Should I Talk To My Cat Through A Camera?

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cat looking at the camera

Have you ever wished you could talk to your cat when you’re not at home? Pet cameras are growing in popularity among pet owners who want to do just this. These systems are a great way to keep a close eye on your cat while you’re out for the day or away on vacation.

Quick Overview

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Pet cameras allow you to interact with your cat and monitor their activity while you're away from home.

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Talking to your cat on through a pet camera might reduce separation-related stress and anxiety.

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Cameras also allow other interactions with cats such as playing and feeding.

Many of these camera systems come with a microphone, which is a great way to keep an ear as well as an eye on what your cat is up to in real time. But should you talk to your cat through the camera?

Cats don’t actually recognize faces on screens, but we do know that cats can recognize their owner’s voice and respond positively to it. So, there’s no doubt that talking to your cat through an interactive pet camera is a good idea, and it has several benefits for both you and your pet.

You can use Amazon Alexa or even Google Assistant to speak to your cat, but pet cameras can give you peace of mind that your pet is safe and well, and allow you and them to gain comfort from interacting together even when when you’re away. There is also a whole range of other benefits that come with installing a camera, as well as a few negatives to consider, so let’s take a closer look.

Also Read: 4 Best Cat Cameras

Reasons To Talk To Your Cat Through A Camera

It Can Help With Separation Anxiety

cat walking near cars

Cats that becomes stressed when you are away might be reassured to hear your voice.

Separation anxiety is a common problem and concern for cat owners. We know that cats are highly independent and don’t require as much interaction or contact with their owners as dogs, but human absence can still have a negative impact on their behavior and happiness.

If left without human company, cats can experience separation-related stress, with common symptoms including:

You can minimize the stress your cat might feel when you aren’t at home by making them feel safe and relaxed when you’re out. This can involve providing plenty of safe spaces for them such as climbing and scratching posts, toys, comfy beds, and getting a friend or neighbor to pop in and feed and play with them for a while.

Having a pet sitter while you’re on vacation will ensure your cat is never alone. But your cat might still seem distressed if they aren’t with their human family. A pet camera such as the Furbo dog camera, Petchatz, or Petcube Bites can be really useful to help—the high-quality audio allows you to speak to your cat and interact with them as if you were in the same room.

Cats respond positively to the sound of their owner’s voice, so hearing you will help them to feel comforted and more relaxed and alleviate the symptoms of separation anxiety.

Also Read: New Cat Owner Anxiety: Why It Happens & How To Overcome It

It Allows You To Interact With Your Cat

cat looking at the laptop

Unlike Zoom or FaceTime, pet cameras offer cat-friendly features—some even dispense treats.

Camera systems with two-way audio allow you to interact with your cat, and for them to interact with you. This is particularly good if you are away on vacation, and it can ensure your cat is stimulated and not getting lonely while you’re gone.

Monitor how your cat responds to hearing your voice through the camera’s microphone. Some cats can become distressed when they hear their owner’s voice but cannot see them. If your cat seems confused or distressed, stop talking to them.

Signs of confusion might include excessive vocalization (howling or meowing), pacing, sitting by the door, or looking around the house for you. Don’t talk to your cat for too long or too often to avoid this problem; shorter interactions are usually better. We suggest that you talk only for a few minutes to start with and build up to longer interactions as your cat gets used to it.

Also Read: The 5 Best Interactive Cat Toys for Bored Cats

Other Benefits Of Pet Cameras

pet camera in table

Pet cameras offer many valuable features like nigh vision mode, sound and motion alerts, and alarms.

Interacting with your cat isn’t the only benefit of these smart camera systems. There is a whole range of other useful features and functions that can help us to keep up to date on what our cats are up to, as well as alert us to a problem quickly.

  • You can keep an eye on what your cat is up to. Having several cameras set up around the house means that as long as your cat is in the camera’s range of view, you can see where they are and what they’re doing. It gives peace of mind that your pet is safe and helps you spot if something isn’t quite right. Most cameras have a wide-angle lens or provide a wide-angle view to allow you to see the whole room. You can even tilt the camera if you need to.
  • Abnormal sound detection and alerts. Most cameras are linked to a smartphone app and can alert you if something is different. Abnormal noise alerts can let you know that there’s a storm, a noisy dog barking, or fireworks that might cause your cat stress. You can then choose to act on this in whatever way you see appropriate before the stress escalates.
  • Night vision mode. This is a really great feature for owners who want to keep an eye on what their pet is up to at night. These cameras use infrared to show you what your cat is doing. It’s a great feature if you’re out for the evening or if you’re working nights.
  • Motion detection and motion alerts. If your cat walks past the camera, you’ll get a notification on your phone or tablet. This lets you know your pet is OK and will help you quickly notice if something is wrong if they don’t move for a while
  • Treat dispensers. Some systems have a facility that connects them to automated food or treat dispensers. This means you can control when your cat gets fed, feed them at their usual time, or reward them with a few treats from wherever you are.
  • Laser pointers. Some camera systems allow you to use laser toys so you can play with your cat and keep them occupied
  • Alarms. You can set alarms to remind you or your pet sitter that it’s mealtime or playtime. This way, your cat’s routine won’t change while you’re out.
  • Recording and video history. Compatible with iPhone and Android so you can use the systems on any device. Some products are available on subscription so you can spread the cost.

Also Read: Why Does My Cat Meow At Night?

Final Thoughts

two cats looking at mobile camera

A pet camera is handy, but it should not replace a real-life pet sitter for times you’re out of town.

Smart pet cameras are growing in popularity among cat owners as they allow you to keep an eye on your cat, monitor their activity and anything out of the ordinary, and even interact with them while you’re away from home.

Smart alerts keep you up to date with your cat’s activity, and can help keep your pet safe, spot any problems quickly, and help reduce separation anxiety. A range of pet cameras are available from several manufacturers.

It’s important to remember that no pet camera system will replace a pet sitter—you should never leave your cat home alone without any human contact for too long, as the camera cannot pick up everything.

You should always get a friend or neighbor to pop in and feed your cat, let them out, and check everything is OK in the house. Having a trusted sitter stay overnight in your home means your cat won’t feel lonely and will still get that all-important human contact.

Also Read: Why Do Cats Like To Walk & Sit On Keyboards As Much As They Do?

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it OK to talk to cats through a camera?

Yes, talking to cats through a camera can help them to relax as they recognize your voice. It can reduce separation anxiety if they are home alone.

Does talking to your cat through a camera confuse them? 

It’s possible that cats could get confused if they hear your voice but cannot see or find you. If your cat seems distressed by you talking through the camera, you should stop doing it.

Should you talk to your pets on camera? 

Talking to your pets through a pet cam can help them to feel relaxed and comforted when you aren’t at home, reduce separation anxiety, keep them mentally stimulated, and reduce loneliness.

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About Dr. Joanna Woodnutt, MRCVS

Dr. Joanna Woodnutt (MRCVS) is a small animal veterinarian and writer who is passionate about helping owners to learn more about their pets in order to improve animal welfare. She loves to write and wants to empower owners to make the best decisions for their pets by giving them all the information they need. In her spare time, she takes consultations on the small island of Guernsey.

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