Dogs detect COVID-19 at European airport with near perfect accuracy

For a while, dogs have been said to be able to sniff out the coronavirus. Yet, these dogs weren’t put on the job as quickly as hoped.

detect covid

I Heart Dogs reports that it took months of research and training to teach these dogs how to behave, and finally, there’s some promising news amid these uncertain times.

COVID-sniffing dogs are now on the schedule at the Helsinki Airport in Finland. They’re the first dogs to sniff out the virus at airports in Europe, and the second dogs to do it in the world. Their accuracy is almost 100%!

Welcoming the new working dogs

The airport employed four dogs to sniff out COVID-19, on top of the dogs that already work there for sniffing out other hazards. When two of the dogs are working, the other two are on break. After all, working dogs deserve time off just as much as humans.

In the initial phases, testing is optional and mostly geared toward those traveling internationally. The test is simple and only takes a few minutes at most. Each person is asked to dab their neck with a wipe. Then, in a separate area, the wipe is placed in a jar for safety and set near jars with different scents.

If the dog smells the virus, they will alert someone by yelping, laying down, or pawing at the jar. The passenger will then need to go through an additional free test to confirm the dog’s results. So far, tests have shown that these dogs’ accuracy is close to 100%.

These dogs can also detect COVID-19 in a significantly smaller molecule pool than other tests. They only need about 100 molecules to detect the virus. Laboratory equipment usually needs closer to 18 million!

How will this affect the future?

While the Helsinki Airport is only the second airport in the world to utilize these intelligent canines, other places may soon join in. Australia, France, and Germany are all working on similar systems. Training for this has gone on for a while, so it’s amazing to finally see it in action.

It takes less than a minute for the dogs to sniff the sample. So, these dogs could be beneficial for any place where lots of people enter, such as hospitals and events.

This is only the beginning of using dogs to help slow the spread of COVID-19. If all goes well, these dogs could make a huge difference in this world, making testing for the virus much more accessible. Hopefully, we’ll see more information about these hard-working dogs in the future!

(Story source: I Heart Dogs)

My dog has taught me the best way to get through the pandemic: live in the now

Coronavirus has made me realise that taking joy in the simple things is what humans need most at this time.

live now

Don’t tell my husband, but I have a new love of my life. Since social distancing began in March, we spend pretty much every waking minute together, and every sleeping one, too.

She’s black and grey and has a white chin; she weighs 22 pounds; she prances when she’s happy and puts her tail between her legs when she’s scared; and her name is Ramona, after the famous children’s book character, but also after Joey Ramone.

I never imagined becoming one of those dog-obsessed people who uses the moniker RamonasMom, but here I am: RamonasMom.

We adopted Ramona last summer, and while I loved her from the beginning, the last six months have taken me from pleasantly engaged pet owner to unabashed, full-on Dog Parent.

I’ve always worked from home, but pandemic has meant that Ramona and I are barely ever apart.

We eat, sleep, work (I work), exercise, and play together, all day long. Whenever I do leave the house, she’s right by the door waiting for me to come back.

She runs to grab a shoe or her stuffed taco to show me, and then jumps up and down, greeting me like I’m a soldier returning from war: “YOU’RE BACK! I HAVE SO MUCH TO TELL YOU!”

The list of why dogs are great goes on and on. They inspire you to interact with the world around you.

They help with anxiety and depression. It is buoying to take care of another creature, to have a trusted friend.

I knew all this going into dog ownership, but coronavirus has shed light on one of the less-heralded greatnesses of dogs: Ramona lives in the now. When you spend most of your time with a dog, that rubs off on you, too.

It’s so easy for me to fall into a spiral of negativity about the world and future, but Ramona doesn’t know and doesn’t, frankly, care about politics or pandemics. As long as I keep providing her food, water, and love, she’s all good.

She has no concerns about the mundane things, either: failure, deadlines, or her Twitter following (she doesn’t even have an account!).

Instead of zoning out with Netflix, she sits on a pile of pillows on the couch, gazing out the window, and she barks when she sees something interesting, even if it’s the exact same interesting that happened five minutes ago.

Spending time with her, I’m reminded that so much of what we consider a happy, successful life is largely made up in our own minds, and often the product of ego and lack of fulfillment in other ways.

She wants an array of simple things, but they are joyful: walks in nature, naps in the afternoon, a delicious treat. It reminds me that humans need all those things, too, now more than ever.

