January 17, 2014 by Lisa Montgomery
Automatic pet feeders are nothing new, but the ability to monitor and control the device from an app on your smartphone or tablet takes pet care to a whole new level. The Smart Feeder from PetNet and companion app lets you set up schedules for the dispensing of your pet’s food. You can manage feeding times, portion sizes and dispensing speed from anywhere. The app shows your pet’s daily, weekly and monthly caloric intake, and alerts are sent automatically to your smartphone or tablet regarding feeding times, food inventory and battery life.
In addition to being convenient and clever, the smartphone-controllable feeders can help ensure a healthy lifestyle for your pet, which according to the 2012 National Pet Obesity Survey, could possibly be overweight. The survey revealed that 52.5 percent of dogs and 58.3 percent of cats are too heavy for their own good. By managing their diet you can add 1.8 years to their life, according to a Purina Life Span Study.
The product first appeared in a crowd-fund campaign in 2012, and it surprised its fundraising goal. The Smart Feeder isn’t available quite yet, but you can reserve one for $199. The company says the products will ship in the second quarter of 2014.
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Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.