Updated January 2018
Best Pet Cameras of 2018
Ever wonder what your pet is up to in the middle of the day? Does it stress you out leaving your pet at home for the day while you bring home the bacon? Well a pet camera might be the perfect little gadget for you. Whether you’re going to work, vacation, just going to the store it’s a great way to keep an eye on your pets and even interact with them if they’re (or you’re) feeling lonely.
There’s a ton of options for pet cameras out there so I set out to sift through the noise and get you a list of the ones I found to be the best. I researched and tried over 50 different models, it was both fun and exhausting but now I can save you the time. Taking into account everything from video quality to the ability to toss treats, here’s the best of the best and why!
Best for Cats
The Petcube is a really fun camera. Cat and even some dog owners are going to fall in love with its laser toy. Bored at work, you can control a laser pointer while your pet chases it franticly around the room.
Beyond just being fun, the camera has excellent video quality, it’s mid-range as far as price is concerned, and it’s got a sleek design with nice rounded edges and brushed aluminum body. It also has night vision and 2 way audio.
Video Quality: 1080p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: 130° | Night Vision: Yes | Features: Laser pointer
Best for Dogs
Furbo Dog Camera
If you like to spoil your pet, then the Furbo is for you.In addition to having a great 1080p 160º degree view, with night vision, you can also throw treats! If you’re pet is looking like they can use a pick me up you can just use the app to fire out a little treat to brighten their day. The Furbo also sports 2 way audio, meaning that you can even tell your dog to sit before giving out any treats.
It also has a barking alert which will ping your smartphone if your dog is upset. This could be a really cool feature for pet owners who have dogs who get stressed out easy. Furbo Dog Camera Detailed Review
Video Quality: 1080p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: 160° | Night Vision: Yes | Features: Treat Thrower, Bark Sensor
Nest Cam Indoor Security Camera
I like the Nest because it’s so much more than just a pet camera. Its a great camera with a nice wide angle view (130°). It’s got night vision, 2 way audio, 1080p video, works with Alexa, and it’s super easy to setup.
The downside is it doesn’t have the fun features like lasers and treat tossers that some other pet camera sport but as far as keeping an eye on your furry friends, there’s not a better option out there. Nest Cam Detailed Review
Video Quality: 1080p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: 130° | Night Vision: Yes | Features: Works with Alexa
If you want to get a great camera to keep an eye on your pet and don’t want to break the bank, this is for you. It may not throw treats or have lasers but it excels at being a camera. It’s got 720p video, that can be saved, night vision, and motion detection.
What makes it more than just a great security camera and enters it into the pet camera category is it’s two way audio feature so you can hear when your pet is upset and calm them right from your cell phone.
Video Quality: 720p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: 120° (full 360° rotation) | Night Vision: Yes | Features: Price
Top of The Line
The PetChatz is the ultimate pet camera. It combines every bell & whistle that the other cameras on this list have all in one sleek package. The downside is the cost, this camera is the most expensive camera on this list by far but if you feel like splurging this is for you.
In addition to the features available in cheaper alternatives such as treat toss, night vision, 2 way audio, and high quality video, it also has 2 way video. That means you can see your pet and they can see you. This is a really cool feature and one of the things that sets this camera apart from the pack.
Video Quality: 1080p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: 65.5º | Night Vision: Low Light Camera| Features: Treat Toss, 2 Way Video, Motion/Bark Sensors, PawCall
Petzi Treat Cam
If you are like me, I love the idea of being able to provide treats to my pups through my PetCam with limited ease. The Petsi camera allows you to see, speak, snap a picture, or dispense a treat at the touch of a button.
Petsi allows you to send your dogs favorite treat at the swift touch of a button while also allowing you to talk to your dog. Petsi is available through both iOS and android and connects via your home WiFi.
The main concern with the Petsi is that the audio is only one way. For me, I only need to talk through it but I know some owners like to hear the dogs speak!
Video Quality: 720p | Wifi: Yes | Audio: 2 Way | Viewing Area: wide angle| Night Vision: Yes| Features: Treat Toss
How to Pick the Right Camera for You
There’s a ton of pet cameras on the market and it can be confusing to figure out which one is best for you. Hopefully a couple quick tips will help you out.
One thing you don’t want to skimp on is video quality, I can’t stress this enough, you’re buying a pet camera to keep an eye on your pet and what they’re up to, or maybe just to look at their cute face while you’re away. You can’t do either of these is there’s just a blurry, pixelated blob where your pet is. Look for a camera that can stream 720p and less is to low of resolution and any higher might have connection trouble if you’re on the average internet connection.
The next thing is to make sure of is that you can see a large area so you want to look for a camera with either a wide angle lens or one that can pan and tilt, or better yet both. Personally I’ve found a good wide angle lens to be optimal. When you open up your phone to check on your pet, scrolling back and forth, up and down in search your furry friend can be annoying. With a wide angle lens you should be able to have a great view of the room at all times.
The last thing to really take into consideration is how it connects and how it’s powered. Most cameras can just connect to WiFi so that’s no big deal but still make a point to check because you may not be in cords reach of your router. The next is power, ideally you can place the camera somewhere you can plug it in but if that’s not an option, make sure the camera you’re looking at can take batteries.
After the main concerns are addressed then think about what cool features you want. Can the camera give your dog treats, does it have night vision, the ability to snap photos or record. These are just a few examples of the fun features that are available on many pet cameras.
Pet Cam Features
Without a doubt the most important feature is live streaming. I wouldn’t recommend any camera that you can’t check remotely. How you monitor it, whether through and app or website is more less personal preference. You’ll notice that every camera I recommend has live streaming. What’s the point of owning a pet cam if it can’t keep an eye on your dog or cat in real time.
Night vision is a great feature, again every camera we suggest has this feature. It’s great if you leave your pets at night to go to dinner and it can also be useful if anyone was ever to break into your house. I’m not saying I would suggest a pet cam in place of a home surveillance system but if you don’t feel the need or can’t afford a surveillance system, it can be a great bonus. You’d also be surprised how much it can help during the day. Sometimes if it’s raining outside and the drapes are closed it gets dark in our house so this feature helps a ton.
Sound and Motion Activation
Getting an alert when your dog or cat is being rowdy can be essential to some pet owners. I found that the motion alerts we’re a little overwhelming but then again, my dog wonders around a lot and isn’t a big trouble maker. If you have a pet who might not be allowed in certain areas motion alerts can be great to help police your pet. On the other hand, I found the sound activation to be super useful. Every time my dog was barking I got an alert and I could open my app and calm him down.
Voice chat is a newer feature on pet cameras and in my opinion, is one of the features that sets pet cameras apart from standard home monitoring cameras. The ability to talk to your dog or cat can be useful if your fur babies get scared during rain storms, if they won’t stop barking, or if you just miss them and want to tell them how cute they are.
Another feature unique to pet cameras is treat dispensers. In addition to just being able to spoil your pet no matter where in the world you are, treat dispensers can also calm your pet or help train them depending on your use case
With all the cameras out there there’s no way we can get in depth with every single feature but some honorable mentions to look out for are, laser pointers, carbon monoxide detectors, air quality sensors, video chat, humidity sensors. Some of these may be more than your looking for but they’re essential to someone or they wouldn’t be making them.
I reviewed a lot of cameras that didn’t make my list. If you have any questions about a feature or specific camera, there’s a good chance I tested it out so feel free to comment on this article with your questions or hit me on the Twitter – @juliabouchard87.