Fitness Trackers For Dogs Set To Be The Next Big CE Thing?
CE retailers in Australia could soon be selling a new type of fitness tracker designed specifically for dogs claims analysts.
The whole notion of a fitness tracker for dogs came from Czech entrepreneur Robert Hasek who discovered that his dog Darwin was seriously fatigued when he went on a 5-kilometre run with his pet companion.
Hasek thought he was delivering his pet a healthy lifestyle that was until he saw the stress the dog was facing after a run.
After strapping a Fitbit to Darwin and discovered he was actually only active in his presence. Otherwise, Hasek says, “he is lying, sleeping and doing nothing. He’s lazy!”
His product is part of a growing industry of gadgets for pets that includes GPS trackers, automatic feeders, ball throwing machines for dogs to fetch and self-cleaning litter boxes for cats that will be on show at IFA in Berlin next week.
Analysts claim that consumers are crazy about spending on their pets. Worldwide spending in 2017 was $109 billion dollars, according to Euromonitor International.
His new Actijoy fitness trackers are now hitting the market with one-unit costing about $300.
The new GPS tracking device tracks the intensity of the dog’s activity and comes with an internet-connected bowl that monitors food and water consumption.
It faces competition from a range of products, from the more basic fitness monitors to more advanced technologies. The Wagz, for example, is also able to record and stream HD video from the collar. It sells for $495 apiece.
That may be a lot for a collar, but some pet owners are willing to splurge. Among them are Millennials who put off having kids or decided against having any and have the extra income to spend, says Harrison Forbes, a dog trainer and pet products expert.
“Pet tech has been a hugely explosive part of the industry the past five or six years,” he said while attending the Superzoo industry conference on pet products in Las Vegas. Technology for pets has tended to follow innovations that were meant for humans and this is an example of that, he says.
Actijoy’s COO, Jana Rosenfelderova, says they are marketing these collars not only to people who have overweight pets but also to those who want to avoid health problems in the first place. Monitoring water consumption, for example, can reveal if a pet is drinking unusually large amounts, a sign of kidney problems or diabetes.
“Our (ideal) customer is a dog owner that wants to prevent,” she says.