Feeding your pet on a regular schedule can be a challenge when you're juggling work, school, family, and time-consuming commitments. But with an automatic dog feeder, you can feed your pooch at regular intervals— even when you aren't home. Not only will a smart feeder make mealtime easy, but it will also benefit your dog's health by ensuring they get the nutrition they need without overfeeding. So to help you keep your furry friend fed while you're away, we've rounded up the best automatic dog feeders on the market below.
Benefits of Using an Automatic Dog Food Dispenser
As the name implies, automatic dog food dispensers do the work for you at feeding time. They're designed with a timer to release food at the mealtimes of your choosing. Most have a storage tank that holds between 4 and 6 meals worth of dry dog food at a time. If you want to provide fresh food daily, you can find an auto dog feeder that can dispense up to four meals daily. Here are a few of the perks of using one of these convenient automatic feeders:
- Pet parents love automatic pet feeds for their convenience as it dispenses food on a schedule set by you. Thanks to their built-in timers, you won't have to worry about your pet missing a meal or eating the wrong amount of food.
- Automatic dog feeders are also a great option for pets that eat too fast. Unlike gravity feeders, an automatic dog feeder dispensing your pet's food in small, spaced-out portions helps them eat slower, supporting healthy digestion and weight management. Some even come with slow feed mode.
- Not a morning person? There's no need to wake up early anymore to feed your hungry pooch. Just set your smart dog feeder before you go to bed, and it'll dispense your pooch's breakfast automatically so you can keep hitting snooze.
- An automatic pet feeder is an excellent choice if you work long hours or spend a lot of time away from home. Thanks to these handy food bowls, your pooch can stick to a regular feeding schedule even when you're away.
- Automatic dog feeders can also help maintain your dog's weight. They prevent overeating and weight gain by feeding your pet pre-portioned meals instead of allowing them to graze on a full food bowl throughout the day.
- Automatic feeders aren't just for dogs! They're also great for feeding cats while you're at work, out of the house, or away on vacation. You'll just want to double-check that the feeder you've chosen is suitable for use with canned food.
What to Look for in an Automatic Pet Feeder
Though most automatic pet feeders work relatively the same way, there are a few key features to look for in a product:
- Capacity— An automatic food dispenser with a larger capacity won't need to be refilled as often. Bigger dog food containers are ideal for larger breeds and pet parents who are away for extended periods of time.
- Portion Size— Similarly, you'll want to look for an automatic dog feeder that dispenses the right portion size for your pooch.
- Automated Feeding Schedule— While all automatic dog feeders use some sort of automatic food dispensing system, you'll still want to check how many meals it can release and how often.
- Wifi Capabilities— The best automatic feeders come with wifi capabilities that allow you to control the feeder's portion size and feeding schedule through a convenient app. Some even come equipped with a camera so you can check in on your dog while they chow down.
- Additional Features— More advanced pet feeders are designed with fancy, tech-savvy features like voice recording capabilities and cameras. Thanks to the added features, these models tend to be a bit more pricey.
- Durable Design— It's worth reading a few customer reviews to double-check that the product you're getting is built to last, especially when it's something you'll be using multiple times a day. Stick to products made from stainless steel and BPA-free, food-safe plastic.
- Prevents Blockages— The best feeders are designed with sensors that detect blockages and adjust their rotation pattern to release stuck food and dispense your dog's meal.
- Easy Cleaning— Look for an automatic pet feeder that offers a removable bowl for easy cleaning. And it is also made with dishwasher-safe materials and a design that's easy to clean.
- Price vs. Quality— While lower-priced options may save you a bit of money upfront, they probably won't have the same tech-savvy features, durable materials, or stylish design. It's worth splurging a bit to get a high-quality product that will last through countless mealtimes to come.
The Best Automatic Dog Feeders
Now that you know what to look for, let's check out the best automatic dog feeders on the market to find one that's right for you and your pooch.
