WhatsYapp: Messaging App Helps Dogs 'Talk' to Owners

dog whatsapp whatsyapp fetch app
Owners may soon be able to tell what their dogs are thinking, with help from a smart collar and a smartphone app. iStock/Getty

Ever wondered why your dog's head is cocked to one side? Or why it's barking for no apparent reason? There's an app for that.

Or, there may be soon. The U.K. pet store Fetch has come up with a smart collar concept that analyzes a dog's sounds, movements and activities and then tells the animal's owner what their pet is thinking through a companion smartphone app, appropriately called WhatsYapp.

Its creators describe it as the "most advanced communications system" between dogs and humans and say it could identify important emotions in pets, such as stress, hunger, excitement, boredom and confusion.

WhatsApp WhatsYapp smart collar Fetch
The WhatsYapp dog collar will analyze a dog’s sounds, movements and activities, and transmit what the animal is feeling to its owner’s phone. Fetch

"It can be difficult to understand exactly what your dog is thinking," Rachel Comerford, Head of Commercial at Fetch, tells Newsweek. "Telltale signs are often misleading—a wagging tail, for example, does not always mean your dog is happy and can be a sign of anxiety. But WhatsYapp will help owners to understand what a dog likes and what causes them stress.

"By identifying what a dog is thinking and feeling, owners can change behaviors and routines to improve their pet's well-being."

WhatsYapp is one of three potential "Petnology" inventions Fetch hopes to develop, alongside an interactive playground for cats called CatQuest and a PetPounds smartband that encourages children to play with their pets by allowing them to earn rewards such as vouchers, days out or time credit on their tablets.

The WhatsYapp concept is currently only for dogs, however if the prototype proves effective Comerford says Fetch will aim to adapt the technology for cats.

WhatsYapp: Messaging App Helps Dogs 'Talk' to Owners | Tech & Science