London: For all canine couch potatoes, there is good news as they will soon be able to channel surf for their favourite TV shows with the world's first pet-friendly remote.
The gadget has been designed with paws and dribbles in mind and will give dogs total control of the goggle-box.
Pet food maker Wagg, which is trialling the remote, says it has been cleverly made from tough waterproof plastic. Giant buttons with raised surfaces make it easy to switch channels and it gives off low-frequency squeaks that appeal to pooches, The Mirror reported.
Wagg has developed the remote with computer designers at the University of Central Lancashire in Preston.
Ilyena Hirskyj-Douglas, a researcher in animal computer interaction, told the Sunday People, "Our studies shows the average dog now watches more than nine hours of TV a week, showing technology is already playing a huge part in our pets' lives."
Experts have been closely monitoring Rover's reactions to the buttons, sounds and colours.
And after analysing the findings, Wagg hopes to talk to tech companies to put the prototype into full production for switched-on pets.
It means owners could soon be fighting with their dogs over the remote control, as well as their partners. Spokesman Dan Reeves is confident it will be a howling success.
"We know that people can feel a little guilty about leaving their dogs in a room alone for a short while -- whether it's to pop to the shops or cook dinner in the kitchen," Reeves was quoted as saying.
"We wanted to create something that would keep the dog entertained and reassure owners of their well-being," he said.