“By the age of 15, more than half of dogs will lose their memory.”
That’s right, dogs can suffer from cognitive decline just like humans. Dog dementia is known as Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (CCD). This is a cognitive disorder in dogs associated with effects similar to those of Alzheimer’s in humans.
One of the by-products of your dog starting to lose his memory is an increase in his tendency to wander off.
Luckily, there’s a simple solution: finding the best dog GPS tracker to ensure you know where your pup is at all times.
Of course, even if your dog is young, fit, and healthy, there’s still every chance you’ll need to keep your eye on him. Whether he chases butterflies on a grassy roadside and gets carried away, or he simply gets lost while out for a walk on his own, stop your furball from pulling a Houdini by taking the proper precautions.
Here are a few things to consider when you’re comparing dog GPS trackers…
- Service fees: Some pet GPS trackers force you to sign up for a monthly package in order to monitor your pet’s movements in-app. You should establish the nature of any service fees while assembling your shortlist. The advantage of doing this is whittling down your options before you get started on the buying trail
- Battery life: You need to establish that the GPS tracker you’re looking at gives you sufficient battery life for your needs. Every pet owner is different. If you live in the city and only take your dog for occasional short walks, you won’t need to place much priority on battery life. If, on the other hand, you frequently head out in the country with your pup, you’ll need a GPS that keeps going all day long
- Waterproofing: Do you live somewhere where it rains a lot? How about taking your dog for walkies by the beach? Does he tend to jump in the ocean? If your dog comes into contact with water, you should ensure that any GPS tracker you look at is adequately waterproofed for your requirements
- Geofencing: Anyone who wants to create no-go zones in the yard for their dog has more options than a wireless dog fence. You can utilize pet trackers with geofencing capability to build out areas you don’t want your pup to breach. Then, if he heads out of this zone, you’ll be alerted and you can subsequently track him for added safety
- Tracking: You should make certain you can track your dog in real time. If you have several pets at home, you should also ensure that any collar and GPS you’re looking at can support multiple dogs. If not, it will work out an expensive proposition to kit out each dog independently. You also need to look at how you will track your dog once you’re up and running. Do you use a web browser or is there a mobile app? Choose in line with your needs
- Price and ongoing running costs: When pricing up pet GPS trackers, you need to look beyond the bottom line. Work out any monthly costs and make sure you’re happy with this monthly commitment before proceeding to purchase
Right, with that simple groundwork in place, you should have a clear idea of what to look for when you’re hunting for dog GPS trackers.
We’ll dive right in now with our reviews so you can assess what’s on offer in this crowded market. Take your time, and you’ll never lose your dog again. Get this wrong and you’ll end up with an ineffective hunk of plastic.
I. The 7 Best Dog GPS Trackers
1. Our #1 Pick: Whistle GO Explore GPS Tracker
First up in our quest for the best dog GPS trackers is this classic model from Whistle GO Explore. Choose from 6 bright colorways and 3 distinct models. What makes the GO Explore stand out, then?
You harness the power of Google Maps and the sprawling AT&T network to keep tabs on your pooch in real time.
It’s not just location tracking you get with this nifty tool, though. You can also monitor a suite of heath metrics from licking and scratching through to how well your furball sleeps. All this is tied up in monthly reports so you can keep your pup at his very best.
The activity tracking portion of this GPS allows you to personalize fitness and health goals for your furry friend.
Also, if you act quickly and sign up for a subscription, you’ll also benefit from a bundled tele-vet service giving you even greater value for money.
When you want to keep an eye on various aspects of your dog’s life, from his location to his health to his overall activity, you can’t go wrong with Whistle.
2. Runner-up:Loc8tor Pet Tracker
Next up is a GPS marketed as America’s #1 pet tracker. Is this just hollow hype, though?
In a word, no. The Loc8tor comes in as a worthy runner-up offering superb versatility and a reliable method of keeping an eye on your pet at all times.
The key selling point of this tracker is the fact you won’t be committed to any kind of contract or monthly fee. If you prefer the simplicity of pay-as-you-go, you’re in luck here.
The other area in which this tracker outflanks most of the opposition is in terms of accuracy.
Small and super-light, your pet won’t end up burdened as you train him.
You’ll get a couple of the transmitter tags included so you have everything you need to get going right out the box.
The only real niggle with this set-up is the fact a few users have complained about battery issues. In all other respects, you’ll get a precise and reliable dog GPS tracker so you’ll never need to worry about the whereabouts of your pooch again.
3. Budget Pick: Tracki 2020 Pet GPS
Whether you’re looking to keep tabs on a pet, a child, or an elderly loved one, why not consider the Tracki 2020? This is our best budget pick for dog GPS trackers and well within most people’s budget. What do you get for your money, then?
Using this thing is a cinch even if you’re not the greatest tech fan. The mobile app is swift, responsive, and easy to navigate.
The tracker itself is small and lightweight weighing just 1.4oz and measuring up at 1.8 x 1.6 x 0.7 inches. Just clip the tracker to your dog’s collar and you’ll never lose him again.
