Monday, January 18, 2021

Furbo : camera for dog and cat

In just a few years, Furbo has established itself in the minds of the masters. Several hundred models of this treats tosser are sold every year.

Furbo Camera Dog

However, I have to admit that I only discovered this product recently, when I was looking for a camera able to film my dogs live, in order to understand why I found my bags all over the living room when I came home…

For the anecdote, I was able to see thanks to a video system that Jodie was lying on my shopping bags as soon as I left, while Mookie, my youngest dog, was having fun running around with bags in her mouth. What a great duo!

But let’s come back to Furbo. Why does this candy tosser appeal so much? Is it really useful? What are its strong and weak points?

The principle of Furbo

The basic principle behind the Furbo is not innovative: it consists of rewarding your dog with a treat. All lovers of positive education, like me, are already used to this system.

But what is new with Furbo is that you can throw your treats from a distance and see your dog / talk to him through a microphone and a camera.

Characteristics of this treats thrower

To summarize, here are the features of the Furbo Dog Camera :

  • Requires a stable wifi connection to work (at least 1 mb/second)
  • Measures 15 x 12 x 22.5 cm and weighs less than one kilogram.
  • Has a 1080 full HD camera, a lens with a 160 degree angle, a zoom x4 and a night vision
  • Listens via a speaker, while a microphone allows you to speak
  • Has a capacity of about 100 sweets
  • Plugs into a USB cable provided in the box to recharge
    Is guaranteed for 2 years.
  • Strengths and weaknesses of the Furbo

I see a lot of reviews and very promotional reviews of the Furbo. I give my opinion as honest as possible, based on my knowledges and feedbacks from other masters who have bought this equipment.

Yes, the Furbo is an excellent material and if you have it in your house, your dog will be delighted. But no, it is not perfect. I’m telling you everything.

The strong points of the Furbo camera

Interact with your dog from a distance

If for the owner, leaving his dog alone all day can be stressful, the situation is even worse for the dogs.

Few animals are completely comfortable when their owner is not around. This is the case with my dogs.

Even though there are two of them, I have found with a dogs camera system that my departure meant: doing stupid things for ten minutes or running around, lying down while looking out the window at passers-by, running to the door as soon as a noise resounds in the stairwell…

With the Furbo camera, you can stop the boredom and play with your dog for his greatest pleasure.

If you leave your dog from 8am to 6pm, it can be a great idea to have fun with him during the lunch break. At first he will be surprised to hear you, then he will have fun with your treats and your kind words.

Don’t give too much treats. It’s the interaction you bring him that matters, not the number of calories you send him.

For the owner, the application is very ergonomic and is presented with a video of the dog accompanied by several buttons.

App Furbo camera
The Furbo application is very easy to use: the choice between video or photo, one button to launch a treat, another to trigger the microphone.

An efficient monitoring system

In addition to interaction, the Furbo allows you to monitor your dog’s actions and noises during the day. Thanks to the camera, you can see if your dog is behaving dangerously in your absence, how he does things, where he likes to rest, which toys he likes when he is alone…

Better yet, the Furbo is a very effective tool to stop barking. You can set the application to receive a notification as soon as your dog barks.

This way, you can immediately signal him to shut up thanks to the camera and above all, understand what makes him bark (boredom, passers-by, fear…).

When we know all the worries caused by dog barking in the neighborhood, this function alone sometimes deserves the purchase of the Furbo. It’s much nicer than buying a painful bark collar …

High quality camera and sound

The great fear of the dogs owners is to have a blurred and unstable image, as well as an incomprehensible microphone when they invest $200 in the Furbo. If this is your feeeling, be reassured, the camera is excellent.

With a good quality phone, you have a flawless image, perceive the details of your dog’s actions. As for the microphone, do some tests and you will see that your words are perfectly clear.

In fact, take advantage of this opportunity to do some training lessons from a distance. Before throwing the treat, ask your dog to lie down or sit down.

Sturdy and reliable dog camera

If Furbo has been able to seduce so many owners, it is thanks to its innovation, but also to the quality of its equipment.

It lasts for years, never gets stuck with treats and other cookies (as long as you respect the maximum size of the treats) and its level of performance does not go down in the long run.

No subscription to pay

This is a very important fact. The application of the candy launcher is 100% free. This may seem normal to you, which is my case, but it is not always so.

For example, a lot of GPS dog collars are not expensive to buy, but require an app at $20 per month to work…

Weaknesses of the Furbo Dog Camera

A high price

The first weak aspect of the Furbo is its price. It costs $199. The price is explained by the components. The manufacturer chose quality, which is top for the use of the accessory, but it has a cost.

Moreover, since there are few competitors on the market (and none are close to competing in terms of performance), Furbo can keep its price high. And don’t forget that the app is free for life.

A well protected treats tosser

Dogs love to eat. If they understand that the treats dispenser they love so much is unprotected, they might jump on it, destroy it and earns all the treats. I paid the price for this with my first dog food dispenser.

Furbo Action
If your dog is always willing to do anything to eat, put the Furbo out of reach so that he doesn’t damage it when trying to get the stored treats.

I recommend that you put the Furbo up high. Do some tests to make sure that the camera angle is good. The dog will receive his treats on the ground and will not be able to touch the launcher while you are away.

Some bugs on the application

This is often the problem of connected objects. We live in a country where we benefit from wonderful technologies with sometimes network problems.

If you are on a 4G network, you may encounter connection problems to use Furbo. Most of the time, this causes image problems…

My tip: use Wifi or 5G networks as much as possible. If you are at work, connect to the box more than to the 4G network. Do the same everywhere you have a wifi network (library, McDonald’s…).

Afterwards, if you are in the city center, the good 4G network will be sufficient in most locations.

Advantages and disadvantages of Furbo dog camera

ADVANTAGES :

  • Continuous interaction with the dog
  • Effective monitoring system
  • Fights perfectly against dog barking
  • Perfect camera and sound
  • Ergonomic application
  • Rugged hardware that’s built to last
  • Works very well with fiber or any good wifi connection

DISADVANTAGES :

  • High price
  • Need to be protected because the dog could break it to gain access to the treats.

Do I own a Furbo?

No, not at the moment. Why? I now work at home and am almost all the time with my dogs. If the Furbo cost $50, I would surely take one to play with my dogs from a distance or when I go out on weekends. But, I am not the right public of this product.

On the other hand, if one day I had to go back to a remote job outside of my home, I would surely take a Furbo camera and tosser.

At the moment, I’d rather put my budget into an excellent dog food dispenser to feed my dogs automatically and a small water fountain.

To do my tests, I used the Furbo from my friend Jean-Fran├žois (who owns a chow-chow) and thanked him for it, and got feedback from several friends who have one for their cats. Indeed, it is quite possible to have a Furbo for a cat!

In conclusion, do I recommend the Furbo?

If you are going away for a long time during the day (more than 5 hours), if you have a dog that is very anxious when you are leaving or eels the need to bark all day long, the Furbo is an accessory that deserves to be in your home.

It can really help a lot of owners, like a lot of dogs.

However, if you only want to check your dog’s behaviour during short absences, use a free smartphone application instead.

 

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