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Best Automatic Pet Feeder 2017

You’ll probably agree with our belief:

It’s tough to feed your pets at specific times every day. However, some animals require this level of care if they have special dietary needs.

Automatic pet feeders are the ideal solution. Having one can put your mind at ease because your animals get the care and nutrition that they need, when they need it.

Although the features of automatic pet feeders vary, they offer some common benefits:

No mess
Feed one or more pets
No begging
No need to ask someone to feed your animals while you’re away and feed your pets no matter where you are.

Our automatic pet feeder review provides details about the various types of feeders available and how they work. We also give you considerations and features to look for when you’re buying an automatic pet feeder.

Pet-FeederCat / DogFeature
RatingPrice
Feed and Go
Smart Feeder

Cat and DogAmazon Discount

Read our Review
SureFeed Microchip
Pet Feeder

Catkeeps pet food fresh longerAmazon Discount

Read our Review
ANMER A25
Cat and DogAmazon Discount

Read our Review
Petnet SmartFeeder
Cat and Dogcontrol weight and health issuesAmazon Discount

Read our Review
PetSafe Healthy
Pet Simply Feed

Cat and Dog12-Meal Automatic Pet FeederAmazon Discount

Read our Review
Lusmo Automatic
Pet Feeder

Cat and DogLCD displayAmazon Discount

Read our Review
Arf Pets Automatic
Pet Feeder

Cat and DogAmazon Discount

Read our Review
Hoison Smart Feeder
Cat and Dogmultiple people to interactAmazon Discount

Read our Review
Super Feeder
CSF-3

CatAmazon Discount

Read our Review

What Are Automatic Pet Feeders? Why Do You Need Them?

As the name suggests, automatic pet feeders dispense cat or dog food either via gravity or electronic programming. They usually consist of plastic or glass hoppers and the bowls in which they dispense the food.

In our automatic pet feeder review, we found that they’re invaluable tools for animal owners who have trouble committing to regular feedings.

They’re a great solution for people with early-morning or late-night work obligations or people who have health problems that make it hard for them to keep regular feeding times.

It’s also the ideal option for owners who spend weekends away from home and don’t want to go through the trouble of boarding or asking others to watch their pets.

Furthermore, automatic pet feeders are excellent products for managing animal health conditions such as diabetes and pancreatitis. Many people use them to control their animals’ weights as well. Some feeders even offer programmable portion sizes and dispense food at scheduled times.


Which Types of Automatic Pet Feeders Are There?

Automatic pet feeders exist for birds, cats, dogs and other small pets such as hamsters and mice. However, most of the market consists of cat and dog feeders. There are two main types of automatic pet feeders: gravity and electronic. Although, variations are available.

Gravity Pet Feeders

Feeders that function based on gravity continuously dispense food. As your pets eat the food that falls from the hopper into the bowl below, more food falls behind it. This continuous replenishment keeps the bowl full at all times, which is ideal if your pets stop eating when they’re full. It’s not the best option if you need to portion meals for your animals.

Electronic Pet Feeders

Feeders that operate on electricity are the most popular among pet owners because they give you more control.

Most of them allow you to program times to dispense food throughout the day. Some even have portion sizing, and others connect to Wi-Fi and mobile device apps that allow you to tap to feed your pets.

Additionally, a few automatic pet feeders come with cameras so that you can check on your animals at feeding time.

These features are perfect for managing health problems such as diabetes, hypoglycemia and pancreatitis. However, our automatic pet feeder review found that it’s important to invest in quality products.

Low-quality feeders can have programming errors, which could mean that your pets miss a meal or get too many.


Buyer Guide for Automatic Pet Feeders

You need to consider your and your pets’ needs when you’re buying an automatic pet feeder. Some of the things that you should think about include whether or not

Your pets need multiple feedings
You need to adjust portion sizes
The product is easy to program
The bowl and hopper are easy to clean
Your pets won’t tip over the feeder

Below are the features that we found in our automatic pet feeder review to set the standard in the market.

Feed Multiple Pets

Many feeders have enough capacity to feed more than one pet. The only downside to having an automatic pet feeder for multiple pets is that all of the animals need to eat the same food and portion size.

Manage Portions

Having the ability to measure food before dispensing it is optimal if your animals have health conditions such as hypoglycemia and diabetes.

Controlling the portions this way helps you prevent low and high sugar problems. It’s also the best solution if you’re trying to help your pets lose weight.

 

Easy Programming

If you have a busy lifestyle, you probably won’t have 30 minutes to an hour to figure out how to program your feeder. High-quality products generally take only a few minutes to program. They have intuitive, user-friendly interfaces that schedule your feeding times, portion sizes or both.

Many feeders also allow you to make schedule adjustments in just seconds. Some even let you pause the schedule but without erasing your program settings.

Easy to Clean and Add More Food

It’s important for your pets’ health that they have access to clean feeders and bowls. The last thing that you want is for your animals to get sick or develop allergies because of the bacteria that grows in an unclean bowl or hopper. Most high-quality products break down so that you can clean these pieces. A lot of them can even go in the dishwasher.

Spill Proof

Even though pets get used to periodic feeding times, some of them can be impatient. If they try to open the feeder on their own, you don’t want the food to spill all over the floor.

Look for automatic pet feeders that have spill-proof lids or some kind of feature on the bottom of the bases to keep them from tipping over.

Refill Alert

It’s common for some people to forget to refill the hoppers, especially if the capacity lasts for a couple of days at a time. If this is you, getting a feeder with a food level sensor can help you remember to refill it. These feeders make a sound to notify you. If the feeders have mobile apps, they may send you a notification about the refill too.

Protection Against Power Outages

Electronic feeders that stop working if the power goes out defeat the purpose of the products. Losing functionality could put pets with special dietary needs in a hard spot. This is why it’s important to choose a device with a backup battery system that can last for a few days until the power comes on again. This feature, however, isn’t necessary for gravity pet feeders.

Microchip or Collar Tag Reader

A few automatic pet feeders have radio-frequency identification technology. If your pets have microchips in them, you can program these feeders to only open and dispense food to your animals. This technology can also be used for collar tags that allow for RFID scanning. Feeders like these are a great solution for scheduling meals for outdoor cats.

Remote Control

Connecting to automatic pet feeders via mobile apps gives you even more control over when and how much your pets eat. The remote control feature could even let you adjust the program settings.

Why to Buy an Automatic Pet Feeder

The main reason why people should buy automatic pet feeders is to make sure that their pets get fed while they’re at work or enjoying a weekend getaway. They eliminate the need to board your pets or ask family or friends to feed them while you’re gone. With easy washing and spill-proof protection, you don’t have to worry about messes either.

The extra level of control that electronic pet feeders give you help keep your animals from gorging on their food. They help you manage when and how much your pets eat. These aspects promote easy digestion, which ensures that your animals get the most nutrients out of their meals.

They also help manage medical conditions and weight. Furthermore, backup battery systems ensure that your pets don’t miss meals when the power goes out.


Is It Easy to Set Up an Automatic Pet Feeder?

Between the different types of automatic pet feeders, the installation process may vary. In general, though, they’re very easy to set up. Aside from a few products that come fully assembled, most of them have a base, hopper and bowl. Simply put food in the hopper, and place it and the bowl in the base.

Electronic feeders have one extra step, which involves programming the settings. This step might take five to 10 minutes for products that have all of the bells and whistles. For the most part, setup is a breeze and takes only moments to finish.