If you consider yourself to be pretty tech savvy, often picking up the latest gizmos and gadgets created in order to make your life easier, it’s probably spilled over into your pet-parent life. And why shouldn’t it? There are a lot of great, high tech items on the market for the dogs and cats in your life that not only make their lives more interesting and fun, but can also make your day-to-day with them easier. We decided to deep-dive into the world of high tech pet products to uncover the best of what’s available now and share our findings with you. We hope that whether you’re already an avid user of tech items or a newbie to the tech game, you’ll enjoy reading about what’s available for you and your furry friends!
Tagg Pet Tracker: The Tagg pet tracker is a GPS attachment for your pet's collar that serves two functions. First, it tracks your pet in case he or she ever gets lost. The app will send you a text message or email if your pet travels beyond its designated boundaries, then lead you directly to the animal's location. Second, it tracks the animals activity like a canine Fitbit or Fuelband, so you can make sure Fido is getting enough exercise. The device costs $99.95, and the service costs $7.95 per month after a three-month free trial.
Pet’s Eye View Camera: Strap a camera to your pet's collar and see what they are up to! You can set the camera to snap photos in intervals of one, five or 15 minutes. The device, which costs $40, stores 40 photos and comes with a USB cable to upload them onto your computer.
Motorola Scout 5000: This $200 device has a GoPro-like video camera built into its GPS location tracking device. Connect to a live stream of the camera anytime on your phone and - even better - a speaker lets you talk to your pup, too! There's also a bark detection feature that notifies you when your dog is being too loud.
Trackimo: A very small GPS location device designed for both pets and humans. It costs $100 for the hardware and a 12-month mobile connection plan. You'll also get international GPS tracking for no extra charge. Depending on use, Trackimo lasts two to three days on a single charge and comes in a waterproof silicone case. One single "SOS" button will broadcast the wearer's location via app, email, or text.
Whistle Activity Monitor ($99): This little device snaps onto a harness or collar and communicates with the Whistle app for iOS. The device connects to WiFi, so you can see your dog's activity in real time. Whistle also compares your dog's activity to similar dogs, so you can keep him or her healthy. The data is sent from the Whistle over WiFi to the connected phone. While you're away at work or on vacation, you can check in to see how your pup is doing.
Pet Chatz: Pet Chatz lets you have a video conference with your pooch, just by using your smartphone connected to their video monitor display. This makes it so you can check in on them from time to time while you are at work, or otherwise out of the house. You can even give them treats using the device, so your dog knows you’re still thinking of them. Pretty sweet!
Go-Go Dog Pals: Dogs need exercise to stay healthy, just like humans. The Go-Go Dog Pal is a remote-controlled device made to look like a small critter. According to the product's website, the remote control works at long range, and the device is capable of speeds surpassing 20 mph. Unless your dog has no interest in chasing it, in which case it just turns into a fun toy for you. Cost is $229.99.
Go Dog Go Fetch Machine: This automatic fetch machine will save some wear and tear on your arm. It launches balls more than 40 ft. You can fill the bucket with one ball or launch several in succession depending on how your dog likes to play. $139.99.
Dart Automatic Laser Toy: There are few forms of entertainment more pristine than watching a cat chase a laser beam. With this automatic rotating laser, you won't even need to wave your arm around. For $30, just sit back and enjoy the fun.
FitBark: Pups need to stay fit, too! This $100 item is a dog activity monitor that turns your pet's movements into "BarkPoints." Track your pet's play, daily active time, and rest in one app via Bluetooth. It's light (eight grams) and designed to fit dogs of any breed, size, and weight.
Nite Ize Light Up Ball: The light up ball lets you play fetch with your dog even when the sun goes down. Night time is no reason to stop playing! Just be sure you are playing in an area that is clear of objects so your dog doesn’t get hurt. $12.
iFetch ($100): An automatic ball launcher that throws mini tennis balls. It's awesome for energetic dogs — or lazy dog owners. Train your pup to fetch balls, then return them back to the iFetch's ball deposit for an endless cycle of fun.
