New Fitness Trackers Record Animal’s Health

CHICAGO (CBS) – Pet owners are using new technology to get a better overall picture of their animal’s health.

One of the new technologies is ‘pet trackers,’ a device that help ensure pet owners that their dog or cat is getting enough exercise. CBS 2’s Chris Martinez showed us how they work.

David Levin keeps tabs on his Golden Retriever, Mark’s daily exercise with an activity tracker.

“Helps me keep him active,” Levine said. “Make sure I’m caring for him as much as he cares for me.”

Pet owners are increasing turning to activity trackers to monitor their animal’s health.

San Francisco based, ‘Whistle,’ makes one of the market’s most popular devices. Other brands include ‘Paw Tracker,’ ‘Pet Pace,’ and ‘Nuzzle.’

The tracker attaches to an animal’s collar and sends information to the owner’s smartphone. The information includes stats on the pet’s weight and how much time it is getting outdoors. The information can then be shared with the pet’s veterinarian.

According to the American Animal Hospital Association, most dogs in the U.S. do not get enough exercise. More than 40 percent of dogs are overweight and 25 percent are obese.

“Both dog owners and cat owners are taking their pets to the vet less frequently,” said Ben Jacobs, co-founder of Whistle. “The goal with Whistle is to bring that day to day awareness about your pet’s health and safety to the forefront.”

Levine said his dog’s tracker also includes a GPS.

“I know that if he wanders off,” Levin said. “I’m going to be able to find him.”

It is a peace of mind that Levin calls “invaluable.”

Research shows the pet tracker industry is estimated to top more the $2 billion over the next five years.

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