Is your dog an escape artist?
Investing in the Best GPS Dog Trackers can be your saving grace.
Now you will never lose your pet again with the right GPS device designed to accompany your canine friend. In this article, we will tackle everything about GPS dog trackers.
Importance of the best GPS dog tracker
Are you worried your dog might somehow get out of your house or run beyond your yard? The best GPS dog tracker is for pet-parents wanting to be more vigilant of their dog’s whereabouts.
A GPS dog collar is ideal for people who want to track their dogs should they get away. There are countless possibilities. For instance, a dog might slip on his leash while you take a walk in the park, or maybe the UPS driver might leave the gate latch unlocked, giving your dog the opportunity to wander away.
This is where a GPS dog tracker comes to save the day. Now you can track and follow your dog to retrieve him.
What is a GPS dog tracker
GPS stands for Global Positioning System. It’s the technology used by Google Maps, Apple Maps, Waze, and any mapping system in the world. The GPS technology powers up any navigating app and we use it on a daily basis such as whenever we use Uber or drive to an unknown place.
1. GPS applications
The same technology is being harnessed for pet-caring applications. A GPS dog tracker is a device used to – you already guessed it – track your dog basically. But it’s so much more than that.
2. The danger of breaking free
A GPS dog tracker saves your pet from being lost – as the device will lead you to him. When roaming, dogs can go more than a dozen miles in a single hour. Imagine coming home from work only to find out your precious doggo has left your home. How far could he go given you’re away for 8 hours?
3. Dog tracker designs
The GPS Dog Tracker can be a device you can attach to your dog’s collar or can be built-in. As long as your dog wears the collar, the tracker will stay with him.
Most tracking systems include a mobile app you can download and use in conjunction with the tracker. You can view your dog’s whereabouts right on your smartphone. Other systems allow you to access the tracker via a browser so you can use your computers and tablets too.
There are also some systems that come not just with the tracker but also with a handheld device – which is a big plus. Overall, the GPS dog tracker gives you no excuse for losing your dog.
How GPS dog tracker works
The tracker acts like a cellular phone. Most devices have sim cards and can access the cellular networks. Since the devices need to access mobile data, most GPS dog trackers also come with subscriptions – mostly monthly while some annually. Ultimately, the trackers are battery operated so you can recharge them when needed just like a mobile phone.
Best GPS dog tracker reviews 2020
You don’t need to search countless pages and compare dozens of products anymore – we have done the job for you. So here’s our list of Top 5 Best GPS Dog Trackers. Each of these models has a remarkable attribute that makes it stand out from the rest.
1. Whistle 3 GPS Pet Tracker & Activity Monitor
- Durable device
- Waterproof unit
- Get alerts via app, text, email
- Follow your pet’s location all day
- Inexpensive subscription plan
- iOs and Android compatible
- NATIONWIDE location tracking
- Ideal for dogs; cats as well
- Long battery life: 7 days
- Set activity goals; track progress
- Inconsistencies on remote places
One of the most popular items today, the Whistle 3 connects to your pet’s collar and sends reports right into your phone. You can track your pet’s activity and location by viewing via an app. Not only that it’s ideal for dogs but can also be used for your cats.
The beauty of Whistle 3 is its capability to use cellular coverage and advanced GPS technology to deliver nationwide location tracking. Now you can pinpoint your dog’s location no matter where he is in the United States!
Whistle 3 is designed to provide the user with proactive alerts. You can receive notifications via email, app, and even text whenever the system detects your pet leaving the safe perimeter. And since Whistle 3 works like a cell phone, it also requires a $6.95/month AT&T subscription plan for the device.
Not only you’ll get notified of your pet’s ‘current’ whereabouts, the device actually keeps track of your dog’s activities and can send you a record of the dog’s trip for the past 24 hours. Now you can see when and where they went.
Ultimately, you’ll surely get impressed by the unit’s battery life that can last for up to 7 days. Overall, the Whistle 3 has everything you could wish for a tracker. With all its features and consumer popularity, it’s easy to get confident with this one.
2. Link AKC Smart Dog Collar With GPS Tracker & Activity Monitor (Leather or Sport)
- Modern look and design
- Works with android and ios
- Has an active call support hotline
- Nationwide tracking coverage
- Sound training capable
- Activity monitoring capable
- Offers real-time alerts
- Offers free collar exchange
- With safety features
- Battery: up to 3 days
- The app needs an update
Now this one comes with class and in two colors – leather brown and sport black. The Link AKC comes competitively with a lot of features and is ideal for dogs above 10 lbs.
