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Digital health technologies are proving to be invaluable to pet health
Our pets are not just animals. They are family. And that means that pet parents would do almost anything to keep their beloved fur child healthy and happy. The good news is that animals’ human guardians have more tools at their disposal than ever before to make that happen.
Digital healthcare isn’t just an important innovation for human healthcare. Indeed, digital health is proving to be a powerful instrument for pet health as well. And that means that, for pet parents, technologists, innovators, and entrepreneurs alike, digital health for pets can offer immense rewards.
Pet parent education
Like human children, fur children don’t come with instruction manuals. And for novice and experienced pet guardians alike, there will always come a time when questions or concerns arise that pet parents just don’t have the answers to.
Fortunately, a host of digital apps has been created to help guide pet parents in caring for their little beloved. This includes technologies designed to connect pet parents with veterinary pharmacies to ensure that Fido and Fifi receive the right medication, on time, every time, and with online educational resources to help their humans understand how to administer the medications and care for their fur child properly during treatment.
These digital resources are also instrumental when practicing preventative care for your pet. Research has shown, for instance, that veterinary costs often reach as high as $1,000 per visit for emergency or acute care. Using digital apps to understand how to provide the best nutrition and the most effective at-home and veterinary care is not only increasing the longevity and quality of life for pets, but it’s also helping to reduce the cost associated with pet guardianship.
Best of all, these online resources enable pet parents to access the information they need on-demand, whenever and wherever they might need it. Many pet guardians, for instance, are choosing to take their pets to work with them.
However, when your feisty Felix or rambunctious Roberta gets into a bit of mischief, perhaps snacking on something in the office that doesn’t belong to them, these pet care apps can quickly help pet guardians differentiate between a true emergency or a simple boo-boo that doesn’t require emergency care.
Just like humans with health wearables, pets can now benefit from remote health monitoring devices. For example, collars and harnesses are available today which can not only track an animal’s whereabouts but can also monitor its vital signs, including heart rate, body temperature, and respiration.
This information can be especially helpful when vets are attempting to diagnose or monitor a health condition. Vets can assess the pet’s status when at home, rather than under the stressful conditions of the vet’s office.
Remote monitoring technologies are also important for pets that may have health conditions or may suffer from separation anxiety. Not only do simple monitoring devices, such as baby monitors, allow pet guardians to keep watch over their pets from their own computer or smartphone, but many of these technologies also allow pet parents to talk to their animals. Simply allowing a pet to hear its human companion’s voice can ease anxiety and potentially prevent pets from acting out or misbehaving when Mom or Dad is away.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought increasing popularity to human telemedicine, enabling patients to receive consistent and high-quality care through virtual consultations with their healthcare providers.
But, increasingly, veterinary telemedicine is proving to be a highly effective tool for pet healthcare. Televets can consult with pet parents and visually assess the pet through video conferencing, potentially preventing the need for an in-office consultation. For sick, elderly, and anxious pets, the ability to be assessed by a veterinarian from the comfort and security of home can be invaluable.
Access to veterinary telemedicine, indeed, can increase the chances that pets will receive prompt and consistent veterinary care, as pet parents don’t have to worry about their fur babies getting lost, becoming overly stressed, or potentially becoming aggressive to their parents and healthcare providers.
We truly live in the digital age, and digital health technologies are proving not only to be invaluable to human health but also pet health. Digital health apps are leading to more informed and empowered pet guardians, who can pull up essential and accurate pet care information with the simple tap of a smartphone. Similarly, remote monitoring and sensing can provide veterinarians and pet guardians alike with the vital statistics they need to diagnose and care for ailing pets. Pet parents can even keep an eye on their pets whenever and wherever needed and can offer soothing words to anxious pets while they’re home alone. Finally, veterinary telemedicine helps pets receive the care they need without having to expose them to the stress and fear of a trip to the veterinary clinic.
(Image Source: Pixabay)
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