It’s a technology driven world we live in today, from smart phones that serve as mini computers we carry in our pockets, to medical instruments that help doctors see and do things that didn’t seem possible a decade ago. Yes, technology advances every day, and people all around the world benefit. So how can technology also benefit our pets?
Microchips. Gone are the days you could rely only on an engraved tag on your pet’s collar to serve as identification in the event he wanders off, gets lost or runs away. Today, you have the option of microchipping your pet with a small, electronic chip enclosed in a glass cylinder that is about the size of a grain of rice. Injected under your pet’s skin, the microchip is activated by a scanner that reads the chip’s identification number. That identification number is tied an online registration that includes the pet’s vital information, such as his pet parent’s name, address and contact information. This technological advancement has helped more than 50% of lost, microchipped pets be reunited with their families ~ the number would be even higher if pet parents were steadfast in updating the contact information regularly.
Medical Care. The world of veterinary medicine has seen amazing technological advancements over the past 20 years. Many of the new tools and procedures have been adopted from human medical practice and have led to better treatments and faster and more accurate diagnosis. One of the newer developments in veterinary technology is recombinant DNA, which has laid the groundwork for a whole host of biotechnological advances. Before its discovery, protein drugs such as insulin, which is very important in the fight against pet diabetes, were difficult to produce. Recombinant DNA allows for a cheaper and more efficient drug production, and it opens up the possibility of gene therapy for our precious pets. Such a procedure would allow veterinarians to replace missing or broken genes in animals to treat a range of diseases and disorders. Technology has begun to play a significant role in the health and longevity of our four-legged friends as the advancements have grown by leaps and bounds.
Communication. These days, methods of instant communication abound. Between text messages, Skype, Facetime, e-mail, Facebook, cell phones, Twitter, SnapChat ~ the list could go on and on ~ people can communicate instantaneously, at any time, from any place. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have that same ease of communication with our pets? Well, while our pets, unfortunately, can’t text or speak, with the aid of technology we can get a better sense of how they’re feeling, what they want and need, and what we can do to improve their lives. Several companies have developed technology devices that can be worn on your pet’s collar that upload important information pertaining to your pet’s activities and health. The information, including vital signs, periods of activity and rest and other wellness indicators, is accessed by the pet parent through an app and when analyzed can help them understand their pet’s needs, desires and health to a greater degree and reach individualized health goals. The data can also be shared with the pet’s veterinarian to aid in ongoing health and wellness management.
Connect with Your Pet. With the help of technology, pet parents can even have conversations with their pets when apart. A product called PetziConnect can take HD photos and videos of your pet and allow you to speak to your pet via a two-way audio app from any smart phone or tablet. It even dispenses treats to your pet on your command! Wow… what will they think of next!?
Technology has come a long way, baby. Americans have more pets than ever before and pet pampering has become the norm. People increasingly view their pets as members of the family and want to ensure their care, longevity, comfort and wellness, and the advancements in pet-related technology will continue to make that even more attainable!