One impressive thing about the Link AKC is the look. The GPS tracker is discreetly stored behind the leather material. So at first glance, it looks like a stylish, good-looking collar. This comes at an advantage in case your dog gets kidnapped. In theory, the wrongdoers will have no idea the pet-parent is still able to track their beloved dog.
For data transmission, you will need to avail a service plan because the device works like a smartphone for your dog. The tracking system works nationwide across the US.
More impressive features include sound training and activity monitoring. You can remotely turn-on sound to ‘talk’ with your dog and initiate training. The brand also customized activity goals based on your dog’s size, breed, and age.
You’ll also appreciate the safety features embedded in the unit. It has an LED light on the collar which you can remotely turn-on. Temperature sensors also notify you of your dog’s current environment.
Overall, Link AKC Smart Dog Collar makes itself an appealing choice for people looking for simplicity and functionality in one. It has got the right features that a typical pet-parent needs.
3. Tractive GPS 3G Pet Tracker for Dogs and Cats
- International tracking
- Inexpensive monthly fee
- Virtual fence feature
- Multiple service plans to choose
- Live dog tracking
- Share your dog’s location
- Lightweight and waterproof
- Ideal for 9lbs or 4.5kg
- Battery: 2-5 days
- Little-to-no coverage on woody areas
Never lose your pet again with this Tractive GPS 3G for both dogs and cats. One impressive feature of this system is versatility in tracking. Not only can you check your dog’s location on your smartphone, you can also locate him in any browser on laptops and desktops. This one is ideal for pets exceeding the 9-lb mark.
This Tractive GPS 3G is powered by an inexpensive subscription plan that is as low as five bucks a month. Moreover, it has got all the essential features you can look for in a dog tracker. It’s lightweight, waterproof, and can be attached to any harness and collar.
Live tracking allows you to pinpoint your dog’s location in a real-time manner. You also have access to the location history of your canine buddy. You can even share it with your friends and family if ever the necessity arises.
The system also allows you to make a virtual fence and get notified whenever your dog leaves the designated safe area. Now tracking has never been this easy.
Tractive GPS 3G Pet Tracker’s greatest edge against other competitors is its tracking coverage. Not only do you have a nationwide reach, the coverage is also worldwide. You’ve read it right. If you’re out of the country, for instance, you can still track your dog from over 150 countries worldwide.
4. Gibi 2nd Gen Pet GPS Tracker
- Improved and updated version
- Nationwide coverage
- Lightweight and compact
- Can create multiple safe zones
- Design safe zones your way
- Text and email alerts
- See your dog right on google maps
- Low battery alerts
- Long battery life; 2 days average
- With Gibi app; iOs and Android
- Subscription: $9.99.month or $99/year
- Might be too big for small pets
This one is the second generation tracker from the brand. The Gibi 2nd Gen retained the key features from its predecessor – lightweight, compact, and waterproof (IP67). For the latest gen, Gibi designed it with enhanced accuracy and longer battery life.
Gibi 2nd gen seems a promising unit as it claims better accuracy in both wooden and urban environments. Its best attribute, probably, is its compact size.
It’s not large, unlike other trackers that really looks obvious at first site. This one seems like a simple, normal collar which your dog will surely love. The only thing that doesn’t make it entirely discreet is the large brand/logo metal carving that says “gibi.”
Another impressive feature is creating safe zones. What makes it even more appealing is you can actually make safe zones in any polygon and size. No yard area looks like a perfect rectangle on the map, and you don’t want to accidentally extend your safe zone to your neighbor’s territory.
Gibi has got the solution by allowing you to shape your safe zone the way it needs to be. For instance, if the area you want to assign as a safe zone looks irregular on the map, you can modify the safe zone exactly how the space looks like. Whether the area has a pointed perimeter or a circular edge due to a winding road, you can still create a safe zone.
5. SportDOG Brand TEK Series GPS Tracking Systems With e-Collar Option
- Designed for tracking and training
- Can be used in very REMOTE areas
- Functional in places with NO cell signal
- Can track up to 21 dogs
- No need to use your smartphone
- Comes with its own handheld device
- Waterproof and submersible collar
- Comes with instructional DVD
- Real-time VOICE alerts and guide
- Pre-loaded maps and unlimited updates
- HIGHLY accurate
- Battery life: 1 day
- No nationwide coverage
Now this one looks a bit more professional as it comes with its own handheld device that looks like a sat-phone with a larger screen.
This is the first company to have combined GPS tracking and collar training. With TEK 2.0 technology, tracking and training have become more reliable and accurate than ever.
You will know your dog’s precise location for up to 10 miles. The device uses HOPTEK technology that uses Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum (FHSS). You may don’t have nationwide coverage but the beauty of the TEK 2.0 is immunity to signal interference. It doesn’t use cell service but rather relies on GPS satellites meaning you can still track your dog in places with NO cell coverage.
