Best Camera For Dog Photography 2020

By | 06/11/2022

For this guide, I spoke with Mikel Delgado, a certified practical fauna behaviorist and postdoctoral beau at the UC Davis Schoolhouse of Veterinarian Medicine, who at the time of our interview used pet cameras to aid her inquiry into cat behavior. I also consulted Laura Linneman, a behavioral rehabilitation specialist at the ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Center. She’due south a certified professional canis familiaris trainer who understands canine behavior and how to become the most out of pet cameras. Finally, I sought the expertise of Wirecutter’s own smart-dwelling expert, Rachel Cericola, who’s covered consumer electronics for more than xv years.

A dog on a couch, with pet camera shown on a side table.

Photo: Sarah Kobos

Spending hours or days away from your pets tin can be rough, regardless of whether y’all’re just at the part for the day or you lot’re on vacation for a week. Maybe you picture them staring longingly at the front door all day waiting for your render. Worse, perhaps your imagination runs wild and you fright that tragedy has befallen them in your absence. Deep downwardly we know they’re probably fine, simply there’s that tiny voice that says otherwise. Condition texts from the pet sitter or dog walker quell those scary thoughts, but the updates aren’t always timely or detailed and sometimes lack photographic proof that our prized pets are alright. Thankfully, pet cameras exist to fill the gap betwixt our imaginations and the fractional updates from pet professionals.

“Pet cameras” are basically home security cameras with playful features our pets can savor. Pet cams let us encounter what’s going on at home when the pet sitter or dog walker isn’t effectually to answer our avalanche of questions. Some models also brand information technology piece of cake to appoint with our pets when we’re at work or on a getaway. We tin can toss our dogs treats, play a game of laser pointer with the cats, or even send our pets a bulletin via ii-way video conversation. (Though be warned: Our research shows that many of these interactive features are problematic and can actually exist harmful to some pets.) On days that nosotros’re especially decorated, we tin watch the footage the pet cam captured of our pets, or rely on the motion sensors to tell usa when they’re on the movement.

A selection of pet cameras tested for this review.

Photograph: Sarah Kobos

I asked ten coworkers and friends near their pet photographic camera preferences and what they valued near almost them. I researched models listed on pet forums and those recommended by veterinarians, dog trainers, and beast behaviorists. And I studied best-seller listings across major retailers, such as Amazon, Chewy, Overstock, Petco, PetSmart, Walmart, and Wayfair.

And then I compiled a listing of eight popular pet camera models and seven security cameras, partly informed by senior staff writer Rachel Cericola’s existing recommendations. I compared each model’s toll (ranging from $25 to $350), availability beyond retailers, ratings, photographic camera resolution, cloud storage, warranty, and notable features, such as night vision, 2-way sound, sensors, and treats dispensers. The following models were selected for testing: Furbo Dog Camera; PetChatz HDX; Petcube Bites two; Petcube Play 2; Petzi Treat Cam; Tooge Pet Camera; and Wyze Cam v2 (discontinued).

A screen capture from a Furbo camera, showing a dog sniffing the floor.

We tested each camera in regular and night-vision mode.

Photograph: Kaitlyn Wells

A screen capture from a Furbo camera, showing a cat close to the camera.

Nosotros noted which cameras distorted the footage during our tests.

Photo: Kaitlyn Wells

I tested each device in my 700-square-pes apartment in New York City to see how each model performed in the existent world, spotty Internet connection and all. And then I compared their performance based on the following factors:

  • Setup and app integration:
    How easy is it to gear up the app for the photographic camera?
  • Image quality:
    Do images and video look sharp in regular and nighttime-vision fashion?
  • Audio quality:
    Does sound sound articulate through the camera’southward speaker, also as through the app?
  • Motion and audio detection:
    How quickly, frequently, and accurately does each device ship push alerts when information technology detects motility or sound?
  • Interactive features:
    Do the light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation pointers, treats dispensers, and two-way sound and/or video features piece of work without a hitch? How easy is it to fix a jamming treats dispenser or a janky laser pointer?
  • Durability:
    Is this device breakable, and are there any pieces that a pet could exploit, impairment, break, or swallow?
  • Privacy policies and security:
    What’s the security track record for each manufacturer, and what are the policies on protecting consumer data?

