Footloose – Self-Cleaning Litter Box Also Tracks Cats’ Health

Petato has developed a cleaning box and app to monitor cats' health.

One of Byron Fan’s passions has always been the development of disruptive technology to make life easier for pets and their owners. When he learned that some friends were giving away their pets because maintenance and care was too much work, he decided to develop an automatic cat toilet that could improve the life of cats and the workload of pet owners. Along with his team of engineers and developers at Petato Byron has developed Footloose, a self-cleaning litter box that tracks the health of cats. The project launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign today and has already hit its funding goal.

After a cat dirties the litter box, Footloose begins an eight minute countdown and then runs a cleaning cycle to move the waste into the lower receptacle. The system uses three weight sensors, four position gauges, a millimeter-wave transceiver, two infrared sensors and two computing cores to track health of pets, and distinguish between different pets. The Petato app lets users track their cats’ weight and overall health, amount of waste, frequency of use and duration of the time spent in the toilet. Users can also control cleaning cycles, tell the unit to sleep overnight, and change wait time before cleaning cycle or length of cleaning cycle.

The Footloose unit is 25.6 x 12.2 x 23.4 inches in size and weighs 26.5 pounds. The waste container has an eight liter capacity, what the group calls approximately seven days’ worth of use for one cat. Weight data for the cat is said to be plus minus 0.1 kilograms and weight of waste plus minus 1 gram. The system works through 2.4 gigahertz WiFi control. The automatic cat litter market is much more crowded than I could have guessed, and Footloose takes time to list out concerns for current products and address how their unit can overcome these issues. There are also several demonstration videos on the page showing how the app interacts with the device for cleaning, emptying and power cycling. The campaign is already successful and ends on November 16, 2018.