our furry friends They are important members of the family and it can be difficult to keep them at home while we go out and do things for others. However, pet cameras — specifically designed to keep an eye on dogs and cats — can reduce the stress on both parties when humans are away. If you’ve thought about buying a pet camera, now is the perfect time.
Read our Best Indoor Security Cameras, Best Outdoor Security Cameras, Best Dog Tech and Accessories, Best Dog Beds, and Best Cat Tech and Supplies guides to learn more.
Update January 2023: We added the Furbo 360 and Wyze Cam Pan V3.
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Surveillance camera or pet cam?
Before getting into the details of a specific camera, it’s important to clarify the difference between pet cameras and general security cameras.
Security cameras allow you to keep an eye on your pet while you’re away from home, but pet cameras often have more pet-specific features that can make them even more useful. Some can hand out treats or allow you to interact with your dog or cat using voice or video chat. They can help with common issues like separation anxiety and boredom, which can lead to furniture damage, other types of property damage, or excessive stress.
That’s not to say you can’t use your security camera as a pet cam—we actually have a suggestion below that can help. No matter what you buy, you should take steps to protect the device. Like any other smart home device connected to Wi-Fi, it has the potential to be hacked and compromise your privacy. Keep your Wi-Fi passwords safe, set up two-factor authentication with the camera app, and keep them updated. It’s also wise to turn it off when you’re at home.
best for dogs
The Furbo 360 Dog Camera spins a circle around the game (9/10 WIRED Recommends). Seriously – the camera can rotate 360 degrees compared to the still pictures you get on most other pet cameras. Like its stationary predecessor, this sleek pet camera includes basics like two-way communication and bark notifications, and it even lets you enjoy a treat.
Most pet cameras have a wide field of view and can see most areas of your room, but the ability to swivel 360 degrees means you can monitor your pup’s whereabouts at all times. Even better, it has automatic dog tracking that follows them from one place to another so you don’t have to frantically search every time you open the app. This tracking can be difficult if you have two dogs roaming around, but I usually find that where one dog goes, the other tends to follow. If it’s nighttime or the room is poorly lit, you can still see your fur baby in color night vision with the 1080p camera.
If this baseline monitoring and interaction isn’t enough, you can choose to subscribe to Furbo’s Dog Nanny service for $7 per month. It takes selfies for your dog, sends security alerts for smoke, carbon monoxide, and dropped objects—even chew alerts—and spot intruders. All of these 15-second video clips are stored in the cloud, so you can check what’s going on anytime, anywhere.