Pets

Pura smart water fountain monitors your cat's drinking habits

Pura smart water fountain moni...
Taiwanese startup Noacare thinks its Pura water fountain will both get cats drinking and give you the inside track on their water consumption habits
Taiwanese startup Noacare thinks its Pura water fountain will both get cats drinking and give you the inside track on their water consumption habits
View 18 Images
Many cats assisted in the making of Pura
1/18
Many cats assisted in the making of Pura
Pura prototypes
2/18
Pura prototypes
The Pura cat water fountain, layer by layer
3/18
The Pura cat water fountain, layer by layer
The Pura cat water fountain
4/18
The Pura cat water fountain
Pura is small and sleek enough to fit in just about anywhere around the house
5/18
Pura is small and sleek enough to fit in just about anywhere around the house
Noacare advocates getting multiple Pura fountains to encourage lots of water drinking, but that could just be a ploy to sell more units
6/18
Noacare advocates getting multiple Pura fountains to encourage lots of water drinking, but that could just be a ploy to sell more units
Noacare's Pura smart water fountain for cats
7/18
Noacare's Pura smart water fountain for cats
Noacare's Pura smart water fountain for cats
8/18
Noacare's Pura smart water fountain for cats
Come for a drink, stay for the view...maybe
9/18
Come for a drink, stay for the view...maybe
Fura can sense multiple cats and log their drinking data individually
10/18
Fura can sense multiple cats and log their drinking data individually
The collar ID tag that allows Fura to track your kitty's drinking habits
11/18
The collar ID tag that allows Fura to track your kitty's drinking habits
The Pura app gives access to general information about your cat's drinking habits ...
12/18
The Pura app gives access to general information about your cat's drinking habits ...
... as well as more specific information in the form of detailed charts showing how behavior has changed over time
13/18
... as well as more specific information in the form of detailed charts showing how behavior has changed over time
The Pura app also helps you keep track of when the fountain(s) need refilling or a new filter
14/18
The Pura app also helps you keep track of when the fountain(s) need refilling or a new filter
It wouldn't be a cat drinking fountain without some cats
15/18
It wouldn't be a cat drinking fountain without some cats
A cat drinks from the Pura fountain, leaving enough room for their imaginary buddy to have some too
16/18
A cat drinks from the Pura fountain, leaving enough room for their imaginary buddy to have some too
Most cats will appreciate the attention to detail
17/18
Most cats will appreciate the attention to detail
Taiwanese startup Noacare thinks its Pura water fountain will both get cats drinking and give you the inside track on their water consumption habits
18/18
Taiwanese startup Noacare thinks its Pura water fountain will both get cats drinking and give you the inside track on their water consumption habits
View gallery - 18 images

Cats are finicky at the best of times, but when it comes to drinking enough water they really don't seem to know what's best for them. Chances are you don't either. But a Taiwanese startup called Noacare believes it can sort both parties out with a smart water fountain. This new fountain, Pura, syncs with a tag on your cat's collar and an app on your smartphone to keep you up to speed on your feline friend's water intake so that you can prevent health problems before they occur.

Domestic cats evolved from various desert-dwelling species, which leaves them with a low thirst drive. But a typical house cat's diet is very different to that of her ancestors, who mostly ate live (and water-rich) prey, and she likely gets far less water from eating her biscuits and canned food than she thinks. Cats are thus vulnerable to dehydration, which can lead to urinary tract disease, kidney disease, bladder inflammation, and related problems that are less serious.

For some cats, the fix is easy: just fill a bowl with fresh water every day and they'll drink what they need. For others, it's a bit trickier. Many cats prefer to hunt for fresh running water, which basically means drinking directly from a tap or fountain (or, if they're anything like my cat, they start lapping up water from the glass that their owner was just drinking from).

Come for a drink, stay for the view...maybe
Come for a drink, stay for the view...maybe

Noacare is pitching Pura as a better, smarter cat fountain. It's an ergonomically-crafted fountain with a sloped design that Noacare claims reduces neck stress and keeps whiskers dry while also providing a constant supply of running water. It's made from non-toxic plastic and contains an activated carbon filter to keep the water clean. You still need to periodically refill the 1.2 L (40.5 fl oz) tank with fresh water, but Pura makes it easy. All you have to do, Noacare assures us, is lift the water container out of the system, put water in it, and place it back – no wires, no clips, just a glowing sensor light to remind you the water needs changing.

The bigger selling point is perhaps the built-in data logging. Pura logs your cat's – or for that matter cats' – daily water intake on an embedded flash drive. It identifies individual cats by syncing with a small ID card attached to each cat's collar when they get within 8 cm (3.1 in) of the fountain, and monitors both the amount of water they consume and the time(s) at which they drink.

The Pura app gives access to general information about your cat's drinking habits ...
The Pura app gives access to general information about your cat's drinking habits ...

This data can then be accessed over Bluetooth using an iOS or Android app. This app provides charts, reminders, tips, a calculator for estimating healthy water consumption levels, and other information related to your cats' drinking habits – all of which you can take to your vet for guidance if something seems amiss.

The Pura team's own trials found that cats drink around 30 percent more water from the Pura fountain than "standard" cat water fountains, but as with all things feline-related your mileage may vary considerably.

Pura is currently on Indiegogo, with a funding target of US$100,000 and an eye toward gaining consumer feedback ahead of potential (minor) design tweaks. Early bird pledges start at US$129 for one fountain and two collar tags, with higher tiers for larger bundle and volume sets. If the goal is met and everything else goes according to plan, Pura should ship in April 2016.

You can watch the Indiegogo pitch video below.

Sources: Noacare, Indiegogo

Pura: A Smart Fountain for Cats

View gallery - 18 images
3 comments
joebloeIDAHO
WOW is there a lot of mommyblogger/junk science in this press release - I mean piece of journalism.
"but when it comes to drinking enough water they really don't seem to know what's best for them. Chances are you don't either."
-There is no scientific research that backs up either proposition here. Both are assumptions made, and repeated by people who think it sounds reasonable. To date, all properly scientific research shows no evidence that our thirst mechanism, nor that of our domesticated pets, is flawed or has - in some way - failed to keep pace with human evolution or animal domestication.
In particular, the statements about animals are all predicated on the notion that cats & dogs developed certain drinking habits based upon their evolutionary appearance "a million years ago.". You literally see that phrase in nearly every article about dog and cat nutrition that is pushing a "raw" or "natural" feeding method.
These would-be scientists should read up a little on evolution 101. Namely, that evolution is ongoing. Not to mention that cats and dogs are genetically malleable.
The same goes for humans not knowing how to drink. There are lots of admonitions about getting "eight glasses a day" etc. but no proper scientific proof to back it up. Our thirst mechanism is scientifically proven to regulate our intake quite well.
How about a little research and scientifically rigorous data collection to back up the claims here?
Bill Bennett
My dog is smart, he drinks water, goes pee for marking, when the water bowl of course filled with filtered water gets low I fill it up, he drinks more, then we go mark, well he marks whilst he walks me.
Wayne1984
It's not perfect, but I would like to try.
"Todays domestic cats retain a number of characteristics from their desert-dwelling ancestors, including the ability to survive with a very low water intake through the production of very concentrated urine (more so than dogs) and the production of relatively dry faeces thus minimising water loss." - http://icatcare.org/advice/cat-care/origins-cats