For the most part, cats are independent and self-sufficient. Unlike dogs, cats don't need you to be around 24 hours a day to stay happy! That said, there is one task that they can't accomplish alone: Mealtime.
Automatic cat feeders can be a lifesaver if you're on a busy schedule. They'll take care of portioning and feeding, allowing your cat to eat at the same time every day whether you're at home or not.
Feeders for dry food are a dime a dozen. But what if your cat prefers wet food? Whether you have a picky cat or one with some dental issues preventing them from eating dry kibble, finding an automatic feeder for wet food is a bit more of a challenge.
Wet food can't stay out all day like dry food. Prolonged exposure affects its freshness and could lead to bacteria or mold growth. So if you need to invest in an automatic cat feeder for wet foods, you need to pay special attention to its build quality and features.
To make things easier for you, we've rounded up a collection of automatic cat feeders for wet food. Here are our favorites!
5 of the Best Automatic Cat Feeders For Wet Food
1. SureFeed Microchip Small Dog & Cat Feeder, White
If you have multiple cats with special diets, this high-tech unit from SureFeed is a fantastic choice. The feeder uses RFID technology or your cat's microchip to provide access to the food! It comes with an RFID collar.
When worn by your cat, the collar acts as a key. The food container will open up when they move under the tall threshold, providing easy access to their meal.
The feeder has a large-capacity bowl that can hold about 1.6 cups of food. Not only that, but the bowl is sealed. As a result, it'll keep wet food fresher for much longer.
2. Cat Mate C20 2-Bowl Automatic Dog & Cat Feeder, 4-cup
Here's a simple battery-powered feeder. With a single AA battery, this unit can provide several days of operation. That's a great feature because the feeder has two timers that can be set to open up to 48 hours later!
Two large removable dishes are included. Each holds about four cups of food. You can separate smaller meals, provide access to the meals over two days, or feed multiple cats. This feeder is quite versatile.
To keep wet food fresh, the unit comes with ice packs. The ice packs are large and long-lasting. They slip underneath the food, providing near direct cooling.
3. Cat Mate C500 Digital 5 Meal Automatic Dog & Cat Feeder
This feeder from Cat Mate is very secure! Rather than using a traditional lid to keep food locked away, this one uses a rotating dish. It can hold up to five meals.
Each compartment has a 1.45-cup capacity. A wedge-shaped opening on the top of the feeder provides access to meals. When it's time for another feeding, the dish will simply spin to reveal the next meal.
To simplify scheduling, the feeder uses a digital timer. A small LCD screen on the corner gives you some quick information so that you don't have to check the dish. Underneath the rotating dish, you'll find two ice packs to keep wet food fresh.
4. TDYNASTY DESIGN 5 Meal Automatic Cat Dry & Wet Food Feeder / Dispenser
Like the previous feeder, this one utilizes a rotating dish and an ultra-secure lid. This dish has five meal compartments that hold about 1.6 cups of food each. In total, this feeder can hold onto about two pounds of food across all meals!
While it doesn't come with ice packs, the lid has a good seal. It's also quite strong, preventing your cat from getting in when they're not supposed to.
The scheduling system on this feeder is very flexible. On the front side, there's an LCD screen with multiple control options. In addition to scheduling the meals, you can record voice messages to alert your cat. The feeder is even sporting a large light indicator to let your kitty know it's time to eat!
5. Petzilla Automatic Wet Pet Food Feeder for 2 Meals Within 48 Hours, Ice Pack Included
Want to keep things simple? This Petzilla feeder doesn't have a ton of bells and whistles. But, it gets the job done efficiently! Two large feeder compartments can hold approximately 1.27 cups each.
The two dishes are removable and dishwater safe. Plus, the feeder comes with two ice packs that you can place underneath the dishes to keep wet food fresh.
This feeder doesn't use a traditional clock. Rather, it has a countdown timer. There's a separate timer for both bowls, allowing you to schedule mealtimes up to 48 hours away.
Why Use an Automatic Cat Feeder for Wet Food?
The advantages of using an automatic cat feeder of any kind are huge! If you live a busy lifestyle and can't be home around mealtimes every day, an automatic feeder will take care of the job for you.
These handy devices eliminate the hassle of meal scheduling. Pair the feeder with a fresh litter box and you could leave your cat home alone for the entire day without having to worry about check-ins or sitters.
