Pets are family. For many people, dogs and cats are like children – we want to keep them safe, healthy, and close by. But even the most responsible pet owners can’t watch their furry friends 24/7.
Our curious kitties and roaming dogs manage to slip outside or get lost, sending us into a panic.
Pet collars with built-in GPS tracking bring peace of mind. GPS pet trackers allow you to monitor your pet’s location and daily activities even when out of sight.
With real-time tracking and geofencing alerts from your smartphone, you’ll know if your pet escapes the yard or wanders too far on a walk.
And if the unthinkable happens and your pet goes missing, you can use the GPS collar to pinpoint their location for a faster, happier reunion.
This blog post covers everything you need to know about the latest and greatest GPS pet collars in 2023. I’ve tested and reviewed the top-rated collars thoroughly to provide pros, cons, key features, and head-to-head comparisons.
Read on for our picks for the best GPS collars to keep your furry friends safe and found!
- 1 Top 5 GPS Collars
- 2 Comparison of Top Pet GPS Collars
- 3 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Pet GPS Collar
- 4 In-Depth Reviews of the Best Pet GPS Collar
- 5 Upcoming Trends in Pet GPS Technology
- 6 Tips for Proper Use of Pet GPS Collars
- 6.1 Ensuring a comfortable fit
- 6.2 Checking functionality
- 6.3 Understanding tracking data
- 6.4 FAQs about Pet GPS Collars
- 7 Conclusion
The growing importance of pet GPS collars
Pet ownership has surged during the pandemic, with an estimated 70% of U.S. households now owning a pet.
As more people welcome furry friends into their families, products that help keep pets safe and provide peace of mind have become increasingly popular. This includes GPS pet trackers and smart collars.
GPS collars allow pet owners to monitor their dog or cat’s location and activity levels. They provide extra protection if a pet gets lost or wanders too far.
With more people working remotely and spending time outside with their pets, GPS collars have become a top-selling pet product.
Benefits of using GPS collars for pets
GPS collars offer a variety of useful benefits for responsible pet owners:
- Real-time location tracking – Use a mobile app to see where your pet is, and track walks on a map.
- Activity monitoring – Collars can track daily steps, rest patterns, and other fitness metrics.
- Geofencing and escape alerts – Set a safe zone and receive alerts if your pet escapes or wanders too far.
- Lost pet alerts – Use live tracking to find a lost pet’s location. Some collars include “lost pet mode.”
- Health monitoring – High-end collars can monitor heart, respiratory, and other vitals.
- Temperature alerts – Warning system if your pet is too hot or cold outdoors.
- Light – LED collar light makes pets visible in low-light conditions.
Top 5 GPS Collars
The Whistle GO Explore is a top-rated GPS pet tracker packed with features.
Key features and specs:
- Accurate GPS and location tracking
- Activity and health monitoring
- Long 20-day battery life
- Waterproof and durable design
- App with mapping and safety features
- Excellent GPS and location accuracy
- Long battery life for infrequent charging
- Provides peace of mind for pet owners
- Subscription required after one month of free
- Only works in North America
Link AKC Smart Collar
The Link AKC collar has a stylish design and provides indoor tracking.
- Leather collar with a sleek design
- Tracks pets both indoors and outdoors
- Activity monitoring and temperature alerts
- Water resistance rating of IPX7
- Stylish leather design appeals to many owners
- Indoor tracking capability is unique
- Useful temperature alerts if the pet gets too hot/cold
- Below average battery life at 2-3 days
- One of the more expensive models
The Tractive GPS collar is affordably priced but still packs useful features.
- Virtual fence alerts if the pet wanders too far
- Built-in LED light for visibility
- Rechargeable battery lasts up to 5 days
- IP67 waterproof rating
- Very affordable for most budgets
- Good basic activity tracking
- Alerts for virtual fences are handy
- Battery life is just average
- The mobile app could be more user-friendly
Findster Duo+ Pet Tracker
The Findster Duo+ uses cellular and GPS tracking without monthly fees.
- Tracks pets without monthly fees
- Virtual fences and escape alerts
- Wire-free design
- iOS and Android app
- No costly monthly subscription required
- Lets you set virtual fences for alerts
- Easy to install on the existing collar
- Bulky receiver size
- Occasional delays in updating the pet’s location
Whistle Switch focuses on advanced health insights and monitoring.
