updated 04/28/2010 AT 5:00 PM ET
•originally published 04/29/2010 AT 7:45 AM ET
I’ve always wanted to see the world through my cat’s eyes, but tying my bulky digital camera to his collar didn’t seem like the best solution. Luckily, there’s the Pet’s Eye View clip-on digital camera ($39.99), a 2-in. by 2-in. device that exposes pet owners to what their furry friends see.
To test it out, I slipped the camera onto my cat Wolfie’s collar, then sat back as he climbed over the fence, through the flowerbeds and under the car – all the while the camera automatically snapped pictures of his favorite haunts.
The kick is in seeing the world from an animal’s level: The backyard looks like a jungle, the neighbors’ cat looms large and every human appears impossibly tall. (A heads-up: Shooting as they do from ground level, your pets are not likely to catch your best angle!)
You can set the camera to take photos at 1-, 5- or 15-minute intervals, and it can hold up to 40 photos at one time. When the memory is full, just connect the camera to your computer with the included USB cable, download the shots and see what your pet saw. (Make sure to delete the photo files from the camera or your pets won’t be able to take more pictures.)
Wolfie might not be Ansel Adams, but his photos weren’t bad either. They included several pictures of the sky (taken while lounging on the patio), the view from inside the flowerbeds and some nice shots down the block. There were some I couldn’t decipher – is that a paw? a leaf? –but most were easy enough to figure out. And the photos are 640 x 480 resolution, so they’re big enough to produce a 4-in. by 6-in. print.
There are some drawbacks: The camera is a little cumbersome for cats or small dogs. It’s not waterproof so make sure to keep it out of the water bowl. And the hard plastic shell did take a bit of a beating when Wolfie rolled on the concrete driveway (oops!). But that’s quibbling. Even if its lifespan is short, the Pet’s Eye View is a fabulously fun peek into my cat’s mysterious life.
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