Technology is so useful in today’s world and can help the most attentive cat owner with feedings. Although pet feeders are not meant to replace care and attention, they can help when you need to leave the fur babies home for a day. They can also assist with a cat who may be an over-eater, by dispensing smaller portions throughout the day.
Pet feeders are usually made up of two parts: an air tight hopper (glass or plastic) that holds the food and a container (stainless steel, plastic or ceramic) that the food is dropped into. Once it’s programmed with times and portions, the food is automatically dispensed. Let’s look at some of the best automatic cat feeders on the market today.
Top 3 Best Automatic Cat Feeders
|1st||Currens Automatic Pet Feeder||3 lbs||Dry||(4.9 / 5)|
|2nd||PetSafe Automatic Feeder||24 cups||Dry||(4.8 / 5)|
|3rd||Arf Pets Automatic Feeder||1 gallon||Dry||(4.4 / 5)|
This feeder by Currens provides flexible meal portions from 1 to 39. With a food container capacity of 3 pounds for dry food,it can be scheduled up to 4 meals per day. This offers a 10 second voice recorder to call your cat to eat when programmed. It also has a built in infrared detection to prevent food locking.
- 4 meals per day
- Built in voice recorder and speaker
- Prevent Food Locking and Spills
- Power adapter(included) or battery operated
- Reasonably priced
- Hard to take apart to clean
- No indicator for refill
The PetSafe Smart Feed Automatic Feeder for iPhone & Android is a convenient feeding solution for the high tech cat owner. The Wi-Fi-enabled feeder connects to your home’s wireless router and works with your Android or Apple smartphone, giving you the ability to feed your cat no matter where you are. You can use the app to customize and schedule up to 12 meals a day with flexible meal portions from 1/8 cup up to 4 cups. This unit is powered by a plug in adapter and has a battery back up.
- Program up to 12 meals a day
- Flexible meal portions
- Smartphone feeding capability
- Removable stainless steel bowl
- Disassembles for easy cleaning with some dishwasher safe parts
- Loud when food is dispensed into metal bowl
- Some complaints about the app being buggy
Arf pets automatic feeder is an innovative dispenser. If you are a busy pet owner and can’t be home to feed your fur baby all day, this is the feeder for you. This food distribution system helps you personalize your cat’s dry meal portions and routine. All you need to do is set the clock, pick up to four meal times, customize the serving size, and you are done. You have the option to plug the feeder into an ordinary wall outlet, or go cord-free with three “D” batteries. You are also able to record a voice command or meal call to let your cat know its time to eat.
- Record a special message for your pet
- Has a magnetic lid lock
- Detachable feeding tray for easy cleaning and made with proper size to prevent the mess
- Up to four meal times programmable
- If bumped hard it could need reprogramming
- Price on the high side
This automatic food dispenser makes feeding your cat hassle free with a capacity of up to 4 meals a day. Each meal can dispense one to 39 portions and can handle many sizes of dry kibble. You are also able to record your voice for up to 10 seconds to notify pets of feeding time. Also has a built in infrared detection which can prevent the food from locking which in turn lets your pet enjoy their meals.
- Built in voice recorder and speaker
- Prevent food locking and spills
- This system can fit any different shapes dry foods
- Ultra low power consumption
- Not completely tamper proof
- Lacks instructions
- Display can be hard to read
This feeder by Aspen Pets reliably delivers portion-controlled meals to pets while the pet parent is away. Meals can be easily programmed for up to three meals a day. It automatically delivers portion-controlled sizes to your cats whenever you choose. The transparent hopper lets you monitor food levels, and the feeder bowl is removable and dishwasher safe. The top load feature makes refilling your feeder convenient and easy.
- Large LCD screen & built-in meal counter
- Twist-lock lid to keep the food fresh & secure
- Removable bowl for easy cleaning
- Locking bowl & stand provides stability & prevents spills
- Dispensed amounts maybe off
- Hopper lid is difficult to screw on
What to Consider
If you have read this far you’re most likely considering buying an automatic cat feeder and you are just not sure which type or brand will suit you and your cat’s needs. Here are a few things to consider:
- Will you need it for long or short term feeding period
- Do you need timers, cameras or phone apps to operate
- Does you cat eat dry or wet food
- How big is your cats kibble
- How many meals do you need to program daily
- Your cats personality or patience level
- How many cats you own
Pros and Cons of Using an Automatic Feeder
Using an automatic cat feeder is a great choice if you work long hours or travel frequently. There is no need to hire a pet sitter for your next overnight trip, because an automatic feeder will ensure your cat has access to scheduled feedings throughout the day and night. Cat feeders can also benefit cats requiring frequent small meals due to diabetes or other health problems. Programmable feeders allow you to control exactly how much food your cat has access to which can prevent overeating for over weight cats. Another added benefit to an automatic feeder is that there is no food sitting to attract insects or rodents.
One of the downsides of automatic food dispensers is they can be noisy. Although most cats will learn that the noise is associated with feeding time, it can be distracting to owners. Another issue is the dispenser can jam if you put the wrong size of kibble in or a piece gets caught. Some cats may never be a good fit for an automatic feeder and will learn to tip it over, shove a paw in the opening or pry open parts.
All the mentioned models have a variety of custom settings, features and styles. Automatic cat feeders are a great investment for regulating your cat’s eating habits and feeding them while away. More importantly it’s about choosing an automatic cat feeder that suits you and your cat’s needs.