I purchased this feeder because I finally got tired of my two pushy, food-motivated cats waking me up to be fed on weekend mornings. I only wish I had purchased it earlier! It has worked great for the six months I’ve had it, though I did make a couple of modifications to it so it better serves my needs.
The food tray that comes with the feeder was too small to accommodate both of my large cats eating at the same time, so I removed it and placed a square melamine tray under the feeder instead. This way, both cats have room to eat and the lip of the tray keeps the food from being scattered across the floor when it’s dispensed.
I also placed a piece of black duct tape over each of the two empty spaces at the bottom of the feeder where the food tray would normally snap in. Pieces of food were getting stuck in these crevices and it would frustrate the cats when they were unable to dislodge the pieces. Since I added the tape, this hasn't been a problem.
Went on vacation, set it for breakfast only (and let the pet sitter handle dinner) and it worked like a charm.
My cat is extremely food-driven, and surprisingly she leaves the filled feeder alone. So I don't think she can smell the food in there.
My original review:
This is perfect for pet parents who want to auto feed their four-legged kids on a daily basis. Instead of filling separate meal chambers, this style of feeder allows you dump a ton of food in and let it go.
For me though, I rely on my little fuzzy alarm clock to annoy me out of bed in the mornings, and really just need something for the weekends and short getaways. So I'm returning mine and going with the other style.
It does have a power button on the bottom, so I could just fill it up then shut it off during the week, but I'd feel bad teasing my little long-tailed darling with a dormant canister of food in the living room.
And one meal at a time isn't right for this type...
When I dumped just one meal's worth of food in the bin, it didn't really work. The rotating rudder that pushes food into the exit chamber doesn't touch the bottom, and doesn't extend very far, so it can't sweep much beyond the center. So I reached in and swept it all into the chamber myself. So it's really designed to just keep full.
It seems air tight enough to not entice hungry critters. My cat was pawing at the food dish, wanting more, but left the cylinder alone.
This seems like it's a tough nut to crack. There is no way, in my opinion, a kitty paw could reach up inside to get food. I've added some photos... the food chamber comes out, and I photographed the bottom of it, where u can see a stiff plastic brush guard blocking the exit, and the distance between the food exit and hole to the dish is such that I just don't think little paws can reach it.
The top of the chamber opens with a button, but not an easy one. In fact, it's awkword enough that I needed two hands each time. So that should deter your cat burglar.
This machine works well now that it's been redesigned to use a flexible dispensing mechanism to prevent jamming. Just wish it came with a stainless steel dish but a trip to the pet store solved that. A 6.25" x 1" bowl from Durabolz Selecta fits perfectly!
5 stars through and through. Multiple aspects of this feeder attribute to this rating. Please keep reading in case any of this pertains to you as someone doing research on feeders as I did prior to purchasing