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Google Photos Can Recognize Your Pets Now

If you have lots of pictures of your dog or cat, Google Photos will start sorting them into distinct groupings.

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Machine learning has, for too long, ignored your dog, head cocked plaintively to the side, wondering why his face has not been recognized and categorized ("CHAMP!") alongside others in your smartphone such as "Mom," or "Mike," or any number of other humans whose faces are algorithmically detected and grouped together in your smartphone app.

Is he not a good boy? Who's a good boy? Who's a good boy?

That's right! Champ's a good boy! Good boy!

In a pun-laden blog post, Google announced on Monday that its Photos application can now recognize your pets, and will sort them into their own groupings.

According to Google's announcement: "you’ll be able to see photos of the cats and dogs now grouped alongside people, and you can label them by name, search to quickly find photos of them, or even better, photos of you and them."

While the app should be able to sort out your beagle from your Bernese, it seems like it may need help telling the difference between two dogs or cats of the same breed. A Google spokesperson confirmed to BuzzFeed News that "this is just the start, and that if you have a number of pets that are the same breed (such as a few yellow Labs), you might need to help the app by removing photos of a misgrouped pet, so the app can tell Lassie from Fido."

Mat Honan is the San Francisco bureau chief for BuzzFeed News. Formerly a senior staff writer at Wired, he has been writing about the technology industry and its impact on society for nearly 20 years.

Contact Mat Honan at mat.honan@buzzfeed.com.

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