Pet cameras empower the user to observe or interact with their pet while away from home. From naptime to playtime, a pet camera can capture adorable moments of your pet's life, or let you check on them while you are away from home. They can also help you discover and address separation anxiety in your pet.
“Pet cameras are absolutely essential for gathering information on what your pet is doing when left alone and to identify separation anxiety in a dog,” Alison Buehler, a certified professional dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and certified separation anxiety trainer (CSAT) for Brooklyn-based dog trainers Dharma Dog NYC, told The Spruce Pets.
With specialized features providing the ability to speak, track, treat, and even support training, pet camera features go above and beyond home security cameras and webcams. The best pet camera is one that provides reliable, clear video and intuitive features for monitoring or interacting with your pet.
We tested 17 of the latest pet cameras on the market in our New York Lab. Our testers scored each camera in multiple categories, including video and audio quality, functionality of interactive features, and overall value.
Our favorite is the eufy Pet Dog Camera D605, which has high-quality audio and video (plus automatic night vision), a 170-degree wide-angle lens to follow your pet’s movement, and an anti-clog treat dispenser. But we found several other pet cameras that may work better for your specific needs.
Eufy Pet Dog Camera D605
Makes treat dispensing into a game
Ability to pre-record messages
Easy-to-clean treat compartment
No mounting options
The eufy Pet Dog Camera D605 allows you to follow your friend as they nap, eat, and play, with a 170 degree wide-angle lens providing 1080p resolution with a 4x zoom function—allowing you to pop in on their activities in real time.
This pet camera checked all the boxes for our tester, who described the eufy video as "extremely clear" in both full light and night-time settings. They were similarly impressed with the responsive app inputs for the voice, treat, and motion controls, which allow for 270 degrees of camera rotation (combined with the wide lens, the eufy pet camera can capture 360 degree video). It was just as easy to take screenshots or record video from within the app. Plus, the camera’s automatic night vision, which uses multiple infrared sensors, will ensure you are able to clearly see and speak to your pet at all hours.
"This is the camera I'd go with," our tester noted. "The wide-angle camera has great resolution and swivels so you can see everything. It can even follow your dog around automatically. The treat dispenser 'game' is a nice bonus as well."
The camera features a gamified treat tossing setting, which was an unexpected highlight for our tester. While many pet cameras have the ability to dispense treats, the eufy Pet Dog Camera offers a suite of fun options, with the ability to fire a treat anywhere in a 270-degree arc, with three different distance settings. The anti-clog dispenser held up under testing too, working reliably throughout our time with it. The treat container is also dishwasher-safe.
Setting up the app and virtually engaging with your pet is simple, with a QR code syncing the camera with your mobile device. The 16 GB of built-in storage allows you to save adorable moments captured by the camera and to pre-record audio messages that can be easily delivered to your pet via the app. The eufy Pet Dog Camera is fully featured right out of the box, with no additional subscription to access anything in the app.
If they get a little loud with their barks or meows (aww, they miss you!) a notification on your mobile device will let you know, and you can offer calming words of comfort with a two-way audio system. Other pet-centric features include smart motion tracking that keeps your pet at the center of the frame. It will even alert you when your dog exhibits unusual behavior, like pooping inside the house or licking their paws too much.
All the features are accessible, without an additional subscription. While we were impressed with the eufy's thoughtful design, from the app to the sleek camera housing, it's meant to be used as a tabletop device, similar to an Alexa or Google Home. This means there are no options for mounting the pet camera.
Price at time of publish: $200
Dimensions: 5.7 x 5.7 x. 12.44 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: Yes | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes
Furbo Dog Camera
Doggie Diaries and Doggie Selfies with subscription
Notifications sent for CO and smoke alarms
Dog can be trained to interact with camera
The camera is heavy and cannot be mounted
Several useful features require an additional subscription
Imagine getting notifications on your phone for a "Doggie Selfie" that your pet captured on their own, followed by an end-of-day "Doggie Diary" showcasing how your pet spent their time at home alone. While our testers preferred pet cameras that were fully featured without the need for an additional subscription, the Furbo Dog Camera and its Furbo Dog Nanny subscription service might be worth the price for some users, with an abundance of fun, unique, and useful features.
