6 Tech Products for Your Dogs and Cats
Illumiseen LED Dog Collar and Leash
These light-up collars and leashes (which, yes, when aglow look like something your kid might wear to a rave) make it easier to keep an eye on Sparky during night walks and help drivers do the same. Select from six colors, which offer three modes—slow flash, fast or steady. The LED-powered items run for five hours on a single charge.
illumiseen.com, collar, $19; leash, $25
Sure Petcare Microchip Pet Door Connect
If you’ve had your animals chipped, this pet door will let them in while acting as a high-tech bouncer for the local raccoon or neighborhood stray. (It can also stop your indoor-only pets from busting loose.) The Connect’s 7 x 7-inch opening is large enough for small dogs and can be installed in doors, walls or glass. An optional hub accessory connects to Wi-Fi and lets you see who’s inside and who’s on the prowl from the app. Crazy cat ladies take note: The door can remember up to 32 of your backyard colony.
surepetcare.com, door, $224; with hub, $288
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Litter Robot 3 Connect
Hundreds of millions of people love cats; not a single one loves scooping the litter box. Fortunately, this connected device does it for you. Minutes after your kitty enters the Litter Robot and leaves a deposit, the top enclosure rotates, sifting the clean litter from the clumps and dropping waste into a carbon-filtered, stink-minimizing drawer. (Your cat needs to weigh at least 5 pounds to activate the box’s sensors—but, phew, there’s no upper weight limit.) When it’s time to unload the drawer and replace the litter, the box sends an alert to your app—where you can also track your cat’s potty habits, if you’re into that.
Unlike your teens, who rue the day location-tracking tech was invented, your dog and cat don’t know from being surveilled. Whistle can locate pets to within a few yards using a combo of GPS and cellular technology. The matchbox-size Wi-Fi-enabled device clips to their collars, and if they leave your home or neighborhood safe zone, it sends you a text alert within six minutes. Whistle also doubles as an activity tracker, measuring how long your dog is spending, say, chasing squirrels, or your feline is snoozing in her carpeted cat condo.
whistle.com, $100; cell service, from $7/month
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Basepaws Cat DNA Test
Is Ms. Jinxy Burmese, Siamese or Tonkinese? A saliva swab from your cat (good luck getting it) will put the family debate to rest and reveal not only her breed but also how feral she is and, starting later this year, whether she’s genetically prone to any health issues. As Basepaws expands its feline DNA database, it plans to provide free updates—including clues on inherited traits (so that’s why she’s a catnip fiend).
basepaws.com, test kit $95
The pet equivalent of a baby monitor, this Internet-connected HD camera lets you not just spy on but also bond with your animals when you’re not home. With the Petcube Play, you can entertain/make your cat crazy with a laser toy controlled via app. Petcube Bites lets you fling treats to your dog by swiping on your screen (or at scheduled snack times). You can also talk and hear via the speaker and mic on either device—“who loves you?!”—and scan the video history for proof of who scratched the sofa (not that they’re sorry).
petcube.com, Petcube Play 2, $199; Petcube Bites 2, $249; extended video history, from $3/month