When we leave our pets home alone most of us probably wonder what they get up to. Are they destroying your sofa, eating your shoes or napping while watching TV? With a number of different pet cameras on the market, you can now make sure you can keep an eye on your pet all of the time. In fact, you can keep an eye on everything happening in your house when you are not home with the Petcube Pet Camera.
Choosing the right pet camera for your pets and home can be a daunting task, so we looked at the Petcube camera to find out more about it and see how it worked when we tried it out with our 2 dogs and cat.
Who Founded Petcube?
Alex Neskin had a problem with his pet chihuahua Rocky, who hated being alone. Every time Alex left for work, his dog would scratch and bark so loudly that the neighbours even threatened to call the police. He needed to find a solution. So, Alex created an Arduino-based robot that consisted of a web camera and a remote-controlled laser pointer. He was able to play with Rocky through a web interface and distract him from barking.
That is how the first prototype of Petcube Camera was born. Soon Alex’s friends Andrey Klen and Yaroslav Azhnuyk joined him to found Petcube. Petcube was funded on Kickstarter in late 2013 and became one of the most successful crowdfunding pet products in its history, raising $251,000 of the $100,000 goal.
Setting up the Petcube camera
The Petcube was really easy to set up and get started with and didn’t require you to read a long instruction manual, which is always good.
Step 1 – Install the Petcube app on your smartphone. I actually had to upgrade the software on my iphone before I could do this as I hadn’t updated in a while. But once that was done it was only a few minutes installing the app.
Step 2 – Connect the Petcube to the power and wi-fi. The camera needs to be plugged in all the time to operate. Some people might prefer batteries, however, I like that there are no batteries to keep buying.
Step 3 – Complete the registration process. This was extremely simple and quick, making the whole set up process very easy and stress-free.
Features of The Petcube Camera
- The Petcube is a wifi camera that connects to your home internet and allows you to watch, and play with, your pets when you are away from the home.
- It easily connects to a smart phone so you can see your pets any time of the day or night.
- It has a 138-degree high definition camera which means you can get a clear view of your pets.
- The 2-way microphone means that you can talk to your pets and hear what is happening in your home at any time.
- The built-in laser allows you to play with your pets while you are not there, similar to lasers you find in pointers and cat toys.
Pros of the Petcube Camera
- The biggest benefit of the camera is that you can see your pets all of the time. If you are at work and missing them, you can check in and see how they are doing. The camera can be viewed from anywhere in the world via the app.
- It’s optional if you want to turn on the 2-way microphone and talk to your pets. I tested this out from the garden to see how my pets would react. My cat never even looked up from his sleep, but Joey (one of my dogs) got a bit anxious looking for me so I probably wouldn’t use that if I was far away from home. Just watching them sleeping was enough for me to feel happy that they were settled and content while I was out.
- If your pet is the playful type, then you can use the built-in laser to play with them. Watch as they jump around the room trying to catch the laser light.
- The setup was really easy. No complicated instructions and the phone app is very simple and easy to use.
- You can interact with other cameras that have been made public and also share with your friends and family.
- You can also find pets from different shelters who have the cameras to watch and play with, making it a great promotion of shelters.
- If you want to be able to view a recorded history of your pets, you can opt to take up the cloud video recording service which means you never miss of moment of what your pet has been up to.
Cons of the Petcube Camera
- One of the things I noticed is that there’s no night vision mode on the current Petcube Camera. When I checked with Petcube it is something they are incorporating into the next-gen product Petcube Play. So at the moment if you want to watch your pets at night you have to leave on a light (or at least a leave a lamp on low).
- As with any wifi product, you do need a strong internet connection. This is nothing to do with the product, but you want to make sure you have a good wifi connection in your home. This would probably only be an issue in more remote areas of Ireland.
- There is no online app to view your pets. I would like to be able to check on my laptop when I am working as well as having the option to view via my phone.
How Much Does the Petcube Camera Cost?
For one pet camera, the cost is £159. And for a 2 pack of cameras, it is currently discounted to £275. (Prices correct at the time of the article)
Depending on how much access your pets have to the rooms in your home when you are out, you may decide to get the 2 pack so you have full visibility wherever they are.
The first 30 days of video recording is free and then if you want 10 days history of recordings it is £10 per month and for 30 days history, it is £30 per month.
Should you buy a Petcube Camera?
As a well-known brand in the market place that does exactly what it says then absolutely, I think the Petcube camera is a great addition to any pet household.
It’s a modern design which fits nicely on any shelf or sideboard, without getting in the way.
I have loved watching my dogs when I am out and seeing what they get up to. Admittedly they do sleep most of the time, but it was comforting to know that they were settled and happy.
The Petcube is also great for keeping an eye on your home, your kids or anyone else in the house. You basically have a 24/7 view of everything that is going on in your home.
Be warned, though – watching a sleeping dog/cat can take up a lot of your day when you first get the Petcube Pet Camera installed!!
Note: I received the Petcube mentioned above for free to assist in an article we were writing about the product. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. Affiliate links within article