Friday, August 22, 2008

What Will They Think of Next?: The Pet Doorbell

When you're dog needs to go outside, how does it let you know? By ringing the doorbell, of course!

Ok, not quite, but a company called PetSafe has created a product that lets your pet do just that. Instead of training the animal to bark or scratch at the door when it wants to get out (or back in, for that matter), just mount the pet doorbell onto a wall near the door or to the door itself. Then, attach a small SmartKey to the pet's collar, and a tune will sound whenever the pet comes within up to 3-feet (or as close as 3-inches) from the device. There are 4 volume settings on the unit, which operates via RF, and the bell itself can be turned off if need be. The unit operates via 3 C-sized batteries; and up to 5 SmartKeys on five pets can be used with one doorbell.

While I find it difficult to believe that any pet owner wouldn't already have a doggie door, or have trained a pet to let him know when he needs to go out, I'm sure there are applications where this item might come in handy. Apartment and condo dwellers first come to mind; along with any renter that might not be permitted to build a pet door. And hey, if you'd just rather hear a sing-song tune than a loud dog bark, it might be worth spending the time to train your dog to use this sensor.

Then, of course, there's also the prestige of high-tech gadgetry! The PetSafe pet doorbell costs US$90.

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