I'm looking for some advice as to the best way to track my pet cat (allowing for future other pets) as he moves around the house and yard.
We have an underground fence for him, which allows him to roam the yard as he pleases. (And I know he won't stray)
However, what I'd like to do is detect when he is in a variety of locations (say, pacing at the patio door to be let in, sitting in his cat tree, eating/drinking from his bowl, under his favorite tree, etc)
I thought about using an RFID setup, but I'm thinking I may need more than just a few centimeters of range. As you approach 15-20cm, the costs go up quite a bit for each reader. (Even with the less expensive readers, can I really bury one near his favorite tree and get a good reading?)
Alternatively, I've been thinking of using motion, pressure and other environmental sensors to detect when he's in various locations. However, as we add other pets to the family it may get difficult to identify individual pets.
I've got years of software and network experience, but I have to admit I'm a relative newbie when it comes to hardware interfaces. That's why Phidgets looks so enticing - so I'm hoping that someone out there can offer some advice.
I guess it may come down to some kind of hybrid solution - the biggest goal right now is to just detect when he's pacing near the door so we can let him in. The other things (sensing where he is around the yard/house) is a nice-to-have, although I'd rather not have to throw away everything when I tackle those next tracking projects.
Any thoughts out there?