What can you do for my cat?


(Robert Andrews) #1

Hello, SmartThingers,

So, what are the ways in which I might be able to use SmarThings/SmartApps with my cat? Not just feeders; what other ideas do you have?

Presence sensing?
In/out catflap notification and logging?
Proximity to house?
etc?

Is there any SmartThings component small enough to be worn around a cat’s neck? If so, what could we do with that?

What I’d really like is a small cat-tracking GPS collar with live tracking support. These exist for dogs but appear to be too small for small cats. The company that makes a small live GPS tracker will surely be rich.

I’m not a developer, just a consumer and cat owner who was already interested in SmartThings and other home automation technology.

Thanks.


(Cory S) #2

I use to train working dogs, and that allowed me to test out pretty much all the coolest tech toys for dogs. The GPS collars are not very practical (yet) because they require a huge battery that only lasts 2-3 days. I can’t imagine something that would be small enough for a cat doing very well at all.


(Desvio) #3

You could put a pressure sensor under the kitty litter tray.  Send a notification after X uses to clean it out.

or… if you are evil, run the can opener each time it steps in.  You’ll get one of two results, either you’ll have to clean out the litter box less often, or you’ll condition the cat to feel “the urge” every feeding time.


(Robert Andrews) #4

@Desvio: “You could put a pressure sensor under the kitty litter tray.”

At first, I was thinking: “How much does cat poop really weigh?!” But now I get what you mean :slight_smile:

@Cory Simpson: “I can’t imagine something that would be small enough for a cat doing very well at all.”

What do you make of this proposed Trax device? http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/trax-gps-tracker/trax-gps-tracker-for-children-and-pets

 

Bonus: I found this weird catphone on Amazon - http://www.amazon.co.uk/Karlie-Technology-Acoustic-Signals-Compact/dp/B003XSOLHE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1365093328&sr=8-2&keywords=cat+tracker


(Cory S) #5

@Robert That kickstarter project looks like it is the closest thing I have seen that has a prayer of working. Reason being it uses a simcard with a data connection which I assume will not only allow for assisted GPS, but it will be able to toggle GPS on when needed, and leave it off when not…increasing battery life. But, if you notice even they claim you should only expect 2-4 days. That would get really old, really quick for me.

 

I don’t know anything about the amazon device…looks like it uses some kind of sonar technology, looks kinda gimmicky imo.


(Matt Garfield) #6

I’ve been interested in incorporating SmartThings into helping me manage my “cat tasks” as well. One fairly simplistic application I’ve decided to try is to combine an auto-feeder with open/closed sensors so that I can be assured that my cats have been fed.

The idea is to put an open/closed sensor on the lid of the C-20 auto feeder so that when the lid pops open, I get an alert that the cats are being fed. If I DON’T get that alert when I expect it, I can assume the auto-feeder malfunctioned and maybe call a neighbor to stop by and feed the cats the old fashioned way.

This application came from the fact that my wife and I often have to travel over the weekend and we’re always having to ask our neighbors to come by and feed the cats. My wife doesn’t trust the autofeeders to work properly, so the open/closed alerts was our compromise. That way, if the feeders don’t work, we’ll know and have a backup plan.

This is the feeder I’ll be using: