How much information is TOO MUCH information (TMI) when it comes to knowing what your dogs are doing while you’re away? Apparently there is no limit for me, as I can’t seem to get enough “intel” on this topic — I may even have an unhealthy addiction to my “Doggie Cam.” About a year ago I purchased a proprietary dog-surveillance camera system (though today there are lots of wireless LAN-IP camera choices like it) and it’s been love at first sightever since, even though what I normally see are sleeping, happy hounds.
Being the mom of moderately fragile greyhounds, I always like to be sure that all is well with them when they are left alone. Years ago when I was getting our female, Corsa, over her severe separation anxiety (SA), I used a simple tape recorder to learn what her time threshold was for being left alone; i.e. how much time was too much time for her. I set up specific trials to teach her that we come and we go, but we always return. I structured the trials within her tolerance range and gradually increased the length of time she was left alone, until finally she could handle it for several hours at a time. I really could have used a doggie cam to help me help her. While a tape recorder is certainly better than nothing, I would have had so much more real time information to work from if I had my cool doggie cam back then.
The camera is mounted up high in the dog’s long-term confinement area (a.k.a. the family room/kitchen/service porch) section of the house. It needs to be plugged in, does not run on batteries and connects with our wireless network in the house. The great thing about it is that it shows you what’s going on in real time, with color and sound, via any internet portal. So I can look at my dogs on any computer with internet access anywhere in the world, or on my smartphone, assuming the camera is plugged in. It measures about 3 by 5 inches and does not try to be stealth in any way like some “nanny cams.” You know it when you see it! The night vision functionality is really wonderful, too.
My friends can testify to how thrilled I was when I first got the camera, as I bored them to tears squealing with glee at the sight and sound of my peaceful hounds calmly enjoying their day (usually sleeping). Hey – it took a lot of work to create that calm, so I think I deserve to see the fruits of my SA rehab labor!
Speaking of great uses for my doggie cam, I will be putting it to use immediately as we incorporate a new canine family member into our home. I can’t wait until he’s all settled in and there’s “nothin’ to see here!” Just three snoring hounds…