As pets are considered members of the family, their health has received widespread attention. Since pets cannot talk and complain when they feel uncomfortable, monitoring vital signs becomes very helpful in disease detection, as well as observing their progression and response to treatment. In this study, we proposed an ultra-wideband radar-based, non-contact animal vital sign monitoring scheme that could monitor the breathing and heart rate of a pet in real-time. The primary advantage of the ultra-wideband radar was its ability to operate remotely without electrodes or wires and through any clothing or fur. Because of the existing noise and clutter in non-contact detection, background noise removal was applied. Furthermore, the respiration rate was directly obtained through spectrum analysis, while the heartbeat signal was extracted by the variational mode decomposition algorithm. By using electrocardiogram measurements, we verified the accuracy of the radar technology in detecting the anesthetized animals’ respiratory rate and heart rate. Besides, three beagles and five cats in a non-sedated state were measured by radar and contact pressure sensors simultaneously; the experimental results showed that radar could effectively measure the respiration of cats and dogs, and the accuracy rate was over 95%. Due to its excellent performance, the proposed method has the potential to become a new choice in application scenarios, such as pet sleep monitoring and health assessment.
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