I Spy: Watching pets with security cameras

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DEAR PAW’S CORNER: I found out recently that my son “watches” his dog while at work by monitoring him with a security camera. I don’t think that’s a good way to care for a pet. What’s your take? – Pat in Concord, New Hampshire

DEAR PAT: While nothing replaces in-person, face-to-face interaction between pet and owner, many people are unable to be with their pet during the day. Having a dog walker or pet sitter helps to ensure a pet is cared for during this time, but still doesn’t replace an owner’s voice.

So it’s not surprising that more and more owners are using today’s technology to keep an eye on their pets. Video cameras and connected mobile apps allow them to check in on the house. And because some video systems have integrated speakers, those owners can even speak to their pets through the monitoring app.

You can watch videos on the Internet of dogs guiltily slipping off the couch when their owner’s disembodied voice calls “Off!” from an unseen speaker. But such a setup may offer a bit of comfort to a lonely pet as well.

To answer your question, remote monitoring is just fine to keep an eye on a pet’s health or to see what kind of behavior they exhibit when the owner is not around. But it can’t replace being there. I imagine that your son would much rather be hanging out with his dog than be stuck at the office.

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(c) 2018 King Features Synd. Inc.


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