Online devices help Japan's animals stay in shape

Online devices help Japan's animals stay in shape
The NEC group in February released a pet monitoring camera that works with smartphones.
PHOTO: Nikkei Asian Review

TOKYO - Dogs and other pets are now also benefiting from devices and appliances communicating via the Internet.

According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, about 6.75 million dogs are registered in Japan. More Japanese people consider their dogs to be part of their families, spending generously on comforts for their animals and expanding the health care market for pets.

The NEC group in February released a pet monitoring camera that works using a smartphone. The product is priced at some 30,000 yen (S$330.20) including a wireless communications device. The camera shoots images of pets at home, sending them to the owner's smartphone.

Dogs are more susceptible to heat than humans because they are closer to the ground and can only sweat through a few parts of their bodies, including their paws. The camera also has a built-in temperature sensor, allowing owners to know when they need to remotely control air conditioning in their homes via smartphones.

Better and cheaper sensors as well as wireless communication technology are also boosting the evolution of Internet connected devices for pets.

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