Buying Guide For Best Pet Trackers
Your dog or cat is part of the family, and its hard to imagine a worse feeling than being unable to find Rover or Fluffy. If your puppy or kitten is an accomplished escape artist, and youre worried about the safety of your furry friend, it might be time to clip a pet tracker to his collar.
There are many different pet trackers from multiple brands, and each one has model-specific features that you may or may not need. Are you willing to pay a monthly subscription fee for extremely accurate GPS tracking? Do you really need to monitor how much sleep your cat gets every day when what you need is a way to find her when she hides? Which pet tracker is the best option if your dog is lost in your neighborhood?
Its ultimately up to you to decide which pet tracker is best for your situation, but we can help. Weve tested a number of solid devices, and our shopping guide provides some tips on exactly what to look for in a pet tracker.
The Best Pet Gps Tracker
The best pet GPS tracker is a great pet accessory to invest in, especially if your pet has a habit of exploring new areas. The ability to see where your dog or cat is through an app is incredibly reassuring. Additionally, monitoring and regulating your pets activity and behavior helps to promote a healthy lifestyle. Once youve narrowed down what features your pet and yourself need most with a tracking device, youll have a much easier time narrowing down the options.
Available in three colors to best suit your pets coloring, the Whistle Go Explore Tracker provides real-time location tracking. If you have a particularly sneaky pet, you can set up alerts to quickly locate him or her when they decide to go on a little adventure. Plus you can designate safe areas and set up alerts for when your pet leaves those spots. You can also monitor your pets activity levels, calories, and distance, and keep an eye on behavior like scratching or licking that could be potential health problems. With a 20-day battery and an adjustable built-in nightlight, you can rest a little easier knowing this pet GPS tracker features added safety measures. Something to note: a Whistle subscription is required for $8.25/month with your first 30 days free and this device uses WiFi connection and the AT& T nationwide network and Google Maps.
Whistle Go Explore Pet Tracker & Activity Monitor
This Whistle Go Explore is the best dog activity monitor you can get. If you do not keep your dog in an outdoor dog kennel, and they have a tendency to get out of your yard with their dog collar or dog harness intact, then a GPS pet tracker might be the perfect solution for you. This is suitable for many different breeds including Yorkshire Terriers, Boxers, Huskies, Great Danes, Poodles and Beagles. This GPS dog tracker attaches to your pets collar or harness, and allows you to see exactly where they are and be alerted when they leave a pre-designated safe zone that you set up.
However, this is not just a GPS locator. Like many of the best GPS locator units on the market, this is also an activity monitor. That means that it measures your dogs activities and keeps track of vital statistics that you need to be aware of about your dog. You can interact with it using the app that can be downloaded for iOS or android devices. You do need to keep in mind that this works on the cellular network, as well as with other locating technologies, and it is a few dollars a month to maintain your dog cellular plan so that you can track them anywhere in the country. Plans starts at $6.95 a month and they are set up when you activate the Whistle app.
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Types Of Pet Trackers
Just like pets, pet trackers come in different shapes and sizes. Currently in use are 3 major types, including radio frequency pet trackers, Bluetooth pet trackers, and GPS pet trackers, with GPS pet trackers coming in 2 different versions cellular GPS trackers and mixed or multi-tech GPS trackers.
Each pet tracker type relies on different technologies for tracking and has its advantages and shortcomings that are dictated by the technology employed. We will now explain how different types of pet trackers work and provide an overview of their greatest strengths and weaknesses.
What About Privacy And Security
Striking a balance between privacy and security with an item meant to track your stuff is difficult, and a device that tracks your location presents a number of concerns. Beyond the worry about what the tracker maker does with your location information, theres also the potential for intentional misuse and abuse by bad actors. Apple and Tile take different approaches on both fronts.
Tile representatives have told us that the company uses your phones location data in four ways: determining where you are in relation to your stuff, periodically determining the location of each tracker, noting your location if youre in range of someone elses lost tracker, and determining the approximate location of your computer or other device by IP address. We dont think any of these uses is particularly invasive for a device that youre purchasing to locate you and your lost items, and Tile told us it doesnt use revenue generating advertising in our products or services that could give third parties access to certain information for monetary gain.
We combed through the privacy policies of both companies and reached out with clarifying questions about our most critical concerns regarding these types of trackers. Heres how they compare:
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How Does A Pet Tracker Work
A pet trackers general mode of operation is quite simple. The tracking unit worn by the pet uses positioning technology to determine his or her location. Once the location information is obtained, it is transmitted to the guardians receiver or smartphone using communication technology.
