JERUSALEM, July 11 (Xinhua) -- Israeli researchers have developed an innovative dog vest that can receive vibrate orders for search, rescue and service dogs, the southern Ben Gurion University (BGU) reported on Thursday.
The researchers were able to train dogs to respond to vibration commands when they wore the new vest.
The vest is based on haptic technology, simulating touch and motion senses - which is particularly useful in remote action or computer simulations, where the user is unable to interact with objects directly.
This technology may be useful for giving remote commands to search and rescue dogs, for dogs that help disabled people and for other service dogs.
"The findings show that dogs responded to vibration signals better than voice commands, and the promising results open the way for the use of contact technology for communication with dogs," the researchers said.
The vest includes four small vibration motors located on the dog's back and sides. The motors allow dogs to respond to different vibrations sent by remote control.
The trainer can send different commands, such as "turn around," "down," "come" and "back," by controlling the area of vibration and its duration.
The researchers noted that the combination of the vest with existing training devices can be successful and strengthen the reward system used for training.
"This will allow to promote the potential of autonomous dog training to assess overall behavior, responsiveness to commands and the effectiveness of dogs rewarded for desirable behavior," they added.
Future studies are expected to test the vest technology in different breeds, ages and training experiences, and incorporate more advanced devices in search and rescue dogs, military work dogs and service dogs.