icpoochThanks to an invention by an enterprising… and dog loving… teen, you can now not only chat with your canine companion while you’re away, you can also pass out treats! Brooke Martin, an inspiring Spokane 9th grader, came up with the idea to help alleviate her own beloved canine companion’s separation anxiety.

“My dog Kayla suffered from separation anxiety, so I thought it would be really cool to be able to video chat with her while I was away from home to make sure she was OK,” Martin explains in an email to GeekWire. “The idea of delivering her a treat seemed liked it would really make her happy if I could figure out how to do it.”

The ingenious device, the iCPooch, an Internet-enabled device powered by a Raspberry Pi computer,  allows dog owners to video chat with their pups and automatically deliver a dog treat from wherever they are.

From the Kickstarter media release

martin-brookeiCPooch began last year as part of an 8 th grade class project. Martin entered her idea for iCPooch into a Startup Weekend competition and received the most votes of the forty ideas presented. According to Tom Simpson, President of the Spokane Angel Alliance and an early investor in the company, “Brooke really knocked the socks off the judges, both with her product idea and her presentation. She now has an outstanding team moving the idea forward.” Martin has also received the honor of being selected as one of the top-ten finalists for the national Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge (www.youngscientistchallenge.com) for her video entry on iCPooch. She will compete in October at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, MN for the coveted title of “America’s Top Young Scientist.”

“Veterinarians estimate that over 13 million dogs in the United States suffer from separation anxiety,” says Martin. “iCPooch can help reduce that anxiety, and gives owners the peace of mind of knowing that they can interact with their dog while they’re away from home.”

James Pelland, Bondgy’s Co-Founder and CEO, said, “Brooke is a prime example of how young people naturally think outside the box. The application of this product goes beyond the obvious, into areas like providing our service men and women the ability to interact with their dogs while deployed, or helping college students away from home for the first time deal with their own separation anxiety by allowing them to reach out to the family pet.”

  • Deliver a dog cookie with your tablet, smartphone, or computer
  • Two-way video chat with your dog using a free Skype account
  • Connects to your home wireless network using a password protected site
  • No monthly fees
  • Easy setup and you’re ready to go!

What a wonderfully creative idea! The only drawback I could see is that once a dog gets the idea that it’s a treat dispenser, I could see them parking their furry self right there just waiting… :)

Here is the latest celebrity pooch demonstrating his love of iCPooch. Beorn is a 7 month old Bernese Mountain Dog. iCPooch lets you video-chat with your dog and deliver a treat with a push of a button on your smartphone, tablet or laptop from anywhere!

So, what do you think… would you give it a try? :) Do you think your pooch would like it?

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