Units for wet food provide a couple of additional benefits. The biggest issue with providing wet food is keeping it fresh long enough for your feline friend to eat it. Most won't have any issues scarfing it all down come dinner time. But, keeping it fresh until then is the problem!
Wet food has a significantly higher moisture content than dry kibble. It may contain soft morsels of meat that's swimming in gravy. While delectable to your cat, the high moisture content provides a very limited shelf life once open.
Depending on the formula, you're looking at a timeframe of only one to four hours. If the food sits out in the open for longer than that, it can go sour, develop bacteria, or grow mold that makes your cat sick.
So how do automatic cat feeders solve this issue?
Most will contain tighter seals and makeshift refrigeration! Tighter seals can do a lot to keep the food fresh and out of harm's way. Thick rubber gaskets ensure that the food stays airtight. This won't restore the food's unopened shelf life. But, it will do a lot to keep pests out while also keeping it fresh for much longer.
The same goes for refrigeration! Many automatic cat feeders aimed at wet food have compartments for integrated ice packs. Just keep the ice packs in your freezer until you're ready to use them!
Once they're in the unit, the packs will lower the temperature around the food to inhibit bacterial growth!
Key Considerations When Choosing the Best Automatic Cat Feeder
An automatic feeder can quickly become an important part of you and your cat's life! Several features will impact its efficiency and convenience.
In addition to looking out features that support wet food, here are some things to consider when selecting a feeder.
How often does your cat eat? Do they eat two bigger meals twice a day or several smaller ones? What's your feeding schedule like?
These are all questions you need to ask yourself. Automatic cat feeders operate on a timer. But, not all timers are going to provide you with the flexibility you need to match your cat's eating schedule.
Some cost-efficient feeders may have predetermined schedules that you can't change. That's fine if your cat's schedule matches the feeder's. But if it doesn't, the device may provide access too soon or too late.
For ultimate flexibility, look for a feeder that allows you to set the time yourself! These units typically have a countdown knob or a digital timer. Set it to provide access to the food at your cat's normal feeding times and they should have no problem getting used to eating from it.
Here's another important thing to think about. If you plan on being away for a full day, you're going to have to provide multiple meals!
Generally, feeders have enough room to hold between two and five meals per day. A lower capacity model is fine if you're only going to be away for a few hours. But for any periods longer than that, we always recommend getting a feeder that can hold up to five meals!
A five-meal feeder gives you tons of flexibility. It covers all your bases and offers ultimate control. Even if you don't plan on providing five meals while you're away, you can use those extra compartments for treats or medications. It's a win-win all around!
This consideration all comes down to your cat's size and your feeding needs.
Appropriate portion sizes for young kittens and big cats are going to be different! Keep that in mind when you shop. Most feeders will have individual bowls that can hold up to a single cup of food. That's fine for most cats. In fact, a smaller bowl of that size is great for portion control!
That said, you might need a bigger bowl that can hold up to 1.5 cups of food if you have a bigger cat. Larger portion sizes can also accommodate two cats who eat at the same time.
Don't underestimate a hungry and motivated cat! Felines are fully capable of destroying poorly made feeders. They can get their sneaky little paws into the bowls, break the locks, and feast earlier than they should!
For this reason, you need to invest in a high-quality unit with some robust materials. Thick plastics will add some serious weight, making it tougher for your cat to get in. Also, look for a tight locking mechanism!
A good seal is important, too. Not only will it keep the food fresher for longer as we discussed earlier, but it will prevent smells from getting out and enticing your cat!
Automatic feeders are available with battery and standard outlet power sources. However, it's always better to use a battery-powered unit with fresh batteries.
What would happen to a plug-in model if the power goes out? If the power doesn't come back on immediately, it will never open and provide food. Suddenly, a simple power outage becomes torture for your poor kitty!
Even if the power does come back on, there's no guarantee that the scheduling mechanism will remember the time you set. Digital systems might reset completely, rendering the device useless until you intervene.
With a battery-powered feeder, you don't have to worry about any of that. As long as the batteries are fresh, you can rest easy knowing that it will work correctly.
Finally, you can't forget about the noise output. There's no such thing as a silent feeder. But, some are far louder than others!
Feeders with a loud motor or constant ticking aren't good for cats. Felines are already skittish enough. Throwing a loud device into the mix will only make your cat avoid his or her meal!
Don't let your busy schedule prevent you from providing perfectly portioned meals for your cat. As you can see, there are plenty of great feeders out there! They give you the freedom to go about your day while still offering up a sense of independence your cat craves.
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