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Designing an emergency communication system for human and assistance dog partnerships

conference contribution
posted on 2023-06-09, 13:07 authored by Charlotte RobinsonCharlotte Robinson, Clara Mancini, Janet van der Linden, Claire Guest, Lydia Swanson, Helen Marsden, Jose Valencia, Brendan Aengenheister
In this research we developed an alarm system that enables assistance dogs to call for help on behalf of their vulnerable owners in an emergency, involving the end users (both assistance dogs and their owners) directly in the entire design process. Here we present a high-fidelity prototype of a user-friendly canine alarm system. In developing the system, we sought to understand the level of support required for a canine user to successfully interact with an interface, finding that the type of emergency a dog is faced with may vary widely and that consequently dogs may have to act on behalf of their assisted owners with varying degrees of autonomy. We also explored the process of conducting usability testing with both canine and human participants, seeking to identify where requirements of one species may overlap with, or diverge from, the other.


Publication status

  • Published

File Version

  • Accepted version


UbiComp '15 Proceedings of the 2015 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing


Association for Computing Machinery

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Event name

The 2015 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2015)

Event location

Osaka, Japan

Event type


Event date

Sep. 7-11 2015



Department affiliated with

  • Engineering and Design Publications

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Peer reviewed?

  • Yes

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