Pet RFID microchip reader?

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Nicholas Humfrey

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Aug 28, 2011, 3:34:03 PM8/28/11
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Hello,

Our cat has a Tracer RFID microchip. I see there are new a number of cat flaps on the market that read your pet's chip, so stop other cats from getting in, for example:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B003XLJ5DQ

Has anyone tried making their own RFID reader?
Thought it might be fun to have some stats about when our cat goes in and out of the house!
(might be easier/cheaper ways of doing it!)


nick.

Derek Foster

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Aug 29, 2011, 4:46:01 AM8/29/11
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As part of some animal welfare work my research group does with Biological sciences I have looked into using social media to improve the relationship between us and our companion animals. I used an RFID tag (Phidgets) on my cat when it eats(receiver at feeding area) as we were worried about him while away from home (specifically his eating behaviours), some more info here: http://www.derekfoster.net/?p=460 . Basically he tweets when he eats :) follow him on Twitter @marjwark . Currently looking at more ways in which to use RFID tags for increased animal welfare.

 

Cheers

Derek

mikethebee

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Sep 1, 2011, 4:40:59 AM9/1/11
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I found a cat bracelet with an electronic tag, the puss had obviously
managed to pull it over its head. I never found its owner but I did
wonder about the protocol. A bit of research lead me find it was for
cat flap access. The advantage over a magnetic type was the ability to
have different codes for different moggies, so George can come and go
and Georgina can come in but not out etc. I haven't had a RF analyser
to decode the protocol yet, but it is something I hope to do, maybe at
the London HackSpace who have the gear apparently.

On the kitty forums there was discussion about using the 'chip' ( that
many animals are fitted with for identification reasons ) instead of
needing to purchase a separate tag and preventing the 'loss' problem.
Nobody had found a commercial catflap that uses this approach. Maybe
the profit in selling proprietary versions, or the concerns about
support is the reason.

If I get the protocol decoded for the std tags then I do think there
is an opportunity to use the Nanode (or other Arduino boards) for home
automation based on a pets needs. At the recent Nanode Dev Weekend,
the Pachube presentation (see http://lanyrd.com/2011/nanode-applications-weekend/video/)
mentioned their interest using their services for bringing ppl and non-
humans closer together using data. OpenEnergyMonitor.org have done
some work using the Nanode to monitor aspects of bee hive living.

You are welcome to contact me if you would like more information on my
research, such as it is.

rgds, Mike


On Aug 29, 9:46 am, Derek Foster <derekfoster1...@googlemail.com>
wrote:
> As part of some animal welfare work my research group does with Biological
> sciences I have looked into using social media to improve the relationship
> between us and our companion animals. I used an RFID tag (Phidgets) on my
> cat when it eats(receiver at feeding area) as we were worried about him
> while away from home (specifically his eating behaviours), some more info
> here:http://www.derekfoster.net/?p=460. Basically he tweets when he eats
> :) follow him on Twitter @marjwark <https://twitter.com/#!/Marjwark> . Currently

Nicholas Humfrey

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Sep 6, 2011, 6:51:28 PM9/6/11
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> On Aug 29, 9:46 am, Derek Foster <derekfoster1...@googlemail.com>
> wrote:
>> As part of some animal welfare work my research group does with Biological
>> sciences I have looked into using social media to improve the relationship
>> between us and our companion animals. I used an RFID tag (Phidgets) on my
>> cat when it eats(receiver at feeding area) as we were worried about him
>> while away from home (specifically his eating behaviours), some more info
>> here:http://www.derekfoster.net/?p=460. Basically he tweets when he eats
>> :) follow him on Twitter @marjwark <https://twitter.com/#!/Marjwark> . Currently
>> looking at more ways in which to use RFID tags for increased animal welfare.
>>
>> Cheers
>>
>> Derek

Thanks for your email Derek - really fun project :)

Our of interest, how close does your cat have to get to the reader?


On 1 Sep 2011, at 09:40, mikethebee wrote:

> I found a cat bracelet with an electronic tag, the puss had obviously
> managed to pull it over its head. I never found its owner but I did
> wonder about the protocol. A bit of research lead me find it was for
> cat flap access. The advantage over a magnetic type was the ability to
> have different codes for different moggies, so George can come and go
> and Georgina can come in but not out etc. I haven't had a RF analyser
> to decode the protocol yet, but it is something I hope to do, maybe at
> the London HackSpace who have the gear apparently.

I haven't seen that type for sale - the two cheaper types that I have seen are magnet base (which stops stray cats coming into the house):
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0007RD9PE

And infrared based:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0007RD9PO

Sureflap and Smartflap both read the cat's sub dermal microchip:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B003EGIM3O
http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B003XLJ5DQ


> On the kitty forums there was discussion about using the 'chip' ( that
> many animals are fitted with for identification reasons ) instead of
> needing to purchase a separate tag and preventing the 'loss' problem.
> Nobody had found a commercial catflap that uses this approach. Maybe
> the profit in selling proprietary versions, or the concerns about
> support is the reason.

There seem to be quite a few on the market now.


> If I get the protocol decoded for the std tags then I do think there
> is an opportunity to use the Nanode (or other Arduino boards) for home
> automation based on a pets needs. At the recent Nanode Dev Weekend,
> the Pachube presentation (see http://lanyrd.com/2011/nanode-applications-weekend/video/)
> mentioned their interest using their services for bringing ppl and non-
> humans closer together using data. OpenEnergyMonitor.org have done
> some work using the Nanode to monitor aspects of bee hive living.

Our cat, Boris, has a Bayer / Datamars / Petlog based identification microchip.


Found this quote on a website:

> All EU countries as well as many other countries require that your pet have a microchip that meets ISO
> Standards 11784/11785. The Datamars (Crystal Tag) chip, made by Datamars of Switzerland, is a fifteen > digit 134.2 kHz microchip that meets this ISO standard. Due to new regulations promulgated in 2006, the > ISO microchip became the standard for all of Europe.


nick.

Derek Foster

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Sep 8, 2011, 10:42:57 AM9/8/11
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Hi Mike, thanks for the info! Yes I am interested in your research and have been lightly 'tasked' to look into how we can potentially measure companion animals (dog/cat) proximity to their owner/humans in the home. Basically this means how can we track throughout the day in the home the distance between the animal and their owner. This is valuable research and also at the very cutting edge with hardware, hence the reason I turn to guys like yourself who live at the edge with electronics ;)

Some feedback on how we might be able to go about this would be great, constraints, battery power, sensor reliability etc.

I'm most likely going to attend the Homecamp event at the end of Oct for at least one of the days, will anyone who is interested in this work be going along?

Cheers!

Derek
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