The Furbo Dog Camera itself was well-liked by our testers. It offers a 160-degree wide-angle live stream in 1080p HD with night vision, two-way audio, a barking alert, and the ability to take a photo. In our tests, its treat feature worked well, reliably dispensing 2-4 treats every time you press the treat button in the center of the app's screen.
One tester described the Furbo as "the best looking of the cameras we've tried, and would be good for someone who cares a lot about their camera blending into decor on a shelf."
They were also impressed with the video and audio quality, which did a good job of keeping pets in view. However, unlike our Best Overall pick, the eufy Pet Dog Camera, the Furbo's rotation is automated and can't be controlled from the app.
The main aspect separating the Furbo from its competition is its subscription features, which currently cost $6.99 a month. The Furbo Dog Nanny service includes 24-hour cloud recording, a home emergency alert for smoke and CO alarms, and notifications for continuous barking or crying. It also sends you "Doggie Diary" daily highlights videos, which capture your pet at play.
The Furbo app is free to use with the Furbo Dog Camera, but is relatively bare-bones without the additional subscription. While several of the features locked behind the subscription wall come included with other pet cameras we recommend, the Furbo Dog Nanny service provides enough additional features to put it above other subscription-based pet cameras we tested.
And while it’s in the name, we should also note that this camera is geared toward keeping an eye on and engaging with dogs—but could also work for cats.
Price at time of publish: $210
Dimensions: 4.72 x 8.86 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: Yes | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes, black and white
Wyze Cam v3 with Color Night Vision
Suitable for indoor and outdoor use
Night vision comes through in vivid color
Adjustable motion detection settings
Compatible with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
Does not dispense treats
Speaker on camera can be difficult to hear
Cannot change position of camera remotely
If your pet prefers spending time exploring your outdoor terrain, then the Wyze Cam V3, with its ability to withstand the elements, is our top pick for you.
When motion or sound is detected, the camera automatically starts to record and sends an alert straight to the connected mobile device. Since your pet might not be the only living entity outside (birds, squirrels, lizards, etc.!), the sensitivity of the detection feature can be adjusted or turned off completely, if preferred.
This is the only pet camera to make our list that is suitable for use outdoors, and the camera’s design impressed our tester: “The camera being small and easily mountable is a definite plus.”
It features full-color night vision in 1080p HD, and it’s lightweight, easy to mount, and adjustable, so you can find the angle that works for your space—indoor or outdoor. “I think this camera delivers a lot of features for the price,” remarked our tester, and while “there is no [remote camera] control or other special features, the basics all worked very well.”
The camera is compatible with Google Assistant and Alexa, provides two-way audio, and offers a 130-degree field of view. With the Wyze app, users can stream video, get notifications, and change settings.
"Sound quality from the app seemed good, as well as the speaker in the camera," our tester noted. "The only area to improve would be that the speaker in the camera is a little quiet.”
Cloud storage of video footage regularly deletes the oldest data, but an additional memory card can be inserted for additional storage. Depending on your space, and especially for outdoor use, you may need to purchase a longer USB power cord than the standard 6-foot cord provided with the camera.
Price at time of publish: $36
Dimensions: 3.93 x 2.51 x 2.24 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: No | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes, color
Best for Training
eufy Security 2K Indoor Pan & Tilt Pet Camera
Area-specific notifications so you can monitor, for example, when your pet jumps on the couch
Can be mounted
No manual switch to activate night mode
If you are trying to keep your pet off of or out of a specific area in your home (the couch, the table, a window sill, etc.), then this camera is our top pick for you. “I think the pet detection zone is a really useful feature for keeping your dog off the couch,” our tester said.
