We love our four-legged pals to pieces, crave time with them, feel terrible when we’re apart. Thank heaven (for little girl and boy animals) that a growing crop of innovators is working in the pet-tronics and pet-care space, helping to reassure us that Fifi and Fido are doing well even when we’re many miles from home.
- Petzi Treat Cam has the Pavlovian response mechanism down pat. Remotely wake up Petzi through your phone or tablet app and a yellow light glows next to its lens, telling whomever “You’re on Candid Camera.” Other app-taps remotely cue Petzi’s pleasant musical-jingle alert, capture and then send your voiced communications and — most important — pump out a handful of dog or cat treats. $169.95; petzi.com
- The Feed and Go sits apart by serving full meals, with six rotating compartments that each hold up to 8 ounces of dry or (if you dare) wet food. An SMS or email message is pushed when the feeding starts. And you’ll get a warning if there’s a system failure. $249; feedandgo.com
- WonderWoof is a cute, connected Bluetooth bow tie that attaches to your dog’s collar, then reports (to an app) if your pal is doing enough running, sleeping, playing and walking. $95; wonderwoof.com
- Your dog will be well-served with PetSafe’s Playtime Anytime Automatic Ball Launcher. A tennis ball shoots out, adjusted to fly 8 to 30 feet away. Poochie hustles after the ball, doubles back, drops it into the device’s top hole, and then the ball launches again. A rest feature guarantees a cool-down every 15 minutes. $199.99; petsafe.net