Dog Treat Feeder
So I got tired of constantly having to remember/get up in the middle of dinner to give him a Dentastick after he finishes eating. Being a machine designer by trade I decided to automate this task so he can become more self reliant.
How it Works:
The Dog (Rusty) places it's paw on the "Paw" lever which turns ON the machine, then the machine decides if a treat will be dispensed or not and turns OFF the machine (to conserve battery). It keeps track of the "next treat time" and "treats left in the tube before rotation" by storing these values in the EEPROM on the Arduino so they remain in memory even after the machine turns OFF (main reason I used an Arduino). The machine is programmed to only dispense a (half) treat every 8 hours and resets this value every time a treat is dispensed.
Loading the Machine:
You load the machine with an entire bag of Dentastix (Toy dog type). Since I only give him one a day, I break them in half and load each tube with 4 total halves.