As pet parents, we’re “parenting” our dogs and cats in many ways similar to how we would take care of a child. Unsurprisingly, that also includes getting some type of baby monitor for dogs (or cats) while you’re away from home. Below, we’ve reviewed and listed the best dog cameras for pet monitoring that are specifically made for animals.
As our reviewer and editor-in-chief Samantha has found out while trying these products and filming the videos, a dog camera can become an invaluable tool for a busy pet parent. There are different types of pet monitoring devices out there, and some of them differ significantly. Some pet cameras have a ton of features for monitoring dogs and cats, while others will just record your pet or stream the video to your phone (and cost less).
Three of our editors’ personal favorite pet cameras for dogs turned out to be Petzi, PetChatz and Petcube, even though the overall ranking of these dog cameras turned out a little differently due to how much each option costs and how much cost-to-value it offers to pet owners. Dog cameras like PetChatz, Petzi or Petcube and their technology will be appealing to many pet parents.
For example, one of Petzi’s main features is that not only can you monitor your dog, talk to the dog through the camera, but also dispense dog treats. PetChatz offers you a screen on the camera itself so that your dog can see, watch and hear you talk to him while you’re away. These and other features are life savers for a dog owner who’s constantly away and feels bad for their pets. Here are eight best dog cameras for monitoring pets we’re discussing below in the article:
|Pet Monitoring Camera||Price||Rating||Features|
|PetChatz HD 2-way Pet Treat Camera w/ DOGTV||$$$$$||A+|
|Dropcam Wi-Fi Monitoring Camera||$$$||A+|
|Petcube Play Camera||$$||A|
|Petzi Treat Cam||$$$||A|
|Furbo Dog Camera||$$$$||A|
|Pawbo Life Wi-Fi Pet Camera||$$$||A-|
|Vimtag VT-361 Super HD Camera||$$||B|
|Motorola Scout1 Pet Monitor||$$||C|
* Click on the best pet camera for more information and prices, or scroll down below for more details.
CHECK THIS: Test & Comparison of 3 Best Pet Cameras
Picking the Best Dog Cameras for Pet Monitoring
Having a pet is, in many cases, sort of like having a baby, which is why having a type of baby monitors for pets can be extremely useful. Our dogs and cats get into things they shouldn’t and are always investigating things that you’d rather they didn’t.
When it comes to pet safety, you can never take too many precautions. This is especially true when you also have small kids at home. We have to ensure that we’re vigilant and aware of the different scenarios our dogs and cats can find themselves in. One way to do that is by using one of these best dog cameras for pet monitoring as a baby monitor. Moreover, we’ve also need to consider our pets themselves, and some features of these pet cameras are a great way to communicate and distract our dogs, dispense treats to them and even let the dogs see us while we’re away, which can be extremely helpful for those with separation anxiety issues.
The way we picked these best dog cameras out is mostly due to three factors: (a) cost-to-value and pricing in general; (b) build quality of the product and reliability; (c) features. Every dog camera for pet monitoring ended up having its own original set of features, so it was not an easy job to list them but we did the best we could. Here’s our top 5 picks!
8 Best Dog Cameras for Pet Monitoring in 2017
FULL REVIEW: PetChatz HD Pet Camera Review
Before I got to test this what turned out to be the first best dog camera on our list from PetChatz, I’ve already heard wonderful things about it from other pet owners that I know as well as people online, and how this device offers many features that other similar products listed below do not. I was really excited to try it out and see what all the hype was about, and in many respects I was really pleased and even pleasantly surprised.
- Dog camera reviews: See here what other pet owners say
The very first few things I want to mention is that this easily one of the best dog cameras on the market while being the most expensive option and also the one with the most features. In fact, when comparing it to other pet cameras I’ve tested, the list of things this dog camera can do is unbelievable. Just to mention a few, some of the coolest features I personally liked are: 2- way audio AND video, compatible with iOS, Android systems AND through your web browser, pet safe design, allows you to save and share videos and photos of your pets, dog treats dispenser, sound and motion detection, it has an aromatherapy scent (!) releaser, streams DogTV and a lot more.
