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    Ask Alexa if my wife fed the Dog

    So every morning and evening my wife and I yell across the house "Did you feed the dog!?!"

    I got a tilt sensor to put on top of the dog food container so that I can monitor if and when the dog food container is opened. However, I am looking for a good way to get the status of this.
    • I could add a status light that is green/red
    • When motion is detected in the room in a certain time window I could use TTS "The dog has not been fed this morning." Or "The dog has already been fed."
    • Same as above but when the dog food container is opened a second time it could say "WAIT...the dog has already been feed x minutes ago."
    • Ask Alexa if the dog has been fed.
    Any suggestions or tips? It looks like I would need to use the verbiage "Alexa, tell HomeSeer to get the status of the dog's food." This doesn't roll off the tongue. Any suggestions?

    And yes our dog does backflips and stares at us asking to be fed. However, she does all that even after she has been fed to try to trick us.

    #2
    I use Alexa routines from Alexa app to make verbiage more appropriate. For example "close garage door" rather than "turn garage door off".

    I don't understand what you are asking about status. is your tilt sensor smart or are you looking for a way to interface a dumb one?

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      #3
      Since our dog will eat all the food put out we feed her in the morning and evening. We do not leave the bowl out all day, though. What we do is let the other person put it away. That way we know the dog has been fed in a clear and visible way.

      Sometimes you just have to take the easy way out..
      Karl S
      HS4Pro on Windows 10
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        #4
        Originally posted by ksum View Post
        Since our dog will eat all the food put out we feed her in the morning and evening. We do not leave the bowl out all day, though. What we do is let the other person put it away. That way we know the dog has been fed in a clear and visible way.

        Sometimes you just have to take the easy way out..
        I like the idea. However, now I feel there is one more thing to remember. "The dog is done eating so now I need to put the bowl up." If you can get my wife to remember then I am all for it! But good luck with that.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Michael McSharry View Post
          I use Alexa routines from Alexa app to make verbiage more appropriate. For example "close garage door" rather than "turn garage door off".

          I don't understand what you are asking about status. is your tilt sensor smart or are you looking for a way to interface a dumb one?
          Thanks for the reply.

          I just ordered a Z Wave tilt sensor that I am going to put on the lid of the dog food container. When the container is opened it will trip the sensor. I plan on making a virtual device with some logic based on time. If it is after 5AM and the sensor has not been triggered in the last 5 hours then set the status as "dog not fed." When the sensor trips I will mark it as dog fed. Then I will redo it in evening.

          Is there an easy way to ask alexa the status of a flag, virtual device, etc.?

          Comment


            #6
            Assuming you have the virtual device and logic you mentioned that monitors if the dog was fed by the lid tilt sensor you can create a routine in the Alexa App that turns on another newly created HS virtual device called 'Check if Fed' that's triggered by asking, "Alexa has the dog been fed" She can answer, "Hold on, I'll ask HomeSeer" (If you want that part)

            Create two events in HS that both trigger if the the device 'Check if Fed' turns on but with different conditions.
            -First event only fires if the tilt sensor controlled device's status is 'not fed' and speaks, "The dog has not been fed" (or whatever you want HS to say)
            -Second event only fires if the tilt sensor controlled device's status is 'fed' and speaks, "The dog already been been fed" (or whatever you want HS to say)
            The only minor caveat is that you'll be asking Alexa the status but HomeSeer will be answering you.
            Dan-O
            HomeSeer contributor since summer 1999, yes 1999!

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by JohnGalt View Post

              Thanks for the reply.

              I just ordered a Z Wave tilt sensor that I am going to put on the lid of the dog food container. When the container is opened it will trip the sensor. I plan on making a virtual device with some logic based on time. If it is after 5AM and the sensor has not been triggered in the last 5 hours then set the status as "dog not fed." When the sensor trips I will mark it as dog fed. Then I will redo it in evening.

