Advances in digital innovation and technology have permeated every sector, improving processes and efficiency. The health sector has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of these advances. A lot of dev companies are focused on providing custom healthcare software development services since the demand is constantly growing. Highly specialized devices and even more general purpose ones like mobile phones have been equipped –using internet of things technology (IoT) to track, monitor, and augment data on people’s lifestyles, making it easier for medical professionals to make better decisions.
These changes are not only related to humans.
With more than 6 in 10 households in the U.S and an average of 88 million households in the EU owning at least one pet, it is not out of place for these iot pet tech solutions to exist, particularly solutions focused on pets' health and diet monitoring systems. With augmented data in real-time, these innovations make it easier for pet owners and veterinary doctors to assess pets' health more effectively. This article describes the digital advances in pets' health and monitoring systems; potential and existing tools to monitor pets’ health.
Pets' Health and Diet Monitoring Systems: What are they used for?
Pets’ health and diet monitoring systems are devices and tools used to monitor and track pets’ health data, particularly pets’ activity data, nutrition, temperature and quality of sleep. The increase or decrease of specific behavioural patterns such as scratching or sleeping serve as pointers to existing medical –physical and mental conditions. Hence, by collecting pet activity data, pet activity monitoring and tracking technologies help pet owners and veterinarians recognise the correct type of intervention for the pet that would be necessary to achieve optimal health.
If we are talking about pet nutrition tracking systems, it’s important to highlight that they are included in a wider group of remote health tracking for pets and their owners. Pets' diet monitoring systems are intended for taking care of what and when your pet has eaten. These systems also allow owners to plan the nutrition of their pets and create healthy diets based on the current vital parameters of their pets as well as their activities. Solutions of this kind can also provide the possibility to have a look at the history of nutrition. This can be extremely beneficial in cases when veterinarians need to find a reason for pets' sickness or to adjust the diet for ensuring a better health state.
Three Tiers of IoT for Pet Health and Diet Tracking Systems
There are three tiers of IoT which make up these pet health tracking systems. The first tier is the hardware device component; for instance, a digital dog collar with global positioning systems (GPS) enabled inbuilt sensors monitoring the dog’s activity with real-time data collation. Benefitting from the sensor data captured by the hardware device requires a connection to a broad spectrum of connectivity where multiple parties or users can access the data for optimisation.
This consideration speaks to the second tier of IoT, which is the internet. Pet health monitoring systems often need to feed data to multiple users in different locations in real-time. Thus, connecting this device to the internet allows these users to play their roles efficiently in safeguarding the pets.
What technologies are used for building pet health tracking systems
As you can see, modern pet health tracking systems consist of several crucial elements: hardware (wearable or stand-alone device) and software app that is usually installed on the owner’s smartphone or tablet. There are also some simpler solutions that presuppose the existence of only a mobile app where all the parameters should be measured and added manually. However, today they are being gradually replaced by more advanced solutions.
Given a modern composition of a remote pet health monitoring system, let’s highlight the most popular technologies used for building such solutions.
Many pet health monitoring technologies are powered by the internet of things (IoT), which connects everyday devices to the internet. Thus, generating, storing, and exchanging extensive information or sensor data help pet owners and veterinarians always know the real-time situation. Among the examples of IoT devices for monitoring pets’ health, we can name wearable devices of different types with sensors, cameras, smart toys, etc.
As pets’ health greatly depends on their activity, many wearable devices have GPS modules. GPS-based pet health tracking technologies help owners to see how active their pets are during the day.
Though AI-powered functionality at the moment is not widely spread in apps for pet owners, this technology definitely has a future in this segment. If an app has such a feature, by using a camera, you can better understand your pet’s body language and their needs. For example, such tools allow detecting even the slightest signs of illness before you can see more serious symptoms with your own eyes. Such features can be also used in pet nutrition monitoring systems to let users understand how their pets react to this or that product.
Pet Health Tracking System by Cogniteq
One of the software products that our team has successfully built is StepUp Horse. It is an IoT app that allows monitoring vital parameters of horses during training. With it, horse trainers can see real-time data on their smartwatches and get access to statistics, data history, and analysis on smartphones. All this is possible thanks to unique wearable devices developed by our client.
These devices are intended for being placed around horses’ thorax, they have special sensors and measure such parameters as distance, speed, and, what is more important, heart rate, recovery rate, and breathing. The app is really unique as it is the first IoT product that can track the breathing of horses during training.
Using this information, trainers can estimate the current health state of horses, create the right strategy for training and take measures already at first signs of illness.
