Humane Society of Utah launches Internet-based outreach system to engage adoptable cats.
An interactive robotic cat toy system that allows you to play with shelter cats on the Internet launched at www.utahhumane.org along with waived adoption fees for adult cats April 20 through April 30. This technology, called iPet Companion, will allow users to directly interact with some of the cats available for adoption in the Humane Society of Utah’s “Kitty City” foster condo. The goal is to promote animal activity, view cats and their living conditions at the HSU, and increase the number of adoptions and donations.
“Your computer mouse gets to play with the cats,” said Deann Shepherd, HSU representative. “We are looking forward to using this technology in our education outreach program and other efforts to connect with the community.”
The HSU visits local classrooms through their outreach program to educate children about the shelter, animal safety and welfare.
“This is so cute,” said Hsa Hser Paw, a seventh-grade technology student at Granite Park Junior High School in Salt Lake City. “I don’t have any pets at my house, so I could play with this all day.”
A great benefit of the system is that people who may not be able to directly interact with the shelter animals due to distance, illness, age or allergies will now have the chance to play with the cats online.
To celebrate the shelter’s feline friends during the launch April 20 through April 30, all adult cats seven months and older will have a waived adoption fee and all cat and kitten adoptions will include a free microchip certificate.
The HSU is one of only 13 shelters across the country with the innovative iPet Companion system.
Allowing users to play with shelter animals in real time from anywhere in the world, the iPet Companion, created by Reach-In Technologies, is the world’s first interactive Web-based pet toy. The system was donated to HSU by Reach-In as a part of the company’s efforts to promote the use of technology in the service of animal welfare.
To remotely play with the cats, users can visit www.utahhumane.org and click on the iPet Companion icon. Users will be placed into a virtual queue where they can watch live video until it is their turn to control options during a two-minute session. Of course, users are welcome to join the queue again as often as they’d like.