Developed by a team at Utah State University, a proposed equine distress monitor system combines a tilt sensor, accelerometer, and wireless technology interfaced with a computer in order to alert horse owners to animals in distress. The team has filed a provisional patent and is seeking a manufacturer.

Rebecca Lewis, BT, presented results of system tests at the 2009 Equine Science Society Meeting, held May 29-31 in Keystone, Colo

The proposed unit would be the size of a cell phone and attaches to a halter at the poll. Unlike current monitors, this system could minimize false alarms by analyzing the incoming data–it can discern a roll followed by a shake as a “healthy roll,” while a number of rolls with no shakes is translated as a sign of colic. Continuous inversion signals casting.

This portable system could be used to monitor horses in high risk situations, such as horses prone to colic, or mares due to foal.