- Two-way audio
- Dual-band Wi-Fi support
- Smooth video
- Treat dispenser
- Night vision mode
- Wall mount brackets don't seem sturdy
- Treats may launch further than you want
When your pet is part of the family, you hate leaving them home alone when you’re at work, school, or even on vacation. Thankfully, pet cameras have made it much easier to check in on your fur baby wherever you’re away. The CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser not only lets you say hello and see your pet but dispenses treats for more interaction. I recently had the pleasure of testing this camera for this review.
This is a sponsored article and was made possible by CENGCEN. The actual contents and opinions are the sole views of the author who maintains editorial independence even when a post is sponsored.
Overview of Features
Even before you take it out of the box, the CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser is fairly impressive. Unlike many smart home devices that only work on 2.4 GHz networks, this works on both 2.4 GHz and 5.0 GHz, which makes it easier to get and stay connected. This also allows for less network interference on a single band and provides smoother video.
You control everything via the CENGCEN mobile app. You will need iOS 10.2 or later or Android 4.2 or later. For most users, this shouldn’t be an issue.
The 1080p HD camera is designed to switch easily between normal and night mode to let you check in at any time. Plus, there’s a 130-degree field of view, giving you a wider area to see your pet.
The pet camera sits well on a shelf, but you can also mount it on a wall. Mounts are included that can be used without drilling holes in your wall, which is a nice feature.
In addition to two-way audio, you also get to interact with your pet using the included treat dispenser. It’s recommended to only use smaller treats with a diameter of no more than 0.6 inches. Obviously, only use dry treats so you’re not left cleaning out a sticky mess later. Treats are ejected at the press of a button in the app or on the device itself.
Easily capture video and photos using the app. As a premium feature, you can pay for cloud storage and store video and photos automatically using the motion detection feature. Motion detection is not available without a paid plan. I’ll cover more about the available plans later on.
In the Box
There’s not much you have to put together here unless you want to use the wall mounts. The CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser itself along with a power adapter, two wall mount panels, instructions, and a light cover sticker are included in the box. I was actually impressed that the company included a sticker to cover the LED light on the side on the camera, which is kind of bright if it’s facing you while you’re at home.
I was surprised to find the adapter and cord are stored inside the camera. Simply remove the silicone top and take it out. There’s also an area on the back of the camera to wrap any excess cord, which is a great idea to avoid tempting your pets from grabbing and eating it.
The treat dispenser is the large opening under the silicone cover. Simply drop in your treats and you’re done. Just make sure to replace the cover to keep your pets out of the camera.
The setup process was pretty straightforward. Connect the CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser to an outlet and power it on. Then, download the app and follow the guided prompts. While the instructions are in the included booklet, the app walks you through everything.
Honestly, this was one of the easiest smart home devices to connect to the network. I didn’t have to switch bands, which was a nice change.
The only obstacle I hit was I had to search for the app name three times before it appeared in the search results in the Google Play Store. No misspelling or anything, it just wasn’t appearing. I wish there was a QR code in the instructions to scan to take you straight to the app download, but that’s not a major issue.
As with most devices, you’ll need to create an account. Once the app’s set up and the camera connected, you can share access with other users. Surprisingly, there isn’t any type of location/GPS requirement for those you’re sharing with. This is actually a good thing since you may want to share access with someone who lives with you, but may be away temporarily, such as away at college.
I had a high shelf to place the camera on, which has a skid-proof bottom. It is kind of large (8.66 x 5.31 x 10.83 inches), so it’ll likely stand out wherever you put it. But, it’s just a simple white box, so it works well in any décor.
I didn’t use the mounting panels, but they’re plastic brackets on an adhesive strip. I don’t know if the strip removes easily from walls without damage or not. To me, they didn’t seem sturdy enough to really hold the camera, but I can’t say that for certain.
Using the Pet Camera
The app couldn’t be simpler to use. When you open it, there are just four main options: Enter, Edit, Cloud Storage, Motion Detection. If you want to purchase a cloud storage plan, click that option to view available plans and set that up. For my review, I didn’t opt for the cloud storage option.
Monthly plans start at $4.49/month for 14 days worth of event recording storage and $9.99/month for 30 days worth of event recording storage. You can save by buying an annual plan: $44.99/year for 14 days worth of recording storage or $99.99/year for 30 days worth of recording storage.
Tap “Enter” to immediately start viewing your home. I experienced some lag, around 10-20 seconds, when I placed the CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser across the room from my router, but when I placed it within a few feet, I had no issues at all.
I did have to turn the volume all the way up to be easily heard through the two-way audio. However, I could hear my cats clearly across the room.
I admit I spent most of my review time laughing at my fur babies as they tried to figure out how I was talking to them without being in the room. They were surprisingly well behaved since they weren’t sure how I was spying on them.
The next adventure was dispensing treats. I put 7 to 10 small treats in to start. I’d recommend turning the treat dispenser volume down just a little, as it can be startling to your pet.
I honestly wasn’t expecting the treats to launch quite as far as they did. The first time I dispensed treats, nearly all of them came out at once. Distance ranged from a few feet to over seven feet away. So, yes, the treats definitely launch. After this first launch, only a few came out at a time. Maybe it just has to have an initial burst before it adjusts?
Night mode worked extremely well. I could see almost as clearly as I could during the day.
If you want a simple way to stay closer to your cats, dogs, and other pets while you’re away, the CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser is a great option. Overall, it worked perfectly. Video and audio were clear and smooth without any interference.
My cats adjusted to it quickly, coming by now and then just to see if I was going to talk to them. Or, maybe it was just to con me out of more treats.
Even the cloud storage plans are reasonably priced to store and access footage for 14 to 30 days.
Overall, the CENGCEN Pet Camera Treat Dispenser is ideal for pet owners and is priced at just $109.99. You can clip the Amazon coupon for an additional $20 off.
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