Uncertain times breed the need for hugs and affection, and our canine companions are only too happy to oblige. They bring fun and laughter to every occasion and provide solace and snuggles when we’re sad.
A burgeoning 24% of the UK adult population have a dog, with an estimated total population of 10.1 million pet dogs, according to the PDSA. That’s a lot of feeding, playing, grooming and training, and sure enough, there’s a burgeoning tech industry for our canines too.
Dogs love to accompany us everywhere, but there are times we have to leave them at home alone. If you worry about your what your fur baby might get up to, it’s worth looking at dog surveillance devices. Our favourite, and one of the most popular is the Furbo dog camera, £133.99 from Amazon, which is a stylish, useful device for dog owners who leave their pets alone during the day. Once plugged in and synced with your phone, this allows you to watch and administer treats to your pets both day and night. The product’s app also alerts you when your dog is barking through a quick phone notification, allowing you to log-in easily and see what might have troubled your pet and calm them with a tasty snack, or the sound of your voice.
Worried he’s getting too sedentary? The PitPat Dog Activity and Fitness Monitor helps you monitor your dog’s walk, play and rest time to ensure they’re getting enough exercise. It easily clips on to your dog’s collar and doesn’t require charging. It takes only minutes to set up your dog’s profile and receive your personalised exercise goals. You can check in each day to see if you’ve done enough exercise and even share data with others such as your vet. It’s easy to navigate and a great motivator to help get both you and your dog to spend more time outdoors in 2021. The PitPat costs £39 from Amazon.
The Tractive GPS Dog Tracker and Activity Monitor follows your furry friend's every step in real-time on your phone so you can see where they’ve been and what they've been up to. Its virtual fence enables you to mark safe spaces, like your garden, and know the moment your dog leaves one - and when they come back safely. It also provides all-day monitoring of active time, rest and calories burned so you can set fitness goals, and it offers worldwide tracking for dogs in over 150 countries. The Tractive GPS costs around £44.99.
Want to get a dog’s eye view of your perambulations? Get a hold of a GoPro camera and harness and you’ll see and enjoy the trip so much more with your dog buddy. Various Go Pro cameras and harnesses are available to suit medium and large dogs.
Barking is a common problem for many dog owners, and there are various products aimed at keeping your pooch quiet when you want him to be, in a humane way. Bark Silencer ultrasonic dog whistle operates at a frequency inaudible to human ears, but it’s claimed to be gentle, and won’t harm your dog’s eardrums. It comes with a small infrared light and a flashlight attached to it. Usually, the Bark Silencer whistle itself should be enough to stop your dog in his tracks, but just in case it’s not, the flashlight will do the trick.
There’s an incredible amount of technology on the market designed especially for dogs, so you should do some research and work out what is going to be best for you and your pooch. Read reviews from other owners and, if in doubt, speak to the companies who will be able to offer more advice.