It’southward no underground that millions of pet owners are absolutely obsessed with their pets. Nosotros give them fantastical haircuts, make keepsakes of their fur, souvenir them to loved ones, and invest gobs of coin in their health care. Naturally, we went into our research for this guide seeking a pet camera that would let us not only keep picket over our pets while we’re away, but also remotely engage with them in ways not possible with traditional security cameras. Watching our pets run around a room or slumber on the sofa is great—merely we figured the feel would exist even better if we could toss them a treat or play a game with them also, even if nosotros were many miles abroad.

Information technology turns out, we were wrong. We found that some of these interactive elements tin practice more harm than good.

“While some pets might similar a random treat or to hear their guardian’s voice when they aren’t at dwelling, for others it could be stressful, confusing, or increment anxiety,” said Laura Linneman, a certified professional domestic dog trainer and behavioral rehabilitation specialist at the ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Middle.

Owners who video chat with their pets while they’re away may scoff at this, but our testing diameter this out. When we video chatted with loved ones and asked them to present the screen to our pets, the animals were more engaged, thanks to the calming presence of an actual man. But when nosotros cooed to our pets from an omniscient voice in an Echo Dot, pet camera, or security camera, sans homo in the room, our pets were more probable to exhibit stress behaviors, similar pacing, whining, running abroad, twitching their ears, or licking their lips.

“Yous e’er desire to carefully notice how your pet is reacting to any type of new engineering science,” added Mikel Delgado, a certified applied animal behaviorist and postdoctoral fellow at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine at the time of our interview. “They’re non getting the usual visual or scent cues [with a pet camera], and if they’re just hearing our vocalism it can be a little disturbing to them.”

Fifty-fifty if your pet tolerates the sound of your disembodied vocalisation well, other interactive features tin can be harder on them. “If your pet isn’t moving all day, you lot don’t desire to necessarily increase their treats” since that could pb to weight gain, Delgado said. She brash pet owners to invest in nutrient puzzles instead of a treats-launching pet cam, considering the puzzles offer both mental and physical stimulation.

Pet cameras with laser pointers also aren’t ideal considering they don’t provide full enjoyment for your pet. Light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation pointers offer a form of play for cats—who are big on hunting—and when they “catch” the laser axle, there’southward nothing to physically interact with, which can be stressful. (You lot should be present and then you tin can give your true cat a real toy to catch so they can become the full benefits of a play-hunt session.) As for dogs, well, “some dogs practice go a chip compulsive for tracking the lite,” Delgado said.

If the potential of stress, unfulfillment, and obsessive behaviors won’t convince you to forgo an interactive pet camera, maybe the toll will. Our picks in our guide to the all-time indoor security camera are cheaper than half the pet cameras we tested. And the leading pet cameras couldn’t offer sharper images or better cloud storage options than our security cam picks. So if you need more than desultory updates from your pet sitter when you’re out of town, if you’re broken-hearted nigh leaving your pet alone all day and want to make certain they’re okay, or if yous have multiple pets and desire to know whom to blame for rummaging in the kitchen trash, any 1 of our indoor security cameras will practise.

A dog with it's paws on the arm of a sofa, with a pet camera shown on a side table.

Photo: Sarah Kobos

Our pick

Nosotros’ve replaced this discontinued option with its newer model, the Wyze Cam v3, which we’ve tested and recommend in multiple guides. Nosotros’ll be testing this version for our pet cameras guide soon.

The Wyze Cam v2 is easy to use, features clear image and audio, and has an unrivaled free deject storage organization. Plus, since it’southward cheap, you can outfit your entire home with more half a dozen Wyze cameras for less than you’d pay for a single traditional pet cam. The Wyze Cam makes information technology easy to inexpensively and reliably continue tabs on your pet when you’re not home.

