Tombot Puppies

The First Affordable Robotic Companion Animals that Seniors Love

Scientists estimate as many as 97% of seniors with dementia suffer from behavioral and psychologic symptoms of dementia (BPSD).1 BPSD symptoms include apathy, depression, loneliness, anxiety, frustration, wandering, and for some, hallucinations and violent anger. To cope with these symptoms, family members and caregivers turn to doctors for help in the form of medications. Sometimes referred to as “chemical restraints,” these medications may reduce confusion and tame some of the “challenging” BPSD behaviors, but they often come with severe side effects and increased risk of death.2

University studies show that where a senior with dementia can successfully form an emotional attachment to an object - traditionally human baby dolls or stuffed animals - the senior may see a significant reduction in their BPSD symptoms, and a corresponding reduction in the need for medications.2 The problem is very few seniors successfully form the necessary emotional attachment to traditional objects. Tombot puppies are more visually appealing and entertaining than traditional objects, and are scientifically-designed to promote successful emotional attachment.3

Artistic Design Services By Jim Henson's Creature Shop

Understanding the customer’s need for a robotic puppy with hyper-realistic appearance and feel, Tombot turned to the Hollywood animatronic community for help. After an extensive review, Tombot selected Jim Henson’s Creature Shop to provide the artistic design services for our prototype robots. For more than half a century, the Jim Henson name has been synonymous with the creation of expressive and enduring characters. Innovation has been a hallmark of the Jim Henson brand, and the experts at Jim Henson’s Creature Shop rose to the challenge to design a puppy that seniors with dementia would love. Using groundbreaking technology, fabrics, and animatronic techniques, Jim Henson’s Creature Shop brought the Tombot puppies to life with uniquely life-like expressions, behaviors, and quality.

Tombot’s puppies are the first and only robots to successfully marry the very best computer and robotics technology with the awe-inspiring artistic creativity that only Jim Henson’s Creature Shop can provide.

1 Steinberg et al, Int J Geriatric Psychiatry, 2008
2 Maust et al, JAMA Psychiatry, May 2015
3 Tombot Customer Studies