Young Minnesotan inventor gains recognition

Sabrina Storms

Last year, a Minnesota high schooler named Brooke Martin came up with an ingenious invention that garnered interest as soon as she pitched her idea at a Startup Weekend in Spokane last year. This contraption was what she called the iCPooch. Through it, pet owners could talk to dogs when they were away, so animals with separation anxiety would not feel abandoned.

Martin goes to North Central High School in Spokane. She was also a finalist in the 3M Young Scientist Award. The iCPooch was her idea that she had come up with on her own, due to having a personal experience with pet anxiety.

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“My dog Kayla suffered from separation anxiety, so I thought it would be really cool to be able to video chat with her while I was away from home to make sure she was OK,” Martin explained in an email to GeekWire. “The idea of delivering her a treat seemed liked it would really make her happy if I could figure out how to do it.”

As it turns out, not only do the pets love this idea, but so do companies. She has already developed her own company, and is currently doing a kickstarter campaign to raise the money to perfect,  develop and put her product on the market.

“The product is on the cutting edge of what the Internet can deliver, similar to home security and Web sprinkler systems, but has a much more emotional component,” James Pelland, the company’s CEO, said in an email to the Spokesman-Review.

The iCPooch is a device that sits on the floor, and is made of material resistant to any dog’s curiosity. It is a dispenser that the owner can attach any tablet or phone to, and with a click of a button, can give their dog a treat to make them feel loved.

“The dog doesn’t have to answer the call,” explains Brooke in an interview with Kids News Magazine. “It comes up immediately on the screen on their end. It’s a two-way audio and video—you can see and hear each other.”

Thanks to Martin’s innovation, now dogs can feel loved wherever their owners may be. The product is still in the prototype phase, however, with the company’s determination to get it out on the market, it could be out for sale very soon.