For several years, pet owners have been able to feed their animals from afar using automated feeders, while watching their dogs, cats and other pets on video cameras. Once that pet food runs low, tech innovations have been ordering fresh supplies automatically for year. Now, artificial intelligence may even be able to suggest what pet food formulations match a dog’s behaviors.
A collaboration between two Mars Inc. divisions, IAMS dog food brand and Whistle pet activity trackers, resulted in a system that uses data on a dog’s behaviors to determine what diet may be best for that pet specifically. Whistle Health tracks key health metrics like a dog's activity levels, eating and drinking times, and scratching and licking habits, which gives dog parents insights to detect potential health issues, monitor and manage chronic health conditions, and make data-driven decisions on the best way to care for their pets, including how to choose the most appropriate IAMS product for their respective nutritional needs. For example, if the Whistle smart device identifies that your dog may not be physically active or is overeating, you can select the IAMS Healthy Weight diet to support a healthy metabolism and help them reach a healthy weight.
“Recipes like IAMS Adult Small breed are formulated with an appropriate level of omega-6 fatty acids to help support a healthy skin and coat which may be a fit if a dog’s Whistle smart device is showing that they’re scratching themselves often,” an IAMS representative told Petfood Industry in an email.
Currently, there are no plans to expand the Whistle Health system to cats, although cat owners do use the Whistle devices, a Whistle representative wrote in an email. Even snake and eagle caregivers are customers.
The Whistle Health system doesn’t integrate with Google or Alexa smart homes. It uses a proprietary smartphone app.
Tim Wall covers the dog, cat and other pet food industries as a senior reporter for WATT Global Media. His work has appeared in Scientific American, Live Science, Discovery News, Honduras Weekly, Global Journalist and other outlets. He holds an M.A. in journalism and an M.S. in natural resources, both from the University of Missouri - Columbia, along with a bachelor's degree in biology.
Wall served in the Peace Corps in Honduras from 2005 to 2007, where he coordinated with the town government of Moroceli to organize a municipal trash collection system, taught environmental science, translated for medical brigades and facilitated regenerative agriculture, along with other projects.
Contact Wall via https://www.wattglobalmedia.com/contact-us/
Still in its infancy, cell-cultured meat is being looked at for its possibilities, but environmental challenges exist, as well.
By David Sprinkle
While forecasts can have short shelf lives, being overtaken by unforeseen events, there’s no question that the U.S. economy and American houseeholds have been buffeted by COVID-19 shutdowns and illnesses, patches of job insecurity despite low unemployment rates and record price inflation only partially offset by wage increases.