If you already have a fully-functioning smart home, or, like me, are in the process of slowly upgrading appliances one-by-one, you may not have thought to “smart-ify” something as mundane as your pet’s food bowl. But just wait until you use an automatic feeder, which works for dogs or cats. Once you embrace the automatic cat feeder, or dog feeder, you will never deign to use a humble bowl again.
This brilliant automatic feeder lets you feet your pet anytime, from anywhere.
First off, as parents, we don’t have time to meticulously plate and portion out food for our pets. If you do, great. Consider yourself lucky. But for the rest of us, making sure the family pet has been fed falls somewhere between loading the dryer and emptying out the dishwasher. That’s where the PetSafe automatic feeder radically simplifies your life in a way you never thought you needed.
It takes all of the guesswork out of scheduling meals, allowing you to set precise times and amounts of food you want to give your dog or cat, from ⅛ cup snacks all the way up to 4 cups for big dogs. The app is easy to use, and also provides flexibility for snacks, slow-feeding (to prevent digestive issues from eating too quickly), and alerts you as soon as your pet gets fed.
The Smartfeed is, admittedly, a bit pricey. But, the good news is that the makers of it have taken just about everything into account. It fits a ton of food — depending on the size of your pet, you’ll easily make it a few weeks before needing to refill — but doesn’t take up some ungodly amount of space. It looks nice enough to not throw off the vibe of an entire room, and the wire can be ditched in favor of batteries if you don’t trust a naughty pup to leave it alone. The design for the hopper is such that our inquisitive little furball couldn’t break in despite her best efforts, and the app also lets you turn on a “child lock” option that will further disable the snack button on the machine so no kids or animals can press it accidentally.
As for the accompanying app, it’s totally useable. It’s not without flaws — it once fed my pup two servings at one time, and I have yet to figure out how to pair two phones simultaneously (which would be a nice feature for couples) — but other than that everything is easy to figure out and works without issue. Setup with your home wifi network is also a total breeze, takes only a few seconds, and completely eliminates headaches from the process.
So, yes, a dog bowl might feel like an unnecessary smart-home item, but when you really look at the full package here, it starts to make a lot of sense. Especially if you have hungry kids whining for snacks, while your pet patiently waits for dinner.
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