I am an animal lover. In my house I have three cats, two pups, a Hedgehog, a pond full of Coy Fish and Shubunkins, two Beta Fish, a Box Turtle, a Bearded Dragon, and even a Sugar Glider. We’ve had hamsters, hermit crabs, and Cockatiels and when I was 7, I even got my picture taken holding a 6-foot Boa Constrictor around my neck. My point is, I am fond of all types of animals, but spiders are not one of them.
They’re furry, creepy, and just scary, even harmless Daddy Long Legs give me the heebie-jeebies. I don’t fully understand why people keep them as pets and I know I’m not alone in this.
Thankfully, Animal Planet and Discovery Communications in partnership with Fuzzy Frog have created Real Scary Spiders, an app that allows kids to interact with a pet spider without parents having to worry about it breaking loose and recklessly running through the house terrifying everyone. Even writing that sentence scares me. Real Scary Spiders allows users to bring a spider to digital life and nurture their spider friend as they would a real pet.
My pet arachnid, a Mexican RedKnee Tarantula is big, black, and crawled all over my screen as I directed her with my fingertips – yes, she’s a she. I named her Spiderella. She has big fangs and I was able to learn a lot about her through a feature that gives tons of facts specific to each species. I fed her worms and other bugs, and learned that this colorful species makes popular pets. Personally, I’m a lot more comfortable keeping this pet on my phone.
Tending to my spider is fun, but the coolest (and creepiest) feature is transporting the fuzzy guy (or girl) into the real world. With the augmented reality feature users can transport their spider onto a target in the real world, such as onto a desk or the wall. I didn’t plan on trying it at first, but when I did I had to admit it was really, really cool.