Reviewed by Lucy Gwilliam
We recently welcomed a beautiful Ragdoll cat into our family and we don’t like to leave her for long periods of time due to her eating little and often and being very fussy about duration of time the food is in her bowl, so when I was offered the opportunity to review a smart feeding pet appliance, I was super excited.
Our cat, Luna, means the world to us and the food we buy for her reflects how we want to feed her the best. We give her a grain free diet, which consists of wet food and dried food. We feed her wet food 3 times per day and she has dried food available at all times, which she grazes on throughout the day. We have to keep replenishing the dried food as she will not eat it if it has been there too long, this leads to a lot of waste. The idea of the auto feed and having sensors that inform you on your mobile phone when the food is low, is a great feature that would work perfectly for what we wanted for Luna.
I have always wanted an automatic pet feeder as I work long hours and like to go on weekends away but I just hadn’t got round to buying one. I had researched them, but there were so many, with different features, that I just couldn’t choose which one to purchase. I think having one, it would give me the peace of mind to be able to leave Luna for the night and know that she is eating the food we leave for her and I can top up her food, rather than my disabled parents having to come round to feed her.
On delivery day, I was quite surprised at how big the box was that my postie delivered to my door. When I opened it, I was staggered at how compact the feeder was, I think I was expecting it to be huge. The bowl that it comes with is rather on the large side however, but I think this is because the feeder is aimed at both dogs and cats alike. The feeder is really easy to set up and the user guide is very straightforward with images to accompany the instructions. It only took me a couple of minutes before it was up and running. The next thing I had to do was download the app to allow me to programme the feeder to my cat’s needs. There is a section to add batteries or you plug it into the wall. I decided to plug in the feeder to the wall.
Once I had downloaded the app, I connected the feeder to my home WIFI. I then added Luna’s dried food to the container within the auto feeder. This then sent a signal to the app that food was available. To test it out, I programmed it to release food a few minutes after setting it up. When scheduling the feeds, you can choose the times, amounts to be released and if you want to use a slow release- to stop those greedy pets from eating it all in one go.
On the first test, no food was released, so I went back to the app to see what I had done wrong. I decided to increase the amount of food that was released to see if that helped. Maybe it was due to the food being inside the container and not being on the conveyor belt that takes the food to the bowl.
You can choose to feed your pet on the hour, quarter past, half past or quarter too, so I had to wait another 15 minutes to see if the feeder was going to work for me. Once the 15 minutes was over, I heard the mechanism in the feeder release the food and Luna ran over to see what was going on. She was quite confused at first and sniffed about it but she happily ate her food once she had had a nosy. As the week went on, she familiarised herself with the sound and knew that it was time to be fed.
The PetSafe website gives you the following information…
Features of the feeder:
· Alexa assisted-You can ask your Amazon Echo device to feed your dog or cat a snack or you can simply use the Smart Feed app on your phone to monitor your pet’s feeding from anywhere for peace of mind
· Smartphone programming – Control your pet’s meal time from anywhere using your smartphone; app requires an apple iPhone or iPod device iOS 9.0 or later or a compatible Android smartphone 6.0 or later
· Receive alerts to your smartphone– you can be notified when your pet is fed, the food level is low or the feeder is empty; feeds on schedule as programmed if Wi-Fi connection is lost or feeder is offline
· Customized meal times – Set up to 12 meals to feed on your pet’s schedule; Feed Now option allows you to feed your pet outside normal feeding times
· Flexible portions – Meals can be dispensed from 1/8 cup to 4 cups to fit your pet’s unique feeding needs; slow feed option allows meals larger than 1/8 cup to dispense slowly over a 15-minute period
· Low Food Sensor – The feeder automatically notifies you when food levels are low; you’ll also receive an alert if the hopper becomes empty
· Easy-to-clean – Lid, hopper, bowl and bowl holder are top-shelf dishwasher-safe for convenient cleaning Best for cats and small or medium dogs
· Smart Feed and free Smart Feed app
· Stainless steel bowl
· Power adapter, with additional adapters for different countries
· Quick start guide
· One-year warranty
Overall, I’m really impressed with the Pet Safe Smart Feed Automatic Pet Feeder. It’s a revolutionary piece of technology that will help us so much once our lives are back to normal after the Covid -19 lockdown has ended. As were at home most of the time, it’s not something that we really need at the moment, but I feel it would benefit us hugely once we can go away for a night’s break and when I’m back to work. It will give us the reassurance that our cat is going to have enough food to last and that I can monitor her eating while not there. I would rate this item 5/5.
This product is available to buy from the PetSafe website here.