File the Buddy—a souped-up dog collar—under egregiously excessive design. Chances are your dog doesn’t need an activity monitor, GPS tracker, temperature and light sensors, and OLED display around its neck. But if you want your pooch to “express its unique character through light,” as the designers tout, perhaps this Kickstarter is for you.
Squeaker, a pet-tech company with offices in Melbourne and L.A., is tapping into the fact that most pet owners will spend excessive amounts of money on their beloved critters. (JFK has even managed to funnel $48 million of funds for a terminal dedicated to animals.)
Here are Buddy’s bona fides: the collar is equipped with Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and a series of trackers to help (helicopter) pet owners keep an eye on their dog’s health and well being. Squeaker likens the device to a FitBit for pets. You can figure out how much the dog has walked, the calories it has burned, and how much it sleeps. You can also program the collar to alert you if your dog has left a certain perimeter (like at the park), send reminders when it needs to be fed, when it needs to head to the vet. Bright LED lights add a level of safety at night when visibility is challenging—probably the best of the myriad design features crammed into the product.
So, if your dog needs a blingy neon collar for all the raves it attends, or if you like “heading to the dog park to compare stats” as the promo video suggests, then back the Kickstarter before September 20 to make Buddy a reality.
[Ed. Note: If you have any decency in you, please please please please please pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease don’t fund this.]