San Francisco Offers First Dog Tech Conference
Photo: The Chronicle

San Francisco’s first dog tech startup conference was held on Thursday March 19, 2015. The conference was geared toward those who are investing in and developing the recent rush in products that are geared toward pets and pet owners.

Held at the Digital Garage, the Found conference was put on by Pack, a San Francisco based social network for dog owners and their pups. Megan Casey, the founder and CEO of Pack, explained that the company views dog technology as an industry in the health and wellness field.

The goal of the conference was to gather a group of Pack’s fellow dog startups that see opportunities and solutions in the same light. They wanted to show others that dog technology is a large market that is growing rapidly every day.

San Francisco Offers First Dog Tech Conference
Photo: The Chronicle

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Speakers at the conference included executives from the pet activity monitoring startup Whistle, the dog-sitting service Rover, the dog toy and attire company PrideBites, and the wireless pet camera firm Petcube.

The increased demand for pet products and the decreasing cost of starting a technology company are the two largest trends that are driving pet tech right now. More and more people are adopting pets and considering them to be members of their family. It is more important now than ever before for pet owners to monitor and pamper their dogs.

Many of the speakers noted that pet technology needs to be designed to foster real-life interactions with pets because that is what more and more consumers are looking for. A design panel at the event focused on designing products for dogs and using dog technology to engage in communication with our pets.

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A majority of the panelists admitted to having conversations with their dogs on a regular basis. Some even stated that they created voices for their animals to talk back. More research is being done every day on the way that we communicate with dogs, and new technologies are constantly trying to advance the way we understand our canines.

The sold out conference attracted members of the technology community as well as regular dog enthusiasts. The goal was to show these groups that dog technology doesn’t take time away from your pet, but rather allows pet owners to interact more with their dogs and provide better care for them by understanding their needs in a more in depth way.

Until now, a large part of the pet market was localized, but with more technology becoming available all the time, it is becoming a worldwide trade. With more apps and companies launching new brands regularly, the dog industry is thriving like never before.

Samantha’s biggest passion in life is spending time with her Boxer dogs. After she rescued her first Boxer in 2004, Samantha fell in love with the breed and has continued to rescue three other Boxers since then. She enjoys hiking and swimming with her Boxers, Maddie and Chloe.