Posted on July 23, 2015: Many working pet parents have probably faced this problem.
You come back home, after a long tiring day at work, and your beloved pet has gone through the trash can and walked all over the kitchen counter or sofa with their muddy, dirty paws. Now, you have to get your mop and clean up the mess. By the time you are done with that, you are too tired to try to discipline your pet and dissuade them from their bad behaviour. So, the cycle continues. Your pet never learns that they are doing something wrong and keeps trashing your house, while you are too tired to train and keep cleaning up the mess.
It was experiences like this with his pet cat and dog that led Sydney-based innovator and inventor Paul Moutzouris, along with a team of engineers and designers at his company Sensonix, to come up with the idea of Petguard. Petguard is an innovative pet tracking and training system that works using ultrasonic waves and radio waves, while being entirely operated through an app on your smartphone.
“We’ve developed a product that works as a behavioural training device,” Moutzouris told startupsmart.com, “It’s really hard to be naughty when you’re caught, and they’ll get caught 100% of the time. The dog rummages through the bin. He waits for me to walk out, looks really innocent, and then you walk out and he’ll rummage in it. He’d just wait for you to go and he knew exactly what he was doing. We’ve also found our cat sleeping in our baby’s cot, so that’s a real worry when you don’t even know they’re in the room. There are products that do part of the job, like spikes in pot plants or chemical sprays, but that never felt right. There wasn’t anything that could actually change the behaviour of the pet.”
Eye in the Sky
The Petguard system consists a sensor and alarm machine known as the Sentinel, and a tag that attaches to your pet’s collar. You place the Sentinel in spots around the house that you want your pet to keep away from, such as the couch, bed or kitchen. You can monitor the movements of your pet through an app, currently only available for iOS, which connects to the Sentinel via Bluetooth. If your pet wanders too close to the Sentinel, it sounds an audible alarm. That’s when you can step in and change your pet’s behaviour.
And for when you are not at home or need your peace and quiet, the Sentinel is also equipped to let out an ultrasonic alarm that is audible only to animals. It dissuades them from going near the sentinel, while you are not disturbed. Genius!
The Companion App keeps a track of your pet’s movements so that you can monitor it later to see how much progress (or not) your pet has made in changing unwanted behaviour. A Tag runs for four months on a single battery charge and is rechargeable.
Costs and availability
The good people at Sensonix are looking for crowdfunding for the next leg of the project which is “tooling and plastics costs, development of the Android version of the app, and final product polish - not core development”. As part of a Kickstarter campaign, they are looking for 500 people to back them with raising $60,000 AUD in the next 11 days.Since they are offering global shipping, parents in India can also book a Petguard system for their pets by backing up the project for approximately $119 Australian dollars. The system also comes with 3 months replacement warranty.
You can find out more about the product in this Youtube video:
Photographs courtesy www.sensonix.com.au