Also, dogs are just fun. In the book The Other End of the Leash, the writer and animal behaviourist Dr Patricia McConnell notes that dogs and humans are among the few animals that demonstrate the need to play throughout their entire lives, even as adults. Humans may forget this, but dogs never do.

When I’m pulling my hair out over the latest news story or wondering if there will ever be a vaccine, Ramona is there, shoving her nose under my arm, nudging me to pet her, or running in circles around the rug until I get up and chase her and then laugh so hard my ribs hurt.

We’re more in tune with each other than ever, it seems. The other day, when I didn’t feel well, Ramona jumped up to cuddle with me on the couch. She touched my hand with her paw, and my heart basically melted into a puddle of goo.

People worry, what will happen to our poor dogs when we go back to “how things used to be” and leave them alone again for much of the day, but I think the real question is, what happens to us?

Though, of course, a dog wouldn’t worry about that. A dog would just live the moments as they come.

(Story source: The Guardian)

Dogs in lockdown: Two thirds of owners say their pet has been a ‘lifeline’ during the pandemic

Many of those polled said their pet kept them active during lockdown and provided a routine.

Lockdown

Inews reports that dog owners have long espoused the therapeutic benefits of spending time with man’s best friend. Now a survey of British dog owners offers insight into the positive effect a canine companion can have on a person’s life during difficult times.

Nearly two-thirds (61 per cent) of long-term dog owners polled have said their pet was a “lifeline” during this year’s nationwide lockdown, while two in five (41 per cent) reported that their four-legged friend helped assuage their loneliness.

And, of the 2,622 owners polled in July, 36 per cent said having a dog by their side during the pandemic made them less anxious.

More comforting than humans

The vast majority of respondents (90 per cent) stated that their dog has had a positive impact on their mental health and wellbeing, the survey, conducted by the Kennel Club, found.

Many of those polled said their pet kept them active during lockdown and provided a routine, with more than a quarter stating that spending more time with their dog had been the best thing about that period.

The majority of people polled (61 per cent) said they found more comfort in their pet than in their fellow human beings, while 41 per cent claimed their dog doesn’t judge them “in the way humans can”.

Almost one in three (30 per cent) felt their dog was there for them when no one else was.

‘Best lockdown buddy I could have asked for’

Tracey Ison, 50, from Leicestershire, credits her dog Scout with helping her through a breakdown, to overcome anxiety and get her through lockdown.

“I had been in a very dark place, but forced myself every day to take Scout out for walks,” Ms Ison said.

“Scout has been a great support to me during lockdown…He gives me a reason to get up every morning and stick to a routine whilst I am furloughed from work,” she continued.

“He really is the best lockdown buddy I could have asked for.”

Through thick and thin

Commenting on the survey’s findings, Bill Lambert, a Kennel Club spokesman said: “For centuries, through thick and thin, dogs have provided us with unconditional love, loyalty and companionship without any judgment, and clearly that has a positive impact on our mental health.

“As we continue to face a global pandemic and the psychological stresses that brings with it, this unique support that dogs provide to their owners is now more important than ever.”

(Story source: Inews)

Golden retriever puppy is a guide dog for his blind big brother

Losing one of your senses is tough, and Tao the Golden Retriever knows that all too well. For almost 11 years, he had perfect eyesight and a perfect life. But as he entered his senior years, he faced glaucoma, which eventually took his sight away completely.

guide dog

I Heart Dogs reports that Tao slowly learned to move around without his sight, but his humans wanted to make the transition as comfortable for him as possible. So, they got him his very own seeing eye puppy named Oko. Now, the two Golden Retriever brothers are the best of friends!

Transitioning to a New Life

Melanie Jackson, Tao and Oko’s mom, said that Tao’s loss of sight happened so suddenly. On the day it happened, he was fine in the morning, but later, he continuously shook his head as if he was in pain. Only five hours after that, he was at the vet, where they determined he was blind. One of his eyes was removed that day too.

Even though the vets said that euthanasia was an option, Jackson refused to go down that path. If Tao could be safe, happy, and healthy without sight, then his family would do anything to make that happen. The extra cost and effort didn’t matter to Jackson because Tao is a part of her family.

Tao kept his second eye for a few weeks after that. Jackson controlled the eye pressure by giving him frequent eye drops. During that time, she prepared him for life without sight. She taught him to move around on his own without having to rely on seeing. So, by the time his second eye was removed, he was already a pro at getting around by himself.

But even professionals need help at times. Jackson didn’t want Tao to have to struggle at all, which is why she decided to get Oko. Oko would provide companionship for Tao and help protect him on a daily basis.

