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Animal Planet Pet Feeder – Full Review

Animal Planet Pet Feeder

Animal Planet Pet Feeder

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

Animal Planet pet feeder is an electronic automatic food dispenser with integrated digital LCD control panel that allows you to set the meal times at your convenience up to 3 meals by day and set the portions according to your cat’s diet with a minimum of 1/4 of a cup.

The digital control panel is very easy to program with buttons “up” “down” and “enter” to set the times for each meal.

The hopper has large capacity to hold up to 10 pounds of dry food (4,5kg).

It works with 3 “D” batteries (not included). Animal Planet feeder has a port to plug in a DC power adapter to run off AC, input specified is 4.5V at 800mA. If you use an adapter, the batteries have to be removed.

Their main components are detachable for easy cleaning.

 

FEATURES

  • Integrated LCD control panel allows you to program customized meal times and portions
  • Feeds up to 3 meals by day.
  • Hopper has capacity to hold up to 10 pounds of dry food.
  • Main components are removable for easy cleaning
  • Cord-free convenient 3 “D” battery operation allows you to have portability
  • Dimensions are 17x11x19 inches.
  • Option to use AC adapter instead batteries.

 

PROS

Control Panel

  • Very easy to program and set the times with LCD panel control.
  • Friendly and well designed user interface. You don’t need to read the instructions every time you need to make a change in the programming.
  • The feeder has been made with fine quality materials.
  • The clock is accurate and reliable.
  • Has the option of AC adapter not included.
  • Quiet when operating.

 

CONS

  • The feeder does not dispense accurately portions if using small and flat size pellet (1/4”) or less diameter.
  • Cats can reach up inside the food chute and get extra food.
  • Feeder is tall and with a cat obsessed with food the hopper could get tipped over.
  • Hopper is thin and flimsy regards the other parts of the feeder.
  • Hopper’s lid does not screw strongly on the base (see below in “tips” how to lock into place right).
  • The unit can use batteries or AC power, but not both.
  • It does not retain the programming when turned off.

 

Animal Planet Feeder

Animal Planet Feeder

TIPS TO USE THE FEEDER:

  • Animal Planet feeder performances better with large size pellet (1/2”) diameter or with small round/spherical kibbles (1/4”) diameter. This prevents jamming issues and also get accuracy in portions.
  • To make the lid stay on, you have to line up sections and twist to lock. This way the lid stays on fine.
  • Place the feeder in a corner to give it more stability.
  • This feeder is sensitive to low batteries, so if you get an “ERR” message while trying to operate, make sure to try a fresh set of batteries.

 

CONCLUSION: Animal Planet automatic feeder is not as desirable as other existing options to feed your cat. Customers in Amazon report some design flaws like the described above on the “Cons”.

In my opinion, I would not recommend this unit as the first option because of the CONS mentioned in the review, but if you still want to buy this feeder after reading this review, make sure you fit these conditions (all of them) in order for you not to have a bad experience with the feeder:

  • You feed your cat big pellets, ½” diameter size pellet or round/spherical small kibbles. This way you avoid jamming issues and also you get better accuracy in portions.
  • Your cat eats up to 2 times a day at the most *
  • Your pet is docile and not obsessed with food. This way your cat won’t try to get extra food from the chute or tip the unit over.

* The normal daily intake for an adult active cat is half cup of dry food. Eating twice a day would achieve this intake. More than that, would exceed the recommended intake for a cat.

I don’t recommend this automatic feeder if you match any of these situations:

  • If your cat is obsessed with food and very determined to get extra meals.
  • If you feed your cat small flat size pellet (1/4”) diameter as portions are not accurate (portions are bigger) and the feeder might jam.
  • If your cat is on a diet
  • If your cat has 3-times-a day feeding schedule.
  • If you want a unit that assembles easily.
  • If you cannot or don’t want to change your cat food to a bigger pellet.

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17 Responses to “Animal Planet Pet Feeder – Full Review”

  1. Gregory Davis says:

    The animal planet pet feeder was easy to assemble and not hard to program. Im using batteries to see how long the feeder will work dispensing 3 meals a day. The portions were accurate the first time i pet it and the feeder has been working properly for 7 days without any errors. I only put enough food in it to last for 5 days bcuz i think it mite jam if the hopper is full bcuz of the weight of the food in the hopper. I use dog chow for adult dogs. Thanks

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hello Gregory, thanks for your input! The unit is more accurate with big pellets like the one for dogs so the 3-a-day feeding schedule it is OK for them. My reviews are a little more oriented to cats so if a cat eats 3 times a day a 1/4 cup each time (with recommendable big pellet to get more accuracy) would exceed the recommended intake for a normal adult cat. Then I recommend it for the 2-times-a-day feeding schedule so they would eat half cup of food by day with spherical/round or big pellets.

      Thank you very much for sharing your experience as a dog owner. It will help more customers to give the Animal Planet feeder a try.

      Keep me posted how your dog behaves with this feeder.

      Thanks!