The Wyze Cam measures two by ii past 2 inches, making it the smallest device we tested. Its miniature size means you lot tin can hands observe a spot for it in any home past setting it on a shelf or mounting information technology to a wall. The Wyze Cam is simple to ready—it takes but five minutes to plug in the camera, download the app, and complete the onscreen prompts. If you decide to purchase multiple cameras, the dashboard shows each Wyze you lot’ve connected to the app, and you tin explore their respective photographic camera settings and watch the footage captured throughout the day. Y’all can grant family members access to your feed by sending them an invite link, and so there’s no reason to keep sharing passwords. (PSA: Go a password manager.) And yous can turn the Wyze on or off through the dashboard instead of unplugging it when you need privacy.

The Wyze Cam v2, shown against a blue background.

The Wyze is pocket-size, then information technology’southward like shooting fish in a barrel to set up almost anywhere.

Photo: Sarah Kobos

This security camera has a lens that matches those of its pricier pet-camera competitors. The Wyze Cam offers a 110-degree viewing bending at 1080p resolution (the same resolution as the 2018 Roku Streaming Stick), and it records videos at xv frames per second, or 10 fps in night mode. (For comparison, virtually mobile phones default at xxx fps, but the Wyze camera nonetheless managed to produce smooth videos in our testing.) It’southward also the just photographic camera I tested that offers video playback in 360p, or 1080p at multiple levels of compression. When you record video from a broad-angle lens, the footage is warped around the edges, merely with the Wyze, it’south not as severe as with another cameras I tested. For instance, the Petcube Bites 2 and Petcube Play 2 accept 160-degree viewing angles that offer a great view of a large room when they’re posted on a high bookshelf. But the Petcube cameras’ wider angles have a high distortion charge per unit, like a fish-eye view, that makes them useless when they’re on a coffee table or the ground. The Wyze v2 captured clear images no affair where information technology was placed. “The clarity is fantastic,” said Tony Kaye, who owns two of them and is a senior associate of commerce operations at Wirecutter. “I use the one pointed in the lawn to make certain there are no rabbits or wild animals nearby before I let [my dogs] out.”

The Wyze Cam’southward two-manner sound projected clearly on both ends in my tests, and usually with only a 1-second delay. When I played a recording in front end of the camera, the sound was understandable through the app. My vocalization also sounded and then crystal articulate through the Wyze Cam’s speaker that I got my domestic dog to sit down on control when I was in some other room.

A person using the Wyze app to monitor their pet.

Wyze’due south app makes it easy to bank check in on your pets (and share how beautiful they are).

Photo: Sarah Kobos

Wyze’south new cloud characteristic offers costless, rolling 14-day storage. When the camera detects motion or sound, it captures 12-second clips that are stored in the Events section of the dashboard, and recordings are securely uploaded to the deject. (When the detection alerts were prepare to high, Wyze recorded clips every five minutes as I moved about the room doing household chores.) Motion-detection alerts remain in the app and are never communicated with the cloud, co-ordinate to Wyze’s privacy argument. (That means if you’re defenseless streaking through your home, non even deject hackers will see information technology, unless they painstakingly sift through all of your footage.)

If you lot prefer continuous recording, you can upgrade to the Wyze Cam’s premium cloud version, Cam Plus, for simply $xv a year, when billed annually. Run across how that (and other features) stack up to the competition, below:

Wyze Cam v2 cloud recording and storage features by plan

Plan Bones Premium
Recording length 12-second clips Continuous recording
Storage 14 days fourteen days
Monthly fee $0 $two
Annual fee $0 $xv

Petcube Bites two and Play two cloud recording and storage features by programme

Program Bones
Recording length Live only 30-second clips thirty-second clips
Storage N/A 3 days ninety days
Monthly fee $0 $6 $15
Annual fee $0 $48 $120

Afterward reviewing each programme and consulting our panel of 10 pet owners, we believe the free options from Wyze or Petcube offering enough recording fourth dimension and deject storage for routine bank check-ins while y’all’re at work. For a weeklong getaway, you can always buy a monthly programme and cancel the subscription when you’re back home.

