network and is easily accessible on the go. So not only does the PetCube allow you to keep your pet engaged throughout the day, but it will allow owners to see what their pet is up to and if there are negative behaviors they need to address as dogs can become destructive when bored.
Remote Training Collars
There are dozens of ways pets can get into danger: sniffing a coiled snake on the ground, getting caught up in a group of unfriendly dogs when off leash at a dog park, running off after a rabbit and crashing into a barbed wire fence. Leashes aren't always feasible and there are moments in a dog's life where even the most well-trained canine won't respond to the voice commands they know. Remote training collars are gentle and effective at training dogs to distinguish between "right" and "wrong" behaviors with a vibration or mild pulse of electric stimulation. A handheld remote gives the owner control over their dogs for distances of up to two miles with some collars.
Remote training collars are also great for dogs with unsavory behaviors like food stealing, trash digging, or furniture destruction.
Keep Track of Your Pet's Health
Phones and tablets keep track of everything lately, so why not let it keep track of health information for pets, too? There are plenty of apps for pet lovers. One app called "MyPetED--Pet Health Center" makes it easy to keep track of vaccine history, surgical information, veterinarian contact information, as well as receive articles directly on the application about various health and behavior articles geared specifically for animals.
Another app, "Pet First Aid" offers important videos and information about common injuries to pets, giving owners time to help treat minor injuries and stabilize serious ones en route to the veterinarian.
Man’s Best Friend’s Eye View Camera
Dogs are brilliant. Every dog owner will attest to that. And there are times when owners walk through the door and their dog has done something so mind boggling that they think "How did they do that!?". Now there's a petcam that can answer those questions. This tiny camera attaches to the pet's collar and lets owners see exactly what their critter has been getting up to while they're away. Just plug into the computer via a USB and watch all of kitty's shenanigans at once. And don’t let the name fool you, it works with cats too!
So what this all boils down to is this – your dog doesn’t need an iPad, but there are various high-tech tools that you and your dog can use to keep them active, keep them consistent in their training and to just keep them having fun.