MN company's new twist on call-your-pet tech: Your pet can call you back


A Minnesota company whose signature product lets you video chat with your dog or cat is nudging consumers a little further down the pet-tech road.

Twin Cities-based Anser Innovation is pulling together money to market PawCall. It's an accessory for their new version of PetChatz, a wall-mounted video system that lets pet owners see and speak to their pet from afar – and even dispense treats.

Version two of PetChatz sells for $380, the company says, and is compatible with PawCall – which costs another $100.

Anser Innovation promoted PawCall at the big consumer electronics show in Las Vegas in January. But now it's putting together a marketing budget thanks to angel investors, the Business Journal reports.

The newest funding totals $950,000. says the target is $2.5 million in investment capital.

How much do Americans spend on their pets?

The American Pet Products Association tracks spending as part of its bi-annual National Pet Owners Survey.

They say 20 years ago Americans spent $21 billion on their pets. Last year the figure was over $60 billion and it's projected to be $62.75 billion this year.

Food and veterinary care account for the biggest part of that. But the fastest-growing sector is "pet services," which includes grooming, boarding, walking, training, pet sitting, exercise and yard services.

The Association's CEO, Bob Vetere, said this spring “The pet humanization trend is alive and well and continues to drive growth at the premium end of the market."

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