Toyota has patented an autonomous vehicle to help dog owners walk their pets.
The vehicle would be able to take dogs out for a walk along a pre-programmed route. Owners would be able to ride along if they want and control the vehicle from the platform or the animal can have a ride if it has had enough exercise.
The machine would also feature a ‘discipline mode’ with sensors on the lead that would monitor how quickly the lead lengthens and know the amount of load the dog is putting on it. If the animal is pulling too hard or starts running towards something, the vehicle would come to a stop and not move again until the dog is no longer pulling.
Toyota’s machine also has the ability to clean up once the dog has done its business. Using cameras, it can learn the dog’s movements when it is about to do its business and prepare the appropriate response – either a small jet of water or deploying a collection device.