Paro the US$5,000 Therapeutic Seal Now Available in America

Paro, the Japanese robotic therapy seal is now available in the US. Paro is a medical device developed by folks who have built therapy robots for years, and they say this robo-companionship can relieve some of the symptoms associated with long-term illness and even Alzheimer's. Why a seal, and not a cat or dog? Because people don't have stereotypes about seals and wouldn't question how real it felt. We're all for a gadget that helps a sick person feel better, but we don't know if you should let your demented aunt Fanny spend too much time with a robot seal.

hospital.jpgParo in Brunei.JPGParo in Sweden.JPGday service center.jpg

The cost? Five thousand dollars. To put that insane price in robot pet perspective, you could buy 16 Pleos or even 2 ½ AIBOs.

But it's only in limited quantities for now; that means if you aren't a hospital you can expect to wait a while before getting your hands on one. [Paro, Paro research]

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