I like a lie in.
In the early morning, it is nice for my cat Sanchez to be able to get his own breakfast without waking me up with loud demanding meows. I am sure it is the same for cat parents everywhere (or is just me being lazy?)
It is the same if I go out for the day to work or travel somewhere for the entire day (but I make sure not to leave my cats alone for too long). It is nice to be able to know that my cats can have access to food to eat without the food being eaten by my dog Max (or waking me up). Thankfully there are some great automatic cat feeders available.
I was actually introduced to automatic cat feeders by my vet after Sanchez had a check up and it turned out he needed to lose a bit of weight and they suggested to get an automatic feeder so I could control what he did eat and the portion size.
Now, like anything you can buy, especially when purchasing products online, there are good and bad options and definitely things you should be looking out for when it comes to automatic cat feeders.
You can actually set and program some of the automatic feeders available according to your furry friend’s requirements, so they will only dispense the certain amount of food that you can program in. In some cases you can even control them from your smartphone, how cool is that?
So, if you are considering taking your pet’s feeding habits technologically to the next level, what should you be looking out for when purchasing an automated cat feeder and what benefits are there over a conventional bowl?
Table of Contents
- Benefits of an automatic feeder for your cat
- The best automatic cat feeders
Benefits of an automatic feeder for your cat
Feeding your cats when you are out
The main point, which I mentioned above, is the fact it takes care of feeding your feline friend when you are out at work or socializing.
Controlled portions and timing
Automatic cat feeders really allow you to take full control over how much your cat gets fed and when.
This for me is a huge selling point, as you can literally set how much and how often your cat gets fed, whereas (like I was with Sanchez before) leaving a bowl out could lead the cat to overeating (and therefore to become overweight).
Stop *you* meaning food
Cats are creatures of habit and can get into a routine of associating you with food, which in some ways is good as it can create a bond (when giving them cat treats).
However, this can be frustrating when your cat constantly clings to you, even when they are not that hungry (and as I said can help you have a lie in!)
Controls who eats what
If you like me have more than one animal in the household (I have 2 cats and a dog) you can set which pet “triggers” the machine to operate (which stops dogs eating cat food and vice versa). Also Sanchez is more dominant than my other cat Bruce so by using automatic feeders, you can make sure everyone gets a fair portion of food.
Automatic cat feeders can be used with either just dry food (kibble) or both wet and dry food.
There are some cheap automatic feeders available (around 20 dollars) however, in my experience, they do not work very well and tend to break pretty quickly. They are not really worth wasting your money on.
The best automatic cat feeders
Okay, so let’s look at some of the best automatic cat feeders.
1. HoneyGuardian A25 Automatic Feeder
This feeder can be used for small and medium sized dogs as well as cats. You can really select how much, how many portions and the portion size you want to feed your pet with the HoneyGuardian.
What is great for me is the fact that you can schedule ahead as well for up to 6 meals a day.
However, the best thing about this is the fact that you can record your voice onto it. Even when you are not there you can “call” your cat to come and feed with your voice. Pretty cool right?
It is also really simple to clean as well (which is a massive plus as well).
This was the automatic feeder I purchased first (mainly because it has the voice recorder option – okay I am a technology nerd I admit).
Can be used with wet or dry food.
2. PetSafe Healthy Automatic Feeder
This feeder can program up to 12 meals a day with flexible meal portions. What I really like about this feeder is that it has Slow Feed Mode to prevent your cat from overeating and vomiting.
It has a pet-proof dispenser so your kitty won’t be able to get to the food as it happens with some lower-quality feeders.
The only one drawback for this feeder for me is the fact that while it does work great, it is pretty pricey compared to other feeders available.
Can be used with dry and semi-moist food.
3. Fitiger Automatic Feeder with LCD Display
This feeder is purely just for dry food, however it does hold a massive amount (almost 6 liters) so you really can just fill it up and set it.
Whereas some automatic feeders can make you feel like you are trying to use the Starship Enterprise, the Fitiger feeder is so simple to use and set with it’s LCD display.
You can set the food to dispense and times that you set and then track your cat’s meals to make sure they get fed at the right time, consistently.
Again a really easy feeder to clean.
A great automatic kibble feeder at a great price.
4. GemPet 5 Meal Automatic Tray Feeder for dry and semi-wet food
As the name suggests this can take both dry and wet food. Although it says semi-wet I have had no problems with “wetter” style foods.
You can really customize your cats feeding schedule with the GemPet, and it is really easy to use and set for up to 5 meals.
A big bonus of this feeder is the fact that you can use it directly from the mains, or if you want to take it away with you and your cat, you can actually use batteries to make it run. It also has a standby mode if it has not been used for around 20 seconds, which definitely helps save the power in the batteries.
Like the HoneyGuardian this automatic feeder does have the capability to record your own voice so you can “call” your cat when it is about to dispense the food. A great way for your cat to think that you are still there, even when you are not.
For me personally, I would still choose the HoneyGuardian over this feeder as the sound quality is better in my opinion.
What I will say for this feeder is, like the others, really easy to clean.
5. Feed and Go Automatic Pet Feeder with Webcam and Wi-Fi
Okay so I have saved the best, and most expensive admittedly, until last.
First up, this automatic feeder can be used for both small dogs and cats for both wet and dry food, but there is so so much more to it.
It is easily the smartest feeder on this list, in fact possibly the smartest that is available on the market right now.
It has a built in webcam and Wi-Fi.
Yes, you read that right.
You can see your pet eating through your smart phone (if you are anything like me you will miss them like crazy when you are away from them!)
It offers absolutely everything that you can think of, it is almost like having a waiter on hand for your cat at home.
- You can program it to give your cat medication or cat treats.
- You can set it for a one time feed or for regular repeat feeds if you plan to be away for slightly longer.
- It will even send notifications to your phone once you have set it up so you can see who is due to eat or who has eaten.
- There are 6 compartments to add either wet or dry food and they are all super easy to take out and clean.
Okay, so it is mega pricey, but if you are away from your cat for longer periods of time in a day, then this really is the best automatic cat feeder for wet and dry food that you can buy.
So there we have it, some of the best automatic cat feeders that you can buy for your cat.
Always remember, never leave wet food in any feeder for more than 24 hours as it can go off and make your cat ill.
Have you tried using automatic cat feeder?
Let us know in the comment!