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One often gets a mini heart attack when a child or pet is out of sight. That’s why we appreciate all the devices that give us some peace of mind and allow us to keep tabs on our loved ones.
Dog trackers have developed from short-range RF or Bluetooth devices back in the day, to GPS gadgets that come with a host of extra features. Becoming affordable, certainly helped in boosting the popularity of the GPS varieties.
If you want to know what’s the best dog tracker in the market, you’ll find the answer in the next sections. In addition, we listed the essential features of a good tracker, and how to choose the right one.
Start off with our easy to use table below with our favourite products:
|Top||Tractive GPS Tracker for Dogs, unlimited Range, Activity Monitor, Waterproof||Prime||Buy Now|
|Pawfit 2 Dog GPS Tracker & Activity Monitor||Prime||Buy Now|
|Simjar Wireless Pet Tracker||Prime||Buy Now|
|Vodafone Curve Smart GPS Tracker||Prime||Buy Now|
|Weenect Dogs 2 - The world's smallest GPS tracker for dogs||Prime||Buy Now|
How to Choose the Right Dog Tracker?
The multitude of models, specifications, and features might get a bit overwhelming. To help you in choosing the best one, here’s a checklist of the essential features of a good tracker. Most importantly, the device should match your dog’s size, temperament, and lifestyle.
The prices vary, of course, as the tech level varies. It might be tempting to purchase the devices with the widest coverage and the most bells and whistles. However, that might not be necessary, and it would be best to get the tracker that suits your actual requirements.
Size and Weight
A tracking device might fit easily on a German Shepherd’s collar, but if you try it on a Chihuahua it would be much too bulky. Clearly, size appropriateness is absolutely important.
In addition, the tracker should be as small as possible to minimize the possibility that it would bother your dog. If I have to choose between extra features and slim size, I would most probably choose the compact device.
Having said that, I would also make sure that the tracker is sturdy enough to endure my dog’s lively lifestyle. Even if that means it needs to be slightly bigger or heavier.
Range of Coverage
A toy dog living with you in a loft might not wander too far away. The main issue with small dog breeds is often the way they hide in sneaky places around the house. A 50 m coverage should be more than sufficient to keep track of this little fellow.
On the other hand, big Fido, the Bull Mastiff in the backyard, is far more active. This guy routinely goes out and might splash a little in the nearby pond. Obviously, Fido needs a very different tracker. A waterproof GPS device with wide coverage should be good.
Luckily, the commercially available tracking devices provide plenty of coverage options.
This is especially important for the resourceful dogs that often find a way out of the gates. If they wander too far off, you’d need the tracker to stay on as long as possible. Run-time is a critical matter if you live beside the woods where tracing a lost dog isn’t that easy.
This feature varies significantly between trackers. Make sure to purchase one with long battery life, and preferably, a short charge time.
Some dogs are a bit too rowdy and energetic. They’d roll around dirt, run in the middle of the dust, and splash into any water body that comes their way. A tracking device hanging onto their collars should take this lifestyle without falling apart!
This feature might not be too common among trackers, but a few models are truly rugged. If you have one of these vivacious dogs, look for waterproof and dustproof devices. They might cost a tad more, but it would be money well spent.
Most GPS trackers require a SIM card and a smartphone app, and both services don’t come free. The norm nowadays is getting wide coverage, realtime monitoring, and several other features at a premium charge.
The subscription is often monthly, but you could get discounted rates or extra benefits if you sign off for a yearly plan.
RF and Bluetooth trackers don’t require such payments. Then again, they don’t provide the same coverage and accurate tracking that GPS devices do.
Some trackers offer extra features like:
- Geofencing, which is specifying a safe perimeter for the dog
- Beeping for the dog to return at mealtimes
- Tracking the dog’s activities
- Getting a full log of the dog’s previous locations
- Listing the dog’s favourite places
- Monitoring the dog’s vital signs
- Unlimited coverage
You might need a single one of these features, or you might want a device that has most of them. This depends on the type of dog you have, where you live, and the budget you allocated for this purchase.
The 5 Best Dog Trackers Reviewed
Here’s a roundup of the most popular dog trackers currently on the market. They differ in the technology employed, size, battery life, and price range. What they all have in common is being a top quality product.
As you go through the product reviews, it’s best to keep in mind your actual requirements. There’s a wide variety of features in the following devices, so hopefully, you’ll spot a good match.
Best GPS Dog Tracker
Tractive GPS Tracker for Dogs
The Tractive products are among the best in the market, and this is not really surprising at all. They provide dependable and highly efficient pet trackers, mostly exceeding the users’ expectations, while not going overboard with the price.
This tracker keeps you connected with your furry friend, regardless of the distance separating you. You’ll get full coverage and live tracking in over 150 countries. Your phone system shouldn’t be an issue, as the app is available in both IOS and Android versions.
You’ll also get a location history for all the places your pet likes to visit. This would give you plenty of insights on its favourite hangouts, and whether or not Fido made new friends. The appearance of a love interest or a new tribe of puppies would hardly go unnoticed as well!
The app also allows you to set a safe perimeter that your dog shouldn’t cross. Once this happens, you’d get an immediate notification. You can then keep track of your dogs movements till you retrieve it back home.
