Big Data: The Next Step for the Animal Sciences Industry

‘Big data’ is on everyone’s lips as businesses across a wide range of industry sectors scramble to collect and make sense of sophisticated data. 

Retail businesses, for example, use data to understand the behaviour of their customers and predict their shopping preferences. Enterprise businesses use data to track their productivity and create new efficiencies within their organisations. Healthcare companies use data to better understand how to treat patients based on their individual profiles.

Now, big data is coming to the animal sciences field.

“Veterinary science, animal pharmaceuticals and the pet insurance industries have long been under served by the so-called big data revolution,” says Jeremy Bocknek, director of Alpha Vet Tech. “For too long these industries have survived on isolated data sources, anecdotal evidence or even guess work.”  

But that’s all set to change as Alpha Vet Tech prepares to the launch their innovative WirelessZoo™ platform. The device will wirelessly track the vital signs of animals in real time, however the real game changer here is the database platform WirelessZoo™ users will build. 

“For example, whenever a vet uses WirelessZoo™ to monitor an animal pre, during or post a surgical procedure, the de-identified data will be sent to the cloud in real time,” explains Bocknek. “That data will be accessible to vets around the world, and to other animal sciences professionals.” 

That means before treating a certain species of animal, vets could pull analytics from the platform on how that particular breed of dog, for example, responds to the specific medication they are considering. 

“Say you need to operate on a 10-year-old female Labrador, and are calculating the amount of anaesthetic to prescribe. You could use the WirelessZoo™ platform to pull analytics and variables on how 10-year-old female Labradors have responded to particular doses of that particular drug,” says Bocknek.

“That puts a strong baseline of real-world data beneath the vet’s decision, which hasn’t been previously available.” 

However, the WirelessZoo™ platform is not just a game-changer for vets. Data will also be available to a range of related industries, such as equine, livestock zoos and downstream third-party sectors including pharmaceutical and pet insurance companies. 

“This will completely eliminate guess work,” explains Bocknek. “For example, pet insurance companies will be able to pull reports for specific breeds of pets and potentially write individualised insurance policies for certain breed types that may be more prone to particular illnesses than others.

“The same idea applies in the pharmaceutical industry. Drug companies might choose to develop different medication lines that are ideally matched to each dog breed. Data may reveal that a Labrador responds very differently to a certain medication than a Poodle, for example.” 

And the beauty of the WirelessZoo™ Platform is that reports will constantly evolve as more and more data is collected across species, breeds, ages and sexes of animal species.

“Veterinary science, pharmaceutical and pet insurance are really just the beginning,” says Bocknek.

“Primary producers like dairy farmers will be able to access the data to gain insights into analytics that will help them optimise their feed mixtures for the best milk production, thoroughbred trainers will have the capability to create data IP on their high-prize horses and have the ability to optimise training cycles based on breed, age and gender specific data. And zoos will be able to increase quality of care through the use of data analytics to gain better insight into breeding cycles, early disease detection and prevention. The applications are almost endless.”

For more information on WirelessZoo™, please visit