Critical for every dog owner, since our pets cannot speak to us I couldn't come up with an objective reason to give this item less than five stars. The unit is essential, I think, for any dog owner. Your pet's activity level is critical to its physical and mental health. While everyone understands how calories are burned and muscle is built through exercise, I think fewer people realize the mental aspect of activity for dogs. If your pet is antsy, seems anxious, or behaving poorly, the easiest step to trying to fix those things is giving it more exercise. While... Fetch More
Critical for every dog owner, since our pets cannot speak to us
I couldn’t come up with an objective reason to give this item less than five stars. The unit is essential, I think, for any dog owner. Your pet’s activity level is critical to its physical and mental health. While everyone understands how calories are burned and muscle is built through exercise, I think fewer people realize the mental aspect of activity for dogs. If your pet is antsy, seems anxious, or behaving poorly, the easiest step to trying to fix those things is giving it more exercise. While that absolutely will not solve all problems, many problems stem from owners not providing this critical component of their animal’s daily life.
Pet physical fitness and weight are also important to their longevity. While this unit doesn’t solve the problem of overfeeding dogs, it does provide a concrete number that can be referenced to see if you are providing your dog with enough exercise to burn the calories he’s been fed.
This unit is valuable to me and my fiancee because it takes the guesswork out of our 12 pound dachshund’s daily exercise. Was that walk long enough? How much exercise does chewing a bone provide? Does he need to be running or can short bursts and tug of war wear him out? How much was he played with before my fiancee went to work tonight? Not having to wonder about these questions is well worth the rather high price tag, as it ensures that my dog won’t drive me crazy (which he will do if he’s not exercised) or begin to misbehave and potentially cost me more money in something he’s decided he would like to chew on.
As I mentioned my dog is a small 12-pounder, and the unit is not too big for his collar. I’ve seen pictures of it on even smaller dogs. Its very likely that it will be able to fit around your dog’s collar without being disruptive. In the image you can see that there are two hooks in the center of the bone. It is attached to the collar by what appears to be an o-ring, or a strong elastic. You hook one end of the ring onto the hook, wrap it around the collar, and wrap it around the next hook. I was a little skeptical of this method, but it does ensure that if something happens to the ring (they give you three) you can easily replace it. You don’t have to worry about a latch breaking and rendering the device useless. I think it was a good less conventional design decision.
I read a few reviews about the software being lackluster, but they must have made an update to the app, because it looks full-featured to me. You can view your dog’s activity down to the hour, and the history builds to show you averages, top scores, and all the usual fitness statistics. It works by detecting agitation through an accelerometer. There are three categories of rest, active, and play depending on the level of agitation. All levels give you the “bark points” that gauge your dog’s daily activity, which can be thought of as calories in humans. Even at rest the body burns calories. However, active and play hours will need to be spent in order to reach the dog’s daily goal. You can set your dog’s personal level as you see fit with recommendations to guide you. You should go more based on your dog’s need rather than the recommendation.
Also you have a suite of options available to manage people who can connect to the fitbark such as co-owners, friends, or your vet. This eases the issue of communicating the information on the fitbark and describing your dog’s history or changes in your dog’s activity. If the fitbark is somehow lost or destroyed you can connect another bitbark to your dog’s account.