Oko Helps His Brother

As soon as Oko moved in with his new family, he fell in love with Tao. The pup follows his big brother everywhere and even leads him around on a leash when needed. Plus, Tao seems happier than ever with his baby brother by his side.

And Jackson was right. Having Oko around really lifted Tao’s spirits and helped him feel safer. They love to run around in fields together and even take naps beside each other. The bond they share is extremely adorable. Now, Oko is about 16 weeks old, so he learns to be a better guide dog for his brother every day.

(Story source: I Heart Dogs)

Robopets: Care home residents with dementia find comfort and joy in robotic pets during pandemic

Staff have also been trained to treat the robots as they would a real animal in front of residents with dementia.

robopets

Robotic cats and dogs have provided comfort and joy to care home residents with dementia while they have been unable to see their families during the coronavirus outbreak, a care charity has said.

Methodist Homes (MHA), which supports 19,600 residents and members living in 90 specialist care homes, 70 retirement living schemes and 62 community groups, started trialling robotic cats made by Hasbro offshoot Joy For All in three of its homes in October last year.

The life-size cat robot, which purrs, nuzzles its head into the hand of the person stroking it and rolls onto its back for a tummy rub, is battery-powered and costs around £105.

Residents who weren’t “cat people” were given a £120 robotic golden retriever puppy, which has a simulated heartbeat, responds to motion and touch and barks when spoken to.

There is some research evidence supporting the benefits. A 2019 study from the University of Exeter found that robotic animals can help to reduce loneliness and agitation in care home residents, while the largest-ever study examining the use of robots in care for older people published last month claimed competent robots could “significantly improve” residents’ mental health.

Other reports suggest therapeutic robotic animals have similar positive effects to live pet therapy for individuals living with dementia, which has also been found to reduce blood pressure and improve social and psychological functioning.

David Moore, MHA’s dementia lead, said the charity had recognised how enormously successful the robotic pets had been and when faced with the possibility that many of its residents would need to self-isolate during the early stages of the outbreak, organised a dementia appeal in the spring to raise money to purchase more robopets.

“We were lucky enough to raise a substantial amount of money and that went towards purchasing a number of these robotics animals for our residents,” he told i.

“We knew we would need to keep our residents occupied and interested, and in particular for people who have been bed-bound and who respond well to the robots, it’s meant they’ve had some comfort.

“Because of Covid the robots have become even more important, especially for those who couldn’t see their families and didn’t really understand what was going on with regards to speaking to them over iPads or the telephone.”

The pandemic had been “particularly tough” for people with dementia, Mr Moore said, adding that the group felt “more prepared to stand up to the government than we were before.

“It’s still not easy for people, but we’re working with families to do the best we can, particularly for those who have experienced a negative impact on their mental or physical health.”

MHA held a day of remembrance last month for the 400 residents and three members of staff who died during the early months of the outbreak.

The charity now has more than 100 robotic animals across its care homes and while it tries to ensure every resident who responds well to them has one, staff know to clean the fur of robots that may be passed between residents in a social setting like a home’s lounge.

Treating the robots as if they were real

Staff have also been trained to treat the robots as they would a real animal in front of residents with dementia, including avoiding putting it in a cupboard or removing its batteries.

“If somebody’s becoming distressed and we know that they like cats or dogs, we’d give them one of the robots. Some of the residents realise they’re not real but they still get comfort from them, while others believe they really are real,” he said.

“We’ve trained the staff to treat the cats as real cats because if they picked up a robot incorrectly or held it by its tail, it could upset the residents who think of them as real. It helps these them to feel like they’re looking after something else.”

While some of MHA’s homes have their living pets, including cats, dogs, budgerigars and guinea pigs, real animals may prove too overwhelming for some people who still want the comfort of having something to hold. If a confused resident threw a robot – or as happened in one case, tried to flush one down the toilet – there’s no risk to a living creature, Mr Moore explained.

“The robots have gone down better than I ever thought they would. They’re incredibly cheap for what they are and I presume that the technology will get better over time.

“There’s been a lot of delight and smiles – for something I was sceptical about after seeing robotic pets at a conference last year, I’m glad to be proven wrong. It’s very interesting to watch how people respond to them and treat them like real cats. The enjoyment is great to see.”

Experimenting with Alexa to reduce stress

MHA’s homes have also been experimenting with Amazon’s AI powered smart speakers, which it’s found helpful in managing some resident’s behaviours, he said.