Alternatively, you can keep your video history offline and install an viii GB, 16 GB, or 32 GB microSD card (one of our microSD recommendations is bachelor in 32 GB capacity). This method offers continuous recording—and so you’ll ever know which manner the cat ran after they knocked over your favorite knickknack. Local recordings are nonetheless viewable in the app and tin can be accessed from anywhere, every bit long as your Wyze is still connected to a ability source and Wi-Fi. (Wyze estimates that 32 GB volition store 2 days of footage in Hd, or seven days of footage in SD.) However, we don’t advise using a microSD card for dwelling security because in that location’s no fill-in if information technology’s stolen during a break-in.

The Wyze Cam works with Alexa or IFTTT, and comes with a 1-year limited warranty.

Two Petcube cameras shown next to a Wyze Cam v2, while a dog is shown in the background.

Photograph: Sarah Kobos

The most obvious drawback for some pet owners will exist that the Wyze Cam v2 doesn’t have a laser pointer or a treats dispenser. But, as we explained, pet owners (and their pets) volition become along fine (if non better) without these features.

The Wyze Cam’s motion tagging feature, which places a green square effectually the moving object, is great for spotting a small-scale or skittish pet in the corner of the room, but it’s less useful if you lot take multiple pets or at that place are people regularly walking into view. In my tests, the Wyze Cam tagged the largest or most active moving object in the room, which wasn’t always useful. I recommend turning motion tagging off in high-traffic rooms, or adjusting the Wyze’south Detection Zone feature, to target a specific area of the room.

The Wyze Cam’southward small stature and expandable, plastic stand make information technology rather breakable. During testing, the Z-shaped stand up had to exist positioned just correct or it would tip over. We recommend keeping the stand collapsed on a shelf, or mounted to a wall using the included metal plate or permanent adhesive tape, to prevent information technology from tipping over. The camera’s limited ane-year warranty covers defects but, so if your pet knocks the camera off a high shelf or uses the stand up as a chew toy, you’re out of luck. But at just $20, the Wyze Cam is not that costly to replace.

As described in our guide to the all-time indoor security camera, in December 2019, Wyze Labs experienced a data breach that exposed user device names, emails, profile photos, Wi-Fi SSIDs, and Alexa permissions. (Wyze says the alienation didn’t include financials, passwords, or video content.) Wyze apace logged users out of their accounts, reset third-political party apps, and emailed users detailed information near the breach, which we received while blind testing this device. We capeesh Wyze’s transparency, and our smart-home team is monitoring the situation.

A dog sniffing a Petcube camera.

Photo: Sarah Kobos

Upgrade pick

If you actually love the idea of interacting with your pet via camera, the Petcube Bites 2 is the model nosotros recommend. It’s easy to install, offers a precipitous epitome that family unit and friends tin livestream, and has a wider viewing angle than whatever model we tested. The Bites ii’s onboard treats dispenser is more reliable than the contest’s, too. Simply this smart pet photographic camera costs 10 times as much as the Wyze Cam. Too, viewing angles—although wonderfully wide—are flawed in some positions, and audio sensors can be finicky. Plus, the Petcube’due south free cloud backup lasts for just four hours, so pet owners who tin’t regularly check the video history may miss out on their pets moving around. And the paid storage plan may be too expensive for a pet owner who’due south hoping for only the occasional look-see.

We similar the Petcube’s interface because installation is a snap; we had the Bites two and Play 2 smart cameras running in 5 minutes. The dashboard is easy to navigate, for adjusting the cloud recordings, livestream sharing, automatic treats dispensing, and more. Perhaps the most thoughtful features are the ability to mute the camera’s connecting sound alert, and to mute two-way audio so the noise doesn’t disturb your pet every fourth dimension yous accept a peek. (Wyze “clicks” when the camera is turned on or off, and the ii-way audio defaults to mute, so you don’t get whatsoever echo or feedback.)