If you’ve already owned or read about other best dog cameras out there, then you’ll see several features that aren’t offered by any other pet camera on the market. In my personal opinion the 2-way video is simply amazing and a very useful feature, which of course raises the cost of this dog camera significantly. As you can see in my video review above, not only can you peek in and check on your pet, but she can also see you, and so far, me and my dogs have been enjoying this feature to the fullest.
If you watch my dog camera review, you can see how you can dispense opet treats with this camera and it plays a quick tune every time the camera turns on, which your dog will quickly figure out and get conditioned to (extremely useful). Controlling this is simply through your smartphone or a web browser. Another one of the most unique features offered by the PetChatz HD Pet Camera is the aromatherapy scent releaser. While many similar products dispense treats, this is the first of its kind to dispense scents.
Overall, I have a lot more things to say about the pros and cons of this first one of the best dog cameras on the list, and you can find a full review in the above mentioned link, as well as see me test it in my below dog camera review video.
Most Helpful review (read the full review):“Ok I buy everything I can from Amazon. I rarely if ever write reviews. BUT this is a a product that brings joy to working dog lovers… and their dogs. BUT BEST OF ALL… IS WHAT IT DOES… calls your dog to a video camera for a “conference call” and a treat. I had to…”
This camera bills itself as having a “sixty second setup.” It attaches to your Wifi network and, once connected, it livestreams in under a minute. The definition of the video is 720p, qualifying it for HD.
There is a 107 degree field of view on Nest Cam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera (think a little more than a right angle) and that field is diagonal. This camera contains Night Vision, which allows you to see in the dark, and Zoom for close inspection.
- Nest Cam Indoor camera reviews: Read what others think
It also has CVR, or Cloud Video Recording, which means that you can take video and send it to the iCloud, which then saves it for review later (when thinking of how that applies to dogs, imagine that you see your dog behaving weirdly—you can save the recording and show the vet). Also included in this dog camera is a Two-Way Talk feature, so you can talk to your dog from another room without worrying about whether they can hear you. The Dropcam runs for $219.49 list price on average.
We chose to place Nest Cam Wi-Fi Wireless Video Monitoring Camera as the top choice among these best dog cameras because its motion detection and quality is top-notch. The camera’s angle allows for a full-angle range of motion and the film can be viewed via your iPhone or Android. It’s easy to set up (customers were thrilled by that part) and it’s also secure, so you can share your film with friends or others without having to worry about it being hacked.
Why someone would want to hack a camera to get film of your dog, I don’t know, but it’s still a reassuring thought that it won’t happen. iCloud has improved its security greatly since the hacking problems with celebrities’ pictures and the improvements have shown. You don’t need any special software or even special attachments to run the camera, so for the computer illiterate, it will be simple to use (but don’t worry, it does include directions). The Two-Way Talk feature also was useful and customers found it to be really convenient when wanting to talk to the person on the other end (in your dog’s case, saying hi to them and making them less lonely without you).
This dog camera does have a few downsides that customers pointed out. One said that it uses a lot of data, especially if you use it in conjunction with apps. If your plan gives you limited data, you need to be aware that this camera doesn’t skimp on data and will use a large portion of it. Also, many customers suggested a longer cord, as this one is short and might not cover the distance you need it to (a recommended cord is the Monoprice 15-feet USB Cable).
Most Helpful review (read the full review):“My review is focus on one aspect so as not to be too long, but still useful. **Please note the updates at the end** The Dropcam is a very good, very easy to use device. Many of the top rated reviews here do an excellent job of listing the pros and…”
FULL REVIEW: Petcube Play Dog Camera
Shaped like a tiny cube (hence the name), this product’s dimensions are approximately 4 x 4 x 4 inches, so it’s tiny. The company that designed the PetCube is a startup funded on Kickstarter. PetCube Interactive Wifi Pet Camera is different from the other interactive pet cameras because this one has a laser pointer.
To use the laser, you have to get the mobile app and be logged on. The newest version of the app makes the laser more calibrated and easy to use. You can play with your dog and have him or her chase the laser pointer while you talk to them through the two-way vocal feature.