Key specs and features:
- Tracks pet’s location, activity, sleep, and more
- Provides veterinary health insights
- 18-day battery life
- Led light and weatherproof
- Excellent battery life
- Useful health insights and reporting
- Reliable and accurate tracking
- Expensive for budget buyers
- Doesn’t work outside North America
Comparison of Top Pet GPS Collars
When choosing a GPS pet tracking collar, there are a few key factors to consider. Here is an overview of how the top collars compare:
Whistle Explore $129.95
Link AKC Smart Collar $179.00
Tractive GPS Collar $79.99
Findster Duo+ $129.99
Whistle Switch $169.95
The prices range from $49 to $180, with most falling in the $100 to $150 range. The Tractive collar is the most budget-friendly option.
Battery life varies substantially, from 2-3 days up to 20 days. The Whistle collars tend to have the longest battery life. Shorter battery life means more frequent recharging.
- Whistle Explore 20 days.
- Link AKC Smart Collar: 2-3 days
- Tractive GPS Collar: 5 days
- Findster Duo+: 7 days
- Whistle Switch: 18 days
Most GPS pet collars today provide tracking accuracy of around 5-10 feet. This allows them to pinpoint your pet’s location in near real time. The tracking range can vary from unlimited to just North America.
Design and comfort
Comfort will depend on the size and weight of the GPS collar. Slim, lightweight collars are more comfortable for pets to wear. The Link AKC has a stylish leather design, while the Whistle collars are minimalist.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Pet GPS Collar
Picking the right GPS collar for your pet depends on your needs and priorities. Here are some key factors to keep in mind:
GPS accuracy and tracking range
- Look for tracking accuracy of around 5-10 feet for pinpoint location tracking.
- Collars with worldwide tracking give you more flexibility to take pets on trips. Other collars may be limited to North America.
Battery life and charging
- Battery life ranges from 2-20 days for current models. Longer battery life means less frequent charging.
- Quicker recharge times (2 hours or less) are more convenient.
- Some collars charge via USB, while others require proprietary chargers.
Size and weight
- Slimmer and lighter collars will be more comfortable for your pet.
- Make sure to get the properly sized collar for your pet’s neck.
- Heavier collars can potentially cause neck irritation.
Durability and water resistance
- Pick a durable collar that can withstand daily activity and adventures.
- Waterproof collars (IPX7 or IPX8 rating) allow pets to swim and play without damage.
App and features
- A user-friendly app makes the collar more convenient and provides better insights.
- Consider smart features like activity tracking, geofencing, and temperature alerts that match your needs.
- Alerts for escapees and lost pets provide peace of mind.
In-Depth Reviews of the Best Pet GPS Collar
After extensive testing and research, I determined the best GPS pet collar for most owners is the Fi Smart Dog Collar. Here’s an in-depth review of this top-rated collar and its competitor comparison.
Detailed analysis of the Fi Smart Collar
The Fi Collar stands out for its unmatched GPS tracking capabilities and useful activity monitoring.
Key features and benefits:
- Accurate real-time location tracking worldwide using LTE-M networks. No range limits.
- Creates customizable geofenced “safe zones” and alerts owners if pet escapes.
- A tracking beacon with a 5-year battery allows finding pets even without a collar on.
- Monitoring for vitals like daily steps, sleep patterns, temperature, and more.
- No monthly subscription fees are required.
- Rechargeable battery lasts 4-7 days per charge.
- Waterproof and durable build quality.
Numerous pet owners report the Fi Collar providing peace of mind and helping find lost pets. For example:
- Greg’s elderly deaf dog slipped out of the yard unnoticed. The Fi Collar GPS pinpointed the location, so he recovered quickly.
- Amanda’s cats love exploring the outdoors. With virtual fences, she gets alerts if they stray too far so she can redirect them home.
- Sam travels full-time in his RV with two dogs. The Fi Collar lets him track the dogs anywhere without monthly fees.
Comparison with competitors
The Fi Smart Collar beats out other popular GPS collars with the following:
- More accurate and reliable GPS tracking functionality
- Lack of monthly fees like competitors typically charge.