From the eufy Pet app, you can indicate a zone within the camera’s that is off limits. If your pet is detected within the marked area, the camera automatically plays a sound altering your pet to their misstep and sends you a notification.
The eufy Security 2K Indoor Pet Camera offers advanced features including a 2K resolution and the ability to distinguish between animal motion and human motion. The design of the camera allows the lens to pan 360 degrees, with a tilt up to 96 degrees, and when pet motion is detected the camera automatically tracks it. Through the app, a user can determine activity that will automatically trigger recording and notifications, and the two-way audio allows for communication in real time.
“I liked being able to pan/tilt the camera, to control the sensitivity, and the activation zone feature is really nice," our tester said. "Camera controls worked very well, and the app has a lot of features built into the live video stream. I got notifications for both movement and sound, and the movement notification specified that a person was detected.”
Our tester was less impressed with the automatic night vision, noting that it didn't activate until lighting conditions were nearly pitch-black. There is no way to manually activate the night vision.
The eufy camera is also smart home ready, compatible with Apple HomeKit, Amazon Alexa, and Google Assistant. The camera’s design lends itself to placement or mounting, but it is slightly larger than other options on our list because of its wide range of motion.
Price at time of publish: $100
Dimensions: 2.97 x 2.97 x 4.21 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: No | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes
Skymee Owl Robot
Playful movements designed to engage your pet
Can accommodate a variety of treat sizes
Cat-specific attachment with a feather
Movement might upset sensitive pets
Cat stick attachment can block camera view
Arrange playdates and keep your pet active with this unique camera that looks like an owl on wheels. Similar to a Roomba vacuum—but dispensing treats instead of cleaning floors—the Skymee Owl Robot is designed to roam around your space on wheels.
This is the only pet camera on our list with this unique feature, and our tester was impressed with its mobility. "This moves really well on its wheels. We tested on a shag rug too [and] it caused no problems,” noted our tester.
"I would recommend this to pet parents who feel guilty about being at work," exclaimed your tester. "I love that not only can you check in on your pet, and have the two-way audio, but you can also keep them entertained with the movement. The treats setting is great too because you can use the microphone setting to talk to your pet before dispensing a treat, or just set up a predetermined amount to dispense."
Through the app, this pet camera allows a user to control where the camera goes in real time or with pre-programmed movements designed to stimulate and engage your pet. A stick with a feather at the tip can be added for feline participation, and the treat dispenser can accommodate a variety of sizes and shapes, so your furry loved one can get their preferred snack either on demand or at a pre-programmed time of your choosing.
Our testers did note that this might not be suitable for all pets, especially those that tend to be anxious. “I think movement out of nowhere may scare them, so I would recommend testing it out with them before you use it when you're not home.”
Since this camera is primarily meant to be free range, it does rely on a rechargeable battery. On average, with 6 hours of charging, the Skymee Owl Robot can run for 3-7 days in interactive mode before needing a recharge.
Price at time of publish: $170
Dimensions: 6.7 inches x 6.7 inches x 4.9 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: Yes | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes
YI Dome Camera
Great audio and video quality
Affordable price point
Small footprint and portable
Wide range of coverage
Does not dispense treats
Defaults to SD but offers HD video quality
Small but mighty! Our tester was very impressed with the video quality and features of the YI Technologies Dome Pet Camera. “I love that the camera is small and easily portable.” With a price around $33.99, you might even consider getting two and setting them up in different locations in your home.
The circular dome design of the camera lens provides 360-degree coverage paired with an 84-degree vertical pan, so you can keep an eye on your pet as they move about, especially with cats who tend to seek out high locations in a home.
Our tester also found the camera very easy to use and control from the app. “It definitely exceeded my expectations”, shared our tester. “The video quality was good. The app offered a few options including HD and SD, which I found helpful.” The HD resolution is more clear, but the SD may be easier to load and view while you are away from Wi-Fi. And our tester saw no difference between HD and SD quality in night mode.
