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CleverPet is a console that plays games with your dog

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Dogs aren't meant to stay cooped up inside while their owners are away from home, so a company called CleverPet is looking to produce a gaming device for our furry friends with the help of Kickstarter.

The CleverPet is a dog game console, according to the eponymous company that wants to bring it to market. The autonomous system is designed to engage and educate dogs throughout the day by challenging the animal with a variety of puzzles, and rewarding it with treats upon success. Three touch-sensitive, light-up pads sit at the front of the console, and a dog can use its paws or nose to interact with them.

CleverPet is imbued with algorithms so it can adjust the difficulty of those puzzles on the fly, and owners can track their dog's progress and add new challenges through a website or mobile app. One of the games is a take on Dance Dance Revolution that challenges the dog to touch pads as they light up in a particular order. According to CleverPet, the device can hold as much dog food as a standard dog bowl. And the system runs on the Arduino-compatible Spark Core, so users can build custom software for it.

The 34-day Kickstarter campaign began two and a half weeks ago, and the funding drive reached its $100,000 goal earlier this week. The CleverPet will cost $279 at retail, but the Kickstarter-only early bird price of $199 is still available. CleverPet expects to start shipping the first production units in February 2015.

The next level of puzzles.

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