“Asking Alexa to play certain pieces of music to calm them down has been really beneficial. If someone’s distressed, playing their favourite song will often reduce that,” he explained.

“It works well for the residents who understand it, but others may find a voice coming out of nowhere a bit frightening. You have to work out what’s appropriate for each person.”

(Article source: Inews)

Let this adorable springer spaniel teach you the correct way to wear a mask

A loveable springer spaniel is showing us all how to wear face masks properly.

Dog Mask

Metro reports that model pooch Oakley was pictured in a series of poses with a mask on his eyes, chin, and forehead before having it correctly covering his nose and mouth.

Pharmacist Gwawr Davies-Jones, who isn’t Oakley’s owner, used the images to encourage people to wear a mask by posting it on her chemists’ Facebook page. Gwawr, from South Wales, says Oakley has since gone viral with more than a million views and 10,000 shares.

She found the images of one-year-old Oakley, from Derbyshire, on Facebook and after contacting his owner, added them to her own page. Visit our live blog for the latest updates Coronavirus news live She said: ‘There’s lots of uncertainty with a potential second wave looming so I try to look for anything that can put a smile on my patients’ faces. ‘I try to share or create some uplifting posts for the pharmacy as well as ones to help inform our community about health-related topics.’

The pictures, which Gwawr hoped would put a smile on people’s faces, also brought her joy. She said: ‘It immediately made me chuckle and I thought it would bring a smile to the faces of our customers.

‘It has already been shared over 10,000 times by our pharmacy page alone and reached over a million people. ‘I think the reason it has been shared so many times is because of the joy of seeing this gorgeous well-behaved model – Oakley.’

The pharmacist also updated the post to say that they hired a professional trainer to come to the pharmacy so show everyone the dos and don’ts of how to wear a face mask. People can’t get enough of the images and wondered how Oakley sat so still for the pictures. ‘Most people are commenting on how many times they’ve seen people wear face masks inappropriately exactly like Oakley,’ said Gwawr.

‘And the other group of people is shocked how they’ve got their lovely dog to sit there so calmly. Most people comment that their dog (including my own), would just chew the mask, or rip it to shreds. ‘We are happy to bring a little bit of joy to people during these crazy times. Who knew it would come in the form of a springer spaniel?’

(Story source: Metro)

Cheeky cat returns home with hilarious note from Toby Carvery around its neck

Any cat owner knows there’s a high chance their cat is being fed by at least five other households in the neighbourhood – that’s just how the cookie crumbles.

Cheeky Cat

But most of the time the cats don’t get caught out.

Huffington Post reports that one exception to the rule is Cole Clark’s long-haired moggy, Tula, who went begging for food at their local Toby Carvery restaurant in Abbey Meads, Swindon – repeatedly.

The 11-year-old Siberian cat arrived home at the weekend with a paper collar attached. “She’d come into the lounge and I could see something on her neck,” Clark, who is a primary school teacher, tells HuffPost UK.

She unravelled the paper collar which revealed a note, dated August 16. “Does this cat have a home?” the note read, while on the back it said: “Always at Toby Carvery.” Busted.

Clark posted a photo of the note with her greedy moggy in the background on the Abbey Meads Community Facebook Group, writing: “I can imagine she’s been trying for the sympathy vote in the hope of getting some meat!”

She added: “She has a lovely home and spends every night with us but thank you Toby customers / workers for looking out for her!” The 41-year-old said she couldn’t stop laughing when she found the note.

She went down to the restaurant to let them know Tula wasn’t homeless and they told her how she spent hours each day meowing at staff and customers for food until they shared some with her.

And to top it all off, she’d been going there since lockdown lifted.

After letting the restaurant know that Tula did in fact have an owner and a home, Clark left. “I walked out of the Toby and there she was, sat by the patio tables,” she laughs.

Clark says her friendly feline is quite partial to a bit of ham or chicken. “If you’re in the kitchen and open the fridge, she’ll meow and try to paw you in the hope it’ll be ham,” she says.

Cheese, on the other hand, is not as well received. “She’s a meat-lover, bless her,” Clark adds.

It’s not Tula’s first rodeo either. The mischievous moggy used to visit the local old people’s home, Deadline News reported, and the residents would give her meat paste from their sandwiches.

She’s got game, we’ll give her that.