Price at time of publish: $30
Dimensions: 3.7 x 3.7 x 6.5 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: No | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes
Best Remote Control Interface
Kasa Indoor Pan/Tilt Smart Security Camera
Remote control of camera's tilt, pan, and zoom
Affordable price point
Offers 1080p video resolution but defaults to 720p
Does not dispense treats
Mounting possible but not straightforward
If your pet likes to mix up their routine and keeps you guessing about their whereabouts within your space, then the Kasa Indoor Pan/Tilt Security Camera is the ideal option for you.
“I especially liked the motion control from the app; it was easy to move around and it had a good range of motion,” our tester noted, singling out the "joystick" style controls, which offer 360-degree rotation and make tilting, panning, and zooming simple.
With two-way audio, activity zones, instant alerts, night vision, and the ability to access the live feed 24/7, this pet camera will let you connect with your pet and monitor their activity. Our tester felt the price point for this camera made it “a good contender for best value camera." And after manually switching from the default 720p video resolution to 1080p within the app, they rated the night vision quality to be on par with other cameras in consideration.
“Overall this is a very solid camera. I have a dog who likes to move around while I'm gone, so it's nice that I'd be able to see her wherever she moves to,” our tester said.
To find an angle that works for your space, the pet camera can be placed on any stable surface or mounted with screws, which our tester found required more effort than other cameras we tested.
Price at time of publish: $70
Dimensions: 3.23 x 3.23 x 4.43 inches | Subscription Required: No | Treat Dispensing: No | Motion Alerts: Yes | Night Vision: Yes
The eufy Pet Dog Camera D605 is our top recommendation for a pet camera. It offers pet parents a wide range of ways to check on their animals, including video streaming and audio support. Plus, you can give your pet treats on demand. It's a little pricier than other options, but the video resolution and range of motion keep your pet in view. If you're looking for a starter pet camera, a good budget option is the YI Technologies Dome Pet Camera. This is a camera-only option that doesn't dispense treats or play games, but it does offer a 360° view of a space, and supports two-way audio, so you can speak to and hear your pet.
What To Consider When Shopping for a Pet Camera
If rewarding your pet with a tasty treat is important to you (it's probably very important to your pet!) and will work in your space, then you should focus on pet cameras with this capability. Remotely delivering a savory snack to your pet is a great way to reinforce their positive behavior.
Remote Camera Control
The ability to influence the camera's position, including tilt, pan, and zoom, from your mobile device is an important factor to consider. Depending on your space, a static camera with zoom functionality might offer plenty of coverage, while others might prefer a camera with a 360-degree view of a space that they can navigate while they are away.
You should consider the ideal location of your pet camera within your space before making a final selection, and whether you prefer the camera to be mounted or placed on an existing surface. You should also be mindful of where your pet tends to roam. For example, placing a pet camera on a bookshelf might blend with your decor, but might not be the most advantageous location to make use of your pet camera's features, like treat dispensing and pet interactivity.
Do they explore their space and get into hard-to-view areas (like under a bed)? Or do they spend their time napping with an occasional trip to their food and water bowls? Your pet's personality and interests should be strongly considered. For example, a pet camera with zone targeting notifications, two-way audio, and treat dispensing might be the best option for a younger dog, whereas a camera with maximum tilt and pan would be the best choice for keeping an eye on a cat that tends to explore all levels of a space.
How We Tested Pet Cameras
We purchased and tested 17 pet cameras in our New York Lab, setting up each and then running them through several tests to rate and compare features and functionality. Our methodology guided testers through multiple scores while also gathering subjective impressions along the way.
To start, our testers timed how long it took to set up their pet camera and familiarize themselves with the corresponding app for remote control. The simplicity or difficulty each tester encountered with a camera's instructions, placement (surface or mounted), and comprehension of features (buttons, speaker, wheels, etc.) was noted. They also gave their first impressions on design and size.
Up next in our assessment of each camera was to rate and review the video and audio performance of our featured models. Video for both live stream and playback, paired with clarity and volume settings for 2-way audio was assessed, with our testers noting which pet cameras exceeded their expectations and which were unreliable. The availability of night vision and the quality of the video in low to no light were also noted.
