Jack Russell rips up pillow on couch

PET CAMS ARE PRICEY — BUT ARE THEY WORTH IT?

05/14/20

Whether you’re grinding away all day at work or you’re just popping out to the store, you can keep an eye on your best fur friend. Pet-specific cameras have some pretty cool features, but are they really that much better than a regular home monitoring camera?

TREAT YOURSELF
Treat dispensers seem like the cat’s meow, but food flying across the room could make your pet overexcited. If your pet already struggles to settle when you’re out of the house, this kind of action could keep them from getting their beauty rest. (Dogs and cats both need around 12-16 hours of sleep per day.)

Some camera companies say this feature can be used to distract your pet from bad behaviours like chewing the couch or barking at the window sill. However, this claim might be barking up the wrong tree. Presenting your pet with a reward when he’s engaged in naughtiness could accidentally reinforce the behaviour.

WOOF DETECTOR
This is mostly fancy marketing spin. Most home cameras have noise detection; they just haven’t given that feature a cute name.

SAFETY FIRST
Pet cameras claim to keep your furry family member from getting into trouble. While cameras allow you to see the problem, stopping it is another matter. If safety is a primary concern, a better option would likely be a crate and pet insurance.

PETS ARE PRICELESS — CAMERA'S AREN'T
Pet cameras aren’t cheap. They can cost up to 5x more than a regular camera. Now, that’s something to whine about.

SO, WHICH ONE IS BEST?
Unless that treat feature is too neat to pass up, we recommend saving your cash and grabbing the regular Wi-Fi enabled home camera with noise and motion detection.

AN APP ALTERNATIVE
If you’re not ready to buy yet, try downloading a free or low-cost monitoring app onto an old phone or tablet. You can leave that device at home and watch what’s going on from your current device!

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