If you're new to the world of automatic pet food dispensers, this WoPet SmartFeeder Automatic Pet Feeder is a great place to start. Pet parents can set feeding times, record up to 10 customized voice memos, and check Fido through the built-in camera thanks to wifi capabilities and smartphone controls. The internal food container holds up to 29 cups of food, dispensing between one to six times per day. It's a great choice for pet owners on a busy schedule!
Best on a Budget
Don't let the affordable price of the Pet Libro Automatic Dry Food Dispenser trick you. It's just as high-tech as expensive, high-end feeders on the market for a fraction of the cost. The convenient dog feeder holds up to 16.9 cups of dry food at a time and can dispense 1-4 meals per day. Plus, it comes equipped with a built-in camera and handy voice recorder so you can stay involved at mealtime when you're away at work, school, or on vacation. Not to mention, it comes with a desiccant bag to keep food fresh. While the automatic dog feeder is ideal for small to medium dogs, it's equally as suitable for feeding cats.
If techy home gadgets aren't really your thing, stick with a low-tech option like this PetSafe 5-Meal Automatic Pet Feeder with Digital Clock and Portion Control. Just set the timer and forget it! The automatic feeder will do the rest for you. Each of its five compartments holds up to one cup of dry or semi-moist food, helping break down feeding into smaller meals that support healthy digestion and weight management. The removable tray is made from BPA-free plastic that's dishwasher-safe for quick and easy clean-up.
Best with Voice
Mealtime establishes an important bond between pets and their owners. Thankfully, with this Automatic Pet Feeder and Voice Recorder from SereneLife, you can stay involved at feeding time when you're away. It's equipped with a built-in voice recorder that allows you to leave personalized messages for your pet to hear every time the feeder dispenses a meal. A six-liter capacity food tank and programmable timer make it easy to keep Fido on a regular feeding schedule while you're at work, in class, or running errands. It's even equipped with infrared detection to prevent food spills during dispensing.
Best for Multiple Daily Meals
Need to feed your cat or dog multiple meals while you're away? Try this 6-Meal Automatic Dog and Cat Feeder from PetSafe. It'll give you peace of mind while you're away and keep your pet on a healthy feeding routine regardless of how busy your schedule gets. The user-friendly feeder holds up to six pre-portioned meals that can be set to the time of your choosing. Each section can dispense up to 1 cup of dry or semi-wet food. The bowl and tray are fully removable and dishwasher-safe for easy clean-up at the end of the day. This is also the best option for small dogs as each slot can uphold to 1 cup of dry food.
Best for Multi-Pet Households
If your household has two dogs, you'll need an automatic feeder with two bowls— like this Two-Pet Automatic Feeder from Honey Guardian. The dual-bowl design and large food tank make it easy to feed two dogs at once. Just use the LCD screen to program the feeding schedule of your choosing, and your furry friends can enjoy up to six meals a day while you're away. The removable food storage container holds up to 29 cups of dry dog food and has transparent sides that make it easy to see when it's time for a refill. A built-in infrared sensor prevents food blockages and ensures feeding time always runs smoothly.
Best for Large Dogs
Larger dogs will need an automatic pet food dispenser that holds more food and dispenses larger portions. Dogness' Automatic wifi Dog and Cat Smart Feeder with HD Camera features a jam-free dispensing mechanism with two portion wheels to choose from. It conveniently pairs with the free app for easy feeding schedule adjustments and interactive mealtimes. A 165-degree HD camera with night vision allows you to watch your pet any time, day or night. And a handy voice recorder lets you leave cute voice memos to play at programmed feeding times. Pet owners can choose from three stylish color options: navy, grey, and Tiffany blue.
Best For Small Dogs
For small dogs, puppies or cats, we recommend this feeder from Petkit. With a simple setup from your phone, you no longer need to get up in the middle of the night to feed your puppy or cats. With the personalized setting, you can dispense different portion sizes. Control portion sizes from one portion to twenty portions. Featuring the duo fresh lock system, it will keep the dry food dry and fresh. And it comes with a dishwasher-safe stainless steel bowl.