- Petcube Play Camera reviews: Read what other dog owners think
You can have a mini playtime session with your pet without having to leave your office. The camera has a 138 degree wide-angle lens that allows you to scan through your house and see all your dog’s activities. The video is HD and can be recorded. You can also share it with your family and friends on the social network, which promotes data sharing. The company was started by Alex Neskin, who owned a puppy that never wanted to be alone and would be desolate when Alex would leave. Neskin created the first prototype and it’s been rolling ever since.
The CEO admitted to the challenges of getting the company up and running, but the design of the PetCube keeps growing more and more interactive and high-tech, so they’re confident any issues will be resolved. Customers who got PetCube Interactive Wifi Pet Camera to work were impressed, with those who experienced the most success being the ones who owned iPhones and were able to get this to work from the beginning.
One commonly-noted piece of advice was to wait for the power-on cycle to complete before trying to turn it on. Wait for the green light to flash and then press the on button firmly. The on button is located on the back of the cube (the structure of it makes it hard to tell sometimes. It’s literally just a cube). The camera, when operating successfully, gives owners a piece of mind and makes their lives easier knowing that their dogs are safe and sound. But know first that there have been glitches with the product—not something unheard of from such a startup.
Most Helpful review (read the full review):“Let me preface this review with the fact that I backed this project on kickstarter for $99 and am an iphone user, so I have been able to use the application successfully from the get-go. With that being said, this product has some large flaws but I…”
FULL REVIEW: Petzi Treat Cam Review
This pet camera for dogs is sort of a social network for you and your pets. The company that made the device was a startup that was funded on IndieGoGo.
Petzi Treat Cam connects you and your pet no matter where either of you are. The Petzi cam works in conjunction with an app on your smartphone or Tablet. You can see your pet through the camera and the two-way voice function allows you to speak to him or her. You can also take pictures of them through the camera.
- Petzi Treat Cam reviews: Read what other dog owners think
The coolest function on this dog camera is the treat part, where you can dispense your pet’s treat with the Petzi Treat Launcher. The Petzi dispensary accepts pretty much any dog treat that is 1” in length (Milkbone mini-treats, for example, work with this machine). You can activate the Treat Launcher from the app on your phone. It’s a fun way to interact with your doggie even when you’re not with them.
This pet monitoring camera was adored by customers, but be aware that it might take your dog a little time to figure out how it works. Some dogs were scared by the random talking voice coming from the camera, while others didn’t really make the association between camera and owner. But most figured it out pretty quickly and didn’t have an issue.
For customers whose dogs loved Petzi Treat Cam, they found the product and the company to be high quality. The company was dedicated to their customers and tried to resolve every issue as quickly and efficiently as possible. The product has updated the longer the company has been started and making money, but those with the earlier units still found it to be reliable and fun.
There’s also a social networking part of Petzi that allows you to link up with other owners of the same breed. This has proven to be very fun for dog owners who love seeing snaps of other peoples’ pets. By far, the most remarked-upon benefit of this camera was being able to give your dog a treat and see how happy they are at the same time.
Most Helpful review (read the full review):“I was an early adopter who purchased this through a crowd-funding site, and LOVE my Petzi. At first, it was glitchy, with poor video and audio quality, and now I can say that I just love, love, love it. I have two yorkies, one is nine and almost blind, the…”
FULL REVIEW: Furbo Dog Camera Review
A great alternative to usual pet cameras for monitoring dogs is this one from Furbo, which is not only a regular pet monitoring camera, but also an automatic treat dispenser. Furbo dog camera works with your home’s Wi-Fi connection, and you can track your pets using Furbo’s smartphone app.
This dog camera also has a microphone installed, which means you have an option to record your voice as a message or speak to your pets through the camera using your smartphone. It’s a rare and very useful feature!
- Furbo Pet Camera reviews: Read what other dog owners think
Furthermore, what really separates this pet camera from most others you can buy today is that there’s an option to dispense pet treats to your dogs or cats. You can either set it up to do automatically, or use your smartphone and Furbo’s app to dispense treats to your dogs while also watching them through the camera (check out our full review and video below).
Furbo camera has been one of the most popular dog cameras on the market since the company released it; however, it’s one of the more expensive options on this list of best pet cameras for monitoring dogs. The pet camera is very easy to use and it takes about 5 minutes to set up, which you can see in the video.
