SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — A device created by a senior at Our Lady of Peace Academy hopes to solve the feeling of loneliness dogs feel when their owners leave.
“It starts with dropping the treat, the dog steps on it to pick up the treat and it’s late enough for him to pet it,” Cassidy Matwiyoff said.
The idea for his invention, called Bow Wow, began after a night watching ABC’s popular hit series “Shark Tank.”
“I thought, ‘What problem can I solve in this world?’ and I looked at my dog who is always sad when we are home alone,” Cassidy added.
With the help of her mother, an entrepreneur herself, Cassidy began designing a prototype for Bow Wow and drafting a four-year business plan. She even visited a local patent attorney who advised her to do her research.
“See if there’s anything out there because you don’t want to step on it at all if anyone else has this idea or if it’s in the works,” Cassidy was informed.
She was clear and the Bow Wow was ready to go. That’s when she heard about Chico State’s Capstone Design and Engineering program, where the public can pitch ideas to the group and, if chosen, have their inventions made by engineers. Her project was selected and when it was finished, she and the group presented it to a room full of budding engineers and professors.
“One of the teachers said ‘my dog would rip it to shreds and I didn’t want to take it at face value and I was like I was going to test you on that one,” Cassidy explained.
She spent every Saturday for the next four months at the Helen Woodward Animal Center where she petted dogs of all shapes, sizes and ages with gloves, sticks, simulating a human hand.
Puppies weren’t as receptive, but dogs over a year old, she says, were all about it. It’s now a waiting game for investors and maybe Shank Tank could be in the near future.
“Once you’ve fueled that passion and passed it on to others, they’re more interested in your product and want to invest and dedicate their time to it,” Cassidy concluded.