A person using the Petcube app to monitor their pet's activity.

Photograph: Sarah Kobos

The Petcube Bites ii produces sharp, 1080p video, with a 160-degree field of view that captures images clearly, dark and day. And the digital zoom feature makes spotting an elusive true cat’s tail under the bed all the easier. The camera detects movement or sound, and you can adapt the motility sensor’s sensitivity level to reduce the number of simulated or frequent alerts. The Wyze Cam also has adjustable motion and sound detectors, and it captures footage in clear 1080p, only its field of view is narrower, at 110 degrees wide. (During testing, I plant the Bites 2’s motion sensors to exist substantially more sensitive than the Wyze’s, since the Bites 2 sent push notifications or recorded footage nigh every two minutes.)

Like the Wyze Cam (and dissimilar virtually cameras I tested), the Petcube has a secure, shareable livestream feed. If you share buying of your pet with someone else, you can grant them admission to the photographic camera feed without handing them your login credentials (an choice unavailable with most of the cameras I tested). Those on the family list get unlimited access, and people on the friends and public lists are restricted to accessing the feed only certain hours or days of the week. Like Petcube, with its family list, Wyze grants its shared users nearly full control of the camera.

Petcube sells 2 models of smart pet cameras that are nigh identical in features and performance: the Bites 2, with its treats dispenser, and the Play ii, with a laser pointer. The experts we spoke with said that treats dispensers offer but passive enrichment, and that laser pointers can cause stress amidst cats or lead to obsessive behaviors among dogs. If you must have an interactive element, nosotros recollect the pet camera with a treats dispenser is the improve and safer bet. The Petcube Bites two was quieter and more than precise when dispensing treats compared with like models, including the Furbo Domestic dog Camera, PetChatz HDX, and Petzi Treat Cam.

A shooting pet treat is certain to become your pup’south attention.

Video: Sarah Kobos

Using the treats dispenser is a game in itself. Yous open the app’s livestream and flick a bone-shaped command into the room, and the treats fly out, mirroring the distance of your flick. It’s the merely model I tested with this game-like interface, and in my tests, treats flew between 1 to 6 feet abroad. The Bites 2 is also the simply treats-dispensing model I found that had three removable treat dams, or inserts, to control how many treats release simultaneously, or to arrange larger treats up to one-inch wide. Typically, one to three treats manipulate at a time. (Comparatively, Petzi doesn’t have a treat dam and frequently spewed out ten treats at a time.) The Bites two also makes a soft, whirring sound when it launches treats, and this was less jarring than the Furbo’s and the Petzi’s grinding noise.

The Petcube Bites 2 is the best smart pet camera I tested, simply it’s also one of the most expensive models. It’south $200, so you could buy x of the Wyze Cams we recommend and outfit your entire abode with sentries. The Petcube platform stores only four hours of footage in the cloud for gratis, then to get anything more than, you need to invest in a paid cloud storage plan, which is $six to $fifteen a month, or discounted to $48 to $120 a year. Insufficiently, Wyze’s paid programme is $2 a calendar month, or $15 a yr. Although the Wyze programme doesn’t have all the premium offerings boasted past Petcube, information technology covers the nuts every pet owner needs: continuous recording, longer storage time, and unlimited downloads. Likewise, the Petcube, unlike the Wyze, doesn’t permit you to capture footage locally on SD cards.

We think the costless plans from Petcube or Wyze should get yous what you need for the occasional check-in while you’re at work. You can ever purchase a monthly plan before you lot head out of boondocks for an extended trip, and suspend your subscription when you return.

The Petcube camera shown next to the Wyze Cam.

The Petcam Bites ii is big plenty that information technology can be hard to find a good identify to put information technology.

