The odds are pretty good that the precious real estate of your phone’s home screen is full of apps. Applications for fun and for streamlining your life; everything from food delivery, to social media, to a digital steel drum (just us?) app.

But while many of the most popular life-changing apps are well known and reported on, apps for pet owners remain largely in fringe conversations. That, or once downloaded pet apps are banished to the third or fourth page of apps on the user’s phone.

That’s about to change. We’re here to get the word out about 5 apps we think all pet owners can benefit from.

  1. BringFido– If you’re like us, you wish you could bring your pets everywhere with you. The good news is, the nice people behind BringFido have compiled a massive directory of all the places where you can do just that! This app is a wordlwidedirectory of “unbiased reviews, detailed pet policy information, and online reservations at more than 25,000 pet friendly hotels” as well as info on pet-friendly parks, restaurants, and attraction in cities all over the world. They even have a helpline for when you need to find pet friendly lodging quickly. What’s not to love? Grab this app if you’re planning to travel with your pets.
  2. Red Cross Pet First Aid- The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters each year, providing first aid, food, shelter, and other  humanitarian relief to those affected by natural disasters–and now they can also help you react accordingly when your dog swallows a sock too. All jokes aside, the Red Cross Pet First Aid app is a comprehensive health and first aid app that all pet parents should have. The app is part health profile for your tracking your pet’s health, part educational library for common maladies. The app is 99 cents, which is a dollar well spent toward keeping your pet in good health.
  3. Tagg– This app works with a small gps tracker you place on your dog’s collar. Using the app, you can see if your dog is at home, chasing a mailman down the street, or out on his regularly scheduled walk with your favorite dog walker. The reassurance you get with this app is knowing that your dog is safely at home or around the neighborhood, no matter where you are. As an added bonus, the app works sort of like a Fitbit for dogs, as it allows you to keep track of movement and exercise. Pretty cool!
  4. iClicker– Dogs are some of the most intelligent animals on earth, and they show it through their trainability. Now, several apps exist that are designed to help you teach your dog some new tricks! iClicker is one of the first of it’s kind, and employs the popular “clicker” training method. This entails using the clicker sound the app makes to associate a sound with a desired behavior, and the app includes tutorials for teaching common skills, such as sitting, staying, and dropping things. Get to teaching!
  5. PetChatz – This app (and device) is for the pet parent and pet who are seriously attached. You might have to see this to believe it, but Pet Chatz is a device you can put in your home that allows you to check in on and talk to your pets via video calling–but that’s not all. The device can also dispense treats when you push a button on your smartphone, and even comes with an extension that lets your pets push a button and call you. Has science gone too far? This last app may be a little too much for the average pet owner, so if you’re going out of town call us instead and schedule a pet sitter.