Here’s our video of unboxing Furbo camera just to give you a better idea.
The app is also very easy to navigate, and the below video as well as full review linked below walks you through the whole setup process and the way to use it. Overall, Furbo may not be the most essential dog supplies item in your house, but if that’s what you’re looking for, I’d say it’s definitely worth its price.
Most Helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “When I got my Furbo I had problems making my smart phone work with it-NOTHING to do with the Furbo-but the Furbo people were extremely wonderful and helped me…”
Another completely new and fresh option among the best dog cameras on the list is the one released just last year with some unique features – Pawbo. Like other options this pet camera makes it quick and convenient for us to check in on our pets while we’re away from home. It works through home WiFi connection and you can use an app on your smartphone or tablet to connect to the camera whenever you leave the house.
The Pawbo Pet Camera offers some interesting original features, and I was very excited to try it out with my dogs. With a price tag ranging from $140 to $200, this is one of the more expensive best dog cameras on the market today, but depending on your needs, it very well may be worth the price tag.
- Dog camera reviews: See here what other pet owners say
Pawbo can be mounted on the wall or sat on an end table or shelf. Personally, I like this over mounting it to the wall (like some other best pet cameras I’ve mentioned above), because it saves the physical damage to your home. This may not sound like a big deal to some, but if you rent or lease your home, you’ll appreciate having the option. You’ll see in my below video that I’ve place dthe Pawbo device on an end table in our living room. Once you initially plug the unit in and turn it on, all you have to do is download the app and wait a few minutes while your device connects automatically to your WiFi system.
The camera is equipped with a 130° lens, and the app allows you to save photos and short videos to your device for sharing on social media. The app is also free to download on iOS or Android systems. There is a 2-way microphone that allows you to hear what is happening in your home and also gives you the opportunity to talk to your dog while you’re away from home. The Pawbo also features multiple ringtones (I use a bird chirping sound, which you can hear in my video review) that you can use to train your pup to come when you access the device.
One of the very unique features that this sixth best dog camera offers is that you can allow up to 8 people to access the device and check on your pet, which is extremely useful for large families. If you give your friends and family your Pawbo password, they can check on your pups when you’re not able to. Or, they could just help you check in and entertain Fido throughout the day to give him extra stimulation.
As you can see in the photo on the left (and in my video review), there are 10 small holes to place treats. If you have multiple pets, you’re going to use all of those treats in a day or two. I use kibble instead of treats, so I go through all of it in just one day. This means that I have to remember to refill the Pawbo each day, which doesn’t always happen.
Overall, I think this is a great choice even with a price tag considered, and is easily one of the best dog cameras available on the market. The only thing I don’t like about the laser is that it points straight across. That means that you need to put your Pawbo up high and angle it downward in order to get the laser on the floor. If you place the device on a coffee table or shelf (like I do) the laser is just going to point straight across at the wall, which you can see in my video at the top of this article. Finally, if you don’t feel like all the features are needed, you may do better with a cheaper pet cameras in the end.
Most Helpful review (read the full review): “We purchased this Pawbo because a few friends recommended it and it was one of my best purchase in 2016!! Convenience: – Very easy set up, just connect with your wifi and follow simple instruction and you’re good to go- Download the app and easy access to check out what your pet is doing even when you’re outside- All…”
This seventh best dog camera provides live streaming with night vision capabilities. It is for use indoors only. You need both Internet access and a power outlet to operate it. Out of all other best dog cameras on this list, it’s the cheapest option pet owners can find.
Vimtag Fujikam is two-way operated and contains HD 1280 x 720p for clear streaming and an easy-to-see screen. It has a tilt function and a pan function, allowing you to scope out the whole area. There’s a motion sensor and the night vision is superior to many other cameras on the market now.
- Dog camera reviews: See here what other pet owners say
You can set up several pet cameras and stream them on your smartphone, tablet, or PC. If you have Wifi service and are using the camera on that (as opposed to Ethernet) you can zoom in, change from night to day vision, send pictures, record film, and mute or unmute the two-way audio service that the camera comes with. The video recording only works with an internal SD memory card only, however, so you cannot do remote recording.
