Pet-sitting drones and 'smart' cat flaps that use radiation to recognise your feline could be the future of pet care.
That's according to Haseltine Lake, the London-based trademark attorney, who has uncovered futuristic pet-related patents ranging from the clever to the bizarre.
Among its finds is a 'pet sunglasses system' to provide shade to dogs and 'small animals'.
The patent, was filed in 1998 by Yolanda Ramirez of North Carolina, and describes a pair of sunglasses with a flexible strap to fit on animals.
'Not only does this invention protect your pet's eyes and prevent cataracts, but your pet will also look ridiculously cool,' Haseltine Lake writes on its blog.
IBM, meanwhile, has patented a pet-sitting drone that looks after your animals when you're not there.
Using cameras and sensors, it studies your pet's behavior, picks activities and takes them on obedience training.
It also connects wirelessly to smart-home devices to activate a ball-thrower or dispense treats.
Other patents include a collar allowing snake owners to walk their pets.
The patent, titled 'Collar Apparatus Enabling Secure Handling of a Snake by Tether', means 'you never have to leave the house without your beloved snake again.'
It describes a chainmail-like necklace of beads in parallel rows that cancel out the concertina motion of the animal to keep it from slipping its leash.
It is noted in this patent that a standard animal collar would not be suitable for snakes as they have 'no external appendages', and that snakes also gradually change in circumference as they grow. http://www.worldcarepet.com.cn/chongwumeirong/2648.html