Puppy Tweets: Puppy Tweets is a fun way to keep track of your dog when you're at work or elsewhere. A sensor on the dog's collar sends a signal to a USB receiver attached to your computer. The sensor figures out what the dog is doing and then updates the dog's personal Twitter account with a clever tweet such as, "You at lunch? Remember the two most beautiful words in the English language: DOGGIE BAG!" Cost: The device is currently selling for about $15 on Amazon.
The Woofer: This little jacket essentially turns your dog into an iPod dock. There are speakers sewn into the fabric, and a pouch with a standard speaker jack for your MP3 player of choice. Between $100 and $120, depending on the size of your woofer.
Petcube: Feeling guilty about leaving your furry friends at home? This is a video-camera system that allows you to remotely tune in to what your pets are up to via Android or iOS app. There's also a built-in mic so you can talk to your pup or kitty. You can even enable a laser pointer to entertain 'em! So fun. Available for $199.
Tractive: A GPS system that uses cell towers to show you where Fido is at anytime. Its waterproof collar attachment ($130) is smartphone compatible. The app allows users to set a "safe zone" and will alert your device if your pup leaves the area. Tractive's GPS service ($6 per month) locates your pets and shows you position history.
Say hello to the smart feeder. Petnet ($199) makes sure kitty or pup is well fed. From your smartphone, you can control your pet's feeding schedule and portion sizes. The Petnet app shows you how much of your pet's daily intake he or she has consumed that day. You can even add multiple users and decide who is responsible for allotting food.
Rover and DogVacay: Going on vacation can be hard when you have a pet. These sites can connect you with sitters in thousands of cities around the US. All dog sitters are reviewed, and you can choose for them to watch your pup in your own home or theirs. Prices range between $20 to $75 per night — definitely cheaper than a hotel for humans.
Litter-Robot: If you hate cleaning litter boxes, this litter sifting system may be a good investment. It’s a round enclosure your cat enters to do his business. Once he exits, the Litter-Robot waits seven minutes before rotating to drop clumps into a drawer which typically needs to be emptied once or twice a week, depending on how many cats use it. It works with regular kitchen garbage bags and any clumping litter as well as alternative litters such as Litter Pearls, Crystals or World's Best Cat Litter. One caveat: Small cats or kittens that weigh less than five pounds may not trip Litter-Robot’s sensor. $369 at litter-robot.com or Amazon.
Voyce Dog Collar: Activity monitors have helped a lot of humans live healthier lifestyles, get in shape and lose unwanted pounds. So why not give your favorite pets the same benefit? The Voyce dog collar is a wearable fitness device that measures your pooch’s pulse (via radio frequency), respiratory rate, rest patterns and calories burned. These important vitals can be tracked through your phone and shared with your vet, if desired. The app will even warn you if your pet’s activity pattern changes – a potential sign of problems. The battery on the Voyce lasts for seven days, so thankfully there’s no daily recharging requirement. You can purchase the Voyce dog collar directly through the company’s website for $199. You’ll also be required to pay a monthly service charge of $9.50 per month or $95 per year.
Wigzi Tangle Free Dual Dog Leash: The dual dog leash by Wigzi makes it so you won’t have to deal with a tangled leash ever again when walking two dogs at the same time. The solution comes from the way it is designed, so that neither leash can cross over the other, causing the dreaded tangle. Get it for $35 over on Amazon.
Pavlovian Puppy Potty Trainer: This potty trainer uses Pavlovian methods to train your puppy to go outside when they feel the urge. This will help prevent accidents and also strengthen your bond with them because you won’t have to worry about getting upset when they do their business inside on, uh, your favorite rug. $99.
Dog Cooling Bed: Keep your dog cool with this $54 cooling bed, and they’ll definitely be thanking you all summer long. Dogs can overheat pretty easily and it’s important to keep them cool, especially during those warmer months. This bed can really help with that as it diffuses heat when they lay on top of it, hitting those all important paws first.
Wanna get really crazy? Check out this $1,300 shower stall! How about an $1,100 doggie treadmill? They’ve thought of it all!
In the comments below, we’d love to hear what tech items you love using with your pup and how you found out about them. Not currently using anything this fancy? No sweat, let us know which