What’s Next? Collars That Monitor Pets’ Illnesses

We’ve had GPS tracking collars for pets for a number of years, but a Star Trekesque collar to check your pet’s temperature for fever, monitor pulse and respiration rate, and even asses for pain has been developed by PetPace in Massachusetts and I4C Innovations in Virginia. Both collars will even send a phone message, email, or text to owners if any abnormalities occur. These “Smart Collars” as they are collectively known can be programmed to monitor for some specific illnesses, like seizures.

Trials have proven successful in monitoring dogs who have a history of seizures, fainting spells, chronic severe vomiting, intermittent cardiac arrhythmias, and other illnesses that result in sudden abnormalities in body rhythms and vital signs. There is also a more sophisticated version available to Veterinarians for monitoring post-operative and critical patients without the need for a tangle of wire connections that are difficult to maintain in pets.

Like with anything new, there are a few limitations of the collars, most notably battery life issues. The current models last between 2 days and 8 weeks depending on how many parameters are monitored and how often readings are taken and sent to the owners. Recharge time is about 2 hours and spare batteries are available. Due to these battery issues, a collar that monitors both health and has a GPS locator has not yet been developed.

The collars sell for $150 to $200 and do have monthly data transmission fees of $10-$15. For a device that would provide some peace of mind to working owners with sick pets at home, the future is now.

Pittsburgh Spay & Vaccination Clinic is a state-of-the-art, full-service suburban veterinary facility serving the Pittsburgh Area since 1980.. We offer diagnostic, medical, surgical, and dental care to dogs, cats, ferrets, rabbits, and pocket pets in the Pittsburgh area.

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