New technologies are rapidly penetrating into areas such as animal husbandry and pet care. Chipped animals, probiotics instead of antibiotics and automatic feeding for dogs and cats can already surprise no one. But do all the new technologies indeed make our lives much easier? Let’s find out!
A Turkish farmer recently put virtual reality glasses on his cows’ heads! He said that the animals saw summer meadows, felt calmer and happier, and as a result – gave more milk. It is not yet clear whether this story is made up or real, but it is clear that things are changing radically in the last few years.
For example, the trend of the decade is food made of insects, which are rich in protein and minerals. This is why crickets, for example, are added to snacks, bread, chocolate, and cookies. Entire farms are being created in different countries, where neural networks help grow insects.
In the usual animal husbandry, too, there is a lot of new stuff, for example – automatic farms! The new system is based on artificial intelligence. The equipment monitors the main processes in the barn: milk production, diseases, and so on, makes predictions and sets tasks: which animal needs to be examined by a veterinarian, who needs to have their diet adjusted.
What is more interesting, digital technologies allow us to model how, for example, milk yield will change when changing the food the cows eat – painlessly and without losses. On other farms, owners use milking robots. The milking cups are attached to the udder using a patented space shuttle docking technology.
On the computer screen, you can see the time of the milking, the quantity of milk received from each quarter of the udder, the amount of protein, fat and colostrum, and if any blood has got in. The cows themselves line up for the robot, because it gives out food as a reward. If someone did not show up for milking, the robot informs the worker. Those are usually the young cows, who do not yet know that they need to go to the machine themselves.
The robot weighs each cow and reads all the information from their collar, then washes and processes the udder (and, if necessary, the hooves). Unlike a milkmaid, it works without rest and does not ask for vacation or sick leave. Plus, the milk does not come into contact with air, hands and any other microbe infested stuff.
In times of developing technologies, it’s no surprise that scientists invent all sorts of items for animals such as dogs and cats. Here are some of the last inventions that have appeared on the market.
Fitness monitoring. Given the popularity of sports monitoring devices, it’s not surprising that pet trackers are gaining popularity. Usually worn on a pet’s collar, these gadgets sync with the phone, allowing you to take a look at your pet’s activity, set goals and watch their accomplishments. With the help of special programmes, pet owners can even share their pets’ performance on specific social networks and compare their numbers with other pets’ activity levels.
GPS apps. Wear-on electronic chips are a significant innovation in pet technology. Tracking devices help pet owners know their furry friends’ location using a PC or phone. Some of the devices also start making loud noises if the pet goes beyond a line and gets out of the location area. Other such gadgets track not only the location of the pet, but also its body temperature, warning the owner if the cat or dog is in danger of heat stroke, which is especially useful if you have a sphynx or a siamese cat.
A different innovation is, in fact, not new for the world of people – facial recognition. Now, that is also possible for pets, thanks to an app that can be downloaded on a simple smartphone. First, the owner has to take a picture of their pet. If the animal gets lost, the owner has to report it as lost. If the one who found the animal takes a picture of them and also posts it on the app, the system will use facial recognition and will match the two pictures. Thus, the owner and his pet can be reunited ASAP.
Video surveillance. Have you been asking yourself- what is your pet doing at home while you are working in the city? Pet surveillance innovations can help you get an answer! Such gadgets imply not only a camera to spy on the pets. They offer the possibility to also interact with them. Some gadgets allow you to organize a videoconference, monitor the pet with a webcam attached to the collar, and give out food. Such gadgets can help a lot with separation anxiety, or just keep the pet from getting too bored while the owners are at work.
Dispensers for food and water. Another anticipated gadget for pets with very busy owners is automatic feeders and water dispensers. They also imply the use of an app that you can download on your phone. Animals that love spending time in your backyard can also find this device quite useful. For example, a motion-activated water dispenser will turn on when the animal approaches and turns off when they leave.
What else can we expect in the future
While pet gadgets that make our daily life easier are certainly admirable, some significant changes in animal technology still appear in the veterinary field. In the future, different apps and devices should improve the dialogue between doctors and pets, help veterinarians find out more about the animals’ health, and enable virtual examinations and diagnostics.
Imagine how easy it would be if you could place a device on your pet’s collar and get all the recorded data such as activity levels, scratching and head movement, sleep quality and how much your pet rests right on your smartphone. Such an app could also have the option of allowing you to take notes on your pet’s health or activity goal reaching, as well as set new objectives and see their fulfillment. You could also use this app when visiting the veterinarian. All of these features would allow you and your veterinarian to monitor your pet’s response to medication on a daily basis.
All in all, if pets will never be aware of the way gadgets affect their lives and health, pet owners of our times are quite lucky to live in the era of developing technologies. With constant technological advances, providing quality pet care is easier than ever!