Saturday, February 27, 2010

The Dog Minder

I can smell a hit from a mile away and the next one is the Dog-E-Minder. Now I've been thinking about the next big thing in As Seen On TV for a while now and the surge of press for this product in the last couple of days is no surprise to me. And, it's not because of the usual As Seen On TV mumbo jumbo either.

Usually, when a new product hits the market you will see the over the top infomercials telling you why you can't live without it, but the Dog-E-Minder is a bit different. Sure the commercial has that campy feel and you get that infomercial sense right away but there is a little more going on here than meets the eye.

Most As Seen On TV ads go to great lengths to illustrate problems we all have but don't really know it. After it's pointed out and we can identify with it, we are amazed and often compelled to buy. Most items do serve their purpose while some seem to be duds, but the Dog-E-Minder is different. Why? Who really knows, but I think it's because it has to do with our love for our pets.

Can we live without the Doggie Minder? Of course we can but by definition this product makes us feel like bad pet owners, and then the guilt sets in. Let me back up a moment. Before I lay the guilt trip, let me tell you what this thing is. Think of a little PDA for your dog. First, it is a dog tag with an ID for your pet. But, it goes further and stores information about the last time your dog was fed, when it was walked and if and when the last medications were given. It sounds simple enough but do we need it?

Well, it's a great idea for the busy pet owner, especially when there is more than one care giver. It's hard when you come home from work to an empty house and wonder if you have to walk the dog or has he just been out. Did someone feed him or should I do it now? Medicines are tricky and, I myself, often forget if I administered it and when. I never really thought of how convenient it would be to know all this stuff and when I think of all the times I didn't walk my dog or fed him I start to feel guilty. What have I put my dog through all these years?

That's why I think the Dog-E-Minder tugs at us and is starting to show up on pet blogs and human interest columns. It's such a cute little gadget that many local news stations are featuring it those little "try it before you buy it" and "consumer review" spots during their news casts. I've seen several as they make their way around the net and the cool thing is that you can see the thing in action.

People seem to love its ease of use and function. It's cool looking and great for busy people or those trying to teach the kids a little responsibility. It's really a simple idea whose time has come in the modern age and the folks on the newscast reviews have very little negative feedback. I haven't seen one who said they didn't want it.

Most As Seen On TV products don't get so much attention unless they are kooky like the Snuggie, but the Dog-E-Minder is garnering attention without the carnival atmosphere. So, I'm going out on a not so short limb to say again, we have another hit on our hands.

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