The Best Smart Pet Cameras of 2019

  1. Editors' Choice

    Furbo Dog Camera

    Skip to the full review below

Other products we tested

  • Furbo Dog Camera

  • How We Tested

  • Other Smart Pet Cameras We Tested

  • More Articles You Might Enjoy

Cute 2
Credit: Reviewed / Sarah Kovac
Best Overall
Furbo Dog Camera

The Furbo is Amazon’s best selling dedicated pet camera, and after spending some time with it, we agree. It’s the best. It is reliable and easy to refill, the video quality is great (day and night), it uses colors a dog can see to let Fido know when you check in, and it looks beautiful on the side table thanks to its bamboo cover.

Going beyond basic motion detection, Furbo uses artificial intelligence to understand exactly what the dog is up to and push a notification to the owner’s phone when the pup is playing or barking, when he stops in front of the Furbo for a “selfie,” or when a human arrives home. These “Smart Dog Alerts” are part of a premium service that, for now at least, is free. This dog camera is also Alexa compatible, so you can ask your Amazon Echo to toss the dog a treat by voice or via the app from wherever you may roam.

It may not have the bells and whistles of more complex models like the PetChatz HD, but what the Furbo does, it does well. The base and apps are a pleasure to use at every point. The Furbo gets it right.

How We Tested

The Tester

Hi, I’m Sarah Kovac, a smart home writer for Reviewed. I’ve been a pet owner for as long as I can remember, and know well that guilty feeling you get when you see your dog watching forlornly from the window as you leave. Somehow I always manage to feel bad leaving my cat alone, too, despite the fact that none of my cats ever seemed to care about or even notice my presence unless they're hungry.

The Tests

Pet cams might be able to help relieve some of that guilt for pet owners who have to be away from their furry friends. You can check in, chat with, and toss treats to your dog or cat from anywhere with an internet connection… but will your dog find it calming or creepy?

We tested four of the best-selling pet cams with my Lhasa Apso, Stanley, by closing him in a room alone and seeing if the interactions with the pet cams helped calm his separation anxiety. We could have tested these on our cat also, but (surprise!) she couldn’t care less whether we’re around or not. We tried the cameras in various lighting conditions, over data and wi-fi, and on both iOS and Android. All units performed similarly across connections and platforms.


Other Smart Pet Cameras We Tested

PetChatz HD

PetChatz HD bills itself as a “Digital Daycare” for your pet, and while it can’t clean the litter box or take the dog for a walk, its array of other capabilities give you the best shot of finding a way to connect with and soothe your home-alone pet. While the app isn’t as polished as that of the Furbo or Petcube, and the video quality is just so-so, the Petchatz offers lots of interesting options.

This pet cam has two-way video chat, essential oil diffusion, motion/audio alerts, treat refill subscriptions and an optional PawCall button that allows your dog to call you or play games and earn treats. But the biggest hit with my dog was PetChatz’s ability to play DogTV (a $9.99/month subscription TV channel designed to entertain dogs) at a dog-height screen on the front of the PetChatz unit. Instead of immediately starting with his yelping and whining when I shut him in the room, he stayed mesmerized with DogTV for a good 10 minutes. It was big for him.

All these options will set you back a few bones, though. The PetChatz HD is the most expensive we tested, at $379.99. If you want to try everything possible to help your dog, it might be worth it. But if you think your voice and some treat-tossing will be enough, go with our top pick, the Furbo.

Petcube Bites

The Petcube is very similar to Furbo. It has great video quality, it throws treats, and it’s super easy to set up and refill. The app is easy to use and offers an activity timeline of three to 30 days as part of the optional Petcube Care membership, which ranges in price from $4.99 to $24.99 per month. It sits on a table top and offers a wide-angle view of the room, and its minimal design comes in three finishes to blend well with just about any decor.

Like the Furbo, Petcube is compatible with Alexa, so you can toss the pup a treat with just your voice. But, unlike the Furbo, Petcube automatically starts recording when it detects activity. Those clips are capped at ten seconds of length and available for four hours, though, unless you subscribe to Petcube Care. The Furbo and Petcube are comparable in many respects, but for the lower price, we liked the Furbo better.

The Best Dog Poop Bags
The Best Dog Beds
The Best Automatic Pet Feeders

Meet the testers

Sarah Kovac

Sarah Kovac

Editor, Smart Home

@sarahkovac

Sarah Kovac is an award-winning author and smart home editor for Reviewed. Previously, she worked with a multitude of outlets such as Wirecutter, TIME, PCMag, Prevention, The Atlantic, Reviews.com, CNN, GOOD, Upworthy, Mom.me, and SheKnows.

See all of Sarah Kovac's reviews

Checking our work.

We use standardized and scientific testing methods to scrutinize every product and provide you with objectively accurate results. If you’ve found different results in your own research, email us and we’ll compare notes. If it looks substantial, we’ll gladly re-test a product to try and reproduce these results. After all, peer reviews are a critical part of any scientific process.

Shoot us an email