I was interested to read an article recently written in the Guardian newspaper about wearable tech for pets. It is no surprise that our obsession with fitness bands has spilled over into the animal world - I would love to know how active my dog is when I am out of the house! From the 'Fitbark' to the 'PitPat' and 'Whistle', fitness trackers for dogs are giving us insights into our pets activity and health.
This technology is something I have been exploring, considering its use by superyacht animals – as both a tracker and as a complementary tool in remote veterinary care. The latest devices can relay essential information back to vet, owner or carer about the health and wellbeing of animals. Not only does this mean that accurate information about an pet is easily and quickly accessible from any distance, it could mean that any problems could potentially detected and treated faster, making a 'fitness' device an essential tool in remote veterinary medicine. This is ideally suited to superyacht animals, who often rely on a level of remote veterinary care. particularly when yachts are cruising in remote locations or for long periods. Starla is currently the guinea pig for these technologies in the SVS camp and based on what we find it could well be rolled out to all superyacht pets being looked after by us.
With pet technology I think we are only just getting warmed up, and figures published in the aforementioned article agree, with the industry of wearable pet tech predicted by a source to be worth $2.3 billion by 2022. True, not every product released is going to be useful (pet to human translators leave me unconvinced with most things animals want to ‘say’ already picked up by their attuned owners), and no device will ever be able to replace direct veterinary care and an owners own knowledge of their animals health and wellbeing, but they can definitely complement them. The future of pet tech is bright, and I look forward to seeing the release of more and more sophisticated devices, with superyacht pets being animals that really reap the benefit.