              Is there an easy way to ask alexa the status of a flag, virtual device, etc.?
              Could you have your system announce when the food lid is opened for a second time that the dog has already been fed. I can just imagine that the dog is going to figure out a way to unplug your HS box...spoiling all their fun!
              HS3 3.0.0.548 &HSTouch Designer 3.0.71 with 996 Devices, 547 Events
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              BLBackup, BLOccupied, BLShutdown, EasyTrigger, Ecobee, Nest, AK Bond
              EnvisaLink DSC, PHLocation, Pushover, SONOS, Blue Iris, UltraRachio3,
              weatherXML, Jon00 Alexa Helper, Network Monitor, MyQ, Z-Wave 3.0.1.252

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                #8
                Originally posted by JohnGalt View Post
                I just ordered a Z Wave tilt sensor that I am going to put on the lid of the dog food container. When the container is opened it will trip the sensor. I plan on making a virtual device with some logic based on time. If it is after 5AM and the sensor has not been triggered in the last 5 hours then set the status as "dog not fed." When the sensor trips I will mark it as dog fed. Then I will redo it in evening.
                This is similar to what I've been thinking of doing - but with an Aeotec window sensor (probably attach that to side of food tub and the magnet to lid).

                Maybe for the chickens coup too - but that is in the backyard so not sure about stretching Z-Wave out there. Besides, I'm the one that neglects to do that on weekends so not sure I want to point that out

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by The Profit View Post

                  Could you have your system announce when the food lid is opened for a second time that the dog has already been fed. I can just imagine that the dog is going to figure out a way to unplug your HS box...spoiling all their fun!
                  Yep! I definitely plan to add this. It would be great if it would announce "WAIT! The dog had already been feed xx minutes ago!" or something to that effect if she has already been feed and the dog food container is opened.

                  In other dog related automation my dog has a doorbell outside that she uses all the time when she wants to come in. It is not "smart" but the indoor unit has a LED that illuminates when the chime goes off. I use a Homeseer flex sensor to monitor the LED status for automations. For example she is always in the kennel when we leave the house. So if the doorbell goes off and the house is not occupied I get an alert on my watch "Did you leave the dog outside?" Thankfully we have not forgotten her yet, but you never know.

                  She has also learned how to open the door herself if we don't respond to the doorbell fast enough. Therefore, I have the doors lock automatically after they have been closed. She helped herself to open the door and track muddy footprints in one too many times.

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                    #10
                    Originally posted by Tillsy View Post

                    This is similar to what I've been thinking of doing - but with an Aeotec window sensor (probably attach that to side of food tub and the magnet to lid).

                    Maybe for the chickens coup too - but that is in the backyard so not sure about stretching Z-Wave out there. Besides, I'm the one that neglects to do that on weekends so not sure I want to point that out
                    My dog food container has a funny lid that might make it hard to add a normal door/window sensor. That is why I went with the Aeotec 7 sensor. It hasn't arrived yet, so I can't speak to it. But at least by specs it supports the normal magnet sensor, but also a dry contact and tilt. Most tilt sensors I found were for the garage door and required a significant (at least 45 degree, sometimes closer to 90) tilt before triggering. It also needed to be tilted in a certain axis. We will see, but tech support said that a 5 degree tilt in any direction from baseline would be enough to trigger the sensor. So I am hopeful I can put it on the lid and even if the lid it only tilted half way open to scoop out the food it will still trigger.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Dan-O View Post
                      Assuming you have the virtual device and logic you mentioned that monitors if the dog was fed by the lid tilt sensor you can create a routine in the Alexa App that turns on another newly created HS virtual device called 'Check if Fed' that's triggered by asking, "Alexa has the dog been fed" She can answer, "Hold on, I'll ask HomeSeer" (If you want that part)

                      Create two events in HS that both trigger if the the device 'Check if Fed' turns on but with different conditions.
                      -First event only fires if the tilt sensor controlled device's status is 'not fed' and speaks, "The dog has not been fed" (or whatever you want HS to say)
                      -Second event only fires if the tilt sensor controlled device's status is 'fed' and speaks, "The dog already been been fed" (or whatever you want HS to say)
                      The only minor caveat is that you'll be asking Alexa the status but HomeSeer will be answering you.
                      Thank you! I didn't know about Alexa routines and I was able to set it up. Alexa doesn't understand my dogs name so I need to ask her if the dog has been feed and not refer to her by name. Also, I use CasaTunes which supports TTS. However, there is a couple second delay from when I ask Alexa to when she answers. I might see if I can try to speed this up. But in typical fashion, my "temporary" solution will become permanent and it will probably remain this way for ever.

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