If we could play with little kittens and friendly furry cats all day, we would, am I right?

Unfortunately, most of us have to adhere to things such as “˜work‘ which requires us to be present and then prevents us from spending our entire day surrounded by fluffy, purring catties.

You could possibly bring your cat to work, but the mass hysteria would not sit well with your cat‘s royal status and someone in the office will no doubt be allergic.

Luckily for us, we‘re living in an age where virtual reality is a thing and robots can magically help us do things – even if we‘re not physically there.

That is exactly what the iPet Companion is; a sort-of virtual reality where you can play with real, live cats from your work desk. 

The iPet Companion actually made its debut three years ago in 2011 when it was installed in various animal shelters across the US. It has since been used by thousands of people across the globe, wanting to play with a rescue kitten in a shelter.

How it works is pretty simple, and it truly makes you feel like you are playing with these fabulous furballs – and in real time, too.

The participating shelters have designated rooms called “˜interactive kitten playrooms.‘ These rooms are equipped with kitten toys which are attached to a robotic arm and features various cameras across the room.

You – as the “œplayer“ – then connects to the iPet Companion playroom where you will be able to control the toys and the cameras.

iPet companion

The toys are connected to motors, which turn and rotate to grab the kitty‘s attention. You are the master of these connected toys, and you can also control the direction of the cameras to watch them.

The idea behind the iPet Companion is to encourage adoption. In America, just as in South Africa, animal shelters are bursting at the seams with young kittens as well as older, rescue cats.

While iPet Companion has only been used in shelters for the past three years, a new Kickstarter campaign aims at bringing the system to your home.

The iPet Companion HomePlay system is basically a smaller version of the original.

This system consists of a control box, a smart wall adapter, a toy motor – to which you can attach all kinds of cat toys – and a camera.

The iPet Companion HomePlay System
The iPet Companion HomePlay System

The HomePlay systems works exactly like the original version, where you log on to the system and control the toy and the camera. You can also share the connection with your family and friends, so that they too can play with your pet.

Out of its $150 000 goal, the iPet Companion HonePlay system has reached over $20 000 with just over a month to go.

If you are the kind of person (like me) that suffers from withdrawal symptoms during the day because you are missing your beloved furbaby, this could be the perfect way for you to get your feline fix – and  also keep an eye on them – during the day.

iPet Companion

You can play with American shelters cats today by clicking through to http://www.ipetcompanion.com/liveplay

If you are thinking of adopting a cat or dog, you can check out the various animal shelters across South Africa including http://darg.org.za and http://tears.org.za

Now, excuse me while I go play with some shelter kittens…

Source: CNet, iPet Companion