Photo: Sarah Kobos

The Bites 2 is large, so it may be difficult to identify this camera in an unobtrusive spot in some homes. Information technology measures 5.7 by three past 10.half-dozen inches, and is roughly the size of a 2-liter bottle of soda. (The Wyze Cam is a 2-inch cube, and then it’s easier to stash in a room.) That makes information technology a tight fit for some bookshelves and television stands. Alternatively, you can mount information technology on the wall using the included drywall anchor screws, but and so it’s harder to move when your pet favors another room. The camera lens exacerbates the placement issue. Petcube advises positioning the camera at least three feet above the ground and close to the edge of a surface for a better viewing angle. If y’all don’t follow that advice, yous’ll be stuck staring at the forest paneling of your coffee tabular array; the camera lens is at the base of the stand, and information technology has a 160-caste-wide lens, which warps the view.

A screen capture from the Wyze Cam, showing a living room with a Christmas tree set up.

The Wyze Cam v2 offers a narrower field of view than the Petcube Bites two.

Photo: Kaitlyn Wells

A screen capture from the Bites 2 camera.

The Bites 2’s photographic camera is located on the base of the device, which warps the view.

Photograph: Kaitlyn Wells

Interacting with the Bites two also has its challenges. Like most of the cameras I tested, with the Bites 2 there was a slight delay with its two-way sound. Though audio for the pet owner and the pet was crystal clear, I noticed a three- to five-second delay on the sender’due south/human’south side. (The Wyze Cam had a 1-second delay during testing.) I blame the Bites ii’s delay on a quirk with the app’s blueprint. You press the virtual microphone then speak into the app to get your pet’s attending. During testing, I had to repeat myself twice before the microphone actually captured my voice.

The sensor alerts were a mixed bag. I like that you lot tin adjust the sensitivity of the motion alerts; that reduces false alerts triggered by, say, a curtain flapping in the breeze. But I noticed that the sound alerts (which you tin can’t adjust) were rarely triggered, fifty-fifty when I projected music or recordings of dogs barking into the room.

Finally, unlike our security camera pick, the Bites 2 photographic camera can’t be turned on and off through the app. If you’d similar some extra privacy at domicile, yous demand to unplug the device, or connect it to a smart plug that you lot command.

The Petcube Bites ii works with Amazon Alexa and has a one-yr limited warranty.

Our main pick now offers an upgrade in the Wyze Cam v3 for about $35. According to our smart dwelling house expert, Rachel Cericola, who’s currently testing the new version, it delivers better image and alerts than our current selection, and still retains the power to record locally or to the cloud.

Wirecutter’s current indoor security camera pick, the $40 Eufy Solo IndoorCam C24, offers sharp 2K video with a 125-degree field of view, four different storage options, and hands connects with other smart devices, including Amazon Alexa, Apple Homekit, and Google Assistant. We’ll be looking at this soon to see how it stacks up for keeping an eye on your pets.

Petcube launched the Petcube Cam in summertime 2020. The $forty device looks comparable to the Wyze lineup with its small frame, versatile mounting option, 1080p full HD resolution, and 110-degree wide-angle lens. Petcube also added a special app feature, Emergency Fund, an on-demand service that connects users with a licensed veterinarian through text for $29 a month, or $240 a year. Subscribers also go admission to a $3,000 emergency fund to cover emergency vet care, in which qualifying care is determined at Petcube’due south vets’ discretion.

A screen capture from a Furbo camera.

Non all cameras are created equal. The Furbo Domestic dog Camera films video in 1080p with a 160-degree viewing angle.

Photo: Kaitlyn Wells

2019 Testing

The Furbo Dog Camera has a modern silhouette, is easy to install, and offers clear video and wide, 160-degree viewing angles. Merely there’s no manner to securely share livestream access with family or friends; you have to requite abroad your login credentials, which is a security risk. There’due south a iii-second delay between existent-time movement and the app livestream. Push alerts arrive just every 30 minutes, which can be frustrating for owners who want more than-frequent updates to their pets’ movements. And when I tested the “barking” alerts with recordings of 11 private dogs barking, the camera couldn’t successfully detect barking (or audio) most of the time. (I likewise tested the audio sensors past talking near it and playing the TV, with little success.) There’s no free cloud storage solution—owners must pay $7 a calendar month or $69 a year to record 10-second clips of their pets. Finally, Furbo’southward most popular characteristic, a treats dispenser, makes a loud, grinding sound before information technology tosses treats into the air. The pet owners I consulted preferred models that were quieter, like the Petcube Bites 2.

