Fat cats and dumpy dogs

The UK is renowned for being a nation of animal lovers. However, despite best intentions, looking after beloved pets is not always an easy task, especially for those that are inexperienced.

Take dogs, for example. There are hundreds of breeds and knowing how much exercise and food to give them is difficult. It’s not a case of one regime fits all. Or even that one regime fits one particular breed. Giving the right amount of food and exercise makes all the difference in providing pets with a healthy and happy lifestyle.

While copious data and forums exist, these tend to give generalised views that are not specific to weight, size and age. And it can be difficult to track pets’ activities throughout the day if they are being walked and fed by various members of the household, at different times of day.

Then there are cats. Felines have notoriously mysterious lives. What is it they do all day, where do they go, and are they getting enough exercise? What’s more, when they are lost, they can be impossible to find, bringing heartbreak to families.

The challenge

The challenge this month is therefore to come up with a suitable method of finding out information about your pet’s lifestyle. The task specifically requires any device to track movements and exercise, food intake as well as the location of the animal.

The sensible start here is to look at the ergonomics of the design as pets will have to comfortably wear any devices on a continuous basis. Assuming that the device has electronics, it is vital that any electromagnetic radiation is not going to affect or harm the animal in anyway, it should be completely passive.

And the ability to track the animal should be instant and easy to assess with a minimal amount of manual input to log information. Within all of this, is the need to provide owners with information tailored to their pets.

Like always, we have a solution in mind to answer the problem that will be revealed in the May issue of Eureka Magazine. In the meantime, let us know how you’d tackle the problem by emailing the editor at tim.fryer@markallengroup.co.uk or leave a comment.