Dogs are great: they listen to you (most of the time), they understand commands, and they’ll love you forever no matter what. While walking them can be a great joy, when the weather is miserable, the task of taking them around the block becomes just as hapless. But thanks to a pair of Auburn University researchers named Jeff Miller and David Bevly, you may soon be able to control your K-9 remotely from your computer.
The two Department of Mechanical Engineering scientists devised a backpack system remote control system you can strap to your dog. The tech pack consists of a wireless radio, GPS, and embedded command modules to relay instructions via sound and vibrations. With this high-tech doggie pack you could tell your pooch to go for a walk on his own without you having to get off the couch. Go right, forward, don’t sniff that other dog’s butt, pee on your bad neighbor’s lawn, and so on; all the sorts of things you would regularly tell your dog.
Of course, there is a serious note to this research. The team demonstrated that the system is effective 98-percent of the time with trained search and rescue and other working dogs. Researchers say this technology could allow canine handlers to communicate with their dogs even when they aren’t holding their leashes, or if they need to a dog to search a dangerous environment that is too tight for a human emergency responder.
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