An extra feature that is pretty useful is activity level monitoring. This takes dog tracking to a different level, as it keeps tabs on more than just its whereabouts. You can match the pet’s diet to its daily or weekly routine, and so keep it well-fed, but not overly so.
This tracker is lightweight, so it shouldn’t bother your dog too much unless it’s a toy dog. It’s also waterproof, so it would still work after a few splashes in the pond or a little drizzle of rain.
The Tractive dog tracker is moderately priced, and the required monthly subscription isn’t too high either. All-in-all, it’s well worth the cash.
Pawfit 2 Dog GPS Tracker & Activity Monitor
The Pawfit tracker is a premium quality device that goes the extra mile in almost every aspect of the trackers’ operation. This GPS tracker doesn’t depend solely on cellular technology but enhances it through every available connectivity. Thus it provides exceptional accuracy in locating your pet.
In addition, it’s resistant to most of the damaging factors that affect dog trackers. For example, it can be submerged in water up to 3 m deep and it’s fully dustproof. Plus, it can take dropping and biting in stride. So if you have a feisty outdoorsy dog, this tracker would be a great option.
You can keep monitoring your dog’s fitness through this app as well. Not only that, but you’ll also get recommendations for the target activity levels, based on your dog’s breed and size. This is usually quite helpful, given the increasing obesity among our canine friends.
This app is clearly smart, and that extends to the number of dogs you can manage. It allows you to monitor 4 dogs simultaneously, which is a brilliant feature if you have a family of dogs. Furthermore, you can customize up to 10 safety zones, and get notified if your pets cross them.
The battery life for this device is pretty good, as it lasts for up to 6 days of moderate usage. It recharges in around two and a half hours, which is considered a quick charge. It’s a lightweight device that medium to large dogs, generally, don’t mind at all.
The Pawfit tracker doesn’t come cheap though, and there’s also the subscription plan to consider. However, it provides a fair value for the money, especially, if you have a bunch of energetic dogs.
Simjar Wireless Pet Tracker
GPS pet tracking is all the rage nowadays, but it’s sometimes far more than what’s required. For instance, if you have a toy dog that’s constantly hiding inside nooks and crannies, then a simple beeper should do.
The Simjar tracker use RF signals between a little receiver the size of a coin and a transmitter to locate anything. The package comes with two transmitters and four coloured receivers. You can thus tag a bunch of dogs. Or, you can use one receiver for your pet and the others for your wallet, smartphone, keys, remote control, or any other items you’d like to locate easily.
There are some stickers that you can label and then place on various slots on the transmitter. Which would facilitate the process of locating each pet or tagged item. Also, the tracker comes with key rings of various sizes. So you can attach the receivers or stick them with double-sided tape, whatever is more convenient to you.
The range covered by this tracker is 30-40 m, the signal passes through walls, doors, padding, and similar barriers. Once the object is located, it would send out a loud 80 dB beep. In addition, an LED would start blinking to get more attention.
This generous package of trackers and accessories comes at a fair price, and it’s quite easy to use. If you only need to follow your pet within a small area, this option would be great.
Vodafone Curve Smart GPS Tracker
The Vodafone Curve tracker is a general-purpose compact tracker that weighs around the same as a key. You can attach it to your dog’s collar, and keep track of its whereabouts in any place on earth in realtime.
This tracker utilizes several technologies to get reliable and far-reaching coverage. The roaming service is good in 100 countries. It comes with a mobile app and a monthly, annual, or bi-annual subscription. You can set safe zones for your pet, and share that information with family and friends.
This tracker isn’t exclusive to pets, so you can attach it to any other valuables. The battery life is quite impressive, and it would keep the device going for about 7 days. It looks pretty cool and sleek too, and we always give extra points for elegant design.
The Vodafone Curve tracker comes at a surprisingly fair price. That’s probably because it provides the basic functionality of tracking without the usual bells and whistles. I consider that an advantage, particularly if that is what you really need.
Weenect Dogs 2 GPS Tracker for dogs
The Weenect Dogs 2 is claimed to be “The world’s smallest GPS tracker for dogs”, according to its manufacturer.
This certainly grabs the attention of pet owners, especially the ones who have small buddies. Large trackers are generally bothersome for pets, and we often look for smaller varieties. However, the Weenect has plenty more features besides the compact size.
The best feature of this tracker is the quick location updates which take place every 10 seconds. You can connect to your pet at all times, all over Europe, in realtime. It works equally well on IOS or Android smartphone systems, with a monthly subscription of course.
This tracker can also work as a trainer, as you can send out signals to your dog for specific requests. A beep and vibration tell your pet to pay attention. You could train the dog to return to the safe zone or get back home for mealtimes when it receives the beep.
The downside of this tracker is its relatively short battery life, which is around 3 days. Also, it’s a bit on the pricey side.
A good dog tracker is an essential accessory for any dog owner and there are plenty of excellent options available as shown in our reviews.
Although all of the products we have included are very good, we recommend the Tractive GPS Tracker for Dogs, which pretty much has it all with realtime tracking, wide-coverage, compact size and waterproof case. In addition to activity monitoring and geofencing. It also comes at a nice price, and that’s a big plus.
If you have enjoyed this article then check out some of our other articles in our Out and About category including recommendations for the best dog coat, the best dog harness (as well as specifically no-pull harnesses , leopard print harnesses and fleece harnesses)