The Best Robot Dogs That Bark and Play on Command


by Jon Gugala
Originally Published: 
a cute and futuristic-looking robot dog for kids against an aqua background

Americans have been adopting and rescuing dogs at record numbers since the earliest days of coronavirus. In fact, the pandemic puppy boom has led to shortages and long waiting lists with dog breeders and pet-adoption centers alike. That’s where robot pets can save the day. If you’re not ready or able to take on the responsibility of a real, live dog anytime soon, you can still bring home a furry friend for your kids — and one who never needs to be walked or fed. The new generation of robot dog toys — aka mechanical dogs or animatronic dogs — is smarter and more pet-like than ever before.

Don’t let the word “toy” fool you. There’s now a tremendous range of robot dogs out there, from the cute and comforting, to the brilliantly interactive, with wide-ranging price points to match. If you’re looking for a cuddly little robot puppy for your toddler, you don’t need to spend a ton on an interactive pet who barks on command. Older kids, however, will want a robot dog toy that’s responsive and loaded with features, and ideally one who can learn a few new tricks along the way. Either way, kids can get the benefits of pet companionship, such as bonding and play, without the full-time responsibility of, you know, an actual pet.

The Best Robot Dogs and Robot Pets

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