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Ford bringing Pet Mode to F-150 Lightning, Mustang Mach-E

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One feature that Tesla’s vehicles have that other EVs don’t have is Dog Mode. That may all change soon. As Ford Authority reported earlier this week, Ford Motor Co. has filed a patent for Pet Mode, and it was approved by the US Patent Office on February 15, 2022, as patent number 11247693B2.

This is a clear shot at Tesla, which has some form of Dog Mode since 2019.

How will Ford’s Pet Mode work?

According to the patent filing, Pet Mode seems to function similarly to Tesla’s Dog Mode, but gives more control to the owner over what can be modified in the vehicle to accommodate their furry friend. Additionally, it appears that Pet Mode will be a function on the Ford Pass app, giving owners the ability control customized features via the app or key fob.

Of course one of the main features would be setting a specific temperature inside the vehicle and cracking the windows. But Pet Mode would also allow owners to do things like lowering the seats, adjusting the volume on the radio and choosing a station to play for them.

Which causes us to asks: What type of music or podcast would a pet listen to?

Which Ford vehicles will get Pet Mode?

The patent was non descriptive about which vehicles this would apply to. We assume it will apply to Ford’s EV lineup as this is meant to rival Tesla’s Dog Mode. But technologically speaking there’s no reason this couldn’t work for internal combustion vehicles, too.

But we assume the Ford F-150 Lightning and Mustang Mach-E will be the initial test market for this patent. And now that it’s filed officially, Ford could launch this at any time. It could even be an over-the-air update for current Mustang Mach-Es on the road now.

Other Pet Mode possibilities

Sometimes patents are just ideas you want to lock in. While many of the features listed on Ford’s patent filing will likely come to fruition, some of the other possibilities seem more like vaporware. For example, the patent lists a hydration system. I envision a big water bowl coming out from a hidden compartment or one of those big guinea pig watering tubes coming out.

This one seems far fetched, but hey if there’s a way to make it happen, I’m all for whatever keeps our furry friends happy. Another aspect to the patent is a RDIF chip system. This is what reads those little microchips in pets to determine ownership. Imagine if a F-150 Lightning had this feature, and you forgot you had your pet in the back seat. The RDIF system could sense that and automatically set the interior comfort for your little fluffy friend.

The bottom line on the Ford Pet Mode

If you’re like me, then you prefer animals to people. I have three dogs and a cat, and my pets are part of my family — and most pet owners feel the same way. So, frankly, it’s a little odd that Tesla has been the only automaker to implement such a system in its vehicles. This is a win for cute little pets, and that’s a good thing.

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Jimmy Dinsmore

Jimmy is News Editor for PickupTruckTalk with an expertise in new vehicles. He is also a Ford Mustang historian having authored the book Mustang by Design (available on Amazon). His second book, about the history of Ford's F-Series truck comes out next year.

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2 Comments

  1. Erica Mueller February 19, 2022

    I’d be interested to see if anyone adds a way to override the seatbelt chime when a large dog is sitting on the backseat and the car is freaking out that there is weight that isn’t buckled in. Ahem. Perhaps in Pet Mode one could override that?

    Reply
    1. Jimmy Dinsmore February 20, 2022

      Great point. I’ve had that happen for sure.

      Reply

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