Different pet trackers use different technologies for determining the location and transferring the information. These include GPS, Bluetooth, radio frequency, cellular, and even proprietary technologies. The technology used determines the communication range of the device, as well as its coverage, accuracy, and general reliability.
While the device constantly keeps track of the pets location, the freshly obtained information can be sent to the guardians receiver or smartphone at different intervals, which can be preset or custom defined. The information can be displayed on the screen of the receiver or it can be accessed via a smartphone using a dedicated app. The exact mode of operation and use differs across various pet tracker types.
Finally I Subjected The Trackers To Two Field Tests
Cat Tracker Field Testing
After watching my cats wear their trackers around the house, setting up data plans, and getting familiar with the apps and receivers, it was time to put the trackers to the test. I tested the trackers in a rural, partially forested area with decent cell coverage.
First, I tested the GPS trackers ability to keep track of movement by carrying all the trackers in my pocket and going for a walk.
Because it updated frequently and provided accurate location data on the app, the Findster Duo+ was the clear winner of this GPS field tracker test.
The other GPS tracker didnt update as frequently, so it lost some ground and failed to give an accurate location on the map. While the Findster Duo+ tracked the entire walk accurately, the other was still loading, refreshing, or trying to get a connection.
The Findster Duo+ was the clear winner in this GPS tracker test. But keeping tabs on your cat isnt always as straightforward as taking a planned walk with your cat outside. I wanted to know what would happen if my cat escaped the house or wandered out of sight while wearing each of the trackers.
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Tkstar Mini Dog Gps Tracker
The TKSTAR Mini Dog GPS Tracker offers SMS based GPS tracking in a mini-sized tracker. With a combination of GPS, WiFi, and LBS to ensure highly accurate location tracking. Easy setup consists of setting a geo-fence, and letting the tracker alert you when it is breached, after that, a simple SMS message to the tracker will send a reply with a Google Maps link to its location.
- Subscription service is $4.66 a month, with SIM card included with initial purchase.
- Three way location tracking can provide location resolution down to 5-10 meters.
- Tracking unit is constructed from ABS plastic and is rated IP65 water resistant.
Dogs Are Escape Artists
Is your dog running off again? Well, dogs can be great escape artists.
Whether it’s out of curiosity or due to their hyperactivity, dogs tend to escape and explore beyond your fenced yard. But because of this, more and more dogs get lost.
When you have GPS dog collars, your escape artist of a pooch can explore all he wants without worrying about where he goes. The geofencing feature in dog trackers can also be very helpful when training your pooch to stay inside.
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Smart Waterproof Mini Pet Gps Tracking
The Smart Waterproof Mini Pet GPS Tracking is a lightweight GPS tracker that is easily attached to your dogs collar. The rechargeable battery can last up to 3 days in standby mode. It relies on a 2G cellular network to relay the GPS information.
- Real-time position tracking, with historical route storage.
- Free companion app is compatible with Android, iOS, and PC.
- GSM Quad Band with voice listening capability.
Loc8tor Pet Tracker Tracking Cat Collar
The Loc8tor Pet Tracker is a GPS Pet Trackers which is amongst the top pet tracker. This contains advanced technology because it provides the feature of locating your lost pet within the range of 400ft including outdoor tracking as well as indoor tracking. While providing an accurate location it also provides the facility of live tracking to let yourself reach your pet. It gives the map access on which live pin location is showed and you can track your pet using a map. The most amazing feature which is provided by this pet tracking device is that its RF-based technology which is considered as one of the best tracking solutions. Due to its RF technology, it gives a more accurate location as compared to other Pet tracking gadgets. The manufacturers are offering different facilities to their customers including no-monthly payment. The manufacturer has won numerous awards for their hard-working as well as upon their amazing result. The device contains a durable design with a waterproof and lightweight.
What About A Tile Or Other Bluetooth Tracker
A Bluetooth tracker may seem appealing for pet tracking. A Tile Pro, for example, costs less than half the price of even the cheapest of these GPS pet trackers, and you don’t have to pay an ongoing subscription fee. Battery life is roughly a year, not days. A Tile is smaller than any of the pet trackers we tested, and the Tile app provides an experience similar to that of the Whistle app. If you’re in an urban area with a decent number of other Tile owners, the tracking can be fairly accurate.
The problem is that a Tile or other Bluetooth tracker would help you find your pet only if you’re very close to your pet, or if someone else who uses that brand of trackerâand thus is part of that tracker’s crowd-finding systemâis very close. And with the latter, there’s usually a delay before you get a notification, at which point your pet may be long gone. At best, the crowd-finding feature of a Bluetooth tracker can give you an idea of the general area your pet is in.