Vimtag Fujikam is seventh of the best dog cameras because it is for indoor use only; also, the lack of remote recording was a feature that some people found inconvenient. Most customers, however, were pleased with this dog camera’s quality overall. VIMTAG is a tech company known for its high-quality products and one customer called it “the best camera I own.”
The picture is of excellent quality as well, as the HD on it is as high as it can get. It’s also simple to set up, with most purchasers reporting that it sets up within three to five minutes. Finding the perfect spot to place it in takes more time than it does actually setting the pet camera for dogs up and getting the thing running.
Customers noted that this does use a lot of data, however. Be aware that this is a data-eater. Also, there are instructions on how to install, but those needing more information on using the features may need to do some outside research because instructions on using those fall flat. For the price ($100 approximately), this camera can’t be beat. A feature customers were most impressed with was the night vision, which lit everything up like it was daytime. It was by far the most superior function on this equipment.
Most Helpful review (read the full review): “Great security camera for my little apartment! Just a couple of things to note: The camera must be connected to your router ONLY for the duration of the setup. The little light below the “router” symbol on the camera should flash green three times if…”
This eight best dog camera is compatible with iPhones and Android Smartphones. It also works with Tablets. You can control the camera and access its features through your PC in addition to the aforementioned iOS and Droid. Out of all the best dog cameras on this list, it’s one of the more affordable options, but also one with the least features and capabilities. Nevertheless, it’s a decent and affordable pet camera.
Motorola dog cam records live video and can also take pictures. This pet camera comes with infrared night vision technology and a communicative two-way talk system that lets you speak to your pet and let them hear you. For the price that it’s offered, this is a great feature to have.
- Dog camera reviews: See here what other pet owners say
Motorola Scout Wifi Pet Monitor functions also include pan, tilt, and zoom functions. It works in areas that don’t have a lot of lighting and you can use it remotely when you’re not in the house. The Scout1 camera is the name of the pet technology this uses and it also comes with an additional power adapter for cameras that need it. The camera is tiny enough and has a rotational scope that gives you a full angle on your dog’s activities. You can connect up to four cameras total on this device’s system.
This is last on the list of best dog cameras not because its features aren’t superb and it isn’t a good piece of technology. It’s last because customers reported having issues with it that impinged on their ability to use it to watch their pets.
Customers that had a good experience were thrilled by the way this works, but this good experience wasn’t always what happened, with one customer saying, “I think I lucked out?” about her camera working. Some customers had a problem with the picture quality and felt that everything was tinged in purple when the infrared light came on.
Motorola Scout Wifi Pet Monitor requires a mobile phone, but if you have that, the setup process is actually pretty painless. The viewing software was the biggest complaint among customers that were unhappy with this camera. They felt that it didn’t work correctly, with one saying that Motorola needed to update the picture quality in order for it to operate effectively.
The device locks up frequently as well. So why did we put it on the list? Well, because the customers who were satisfied with it described it as flawless and were thrilled with the ease of use and the portability, as well as the rotational camera angles. It appears to be hit and miss (better hope you don’t miss).
Most Helpful review (read the full review): “After reading the two (at present) reviews on Amazon as well as the reviews in the Apple app store (in short, the latter were scathing zero star reviews) I assumed I’d set this up, have the same problems, write a bad review and move on. Much to…”
Video test and comparison of top best dog cameras for pets
Why you need a dog camera for monitoring?
Dog cameras allow you to monitor your pet’s behavior without having to be in the same room. In some pet cameras, you can even set up the equipment so that it feeds your dog treats on command (when your dog approaches it, it dispenses a treat).
This use of technology to improve your pet’s safety is not an overreaction or a case of “helicopter parenting.” Dogs are vulnerable to accidental deaths and injuries the same way humans are, and keeping an eye out is always a smart plan.
The top five causes for accidental dog deaths include poisoning and accidental electrocution. Our homes have chemicals, pills, dangerous plants, and other alarming substances that, if ingested, can cause your dog serious harm.
Electrocution is a cause of death that many people probably don’t expect. It’s especially common for puppies when they’re in their chewing phase (a phase which some dogs never leave, actually).
