Whistle, a wearable activity tracker for dogs, lets you know when your dog is at his or her most active times.
For the last week or so, I’ve been testing the Whistle tracker on my pup, Donny.
Whistle, available for $US99.95, is a small, stainless steel disc that you clip onto your dog’s collar.
As your dog walks, eats, and sleeps, Whistle records his activity and shows it to you via its smartphone app. All the data syncs via a Bluetooth connection.
On Christmas, my dad walked Donny for what seemed like 20 minutes before we headed to go see a movie.
But Whistle notified us that my dad only walked Donny for 10 minutes. It turns out my dad was just hanging out in the garage for a bit before actually starting the walk.
Donny likes his exercise, so when the time came for his afternoon walk, my mum knew thanks to Whistle that she needed to take him on a longer walk. So she walked him for 37 minutes.
With that in mind, Whistle could also be incredibly effective if you rely on a pet sitter or dog walker. That way, you can see if your dog is getting an appropriate amount of exercise.
Another cool feature about Whistle is the ability to see how your dog stacks up to other dogs his or her size. Donny, it turns out, is nearly 3 times more active than other dogs his size. He also doesn’t need to rest or sleep as much as other dogs.
To date, Whistle has raised $US6 million from DCM, Red Swan, and Gunderson Dettmer.
But Whistle isn’t the only startup trying to tackle the activity space for dogs. FitBark is similarly a wearable activity tracker for pups, and it recently raised over $US80,000 on Kickstarter to bring its bone-shaped tracker to market.
FitBark seems to offer a more robust solution, fitted with an open API to allow the development of 3rd-party apps like custom exercise plans or custom food recommendations. But it will be hard to judge until the product actually comes out to market.