As a cat-mom myself, I know as much as anyone how owning these lovable little balls of fluff can, at times, feel like a full-time job: these are pooping, shedding, furniture-ruining machines that demand to be fed, walked and played with, all on their own schedule (and sometimes, that schedule is 2AM). Even if you’re someone as averse to smart-devices as I am, there’s something appealing about using tech to automate that hassle away; in fact, I recently caved and bought this fancy electric fountain to cut down on my weekly dish-cleaning time. Consider me a convert.
Pet parents like myself spent close to $5 billion last year alone on these sorts of devices—and thanks to all the cats/dogs/gerbils that folks have adopted over the pandemic, that number’s expected to keep on exploding. That means there’s going to be an explosion of new companies with new, techy ideas trying to get a piece of that pie. Naturally, not all of those ideas are winners.