The problem of understanding animals, e.g., what they want and what they are doing, are recurrent matters for the emerging field of animal-computer interaction (ACI). We focus on animals in the city by bridging the field with urban studies and open up for new design opportunities in terms of the possibilities of new digital technology to re-configure animal city life. We present an ethnomethodological video analysis of the negotiations and interactional work between two leashed pugs and a handler walking down a street. We unpack similarities and differences between the two species in terms of their interests and intentions in an urban environment through a detailed examination of the moments in the walk when the leash is pulled taut. We show how a strained leash can result from a conflict between the dog’s attentiveness towards other dogs by smelling and looking, and the human’s urge to move along. We propose design directions supporting the dogs’ wants and needs by accessing the handler with information on the dogs’ curiosities in other dogs by visualizing the invisible scent-universe of the dogs and encourage dog-dog interaction.
Aspling, F., Juhlin, O., and Chiodo, E.
Published in: 
In Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Animal-Computer Interaction, in conjunction with ACE’15 (ACM). Iskander, Malaysia.
Friday, November 27, 2015 - 16:30