This is the only tracking system with voice updates sent right to your handheld device. It will tell you exactly which direction your dog is headed, exactly how far away they are, and how fast your dog is moving.
You will have two devices – one collar receiver and one handheld device. Your handheld device features a large screen that uses an icon-based menu (similar to modern smartphones) so you can use and navigate it easily.
You can track up to 21 dogs with premium training features and programmable stimulations. The tracking screen comes with a map pre-loaded into the system and comes with unlimited lifetime map updates.
Ultimately, the collar receiver features Drytek technology; guaranteed waterproof and submersible up to 25 feet. Overall, the TEK 2.0 is a promising tracking system not just for worried pet-parents but also those parents who want to train their dog the modern way.
Best GPS dog tracker buying guide
A dog tracking collar is probably the best investment you’ll ever make for your dog – and he deserves only the best. However, it won’t be that good of an investment if it breaks in the first month of use. So here are some factors to consider when buying a GPS dog tracker.
Not all pet collars are created equal. Make sure you purchase something comfortable for your beloved dog. It’s practical to go for a unit made of mostly plastic; it’s cheaper and does not cause discomfort and pain to your pet’s neck.
While it’s recommended to go for plastic, make sure the product came from a reputable brand to ensure the materials are not flimsy and built to last.
The tracker must fit securely on your dog’s collar. Don’t make it too tight. Make sure your dog won’t have a hard time playing, eating, drinking, and moving despite wearing the collar and tracker.
2. Pet tracker options
If you’re not here for tracking alone, you can opt for devices with more features. The TEK 2.0, for instance, can be used for training your dog; also, you can track up to 21 dogs using one handheld device.
Another feature you’d surely like to have is waterproof capability. There are collar trackers that are even submersible.
Some devices allow you to even track fitness and health. There are also some that can give you voice alerts that will guide you along the way.
Modern trackers can now sync with an app right on your smartphone. You’ll receive real-time updates whenever your dog leaves its safe spot.
Another thing to consider is the size of the tracking tag itself – the thing you attach to the collar. There are also some products where the collar and the tracking device go as one – built-in. So for instance, if you want to track a teeny little puppy, you might want to dodge a tracking tag the size of a tic-tac container.
You might also want to set your desired budget. It’s almost always a fact that the cheapest options may not be the best option for your pet and also for you. But it also doesn’t mean that you can only find the most reliable in the most high-end models.
All items presented in this list are guaranteed to deliver a great deal – a balance of reliability and affordability. Note that you don’t need all the bells and whistles, just consider all features that are important for you and your pet. That way, you can dodge the expensive ones that can possibly have some features that you don’t need anyway.
5. Battery life
GPS dog trackers are not like smartphones where there are only little differences in battery life. There is really a vast difference in terms of battery life between different brands and models. Some batteries last for a day while some can last for a week, others can last even months.
Note that the battery size is kinda proportional to the size of locator tags. It’s almost always true that the larger the tracker, the longer its battery life, and vice versa. You might want to have something with a good balance between size and battery life.
6. Subscription services
Most brands will need you to pay a subscription to use their satellite service. Plans can be monthly while some can be annual. Generally, the amount is not expensive at all. If you value every penny, you might want to opt for the cheapest subscription rates. Also, watch out for freebies.
7. Ease of use
Who would want a complicated system? With that, always choose something that is easy for you to use. The Whistle 3 for instance can integrate with an app to give you access right on your smartphone. The TEK 2.0 comes with a handheld touch-screen device with the familiar icon-based design. Whether you like to monitor your pet with your smartphone or you want a separate device for it, is totally up to you.
Choose a device that suits you and your personality as well. While there can be limited options in terms of colors and styles, there are still some products that at least offers two (2) or more colors to choose from.
9. Customer service
While this one is not the most important factor to consider, it still counts. After-sales service doesn’t affect or help the unit’s performance but it still plays a vital role.
A good customer service includes a contact number you can call, being quick to respond to emails, and a good warranty period for the product.
If you can’t afford to lose your dog, then it’s a wise move to be proactive. Being reactive comes at a greater price. Just imagine losing your precious canine companion with only his picture as your lead. Can you fathom the efforts required and all the money you’ll spend in hopes of finding him back?
The best GPS dog tracker offers the right solution not just in tracking your dog when he’s lost but preventing that scenario in the first place. Any of the five products fits the title and now it all boils down to your preferences. Whether you like something discreet or you prefer something that has a longer battery life, there’s a dog tracker that suits you and your dog.