Closer look at Pet Health and Nutrition Monitoring Apps
Pet health and nutrition monitoring systems are mostly application software designed to ensure pets get utmost care regarding diet, essential nutrients, and all-round fitness. They combine all tiers of the IoT system. The hardware component gathers sensor data, connects to the internet with limited user access, and displays the activity and health data to the app users.
These apps allow the owners to design tailored nutrition for the pet’s health and, perhaps most important, access to remote health tracking. A remote pet health monitoring system such as a smart cat feeder app, for instance, can be set to monitor the cat's movements with the aid of a cat collar, alongside a smart feeder dictating the right time for the cat to access meals. This is necessary to determine the cat’s eating patterns, allowing a healthy time gap between meals based on the owner’s configuration.
A smart feeder can have three to four food storage spaces which will only open to the pet as designed by the owner. For instance, a time configuration for 8 am, 12 noon and 4 pm will mean that each storage space will only open up to the pet within those hours. Beyond such time configuration, activity data also ensures that it is possible to track the hour the pet last ate and the necessary time gap between meals to ensure that meals are well digested and optimised.
Another essential feature of this pet's health monitoring system is the insights gathered on behavioural patterns such as scratching, sleeping or shaking. The veterinarian will usually advise on the required amount of activity for each of these behaviours. Hence, a sudden irregular increase or decrease in these patterns over a while can create an amber or red alert on the pet's health status to both the owners and the vet. Sometimes, a pet recording little or no movement at an irregular time can trigger a red alert to a neighbourhood watch or emergency contact if the owner or vet cannot reach the pet when it needs care.
Popular features of pet health and nutrition tracking systems
As you see, the segment of pet health and diet monitoring solutions is actively growing at the moment which means that it can be a very good moment to enter the market with your own project. We offer you to have a look at the list of some highly-demanded features for apps of this type. And maybe they will help you to create your own unique product for pets and their owners.
As we’ve already mentioned, healthy activity is crucial for pets. Apps for owners coupled with GPS-powered wearables for pets help to see the time of activity per day, walking distance, routes, etc.
For ensuring this functionality, wearables for pets should be enriched with special sensors that will be able to measure different vital parameters like heart rate, breathing, etc. If there are changes in some parameters that can be signs of illness, a pet owner will receive a notification.
This is the most popular feature for diet monitoring apps. If a pet has excess weight, it's very important to track the consumed calories. With a calculator, where a user can enter different products and portions, it is rather simple and convenient to do it.
Consultations with vets
Pet apps just like traditional telemedicine apps can have different functionality for communication with doctors (or in our case - vets). It can be an online chat or a video conferencing feature. The main goal of them is to provide the possibility to get medical recommendations in a remote format.
Apps can be enriched with the functionality for storing all medical documentation and records of your pet. It is really very convenient as you will always get access to all the necessary information
The digital health sector for pets health is a niche sector that requires builders of products and services to extensively understand users’ needs and pain points to create an intervention that will lead to outcomes that solve those problems/pain points. Cognitec prides itself as a leader in the IoT arm of the digital innovation sector. More importantly, it is a company that understands the pet tech market with its thought leadership contribution to iot pet tech solutions and extensive portfolios that showcases expertise. We are constantly at the forefront of reimagining the world of pet tech products.
Thus, we can offer you an end-end service in custom mobile application development ranging from design to product building, product launch, and software testing. We also provide after-sale services of support and maintenance services. We will be delighted to analyze, advise and maintain your pet's health monitoring system for you. We value co-creation, so our team will work alongside yours to realize your product concept. We will be delighted to have a chat about your concepts and specifications and even questions you might have. So please do not hesitate to get in touch with us
What should a Pets Health and Diet Monitoring Systems Consist of?
Pets Health and Diet Monitoring systems can be made in various forms, such as a dog collar, smart feeder, smart harness etc. The most important factor should be that the device can collect and transmit real-time remote sensor data on the pet’s health, behaviour and location to the required users with added security to safeguard against data leakage.
What are some of the IoT technologies currently available for pets?
Several IoT technologies are available for pets, such as smart feeders, water dispensers, litter boxes, smart collars, etc. There still appears to be a gap in creating an all-inclusive technology for pet care that combines these technologies into an ecosystem for pet monitoring and tracking systems.
What harms can pet trackers introduce to pets regarding exposure to signals?
Pet trackers are not harmful to pets. Many pet trackers use local cellular networks to send data, using the same technologies as mobile phones and wearable health devices. Hence, these devices are safe for pets and pet owners. Also, the sector is regulated, and pet tracking products must pass regulatory checks.