Tech

12 animal gadgets that’ll make you wish you had a pet

Posted by
David Cornish
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The cat says, "Meow!"

The bird says, "Tweet tweet!"

The dog says, "Seriously Chris, why haven't you bought me the Dog Tracker 2000? Rex next door has got one. The hounds down the park are laughing at me."

From fancy grooming brushes to laser toys, these are the coolest gadgets for your pet (don't worry, you get to play with them too). 

Petzi treat cam

What is it? A web cam system that allows you to "talk" to your pet from any computer, dispensing treats at the push of a button. 

Bored of putting together that PowerPoint? Call your dog and see how its day is going. 

Not got anyone to have lunch with? Give your cat a nudge (and face the inevitable disappointment of it ignoring you, the bastard). 

"Nice keeping in touch with our furry kids", reads one Amazon review. We're not sure if they actually use this to communicate with their abnormally hairy children they keep locked in a basement, or if they're just overly attached to their dogs.

£135

GoPro Fetch dog harness

GoPro Fetch dog harness

What is it? Oh just a badass GoPro harness for your dog. 

Sling a GoPro camera (sold separately) on the back of, or underneath, your pooch and head out on the most extreme walkies session in history. 

No, we've got no idea what you do with the video afterwards. Upload it to YouTube? Show it to your nan? 

£39

Pawtrack

Pawtrack

What is it? A GPS tracking collar for your cat. 

Your cat probably doesn't do much when you're out at work. It's probably just sitting around at home being a lazy tosser, getting up to wash itself occasionally or sit on some washing you've not been able to put away.

But every now and then, it'll bugger off on a grand adventure that you never get to follow - unless you've got a Pawtrack slung about its neck. 

Do note - after a year's use, there's a monthly charge of £4.99. You don't get to intrude on the privacy of your cat for free.

£125

FroliCat Bolt Pet Laser

What is it? A small pillar that emits an erratically-moving laser beam for your cat to freak out over.

Lasers are amazing. They can read data. They can send data. They can turn your cat into a spinning vortex of fluff and claws. Seriously, if you've never mucked about with a laser pen and your cat, you're missing out. 

The FroliCat Bolt takes the wristwork out of the equation, tracing a random pattern around the room for your cat to chase. Just don't go setting it up near any balconies or staircases, okay?

£24.99

Disco Dog

Disco Dog

What is it? An LED coat for your dog that partners to a smartphone app, allowing you to change its flashing patterns and write custom messages. 

Essentially, turn your pooch into a walking billboard. Great for keeping it safe at night, and making every other dog in the area look deeply feeble. Having successfully smashed its Kickstarter project, there's no word yet on when these will be available, but keep an eye on their website. 

Coming soon

Go Dog Go automatic fetch machine

What is it? Like one of those tennis training machines, this ball dispenser will fire off a ball for your mutt to chase. With a bit of training, you can get your dog to drop the ball back into the machine's bucket for another go - leaving you to sit on the porch and sip a pint of something cold while your pooch runs itself into the ground. Some might call it lazy, we call it efficient.

£129.99

Dyson Groom

Dyson Groom

What is it? A dog grooming tool from the suckers at Dyson. 

Up there with changing the oil on your car and tax returns, grooming the dog is one of those jobs that no one looks forward to.

Dyson has made the whole process a hell of a lot easier (provided you own one of their vacuum cleaners) with the Groom extension: stick it on the hose, drag the brush through your mutt's hair. Rather than being spread around your entire living room, the brush design captures the loose hairs and feeds them into the nozzle. Life saver. 

£40

CleverPet

What is it? An electronic reward game for your dog (or a seriously smart cat). One of three pads will flash, encouraging your pet to tap it. If they tap the right pad, they'll be rewarded with a treat. 

This could go one of two ways: if you've got a stupid dog, this is an expensive way of proving that. If you've got a smart dog, this is an expensive way of making them a smart, fat dog. Still, good fun to watch. 

Coming soon

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CatFishing 2

What is it? An app that turns your tablet into a small watery window, filled with bright fish. 

Pro tip: if you're going to let your cat go mad with your tablet, be sure to place said tablet on the floor - rather than on a surface which said cat will almost definitely knock it from. Cats are bastards like that.

Get it here

Dog Whistle app

Dog Whistle app

What is it? A digital dog whistle that lives on your phone. 

Simple as that. So long as you've got a decent set of speakers on your smartphone, this high-pitched whistle could be a real game-changer when it comes to training your mutt. There's a slider to shift the frequency of the whistle, and a play button. That's it. 

No, it probably isn't as good as the real thing - but it's FREE. 

Get it here

The Feliway diffuser

The Feliway diffuser

What is it? A plugin scent that will chill your cat right out.

Does your cat scratch up the furniture like something out of Edward Scissorhands? Is it a bit of a bastard to your other pet? Is it generally an annoying creature for 90 per cent of its life? You might want to consider trying one of these - basically an air freshener that releases a synthetic pheromone to help calm your kitty. Much kinder than a blast from the water pistol (although not as fun).

£18

Petnet pet feeder

What is it? A pet food dispenser you control remotely from your smartphone.

Going away for the weekend and can't be faffed to beg your neighbour to pop round to feed that cat? The Petnet feeder has you sorted: fill the hopper with dry food, input data on your pet's age and weight and a connected app will tell you how much your pet should be getting fed, and at which points of the day. 

There are two downsides though: it doesn't support Android devices, and it's only shipping from the US at the moment. Keep an eye out for updates on when it'll arrive here.

Coming soon

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Author

David Cornish

Shortlist.com’s esteemed Tech Editor. David has a keen interest in video games, Star Wars and stuff that runs on batteries.

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