New iPhone app aims to improve pet health

New iPhone app aims to improve pet health
A new iPhone app is designed to help pet parents keep their cats and dogs healthy.

A Boston-based company has introduced a new iPhone application designed to help pet parents keep their cats and dogs healthy.

The Petmobi app allows pet parents to set weight loss or maintenance goals, track daily calorie intake using a database of thousands of pet foods, record exercise and track their pets' progress over time, the company said. Petmobi also contains a social networking aspect that permits pet parents to share updates with friends and support each other in their pets' goals.

The Petmobi app was created by Alex Papanicholas, the founder of the new company, which is also named Petmobi, and by his veterinarian-wife, Kerri Papanicholas. The app is free to download for one pet and 99 cents for each additional pet. It is available in the iPhone App Store.

Petmobi joins a growing inventory of pet-related apps. The petMD website, for example, offers a suite of iPhone apps, including one for "cat emergencies" and another for "cat symptoms."

Pet weight problems have received significant attention from animal health advocacy groups over the past year. Survey results released by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention in February 2012 showed that 55 percent of cats and 53 percent of adult dogs were classified as overweight or obese by their veterinarians. As part of National Pet Obesity Awareness Day in October 2012, the CATalyst Council urged cat parents to guard against pet obesity, noting that overweight animals are more likely to suffer from diabetes and other ailments.

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