The true secret of DOGS—never need to walk your dog again! Tip number five will HORRIFY you.
Dogs! You sometimes need to walk them, but maybe you don’t want to.
Sure, you could walk your dog on a treadmill or giant hamster wheel inside the house (Fig 1), but maybe you still want to give your dog the authentic outdoor-walk experience. Currently: not possible.
Fig 1: Ancient people knew that a “turnspit dog” could be an all-natural eco-friendly power source for charging a cell phone. Image is from a historical woodcut.
A human on a dog walk typically provide two things: 1) navigation guidance and 2) the ability to pull on a dog’s leash if necessary.
As described below, we can easily replicate these two factors without requiring a human to go on the walk (Figs. 2a, 2b):
Fig 2: The dog will wear a sweater-like harness (blue) with an attachment point at the top. This harness should also include a GPS tracker.
Fig 3: This attachment point will have an articulated set of powered joints coming out of it, which will support a false hand (green) that holds the leash (yellow). The hand can be remotely controlled to pull the leash in various directions. (The harness provides the support / counter-force to allow the hand to pull on the leash.)
Once the harness is properly attached, and the leash is affixed to the artificial hand, the dog is ready for a walk!
Fig 4: By extending the hand backward or forward, the dog will feel as if it is being pulled in that direction (although the harness/hand combination is not capable of pulling the entire dog in any direction at all).
We have two options for actually controlling the hand:
- The walk could be handled automatically by a computer (using the GPS data to control the hand
- Or a human operator could manually direct the leash-holding hand, as shown in figure 5.
Fig 5: A camera attachment will allow the dog operator to see where they are going. For the ultimate experience, a 360° camera could be attached to allow for immersive telepresence operation via VR goggles.
PROS: Now you can walk your dog while in the safety and comfort of your own house!
CONS: May cause the powerful dog-walking industry to collapse, so there will be lots of opposition from “Big Dog-Walking.”
Supplementary Figure A: Artist’s original rendition of the dog-walking system. Captions are hand-lettered in ink.
Supplementary Figure B: Material for a future patent filing.
Supplementary Figure C: Additional material for a future patent filing. Original idea, do not steal.