South Korean smart dog collar tells owner what’s in a bark

A South Korean startup has developed an AI-powered dog collar that can detect five emotions in canines by monitoring their barks using voice recognition technology.

The Petpuls collar can tell pet owners through a smartphone application if their dogs are happy, relaxed, anxious, angry or sad. It also tracks dogs’ physical activity and rest.

“Petpuls gives a dog a voice that humans can understand,” says Andrew Gil, director of global marketing at Petpuls Lab,told Reuters. “With this device we humans, can understand and communicate better, more accurately, more effectively.”

The company began gathering different types of barks to analyse dogs’ emotions in 2017. Three years later, they developed a proprietary algorithm based on a database of more than 10,000 samples from 50 breeds of dogs.

“I thought she was just happy when she played and felt sad and anxious when I wasn’t home…actually she felt angry when she lost a game she played with me, like how humans feel,” said Moon Sae-mi, who has a six-year-old Border Collie.

Petpuls Lab started marketing the collar online in October last year at $99.

The global pet care market was worth $138 billion in 2020, up 34 percent, Euromonitor data showed, as more people spent time at home with their pets or adopted pets during the COVID-19 pandemic. The global dog population also grew 18% the same year to 489 million.