My first project - The Doug Buster


Just completed my first 'propper' Arduino based project - the Doug Buster.

Doug is my dog. He likes nothing more than running down the side of our house and barking his head off if our neighbours so much as sneeze. I suspect this annoys them, but it bugs me too.

So - introduced to Arduino through the Camera Axe project, and having done a few blinky based tutorials I set to work.

I picked up a 12v solenoid valve from ebay. I already had a selection of bits for automatic sprinkler based watering systems.

I used the solenoid example from the playground, the example script from the Arduino menu that turns an LED on when a pot reaches a predefined threshold. Replaced the pot with an electret breakout I already had and the LED with the solenoid circuit and created the Doug Buster.

Now if Doug runs down the side and barks, he gets showered by three mini sprinklers. He doesn't like getting wet!

I am quite chuffed, bearing in mind I know nothing about programming and very little about electronics (I certainly couldn't remember the physics lessons from school many moons ago)

I have some enhancements planned.

Adding in a pot to set the threshold - or possibly having it scan ambient noise and going off when it changes by a certain amount.

Oh, and the 9v powering the Arduino (I have a 12 battery for the solenoid) doesn't last very long. I can power from the mains but the whole thing is outdoors so battery is preferred. I need to look at ways to improve that.

I think I am going to have fun around here!!!


Cool idea :) Very original.

I should do something like this for the street cats fighting at night.

Now where did I place my water cannon? ::)

as for 9v battery,

Use solar power to make this work ;D

Would be really awesome if it were possible to power this through piezo elements =P
Would eliminate the need for an arduino too, but meh :stuck_out_tongue:
Try imagining it… doug would be powering the system with his own barks ;D

9V batteries pack the least power for the most dollars. AA batteries (4 of them) last a lot longer than 1 9V battery.

Sounds great to me, it will be better to see :)


Thanks for all the feedback.

I have already swapped over to 4xAA. And solar sounds ideal (except for being in the UK!!!). I'm looking into it.

Now Imahilus you have me thinking. If I could harness the methane from his mess, burn it, convert it... That would be something.

I have uploaded some pics to Flickr - you can see them here.

Now where's that moisture sensor, I need to stop the cat throwing up on the bed!!!


This is my new favorite project! My neighbors have yappy little dogs that bark (and bark and bark and bark and bark) at every little thing and every hour of the day or night. Since they are not native English speakers, I don't have the spine to confront them about it and I don't want to call the animal people either. So I just sit, annoyed.

But this would be very effective (and sooo satisfying) to resolve the root cause of the problem!

BTW: on the batteries, if they are plugged into the DC jack or Vin pin, you need 6 or 8 AA batteries or the Arduino may be unstable. If you are connecting the 4AA pack directly to the 5v pin, you have to use rechargeables or it's too much voltage.

Thanks for the battery tip, although so far it seems stable enough with 4xAAA in the DC jack.

you have to put up a video of this thing in action after you get it working :slight_smile:

i wish i can do something similair... it would be hard to do something like this india... without getting someone wet ;)