(Story source: Huffington Post)

Feline fine: 5 signs your cat genuinely bonded with you during lockdown

Cats and their owners are feeling more connected. An animal behaviourist explains why – and how to avoid separation anxiety.

cat bonded

Cats have a reputation for being aloof when it comes to the attention they give their owners. Sometimes it’s easy to feel as though you’re just a glorified cat-food dispenser in human form.

But more than half of cat owners say lockdown has made their bond with their cat(s) even stronger. That’s according to a survey by Direct Line Pet Insurance.

And while some cats do lean towards the more independent side, they’re not as anti-social as we think they are as a species, says animal behaviourist Rosie Bescoby.

“Cats who have been well socialised with humans from an early age are more likely to find human interaction pleasurable, as long as it is the right sort of interaction of course,” Bescoby tells HuffPost UK.

“They will bond with caregivers, sometimes very strongly. New research shows cats can suffer from separation issues too, not just dogs.”

Bescoby, who is a member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors, says: “For many cats, having ‘their people’ home more has meant warm laps to sleep on, attention to be had whenever it has been demanded, as well as potential access to other things the cat enjoys like food, or outdoor access if owners tend to only let their cat out when they are around to supervise.”

But how can moggy owners actually tell if their beloved feline companion is enjoying this extra company?

Signs your cat is a BIG fan of you

If your cat chooses to spend time near you, that’s a sure-fire sign they’re feeling connected. They might be following you around more often or sleeping near where you’re working, says Bescoby. Has you cat been seeking interaction more frequently – nudging you with their head, pawing you, rubbing their face on you, or padding across your laptop?

If they’ve been in more physical contact – sleeping on your lap or shoulders, say – this is also evidence of a tighter bond. Even if they don’t sleep near (or on) you, they might choose to nap in areas where your scent is greatest, such as on the sofa or your bed, or in a pile of your clothes.

Another sign of a strong connection built up over lockdown maybe sad to see – and that’s when cats are showing signs of distress. Separation anxiety can change their behaviour – when you leave the house or your cat is unable to gain access to you (for example if you’re sitting in a different room with the door shut). They might become more vocal (meowing or crying), or they might scratch at the carpet or furniture – or urinate indoors.

During lockdown, nearly a third (28%) of pet owners admitted that they spent more than five hours of one-on-one time daily with their pets – breaking this down, 31% of dog owners spent more than five hours with their dog a day, while most cat owners spent between two and three hours with their pet.

Madeline Pike, veterinary nurse at Direct Line, warns that as owners head back to work, some pets may be experiencing separation anxiety, having become used to having their owners around more than usual. Separation anxiety can affect cats of all ages; however it is particularly common in kittens.

How to prevent separation anxiety

“With returning to work, it is important to encourage independent behaviour – so not everything great comes from the owner,” says Bescoby. “Relationships can be maintained using interactive play on a regular basis.”

She recommends providing cats with opportunities to build independence from the environment they’re in, rather than all the good stuff coming from you.

“For example, if you normally feed your cats at set times of the day, consider providing activity feeders that provide both physical and mental stimulation to get the cat to work for their food, as they would naturally have to hunt for their food; or place food around the house or garden for your cats to search for, as they are also natural scavengers,” she says.

“Feeding smaller meals more frequently fulfils their natural eating habits and helps reduce the salience of meal times. A timed feeder removes the association with you providing the food.” It’s important to interact with your cat(s) but also to encourage independent play – you can do this by providing fun stuff for your cat to hunt and chase.

“Having a variety of textured items – feathers, suede, fur, wool, plastic, cork, polystyrene, paper, the list is endless – that have different sounds and even smells and rotating these on a regular basis, placing them for your cat to find or hanging them from string can enrich your cat’s home environment,” Bescoby adds. “There are loads of games on the market to encourage cats to
play independently too.”

Another way to give your cat some newfound independence is to make your home more feline-friendly. Ask yourself: are there high up places for your cat to climb on to? Are there secret hiding places for them to sleep? Are there warm, comfy areas that are off the ground that fulfil all the criteria of your lap?

“Providing access to shelves, tops of furniture or fridges, as well as any empty cardboard box from your deliveries can really help your cat feel more secure without involving you,” says Bescoby. “This is particularly important in multi-cat households, homes with dogs, or for any cat who exhibits signs of anxiety – because your presence might be the only time they currently feel safe.”

(Article source: Huffington Post)

Owner creates dedicated holes in fence so dogs can peek through

An Australian dog owner has drilled holes in her fence just so that her pets can peer through at passers-by.

