Robot cat-sitters: The products that keep my cat alive while I’m away

I wonder when they're coming back...

I wonder when they’re coming back…

I’m taking off this weekend to go on a quick overnight trip to Sebastopol. It’ll be the first time that I’m leaving Diego (aka. The Woogs) alone in Mike’s our house. It’s too short of a trip to consider a cat-sitter, so instead I’m breaking out my robot pet-sitters.

Here are the products I use to keep my cat alive while I’m away…

Automatic cat feeders

Weekend trips:

This was my very first robot pet-sitter. I can stretch this from a two day feeder to a four day feeder, just by filling up both sections with both of Diego’s food rations for the day. (He gets fed twice a day because he has no portion control.)

Short trips:

I graduated to this baby once I started spending the night at my boyfriends’ house a lot. I’d come back during the day, but at least he got his breakfasts and dinners on time every night, no matter if I was out or not.

The only annoying part is that it’s more of a 5 day feeder, since the first feed trough is always open, so if it’s not time to feed your pet, you have to keep it empty and wait until it cycles through to the next section. AND it doesn’t automatically re-start after every cycle. So you have to manually program it again and again.

Long trips:

I graduated to this larger automatic pet feeder when I went on our trip to Bogota. I arranged for several cat sitters to come in and spend time with The Woogs, but I didn’t want to burden anyone with having to feed him twice a day every day. So I purchased an (almost) endless feeder. And it seemed to be working fine, until The Woogs figured out how to reach his paw in and force more kibble bits to shoot out. I love that it’s called “portion controlled” automatic pet feeder, because really, Diego controlled his portions and ended up gaining a lot of weight while I was gone. 😉

I’m now looking towards the PetSafe Healthy Pet Simply Feed 12-Meal Automatic Feeder as my next robot cat sitter purchase. This looks like it won’t allow The Woogs to gorge his way through my absence, and it’s very highly-rated on Amazon.

Automatic water dispensers

This is my cat’s full-time water dispenser. It’s also convenient when I leave town. He loves it.

If your cat needs running water (which The Woogs did for a while, and then got over it) the PetSafe Drinkwell Platinum Pet Fountain is an awesome cat water fountain AND it stores extra water for when you need to set it and forget it.

Robot litter box

The Woogs and his litter bot.

The Woogs and his litter bot.

Remember when I took a gamble on the most expensive automatic litter box ever? That gamble paid off. All the Amazon reviews were spot on — it was worth every penny. This baby is huge, and it looks like the boring uncle of BB-8…

Me and my favorite robot.

Me and my favorite robot for scale.

But man-oh-man does the Little Bot do the perfect job or cycling shit and hiding the smell. I love you, Litter Bot.

SPECIAL UPDATE: I was contacted by the Litter Robot company with this special URL that will get you $25 off your own litter bot! Click here to take advantage and then never scoop shit again!

And that’s it! If any of you guys have more suggestions for robot pet sitting options, leave ’em in the comments. I’m always looking for new tech to make my boy happy.

6 thoughts on “Robot cat-sitters: The products that keep my cat alive while I’m away

  1. KathyRo

    So the litter bot worked! Too bad Amazon is out of them. Hopefully they’ll get more. I’ve love to give it a whirl. (Get it? A whirl? )
    I have an automatic feeder like the Aspen but I stopped using it. My cats always goober their bowls. Even if they manage to keep the cat hair, leaves, rubber bands and lizard parts out, they still get their saliva or something all over the food bowl and the cat food sticks it to so its all tacky and gross. So I feel compelled to clean the feeder at least every other day and that was a pain in the ass because you have to disassemble it.
    I had a similar problem with an earlier version of the Drinkwell, even though there was a filter.
    So now I resort to multiple bowls ( it’s a free for all! ) and if I’m gone a long time I have my father stop by and top them up.
    Am I the only one who has these problems? It’s not even the same set of cats.

    My Woogs ( government name: Buster ) was recently declared overweight. Sigh. So I’m thinking about revisiting the land of auto-feeders. Let me know how the food safe works!

  2. meganfinley

    I seriously can’t recommend the Litter Bot enough. I hope Amazon gets ’em back in stock.

    And I have to do more research before I blow that cash on the other auto-feeder. If anyone has more long-term, easy-peasy auto-feeder recs, I’d love to hear them.

  3. TAnk

    Totally bought the litter robot and it is most excellent. Definitely worth it. Bonus, it keeps the new cat-shit-eating dog with no cat shit to eat!

    1. meganfinley Post author

      YAY! Congrats on your new robot addition!!! I didn’t even THINK of that poop-eating benefit. But that makes sense. High fives all around. 😉

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