Testers then evaluated each pet camera's notification abilities, which for some included motion, sound, and activity in predetermined areas. Our testers noted which cameras required a manual setup, and those which offered advanced technology to recognize situations and trigger a notification, such as pet movement vs. human movement, and barking vs. crying.
Within our selected group of pet cameras that feature a treat tossing capability, our testers tried each one 10 times in a row. They noted the flexibility of range and if the dispenser ran smoothly or was prone to clog. And for cameras with the ability to roam, our testers took the devices over various types of surfaces often found in a home to assess their durability and potential to cause safety issues for pets and humans of all ages.
Finally, our testers looked up the price of the pet camera they were testing and gave us their impressions of the product's overall value.
Do pet cameras help with separation anxiety?
A pet camera will not directly ease separation anxiety but it can help you to more accurately understand your pet's habits and behaviors when you are not home.
"A pet camera is baseline essential to identifying if separation anxiety is an issue and how it is manifesting in your dog," Buehler told The Spruce Pets.
With the ability to see and hear your dog (or cat), you'll have more information to determine if it is exhibiting any symptoms. Then, you can develop a training plan to help your dog overcome it. The camera can even help you to monitor your pet during training sessions for the condition.
As a certified dog trainer specializing in separation anxiety, Buehler advises her clients to use a pet camera to see the specific way social anxiety is exhibited. Like people, some dogs get loud when they are afraid, so a neighbor might report excessive barking. Other dogs quietly pace, pant, or drool excessively, but all are signs of extreme separation anxiety that a trainer needs to address.
If separation anxiety is not an issue for your dog (which you can confirm with the camera!), you can still use interactive pet camera features like treat tossing to engage your pet while you're away.
“The ability to push a button on my phone and dispense a treat is a great way to redirect a dog's attention to another room,” Buehler said. And it's a tool she uses in her own home.
How do you train your pet to react to a pet camera?
Your pet will need to get used to the look, sound, and functions of the pet camera in order to react positively to it. Start by putting the camera in your pet's surroundings so that they can become familiar with the sight of it. Next, you can plug it in and explore its features with your pet. For example, for treat-dispensing pet cameras, have your pet sit with you and dispense a treat. Encourage your pet to go and get the treat and offer praise. Once your pet associates the camera with good things, it will be much more comfortable with its functions.
If you can speak to your pet through the camera, help your pet learn to associate the camera with your voice by speaking through the device while you are in the same room. Dispense a treat if your pet gives the camera its attention while you are speaking. Adapting your pet to interactions via the camera is an important step, according to Buehler.
“Speaking to your dog through a camera can be distressing for them because they hear a disembodied voice without the scent or sight of the person. If the dog has separation anxiety, they may be triggered again when the voice stops, like another departure," Buehler said. "When you are training by desensitization, you want to watch your dog for any signs of discomfort so you can come in before they are distressed, and start building positive experiences of being alone.”
Why Trust The Spruce Pets?
This roundup was written by Anna Mejorada, a writer for The Spruce Pets, who shares her home with a Pomeranian named Gidget. Before researching and writing about pet products for a living, Mejorada embarked on a self-mandated, ongoing quest to find the optimal items for her dog. She is now delightfully devoted to helping humans discover and select the most favorable products for their pets.
For this article, Mejorada consulted with Alison Buehler, a certified professional dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and certified separation anxiety trainer (CSAT) for Brooklyn-based dog trainers Dharma Dog NYC. Buehler not only keeps rescue dogs herself, but also provides training support to groups and private clients. She specializes in "force-free" training methods, with a specialty designation that certifies her as an expert in separation training.
A previous version of this article was written by Camryn Rabideau, a lifelong animal lover who jumps at any opportunity to combine her love for writing and her pets. She's tested all sorts of pet products for publications such as The Spruce Pets, Reviewed, and Forbes.