Love your pets? You’re not alone! The ASPCA estimates that as many as 80 million dogs are kept as pets in the United States. Even more of us are cat lovers according to their reports – with 96 million cats as pets.
For many, cats and dogs are part of the family; it would be impossible to consider life without them. But, that doesn’t mean we can’t make life with them easier.
Many cat owners report being able to sleep in after bringing home an automated feeder. Additionally, cats often have different dietary demands – and strong wills.
And though someone still needs to let the dog out, an automatic dog feeder will allow you to easily cross one more item off your to do list.
But no matter why you’re looking for an automated pet feeder, we’ve got the best of them here. Of course, we’ve put weeks of work into finding the best – and most reliable pet feeders in every price range. We think you’ll love them!
Your inquisitive cats can’t get into this tamper-proof cat feeder and the food dispensed is remarkably accurate. You can dish out tiny amounts of food if you want – and the hopper holds a lot of food.
Wow is this is a noisy unit and you probably don’t want inquisitive dogs using it.
There are two situations that make this a perfect cat feeder. If your cats are on a diet, you are going to love the fact that you can offer them small portion sizes. And, if you need to head out of town for awhile, you can fill this with food and be alright. (However, you will want someone to clean the litter boxes unless your cats use the great outdoors.) This feeder is stunningly accurate, though it is on the noisy side. (You’ll get used to it.)
For Fido or Fluffy? It’s designed for cats. You could possibly use it for dogs, but it’s not as if you don’t have other options.
Kibble or tartar? Dry food only and you’re looking at a kibble size around 5/8” max. You don’t want the pieces to be too small either.
Capacity? You can fit a whopping 6.5 pounds of food into the hopper. That’s a lot of cat food.
And that’s how many meals? You can set between 1 and 3 meals a day and the minimum meal size is a scant 2 teaspoons of food up to cup sizes. So it’s great if your furry friends are on a bit of a diet.
What sort of power is needed? You need 4 C batteries top operate this automatic cat feeder. The manufacturer claims that you’ll get between 6 to 9 months of use out of a single set. Users believe it's much closer to a year. And unfortunately, there’s no way to hook it up to electricity.
Is the cleaning easy? Most of the parts are dishwasher safe and the rest is easy peasy.
Will it break the bank? You should expect to pay less than $70 for this feeder. That’s a relatively good deal, though there aren’t too many features to speak of.
Everything the food touches is removable and easily washable. In addition to the cute design, there’s a mischief guard. (How fun is that?)
Wow on the battery suck. Some users report using a set of batteries every six weeks.
Let’s face it, the color (there are 3 to choose between) and the design is going to make you happy. (And the food supply will make your pets happy.) There’s an LCD timer that allows you to set the meal times (up to 3 a day), though you will need to reset everything when the batteries go – which they might do quickly.
We’re super big fans of the included mischief guard accessory that stops paws from getting to all that food! It’s not exactly cheap, but we rather enjoy it.
For Fido or Fluffy? You can use it for both cats and dogs, but the portion sizes suggest it’s not good for larger dogs.
Kibble or tartar? It’s dry food only. The drop system just wouldn’t allow wet food to remain safe for long. Kibble should be longer than 0.6” as it could get caught in the feeder and stop its operation.
Capacity? It can store up to 2.2 pounds of food. That’s not huge, but we’re going to try to justify it by looking at the design again.
And that’s how many meals? You can schedule up to 3 meals a day. And, meals can be set in increments as little as 1/16 of a cup to 1 full cup. Not bad, right?
What sort of power is needed? You’ll need 4 D batteries and you’ll need a lot of them. They go quickly.
Is the cleaning easy? You betcha. Everything that’s removable can be washed. And everything that touches the food can be removed.
Will it break the bank? Okay, it’s not the cheapest. The MSRP is about $130, but you’ll pay something closer to $100. It’s not cheap, but it’s wonderfully reliable.
This accommodates 5 meals of dry – or wet – food. And it’s not easy for pets to get into the goods ahead of schedule.
Some users don’t recommend this for dogs as it’s not huge and the timing is a little wacky.
