By Sian Lazell
February 9, 2017
US start-up AGL Technology has launched its Vetrax pet wearable to veterinarians in collaboration with Hill's Pet Nutrition.
Vetrax is a smart device designed to be attached to a dog's collar. It uses a sensor to consistently monitor behavioral patterns and pet activity. Data collected by the Vetrax Sensor is then stored and accessible to veterinarians and owners online through the Vetrax Portal and Vetrax App, respectively.
The consistent health and behaviour monitoring provided by Vetrax is intended to help veterinarians diagnose and treat pets' underlying health conditions. AGL said veterinarians typically rely on the perceptions and observations of pet owners, meaning important signs can sometimes go unnoticed or be misinterpreted. Both AGL and Hill's are therefore aiming to close the resulting information gap with Vetrax and the Hill's SmartCare program.
Jesper Nordengaard, vice president of global marketing and innovation for Hill's, said: "This technology will allow veterinarians to take their care to the next level. They will be able to monitor the effects of their recommendations in nearly real time, providing them and pet parents with a new level of understanding about how therapeutic nutrition and other recommended therapies can help transform the lives of dogs suffering from dermatological, weight and mobility conditions."
Joe Young, chief operating officer of AGL, added: "We are thrilled that our first strategic partner has elected to use Vetrax to enhance their portfolio offerings.
"Our sophisticated behavior monitoring capabilities, coupled with their long-standing expertise in pet nutrition, provide veterinarians with another tool to help manage their canine patients with these common conditions."
Dr Joel Griffies, who helped develop the Vetrax technology with his patients at the Animal Dermatology Clinic in Marietta, Georgia, said: "As veterinary dermatologists, we ask pet parents how itchy their dogs are but they don't know because they're not home for most of the day.
"Now, Vetrax helps bridge the communication gap by giving us an objective measurement, rather than relying on human observation."
AGL spoke to Animal Pharm In Kansas City last year, as it was preparing for commercial launch of the product.
Speaking of the firm's partnership with Hill's, Mr Young said: "We're a start-up with a vision of what we can do for the veterinary community globally. We're collaborating with a company that has innovated in the field of nutrition for decades. Their focus has been the veterinary community and bringing innovation through nutrition. They now see an opportunity for innovation beyond nutrition alone."
Mr Young also said regarding the digital space, the use of data and technology in animal health is in its infancy but evolving quickly. However, AGL is one of the firms to still be making progress in the arena, as other companies start to feel the impact of competition for the top spot. Reprinted with permission of Animal Pharm News