YaDoggie's Smart Scoop predicts when to send more dog food your way

Worried your dog is eating too much or too little? Didn’t realize your son fed the dog already? Ran out of food for your hungry pooch? These are all questions a new California-based startup called YaDoggie wants to help answer with its subscription service, and a smart scoop.

“There’s a huge opportunity to simplify dog food,” Sol Lipman, CEO of YaDoggie, told Digital Trends. “When you sign up for YaDoggie, you tell us all about your dog: Your dog’s breed, weight … to determine if your dog’s overweight, and what are your goals for your dog. We actually get to know you as a customer. No one does that.”

The core service YaDoggie offers is selling you high quality dog food. Currently there’s only three types of kibble you can order through a companion app: Buffalo and duck meal, Lamb and sweet potato, and turkey and pea limited ingredient (for sensitive or selective dogs). The company said the choices are all 100 percent grain free; manufactured in the United States, with ingredients from the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, and Europe; with “guaranteed amounts of Omega-3 and 6.”

The service works best with the YaDoggie Smart Scoop. It’s a large, red, dog food scoop with volume measurements, but it also packs an accelerometer and Bluetooth. When you make a scoop motion, it detects you just dropped food into a dog bowl, and everyone with the YaDoggie app in the household will get a notification saying the dog has been fed. The company said it tested the motion many times to make sure it was accurate — waving the scoop around won’t trick it.

If the Smart Scoop isn’t near its paired device, it will store the last known data within a certain time period. So if the light indicator on the scoop is green, it means no one has used the scoop recently and the dog needs to be fed. A red light means the dog has already been fed.

This data from the scoop is also used to figure out when the company needs to send you more dog food. This improves as time passes and the more you use the Smart Scoop. If you need more dog food earlier, it’s a simple few taps in the YaDoggie app.

The Smart Scoop costs $49, but it won’t be available until November. If you subscribe to YaDoggie’s service now until the scoop starts to ship, you’ll get it for free as an early adopter bonus. Speaking of the service, put down $1 and you’ll get a starter kit mailed to you. This includes a trial bag of YaDoggie duck, lamb, or turkey kibble, a bag of YaDoggie treats, biodegradable poop bags, and a tennis ball. There’s also a handy instruction chart on how to slowly ween your dog off his current diet.

The perks of joining the YaDoggie club are: A custom feeding plan for your dog, predictive delivery, high-quality dog food, free shipping, the ability to track and pause deliveries, the option to set reminders for dinnertime in the app, and free poop bags. Lipman said the average dog in the U.S. is 40 pounds, and the service will cost approximately $50 a month for a dog of that size.

YaDoggie’s subscription service has been in beta in the Santa Cruz area since early this year, but you can now sign up on the company’s website to get the starter kit for $1. The idea isn’t new as many companies have attempted to help track your dog food habits with tech gadgets; few actually offer their own food, but PetMio is a similar service that’s still a Kickstarter.

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