Peeping dogs

Metro reports that a video of this adorable DIY, titled ‘Mommy is home’ was uploaded to liltroubless’s TikTok, which shows the canines rushing over to their peepholes as their owner gets close to the house.

The two dogs have eye and nose holes, which their snouts adorably poke through so that they can see through the two smaller eye holes. Genius level stuff. The dogs can also be heard whining excitedly in the video as their human gets closer, which really puts the icing on this whole adorable cake.

One of the dogs gets it together fairly quickly as she approaches, getting their snout straight in the hole so they can stare at her imploringly. The two nosy parkers are greeted with a ‘Hi babies’ from the owner, and the second more excitable-looking pooch runs off – presumably in an effort to get closer to their owner.

This quick but super cute clip has over 18,000 comments and two million likes so far, with some commenter’s saying they’ve been inspired to do something similar at their homes. One person wrote: ‘Imagine you have a bad day then go home to that.’ Another said: ‘Smartest thing ever. You can see but you can’t bark.’

(Story source: Metro)

From ball launchers to activity trackers: the new breed of pet tech

We review some of the popular gadgets helping to keep dogs and cats healthy and occupied

pet tech

Technology for pets is increasingly popular, with gadgets entering the market that promise to keep our dogs and cats in trim, healthy and occupied, and we pet owners in sync with their needs.

The increasing humanisation of pets means more and more of us are treating them as fluffy family members. Spending on cats and dogs has increased hand in hand with this trend.

Total spending on pets in the UK reached a record high of £6.9bn in 2019, an increase of about £3.5bn since 2009, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Many gadgets that started out as human tech, such as activity trackers, have made the transition to the pet market.

PitPat dog activity tracker

The excellent PitPat dog activity tracker has been designed in collaboration with vets.

It clips on to collars and measures the time (rather than steps) your dog devotes to play, rest and activities such as running or walking. It also clocks the pet’s weight, if you are looking for him or her to shed the pounds, and you can even add activity goals for your dog to achieve to gain points and win prizes. PitPat has a subscription service that features veterinary advice. The device costs £39 with a monthly payment of £4 for the more advanced
features. www.pitpat.com

SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap and SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect

SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap and SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect are innovative cat flaps that use microchips to let the registered pet into your home.

The Connect version can also be controlled via smartphone using the Sure Petcare app – this allows you to lock or unlock the cat flap if there is a change in the weather or you are late home after dark. The recommended retail price (RRP) is £60 to £125, depending on the features.
www.surepetcare.com/en-gb/pet-doors

Whistle FIT

Whistle FIT tracks your dog’s activity and health behaviours such as licking, scratching, night sleep and drinking. Depending on your dog’s age, weight and breed, Whistle will determine how much food they should eat and how much exercise they should get in order to stay healthy. It fits on to a range of funky collars that Whistle also sells and activity is measured via a downloadable app.

The device measures distance in miles/kilometres, rest time and calories burned. The tracker is stylish and lightweight, making it a good choice for cats and small dogs. It costs £60 for the tracker and there is also a subscription service including vet advice. www.whistle.com

PetSafe Automatic Ball Launcher

The PetSafe Automatic Ball Launcher provides a game of fetch for dogs. The toy is suitable for all breeds and keeps dogs entertained while encouraging mental and physical activity. The launcher has nine distance settings up to 9 metres and six ball angle settings up to 45 degrees, as well as a built-in delay after ball placement to teach waiting skills. It has an RRP of £141.99.
www.petsafe.com/uk

Butternut Box

Butternut Box is a dog food subscription service that gives a dog its own online meal portal, with the optimum measurements of freshly prepared food to keep them in top condition. There is a comprehensive profile section for each pet to keep tabs on their weight, eating habits, quirks and activity levels, all of which can be updated if anything changes. Butternut Box’s plans are calculated to a dog’s individual requirements including their age, weight and activity levels, and take into account any health conditions. Butternutbox.com

Furbo Dog Camera

The Furbo Dog Camera lets you check up on your pet while he or she is home alone. You can also dispense treats remotely your via an app: there is room for about 100 small treats to keep your dog occupied. The HD super-wide image offers a 160-degree view of the room in which you place it. It features night vision and a high-quality two-way microphone, so you and your dog can hear each other. The Furbo is compatible with Alexa, which means it is voice-activated. It can detect your dog’s barks and will send an automatic push notification to your phone. You can then decide whether to remotely dispense a treat, speak to your dog or even sing to him. The RRP is £189. Shopuk.furbo.com/products/furbo-dog-camera

(Article source: The Guardian)