  2. Michelle says:

    I bought this for my outside cat, so when we went away for the weekend we didn’t have to bring her inside. It was easy to program, I did get a few error messages at first, but it is working great so far. I was sceptical about getting the auto pet feeder after reading some negative reviews, but i wanted to try it out & see for myself. Glad I did becsause I had no issues with anything that was listed. When we got home she was happy & there still was a little bit of food in her dish! i just have to make sure she doesn’t get to fat may have to cut back on portion size.

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hello Michelle, thanks for your comment. I am happy to know you have a good experience with this automatic feeder. A good or bad experience with an automatic pet feeder sometimes depends on the cat personality, your princess behaves good with food which is great using this feeder. I would like to know how long you have had this automatic feeder and ask you if you could give me an update in a couple of months. I would really appreciate that. What pellet size do you use for your cat?

      Thanks Michelle again!

  3. Kirsten says:

    Hello Lorena. I bought 2 of these feeders for my 2 cats and guess I should have read the reviews first. My pellets are apparently too small. Both dispensers were serving way over the programmed 1/4 cup and when I got up this morning they had pooped all over the house – diarrhea in my daughter’s room, etc. They are getting sick and filled up the 2 litter boxes in one day.

    I started using the feeders Monday after Christmas. I’ll try again with larger pellets 2x per day before I give up completely.

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hello Kirsten, I am sorry about your bad experience with this feeder. My main goal is to avoid exactly what just happened to you and that is why I don’t hide any “con” in my reviews; I mention exactly what people need to know.

      I hope the feeder will work better with bigger pellet size. I recommend you to change the pellet progressively and not at once since to change suddenly to a new pellet might harm your cats digestion even more.

      Feel confident to ask me any question in the future. Thanks for sharing your experience Kirsten, it will help more people for sure.

  4. Denise says:

    Lorena – I am not impressed with the feeder. I got it as a gift from my daughter. It only dispensed the 1/4 cup amount once, and I can’t change to a different kind of cat food because my cat has food allergies. The top does not snap down into place because the little tabs don’t reach into the groove in the hopper. I can see where it would work better for dogs that have larger kibble sizes. So for now, we have to pick out almost half of the amount of food dumped.

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hello Denise, I am sorry about your bad experience and I wish you read my reviews before buying it. What I can suggest you now since you already have the unit is set it up with a 2-a-day feeding schedule so you don’t overfeed your cat or on simply trying to look for a different option to feed your pet. The best options are the one classified in this website as 5 stars. Good luck Denise!

  5. Lisa says:

    I have tried 2 different Animal Planet Electronic Pet Feeders now and I am having the same problem. It works the first day I program it and then stops dispensing the food every day after that. The clock runs about 20-30 minutes slow and there are no error messages, just wont work every day. I returned the 1st one and I will be returning this one too. I have 2 more expensive electronic pet feeders that have worked properly for more than 4 years now.

  6. Don Phillips says:

    I was very happy with mine until one day I looked and noticed the clock was not on. I checked the batteries they were good. The feeder just stopped working after 6 months. very unhappy

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Thanks for your contribution Don. I am sure your testimony will help cat owners to decide better with this information. That is the main goal of this website, to give the best information when it comes to know real pros and cons of the different automatic cat feeders existent in the market.

  7. Ron Hall says:

    Hi. I’ve been using this feeder with my two cats for six months and it’s great. It’s been perfectly reliable so far. Batteries did wear out about four months along. Replacement was easy. When batteries wear out it just stops working.
    I’d like the option for it to drop a bit less food in a day’s feeding. The hopper mechanism turns twice on what I think is the lowest setting and if it would turn once at one of the two feedings, it would be just right. Any ideas?
    I’d also put in fresh batteries if I was leaving it for any length of time. Is there a dedicated a/c adaptor available?

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hello Ron, you can setup the feeder to dispense once a day and if you use small pellets for your cat (1/4″ diameter) it would be a good daily intake for it as the accuracy on the dispensing is a little more in small pellets so your cat would get more than 1/4 of a cup by day.

      This feeder has a port to plug in a DC power adapter to run off AC. If you use an adapter, the batteries have to be removed.

      Thanks for sharing your experience with this automatic feeder.

  8. Heather says:

    I bought this feeder from Groupon. From the beginning I would have to turn the feeder on and off in order for it to release food. It would work for a few days and then all of a sudden it would stop. I would find the plastic pieces that controlled the food amount in my cats food. Then, all of a sudden, all the food poured into the dish along with all the other plastic pieces. I would not recommend this particular brand to anyone.

    • Lorena Ávila says:

      Hi Heather, thanks for sharing your experience using this automatic feeder, it will help our readers to decide with more information.

  9. Kevin says:

    The poor fitting top can be helped by just adding some paper masking tape around the edge of the hopper to build it up.(don’t use duct tape ,it’ll come loose when it gets warm and it leaves a mess on everything when it does) The timer should only rotate the set amount of times no matter what size or shape food is in it .The problem here is a miscalculation of proper component values on the circuit board. The power supply requirement is an odd ball size at 4.5 volts and should be a bit larger and at least a more common size like 5 or 6 volts. Its a great idea but just an all round bad design from start to finish. I mean really…how could you not see fault in a conical shaped top heavy hopper. Everything about it just says amateur entrepreneur.

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