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Automatic Feeder Mod Makes Cat Work for Food

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Written by Lambert Varias | August 10, 2015

Benjamin Millam came up with a brilliant way to help his cat Monkey eat and have fun at the same time. Benjamin modded Monkey’s automatic feeder so that it will dispense food in exchange for a wiffle ball.


Benjamin made an Arduino-controlled add-on to the feeder that has an RFID reader. He then placed RFID tags inside several wiffle balls, so that the feeder will dispense food when one of the balls rolls down the add-on.


Benjamin hides the balls all over their house to make things more exciting.

One very important thing that’s not evident in the video is that Monkey didn’t just instinctively know how to get food from the modified feeder. Benjamin had to train Monkey to recognize the steps you saw above as good behavior, and then put them together as a single task. In other words, you have to hack your cat first before you mod its feeder.

[via Benjamin Millam via Digital Trends]