GPS under the skin

I have an investor who will pay huge for a device like this for dogs. Obviously a GPS will not fit under the skin because of the battery size and need to be charged. Neither will a GSM modem. I have a solution using Wifi and RFID that will achieve the same results, with the collar being the size of a BIC lighter. Here is the goal: Whenever the dog is stolen, it's location is transmitted, when the collar is removed. This must happen at least once, when the collar is removed. Extra credit for tracking a dog when he runs away. Ideally where he is taken to without wearing his collar. This removal can be detected with RFID or a simple wire that is cut when the collar is cut. Both together. The collar should be small enough so the technologically aware thief will not suspect it has GPS or a modem. Thinking out loud. Thoughts? Ideas?

A smaller version of this to charge AAA size battery? http://www.gizmag.com/npower-peg-uses-motion-to-charge-mobile-devices/10716/

2 questions came up: what is the size of the dog? what technology/sensors is used for tracking cars or iphones?

Let’s assume it is a large or medium size dog. I am familiar with the newest tracking technology. The smallest is a logger without any means to communicate. Even this is 10x too large to implant under the skin. It must cost much less than $1000.

Whenever the dog is stolen, it's location is transmitted, when the collar is removed. This must happen at least once, when the collar is removed.

So, someone cuts the collar off, and then steals the dog. You find the collar but no dog. Score! Oh, wait, maybe not.

That is the minimum requirement. If the thief throws away the collar. If he keeps it in his car, then it will continue to send it's location. This might work, possibly, because it is not large enough to contain a GSM modem. The thief may decide to keep it. Can you think of a better idea? That's what I'm asking here. I have explained my goal?

Can you think of a better idea?

Some training for the dog?

Actually, no, I don't have any better ideas. Most tracking devices are either hidden (hard to hide one inside the dog) or non-removable (I don't think that the dog will hold still while the weld the tracker on).

Getting the dog to participate in not being stolen seems like the best solution.

I appreciate your effort, but I don't think that is effective. We want our dogs to be friendly to strangers. The third option is some sort of trickery towards the thief, which is what I'm going for. Actually you did just give me an idea. Making it very difficult to get off with a small padlock. Thank you!

sbright33: very difficult to get off with a small padlock.

I don't think those two ideas go together. Put it another way: if I was prepared to steal a dog, then needing to use bolt cutters to dispose of a small padlock or a large padlock or a massive padlock and hefty chain would not be an obstacle that would stop me.

I think I get your drift. An RFID card INSIDE the dog and the collar with an RFID reader. When they get too far apart, the collar has been removed and the signal is transmitted. Is that what you mean?

Thoughts? Ideas?

Sure, I have a thought. Steal the dog, but leave the collar alone. Nothing is transmitted. Eventually the battery will go dead and the collar can be safely removed.

Packocrayons, Yes, but then there is no way to remotely track the dog, only the collar. So you may only get one ping at your house. My idea is to fool the thief into thinking the collar has no transmitter, so he will bring it with him.

Javaman, I was thinking the collar will normally send a location every x minutes, whenever it is away from the house. This will help if the dog escapes and runs away on it’s own too.

I'm struggling to imagine how this would provide any value. There is already a scheme for chipping animals with unique tags that can be scanned for to identify the owner. If the animal is lost and found, this is enough to get them home.

If you want to know where the animal is, you can fit a tracking collar. It would need to be recharged regularly. It would be pretty obvious it was a tracking collar. If the animal was stolen (does that actually happen?) at best this would tell you where it went up as far as the collar being removed. You have no practical way of preventing the collar from being removed and I would have thought it was a pretty obvious thing to do when stealing an animal, as it's the most immediately recognisable thing that could be used to identify it. As soon as the collar is removed, you have no way of knowing where the animal is. Being able to trace the collar after that is of no value.

The only scheme I can see that makes sense to me is to insert an ID chip, and fit a tracking collar that detects the presence of the chip and reports its position regularly, including whether the collar is currently on the animal. I suppose this would enable you to guess whether the animal was stolen, or merely lost. Obviously if the collar is on the animal it's worth going there to retrieve it; if it isn't ... you probably want to go there anyway to retrieve the collar and look for clues. Knowing whether the animal is wearing the collar doesn't seem to have given you much benefit, it seems to me.

All good points. The value I can see is that it will save battery power, by not sending any data, when the collar is still attached to the dog. This can also be done with a wire instead. There is little cost to adding this feature, if you want to chip your dog anyway.

How did they fit the mobile phone transceiver and GPS and battery all in 3 cubic inches?

http://www.pettracker.com/sites/default/files/Tagg_UG_20_October_2012_AT_FINAL.pdf

It's hard to beat that. Now if only you could detect when it is removed?

http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1362&doc_id=251424&dfpPParams=htid_66,bid_30,aid_251424&dfpLayout=blog&dfpPParams=htid_66,bid_30,aid_251424&dfpLayout=blog

That is completely different. There is no GPS or mobile transceiver in there. The battery can be much smaller as the current demands are lower.

The value I can see is that it will save battery power, by not sending any data, when the collar is still attached to the dog.

Dogs can go on the ran-dan if there is a bitch in heat. Being able to track them down while they are wearing the collar can be useful.

What is the problem here, are the dogs being stolen for use in experiments or because they are expensive breeds or to hold rich owners to ransom?

I don't think you can get it under the skin because of battery and poisoning concerns. If you somehow use the electricity of muscle and skin? I would go with a collar.

are the dogs being stolen for use in experiments

Stealing a dog for experiments is not going to work. For any experiment to be of any use at all you have to know the genetic history of the dog. You don't get that from stealing a dog.

What is getting more common in the UK is stealing a dog for ransom, some how the police do not seem to think it is a crime from what I gathered from one radio phone in program.

In this case the thief is not likely to remove the collar as he hopes to return everything. So you have the problem of transmitting the location. You could do this automatically when you detect that the dog is over some distance away from home, say half a mile. You will get false reports when you take it on a trip but that just assures the owner that it is working.

Even if they do believe it could be a crime, they wait a LONG time before they help at all…