A screen capture from a PetChatz camera.

The PetChatz HDX filmed in 1080p at a 103.five-caste viewing angle during our testing period, as pictured, and the photographic camera was recently updated to capture images in 1080p at 110 degrees. (Annotation, we positioned the PetChatz on the table, merely information technology’s designed to get over a standard electrical outlet just a foot off the ground.)

Photo: Kaitlyn Wells

The PetChatz HDX is $350, making it the priciest model we tested. It’s also the largest, measuring vii by 4 by 12 inches and weighing six pounds. Installing the camera is a huge pain considering you have to mount information technology on a wall over an electrical outlet. (Alternatively, you tin can purchase a stand up for $60.) The PetChatz’s low position over the outlet and tight, 110-degree viewing angle arrive the worst photographic camera to get if you want to keep watch over an entire room; it works better for close-up interactions with your pet. (PetChatz released a software update after our testing menstruum. The photographic camera’s field of view was 103.five degrees during testing.) It’due south the simply pet camera I institute with both two-way video and sound, but I considered the video feature to be a parlor trick for humans entertaining guests because information technology only stressed out my pets during testing. The onboard video screen was overexposed and undersaturated, information technology never centered me onscreen for my pets to see, and there was always a 3-second delay. This model’s treats dispenser likewise performed poorly in tests, and y’all must use PetChatz’s proprietary treats or it voids the warranty. Yous also can’t take photos in the app, only video recordings, and it takes up to xxx minutes for the app to process the footage before it’s viewable.

The Petcube Play ii uses the same technology equally the Bites two, merely it’southward a quarter of the Bites’due south size, and it comes with a laser pointer instead of a treats dispenser. As I explained earlier, the experts I spoke with said a laser pointer is a problematic interactive feature because it can atomic number 82 to obsessive behaviors and stress.

A screen capture from a Petzi camera.

The Petzi Treat Cam films video in 720p with a 110-degree viewing angle.

Photo: Kaitlyn Wells

The Petzi Treat Cam I tested arrived dirty, and the lens bumper was cleaved, which I chalked upward to harm during shipping. Even so, this model offers only a grainy 720p resolution and a tight, 110-caste viewing bending, both of which aren’t ideal when you’re searching for an elusive cat or pup. Petzi couldn’t reliably observe nighttime from daytime, the video tin can exist spotty, and at that place’s a 5-2nd delay for video, which is a lifetime for anxious pet parents. You can have just snapshots, not videos, of your pets, and there’s no real-time two-way audio feature. (Yous have to “record” an sound bulletin each time you desire to talk to your pet.) And if you lot stop interacting for more ii minutes, say, to fire off an email, the app times out. The app’s dashboard is a little confusing to operate, and each of the camera’s controls is stored on a different folio, which means you spend more fourth dimension adjusting settings than interacting with your pet. Installing treats is also virtually impossible. You accept to use pressure to opposite sides of the cover and lift, similar yous would a child-proof pill bottle. When you exercise figure it out, prepare to exist disappointed farther. The treats dispenser fires off a random number of treats, usually between one and x during my tests.

At but $34 and with more than than 1,900 Amazon reviews, the Tooge Pet Camera sounded promising, just it failed to live up to the hype. The device offers foggy 720p video and claims to provide a 350-degree view of the room, simply you accept to press an app button up to 22 times to rotate the camera a full 350 degrees, giving you just a sliver of a view at a time. The audio was also faint, it was difficult to save photos from, and push notifications were obnoxiously loud.

  1. Mikel Maria Delgado, PhD, CAAB, CCBC, postdoctoral fellow, UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, telephone interview
    , January vii, 2020

  2. Laura Linneman, CPDT-KA, behavioral rehabilitation specialist, ASPCA Behavioral Rehabilitation Eye, e-mail interview
    , January six, 2020