You’ll need to commit to a contract but fees are much lower than much of the competition.
As if all this wasn’t enough, you’re covered by a limited lifetime warranty. You really can’t ask for much more, especially at this price point.
If pushed to find fault with this GPS, we’d point to reports from a few disgruntled users suggesting that long-range tracking is deficient. Think carefully about your intended usage and whether or not this would be problematic.
4. BARTUN Pet GPS Tracker
The BARTUN tracker comes with the ability to track your dog over as great a range as you need. This is one of the strongest performers in that area when it comes to pet GPS trackers.
Another outstanding element of this tracker is the global functionality. This thing works in pretty much all countries worldwide.
Fully waterproof, you’ll have no concerns if you’re out in the rain or walking down by the water. The tracker is rated IP67.
You can manage your tracker from a web browser or in the responsive mobile app.
The collar comes in either mini or small sizes. This is not designed for larger dogs. It’s small and compact so your small breed pet can wear the collar all day without feeling uncomfortable.
Giving this tracker a full burst of charge takes just 5 hours.
As with most of these pet GPS trackers, you’ll need to sign up for a subscription. You should ensure this fits with your budget before committing to purchase.
5. PetFon Pet GPS Tracker
Do you want a small and compact waterproof device that enables you to keep a bead on your dog’s location at all times? If so, the PetFon Pet GPS Tracker is well worth popping on your shortlist.
With WiFi, Bluetooth and GPS connectivity, you can monitor your pet’s movements in real time so he will never give you the slip again.
Despite such powerful performance, this tracker couldn’t be easier to use. You don’t need to be a tech beast to get the most out of this unit.
If you need to create a virtual fence so you know when your dog wanders out of a certain area, geofencing makes this possible.
You can record and issue voice commands through the onboard speaker, too. Call your dog back if he wanders off or call him to stop barking. The possibilities are diverse and we appreciate this extra edge not available on most of the opposition.
For a reliable and fully waterproof dog tracker from a brand you can trust, we can’t recommend this model strongly enough.
6. FitBark GPS Dog Tracker
As we edge to the end of our dog GPS trackers, we have the FitBark. What does this tracker deliver?
As the name hints, you can track multiple health and fitness metrics as well as the location of your pooch.
You’ll need a WiFi connection, Verizon LTE coverage, and an in-app plan to get going. You should, as with all trackers, do your budgeting before you brandish your credit card. Make sure you’re clear on all charges and you’re happy to pay the ongoing monthly fee. Establish, too, that you’re comfortable with the contract length.
With all that in place, you can take full advantage of a vet-backed system that allows you to monitor vital metrics at a glance and to ensure that your pet is safe, healthy, and happy at all times.
7. Garmin T5 GPS Dog Collar
Last but not least, an entry from the mighty Garmin, a company with a stranglehold on the GPS vertical. Is their pet-centered model as strong as their auto GPS systems?
It certainly is! Off the bat, you get an incredible 9-mile range. Unless your dog plans on running a marathon, he won’t evade you even if he’s prone to wandering off.
For pet owners who spend a lot of time in wet conditions, the waterproofing on the collar ensures you won’t end up with your hardware ruined every time it rains or your dog take a dip.
The drawback with this GPS is the fact it’s substantially heavier and bulkier than most competiting models.
This collar is designed to work with either the Garmin Alpha 100 or the Astro 320.
With our reviews put to bed, it’s time to round out in our usual style. We’ve collected answers to the most frequently asked questions about pet GPS trackers. That way, you have all the information you need in one place.
1) Can an item finder replace a dog GPS tracker?
No. You need a dedicated pet tracker so you can be confident the collar will stay in place. While an item finder would work in principle, the chances are high your pup would lose the device itself. When pet GPS trackers are so cheap, why take the chance?
2) Can I only track my dog’s location?
Some trackers act as a pure GPS unit. Others offer the ability to chart a range of metrics from health to fitness to sleep.
3) Is it possible to get a waterproof dog GPS tracker?
Absolutely. Most of the models we review today are fully waterproofed, some rated IP67 and good to a depth of 30 feet. While your dog obviously won’t be diving that deep, it’s reassuring to have a completely waterproofed unit, especially if you live somewhere with a rainy climate.
With more than 10 million cats and dogs going missing each year, according to the American Humane Association, you can easily make sure your precious pet is not among those statistics.
All you need to do to achieve this is to invest in the best dog GPS tracker, and you’ll easily pin down your dog even if he slips the leash and heads off on an adventure.
You should be clear on what to look for when you’re shopping for these tracking devices. Also, if you want to monitor the health, fitness, and sleeping habits of your pooch, many of these trackers also allow for that functionality. That said, you should only buy in line with what you actually need. Don’t seek out the most feature-rich tracker just for the sake of it. Owning a pet is costly enough without any unnecessary expenditure.
Before you pop out for a walk with your dog, bookmark BarkVA. Be sure to come back any time you need guidance on any area of dog ownership. We’ve got you covered. We have lots of content lined up for the coming months so come back soon!