TORONTO, CANADA – June 29, 2021 – Myant, Inc., industry leader in textile computing, has announced the launch of a new division that will leverage Skiin’s existing technology and platform for use with companion and production animals, providing a more holistic, predictive and preventative way to care for them and to manage their performance. The newly formed Myant Animal Science division, which embarks on this mission with an initial focus on equine health and performance, will be housed in a unique equestrian facility that features a race track, show jumping arenas, paddocks, numerous barns, a laboratory, and an office. By co-locating the technical team with the animal care, training, and testing functions, the development process for textile-based animal biometric technologies will be accelerated. Research and development at Myant Animal Science will be led by equine exercise physiologist, Perse McCrae, Ph.D..
The Future of Animal Care: Beyond Reacting to Symptoms
Humans have a vested interest in the care of animals, be they companion animals such as cats, dogs and horses, or production animals like dairy cattle or sheep. Despite the amount of technological progress since the advent of animal domestication, people to this day face the same set of fundamental challenges when it comes to animal care. Firstly, animals are unable to precisely articulate their needs, meaning that human care providers can typically only react to the behavioral and physiological symptoms they happen to observe. Since owners cannot be with their animals at all times, observations are typically episodic in nature and lacking in their diagnostic value. By the time the animal can be examined by a veterinarian, care for this animal becomes about treating a condition in a reactive manner as opposed to proactive management of the animal’s well-being.
Take horses as an example: an owner may observe that their horse has been pacing and rolling more frequently in the past few days, leading them to suspect that the horse is suffering from some form of abdominal distress. The equine veterinarian responds to the call a few hours later and discovers that the condition has progressed beyond the point of management and that surgery is required to save the horse’s life. Such an example highlights the need for a paradigm shift in animal care, from a management model that is episodic and reactive to symptoms, towards a model that is more continuous, predictive, and preventative.
Connecting Animals to Care Through Textiles
The need for a continuous, predictive and preventative model of care is in fact not limited to how we care for animals but also how we care for each other. Myant is in the process of realizing this new paradigm in health and performance management through Skiin (skiin.com), a textile-based solution which uses everyday clothing that can sense biometrics to understand the human body, to anticipate its needs, and to connect people to preventative care. Through clothing (a ubiquitous technology already adopted by everyone in society), an elderly person can stay continuously connected to the loved ones who care for them, healthcare providers who manage their health, and to AI algorithms that analyze their biometrics (including heart rate, body temperature, posture, activity level, and more) to identify potential signs of trouble. Myant’s new Animal Science division aims to leverage the same technology that is commercially available for humans, initially adapt it for use in horses, then eventually to other companion and production animals.
“Myant was founded in part to provide a way to stay connected to the care and support they need and deserve,” says Ilaria Varoli, Executive Vice President at Myant. “Whether your loved one is an elderly parent, a young child, or a four-legged companion, we are committed to helping you stay connected to their well-being.”
The same owner whose reactive management of their horse’s well-being led to the need for life-saving surgery will one day be able to stay connected to the horse’s health regardless of the distance that separates them on a daily basis through Myant’s textile computing technology. With access to a holistic set of equine biometrics and other data (such as 1-3 lead ECG, respiration rate, body temperature, posture, activity data, location, etc.) through their mobile devices, horse owners, trainers, and veterinarians will possess new ways to manage the health and performance of the animals in their care.
Myant Animal Science: Accelerating the Development of Textile-Based Animal Biometric Solutions
Executive Vice President
For more information about Myant, please visit www.myant.ca or www.myantusa.com.