It’s a basic automatic pet feeder, but it does the job well. You fill a single tray with as many as 5 1-cup meals and schedule the tray to rotate to expose a new meal with an electronic timer. It only offers dispersal over a 24-hour period, so don’t think you’re headed away for the weekend with this. The drawback of the good price is the lack of features – and rambunctious dogs can figure this feeder out quickly.
For Fido or Fluffy? It’s really for both dogs and cats. But, we want to qualify that. If you have a small dog with blood-sugar issues (or no sense of time), you’re good to go. If you have a large dog that needs serious routine, move along. (And rambunctious dogs can pull the food tray out if they try.)
Kibble or tartar? Either way or a mixture of both. And, the size of the food doesn’t matter. But, we do need to let you know that there isn’t an ice pack included. You might want to freeze later portions of wet food to keep it fresh. Or use dry food for later meals.
Capacity? A max of 5 cups.
And that’s how many meals? A max of 5 meals. There’s a single tray that rotates between the 5 1-cup containers.
What sort of power is needed? You’ll need 4D batteries – and they’re not included, which we think is a bummer.
Is the cleaning easy? The tray is completely dishwasher-safe, but you’ll have to clean the rest of the unit by hand. Sorry.
Will it break the bank? At $35, you can certainly afford to give this cat feeder a try. It may not be something you use every day, but it could help you sleep in every now and again.
Portion sizes are hugely adjustable between a mere 1/8 of a cup to a whopping 4 cups. Meals are dispensed “slow food” style to prevent overeating and bellyaches when you can’t be there.
Sadly, there’s no monitor, to show you what’s left in the hopper (though it is slightly translucent), or alert, to let you know it has run out.
This is the best automatic pet feeder available at the moment. It’s not cheap, mind you, but it’s incredible. When you unwrap it (and wash it please), it’s preset to dispense 2 meals a day (at 8am and 5pm), but you can schedule up to 12 meals a day at any interval or schedule you want. There's also a slow-feed function which we adore.
The digital timer works with the conveyor belt system to offer meals between 1/8 of a cup to 4 cups at a time. There is a locking lid to block feisty pets. And, best of all, there’s a pause feed mode to temporarily stop meals without losing the programmed schedule. Whew!
For Fido or Fluffy? You can feed cats or dogs with this awesome pet feeder. It’s better for smaller dogs, but it’s tamper-safe from those curious kitties too.
Kibble or tartar? If your pets are used to gourmet wet food feasts, this isn’t the feeder for you; it’s dry food only. The manufacturers suggest it’s also good for “semi-moist” food, but it doesn’t have an ice pack, so you probably don’t want to go that route. Luckily, it doesn’t seem to have much of a problem with most kibble sizes.
Capacity? You can fit up to 24 cups in the hopper. If you have small cats, that will last awhile.
And that’s how many meals? You can schedule between 1 and 12 meals at a go, but the maximum size of any meal is 4 cups. If you use all 4 cups at a time, you can’t pre-schedule 12 meals; only 8. However, you can set meals as small as 1/8 of a cup. Not bad, right?
What sort of power is needed? This pet feeder operates with 4D batteries. That means it shouldn’t stop working when the power is out, but it does mean... well, batteries. There is an optional power adaptor available, but you will pay more for it.
Is the cleaning easy? BPA-free plastic and stainless steel make this machine. There are parts that are dishwasher-safe, but there are others you’ll need to do by hand. Overall, it’s not too bad, especially if you stick to dry food.
Will it break the bank? There are definitely cheaper automatic pet feeders, but few that offer the solid features this one has. Clearly. At a cost of $130, it’s still an Amazon Bestseller.
Katie’s Cleveland proud; but she’s also lived in Australia, Switzerland and now stays in South Africa. That’s a roundabout way of saying she can’t sit still; she’s always moving, always busy.
She has a BA in International Relations from Kent State University and work towards a Masters in Human Rights. She speaks French, is learning German and used to dream in Spanish. For years, Katie worked as a producer on fashion and advertising shoots before she realized her passion was the written word.
Katie’s far more interested in guy’s gear than women’s, except she has a wardrobe brimming with little black dresses. She drinks her beer out of the bottle and is raising her two boys to be better men.