Do you know what’s most important in life to your dog? Maybe your dog could obsessively play fetch for hours, pig out on “people food” (or virtually anything that’s barely edible!), or is dedicated to winning the battle of wits with the squirrels in your backyard.

Regardless of your dog’s activity preferences, turns out that social companionship is at the top of the list for what most dogs need more of. Yet unfortunately many dogs spend a majority of their time home alone. Research shows that social isolation is one of THE most significant stressors for dogs.

Prolonged social isolation seems to predispose dogs to a variety of behavior problems because their needs for play, mental stimulation, physical activity, and companionship aren’t being met. Doggie day care and dog walkers are two alternatives to having your dog spend all day by himself.

But if your dog doesn’t get along well with other dogs and hiring someone to walk your dog every day is beyond your budget, another alternative is now available. PetChatz® is a new device that allows you to be with your pet – virtually – throughout the day anytime you want.

PetChatz allows you and your pet to see and hear each other through the device’s video display, camera, speaker and microphone. By giving your pet the chance to see and hear you, you provide your pet contact with you and interrupt the social isolation.

You can also choose to deliver a treat to your pet through PetChatz – either just because you want to, or as a reward for a specific behavioral response you observe through the video camera. Asking your dog to do something to get what she wants is a source of mental stimulation, because your dog has to figure out what she has to do to make that treat appear. A bonus feature is your ability to trigger the release of an odor designed to have a calming influence on your dog.

The moments immediately after their owners’ departure can be the most stressful for many dogs, but with PetChatz you can keep talking to your dog after you walk out the door. This continued contact with you may delay, minimize or even prevent any anxiety your dog feels about you leaving. And access to a food filled toy that holds your dog’s interest may help as well.

While nothing can substitute for in-person time with you, PetChatz allows your pet to see you, hear you, and be rewarded for good behavior, even when you aren’t there.

Suzanne Hetts, Ph.D., CAAB

4994 S Independence Way
Littleton CO 80123

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