Putting pets in their place: Tools for pet owners

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We love our pets, but sometimes they can really try our patience. Messy, destructive and unresponsive, these animals can roam the home like they own the place, marking their territory and shredding your beloved possessions.

If you’re a frustrated pet owner looking to reclaim your home, and your sanity, here are some gadgets that will help you keep the animals in line.

Automated Pet Care

Largely content to take care of themselves, cats are the perfect pets for people that don’t want to get too involved. But even the lowest maintenance cats still need to be fed every day, and their litter boxes need to be cleaned out on a regular basis. Fortunately, for those that want the joys of pet ownership, without any of the hassle, there are easy ways to automate these tasks.

The Litter-Robot is a self-cleaning litter box that spares you the job of scooping up after your cat. The spherical litter box rotates when the cat has done its business, sifting through the litter and neatly depositing any waste into a bin down below.

... these gadgets can ensure that your pet gets taken care of even when you don’t always have the time.

— Adam Verwymeren

To automate feeding times, there’s the Petmate automatic pet feeder, a device that deposits just the right amount of food at regularly scheduled intervals. Of course, these gadgets aren’t just for lazy cat owners. If you’re a frequent traveler, or work long shifts, these gadgets can ensure that your pet gets taken care of even when you don’t always have the time.

Dog owners looking for a break from pet-owning duties are also in luck. If your pooch has put on a few pounds, there’s the PetZen DogTread treadmill, which, much like a human treadmill, allows your dog to go for a run without ever leaving the house.

As ridiculous as it might seem a dog treadmill has its uses. Summer days will eventually give way to fall rain and winter winds, and you might be very happy you have a way to walk the dog without having to brave the elements. The DogTread treadmill is also great for elderly pet owners that no longer have the stamina to keep up with an active dog. Unfortunately, though, you’ll still have to take Fido outside to do his business.

Keep Them in Their Place

While we want pets to roam free around the home, but there are places they just shouldn’t be. But it seems like no matter how many times you chase the dog off the couch or the cat off the counter, they always seem to find their way back again.

Fortunately, SSSCat is there to keep them in line. This motion-activated spray bottle gives your pet a quick jolt when it gets too close. Strategically place a few of these around your home and your pet will learn to steer clear of restricted spaces after a few weeks. If your animal responds better to loud noises than jets of water, try the Tattle Tale Sonic Training Alarm, a motion-activated alarm that screeches when your pet gets too close.

If you give you pet a comfortable place of its own, it’s quite possible that it will leave the furniture alone. The Cat Crib is a simple little hammock for cats that hangs conveniently beneath a chair or table, keeping felines from slumbering on beds and couches where they don’t belong.