PetSafe 5 Meal Automatic Feeder
There are the occasional days where Lyger is home alone for a long night with the dog door, which he doesn't mind at all. Frankly, I'm sure he'd prefer it to being crated and toted places when we have quick over-night trips. Rather than bring a neighbor in just to feed and medicate him while we're away for 20 hours, we wanted to try a pet feeder.
We put it to the test for the two days before the Thanksgiving holiday when we'd be away for about 30 hours, just to give it a dry run. It's a bit tedious to program, as you must program each feeding for the next 7 feedings, rather than just telling it to feed at 7am and 5pm every day. Additionally, I don't quite grasp why the device allows you to program 7 feedings but has only 4 rotations. (The first feeding is available as soon as you set it down, so I don't count that as 5 feedings while you're away from home.)
But, once it's programmed...what do I have to say about it. I set it up for AM and PM feedings, it fit his 1 cup easily and I just popped his arthritis pill in a pill pocket so he'd scarf it up. It worked, just as expected, on a few big batteries.
I like the convenience and comfort so that I don't have to bother neighbors to come learn his food and medication needs just for a one or two off feeding. The feeding tray is dishwasher safe and compact.
But, this particular device has a lot of drawbacks in the programming department. I'm still not sure if the device will restart its cycle at the end of it's 7 pre-programmed cycles, and it doesn't mention it in the instructions. My biggest complaint is that you have to program each individual feeding instead of just telling it what times the dog eats and having it figure out the math on its own.
But, the item was on sale at PetSmart for $39.99, and that allowed me to go spend the holiday with my in-laws a few hours away and relax, without needing to bring someone else in over the holiday. Of course I came home and spoiled my boy, but it's given us a new freedom to come and go without inconveniencing our guy. I think this would be ideal for these sorts of situations, or perhaps other pets that need scheduled feedings or medications daily. If it helps people help their pets, that's not something I can complain about.
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