A Bluetooth tracker may work in the right scenario. But if you’re concerned about finding an escaped pet, we think the peace of mind a GPS tracker offers is worth the extra cost, as substantial as it may be.
The Advantages Of A Bluetooth Tracker
Bluetooth technology is very precise, and can track location down to centimetres. However, this will only work in the Bluetooth range, of around 10 metres, defeating the purpose of tracking in the majority of cases. Bluetooth trackers, such as the Apple AirTag were originally designed to track valuable personal items, which are easily lost, such as wallets and keys, whilst at home.
A Bluetooth tracker will cost less than a GPS tracker, with many GPS trackers requiring a small monthly subscription. However, the Safer Pet GPS pet tracker is available with the best value subscription plans available on the market. The small extra cost is worth it for the peace of mind, given that with a Safer Pet GPS pet tracker you can reliably find your pet at any time if they become lost.
Bluetooth trackers tend to have longer battery life, due to the fact that the devices don’t transmit data as frequently. GPS pet trackers regularly update their location to increase accuracy and reliability.
Best Gps Trackers For Dogs
This post contains affiliate links, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links, at no cost to you.
A GPS tracker is one of the most useful devices currently on the market for pets.
A GPS tracker is a device that can alert you when your dog gets out, and tell you exactly where to find them, so that you do not spend hours driving around your neighborhood or are sitting at home worried because your dog is not yet come home. But how do you choose the right dog GPS tracker? Thats exactly what we are going to cover in these reviews and in this buying guide.
These are the top five dog GPS trackers currently on the market. These are all really great devices, and they have all of the features that you need to make sure that you know where your dog is at all times and that you are alerted when they wander from the area where they are supposed to stay. Lets take a look at each of them one by one because they all have a little bit different design and their own advantages.
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No Monthly Fee Pet Trackers Vs Subscription
No monthly fee pet trackers can save you quite a lot of money in the long run. However, what pet guardians often fear is that by getting a zero-fee pet tracker, they may be saving cash at the expense of their furry friends safety.
The truth is that no monthly fee pet trackers come with more advantages than downsides and they are in many ways superior to their subscription-based counterparts. Still, it is also true that subscription-based pet trackers come with one significant benefit that makes them highly popular among pet guardians.
To help you make an informed decision, we have created simple overviews of the main advantages of both no monthly fee and subscription-based pet trackers, allowing you to find out exactly what you get and what you miss out on if you opt for a no-fee tracker.
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Skip Trackers That Dont Use Both Gps And Cellular Service
As their ratings indicate, all five of the trackers that use a combination of GPS and cellular serviceCube GPS Real Time,Fi Series 2, Link Smart Pet Wearable, Tractive GPS Dog LTE, and Whistle Go Exploredo a very good job at their core function: locating and tracking your pet from afar.
Two of the seven models we tested, however, lack GPS or cellular capability or both, and we cant recommend either as a result, even though they can cost less than other models.
The PetFon Tracker II costs a relatively hefty $240 but could save you money over time because it does not use cellular service for tracking, so theres no ongoing subscription or service fee. That potential cost savings, however, doesnt make up for the relatively limited range of its GPS-based tracking: two-thirds of a mile in areas dense with buildings, homes, or trees, according to the PetFon website, and up to 3.5 miles in more open spaces.
The Pawscout Smarter, meanwhile, lacks both cellular and GPS technologies, relying instead on close-range Bluetooth connections to other Pawscout owners to find lost dogs. That means if your dog goes missing, you could track its location only when it happens to be within 300 feet of someone else who happens to be using the Pawscout app. Not even the sizable cost savingsthe Pawscout costs $15 plus $15 per year for optional extended servicecompensates for that limitation. In addition, we found it to be unreliable and hard to use even within the scope of its capabilities.
Sportdog Brand Tek Series Gps Tracking Systems With E
The SportDOG Brand TEK Series GPS Tracking Systems with E-Collar relies solely on GPS satellites to track your dog from a distance of up to ten miles. The included handheld device allows you to see the track, direction, and status of up to 21 dogs with collars. It is designed to be an ideal field solution for tracking your dog through any climate, terrain, or conditions.
- Handheld Device contains preloaded topographic maps with unlimited free updates for life, with no subscription or upgrade fees.
- Add-A-Dog Collar can be purchased to add up to a total of 21 dogs that can be tracked simultaneously.
- Collar and Handheld Device are both waterproof, submersible, rechargeable, and can be updated with the desktop app and the included USB cables.
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