Dogs see an unplugged power cord or electric socket and go to investigate it, only to receive a nasty—and sometimes fatal—shock. By having one of these best dog cameras in place, you can check in periodically without having to physically be there. Looking in on your dog from time to time will give you the heads-up on what he or she is doing and if they are safe.
What are the best dog cameras and why do pet owners need them?
Aside from more traumatic reasons, another reason you might choose to purchase one of these best dog cameras for pet monitoring is for pet’s health reasons not associated with accident-safety and preparedness.
If your dog has a health condition that makes him or her infirm or sick, it can give you piece of mind to check up on them throughout the day and make sure that they are still doing alright. As owners, we have to balance our own lives with those of our pets. We can’t always drop what we’re doing and run home from work to check, but a camera allows us the option of vigilance without inconvenience.
Doggie cameras can be set up pretty much anywhere. As I’ll show you on the list of best dog cameras, there is an option to purchase a pet camera that automatically dispenses a treat when the dog approaches it. You can set your camera up in an area where he or she plays most frequently. You can also put up a pet gate to seal in the perimeter and give your dog a set area that they can go in. Place the camera where you know it will get the best angle on the activities of your pet.
In the above list of best dog cameras below, I’ve given the top pet cameras for dogs and their monitoring on the market. These dog cameras have been researched, analyzed, tested and their customer reviews have been sifted through as well to give all the accurate information needed to help you make an informed decision. We’ve given you a brief overview of the products, as well as an explanation of their position on the list—the good, the bad and what customers had to say about these best dog cameras. By the end, I hope you’ll do your own research as well and then make a well-informed decision on what camera you want to buy for your precious pup. Make sure to account for cost-to-value ratio as well.
How to select the best dog camera for pet monitoring?
Doggie cameras come with a lot of add-ons and technical lingo surrounding them, much in the same way that all other products do as well. It can be intimidating to know what to look for at first when selecting one of these best dog cameras for pets, but as I showed you in the list above, that information can be synthesized successfully.
Choose a camera that has a wide scope. You want to make sure that you’re aware of what your dog is up to daily and that won’t work if you’re only seeing a minor part of the picture. A dog camera that revolves its lens to catch all the angles is the one for you. Another feature to pay attention to is how the Wifi connection works; does it need to be attached to a computer or phone? An Ethernet cable? Or can it be anywhere? Knowing the logistical details will save you a lot of hassle when it comes time for setup.
Make sure the video streaming is high quality. If you’ve ever been on YouTube and tried to watch a video that was at 320p, you know the frustration that comes from having a low video quality. You can’t see anything and the annoyance of the whole thing just gives you a headache. Choose a streaming of 720p HD quality. The high definition will ensure that you won’t be squinting over your computer trying to catch a glimpse of the activity on the screen.
Night vision is another feature to consider. If you think you’re going to be gone late and won’t be home for your pet by nightfall, you should purchase a dog camera that has a night vision component so that you can still be there with your pet and your access won’t get cut off because of a lack of lighting.
In terms of actual camera functioning, zoom and tilt are two features that you want to make sure the camera has. Zooming in allows you a close-up of what your dog is doing and tilt lets you catch the action from all angles.
If your dog has something in his or her paw, you may want to zoom in for a closer look to see—checking to see if he or she is playing with a pill or small sharp object is going to take some up-close scrutiny. In the spirit of thoroughness, you will want to make sure that that your camera at least allows you to zoom in on what you’re seeing.
Hopefully, this list of best dog cameras I’ve given you has allowed you to make a decision on what camera is right for you and your dog. We want to make sure that our readers are aware that we are NOT sponsored by any of the manufacturers and dog companies mentioned in this article. Please note that we do our best to provide accurate information, but we highly encourage dog owners to always double-check other sources for additional tips on best dog cameras so that you can make a more accurate decision of what’s best for you, and your canine.
The above overview of best cameras for dogs should give pet owners a good idea of best rated dog supplies, but please also make sure that you read the more about top pet monitoring camera reviews from multiple customers before you purchase any dog products. Sometimes, those reviews from pet parents can provide more information than any dog supplies website ever could. Finally, I hope this list was helpful, and if you tried any of these dog products, please let us know of your experience in the comments below.