As a nation of animal lovers, the majority of households include at least one pet. Our furry friends are often left alone while we’re at work or out for the day, but their activities can cause trouble for some traditional home-protection devices. Older devices did not distinguish between human and animal movement, and could frequently send off false alarms. In recent years, the home-alarm industry has addressed these issues. Though no system is foolproof, new technology makes it easier for homes and pets to stay safe when owners are away.
Passive Infrared (PIR) Sensors
Most major alarm companies, including ADT and Brinks, as well as several do-it- yourself models, have adopted a form of Passive Infrared Sensors (PIR sensors). Like typical motion-detectors, a PIR sensor detects movement within its field of view. These sensors work with temperature and infrared sources and will trigger an alarm when movement is detected. To make PIR sensors work in a pet-friendly home, they can be focused at a level taller than the family pet. The higher angle will still detect human movement, while animals are free to roam the house. This system can be installed while a home is being built or later on, and is usually easily adjusted to accommodate larger animals.
Glass Break Sensors
Early glass break sensors involved strips affixed to each window pane. This old technology was not just unsightly, but easily detected and circumvented. Today, the technology has evolved and now one small sensor covers a variety of areas, and picks up not just sound, but the vibration of the impact required to break the window. Glass break sensors are nearly invisible and are effective on the whole perimeter, while allowing free movement inside the house. This relatively inexpensive option, about £32 per unit, can cover an area of up to 35 feet, so most houses do require more than one unit. Most major security companies can install GBS systems, or several do-it-yourself units are available, but it is recommended that homeowners consult a professional to get the most use out of the system.
Wireless entry and remote monitoring
A significant advancement in home security, wireless entry and remote-monitoring are great options for pet-friendly homes. For families with young puppies, a one-touch remote provides a quick disarming method, which can be useful for housebreaking. Additionally, one-touch key fobs are easily transferable for dog walkers or other caretakers during a vacation. For tech-savvy owners, several companies provide remote video access to a home from a laptop or work computer. This works to ensure pets and the home are safe while owners are away.