We’ve covered a few different high-tech dog collars here before. Most let you track down your pet if it gets lost and offer a few other features in a simple unobtrusive design. Then there’s Buddy, a new smart collar from Australia designed to stand out as much as possible while keeping tabs on your dog.
This new device packs GPS, Bluetooth and more into a stylish customizable LED-covered design. It’s on Kickstarter now and looking for almost $300,000 in funding.
Buddy is designed to replace a traditional dog color entirely. It includes a regular D-Ring for attaching your leash. It’s also waterproof, flexible and boasts a 14-day battery life. The collar comes in small, medium and large sizes so it should fit most dogs.
The entire device is covered in LED, and you can customize the lights colors and patterns using a free app for Android or iOS. If you’re dog does get lost Buddy will know and automatically switch to a hazard pattern with lots of red and orange. The collar also features a light sensor, so it should turn on automatically outside at night and switch off at home.
Of course, there’s a built-in GPS to help track your dog. You can even set a geofence using your phone. So, for example, you could set the backyard or an entire park as okay for your dog, but as it soon as it leaves that area you’ll get an alert.
Other included sensors will measure your dog’s temperature along with how much it sleeps and how many calories it burns. You can access that information on your phone or view it on a small OLED screen on Buddy.
The company says Buddy can even communicate to other smart home devices. So if your dog gets too hot your Nest can automatically lower the temperature. That’s a pretty bold promise, though it’s definitely not impossible to pull off.
You can pre-order Buddy on Kickstarter for as little as $180, which is pretty big discount from the planned $450 retail price. That also include the Wi-Fi charging dock, though it won’t actually ship until July (or later).
Delays are always possible on Kickstarter, even when a project leaves itself plenty of time to ship early orders. The company behind Buddy has experience making dog-related products, though nothing this complicated. The new collar also still needs some testing, and suppliers need to be picked.
Buddy isn’t for everyone. The design a bit out there to be sure, but if you’re not interested in a boring old dog tracker this could be a pretty great alternative.