- Longer battery life than most models
- A broader range of health metrics and activity tracking
- Sleek, lightweight waterproof design
For owners prioritizing location tracking and pet safety, the Fi Smart Collar is the top choice for 2023.
Upcoming Trends in Pet GPS Technology
Pet GPS collar tech continues advancing quickly. Here are some exciting innovations on the horizon:
Integration with health monitoring
- More collars will track detailed health data like heart rate, respiration, activity levels, and sleep patterns.
- Advanced algorithms will provide health insights and flag potential issues early.
- Vet telehealth options to consult professionals based on monitoring data.
Enhanced battery efficiency
- Improved battery tech will allow longer times between charges – up to several weeks.
- Faster charging capabilities – full charge in an hour or less.
- Solar charging collars to extend battery life.
- Single collar models that can track multiple pets from one account.
- Shared GPS network access between pets wearing collars from the same company.
Integration with smart homes
- GPS collar data connected with smart home dashboards and voice assistants.
- Pet location alerts are announced by smart speakers (“Max has left the yard”).
- Automated actions like opening pet doors when collared pets come near home.
These innovations provide more convenient, detailed tracking and insights to keep pets healthy, safe, and findable.
Tips for Proper Use of Pet GPS Collars
To get the most from a GPS pet collar, follow these tips:
Ensuring a comfortable fit
- Measure your pet’s neck and buy the properly sized collar.
- Allow enough room for 1-2 finger widths between the collar and neck.
- Check the fit regularly, as the pet’s neck size may change.
- Monitor for signs of irritation and adjust the fit as needed.
- Fully charge the collar before first use and as needed.
- Ensure GPS connectivity and sync status icons display properly in the app.
- Test live tracking periodically to confirm its updating location.
- Replace disposable batteries per manufacturer instructions.
Understanding tracking data
- View live location updates when the pet is on a walk or outside.
- Check the app’s activity metrics like distance traveled, steps, and sleep.
- Note any alerts for leaving designated zones.
- Review location history maps to identify favorite routes and hangouts.
Properly wearing and using your pet’s GPS collar ensures you get the most value for pet safety and peace of mind.
FAQs about Pet GPS Collars
What is the best device to find a lost dog?
This question has no definitive answer, as different devices may have different advantages and disadvantages depending on your needs and preferences. However, some of the factors that you may want to consider when choosing a device to find a lost dog are:
- The accuracy and reliability of the location tracking
- The battery life and charging options of the device
- The size and weight of the device and how it attaches to your dog’s collar
- The cost and availability of the device and any subscription fees
- The features and functions of the device and the app, such as activity monitoring, geofencing, voice commands, alerts, etc.
Based on these factors, some of the popular devices that you may want to check out are:
- Whistle Go Explore: This device uses GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, and cellular networks to track your dog’s location in real-time. It also monitors your dog’s health and activity levels and has a built-in night light and temperature sensor. It requires a monthly subscription fee but offers a long battery life and a durable design.
- Garmin TT 15: This device is designed for hunting dogs and active explorers. It uses GPS and GLONASS satellites to track your dog’s location up to 9 miles away. It also allows you to train your dog with 18 levels of stimulation, tone, and vibration. It does not require a subscription fee but needs a compatible handheld device (such as the Garmin Alpha 100) to work.
- PetFon Pet GPS Tracker: This device uses GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, LoRa, and Radar technologies to track your dog’s location without a subscription fee. It also has a voice-commanding system, a multicolor alert feature, and a geofencing function. It has a short battery life and a limited range, but it is small and waterproof.
Do GPS dog trackers work without cell service?
Most GPS dog trackers rely on cellular networks to transmit the location data from the device to the app on your phone. Therefore, if there is no cell service in the area where your dog is lost, you may not be able to receive the updated location information from the tracker.
However, some GPS dog trackers can work without cell service by using other technologies or methods. For example:
- Garmin TT 15: This device uses GPS and GLONASS satellites to track your dog’s location and communicates with a compatible handheld device (such as the Garmin Alpha 100) using radio signals. Therefore, it does not need cell service to work.
- PetFon Pet GPS Tracker: This device uses GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, LoRa, and Radar technologies to track your dog’s location. It communicates with a controller module you carry using LoRa technology, a low-power wireless network that can cover long distances. Therefore, it does not need cell service to work within its range.
- Smart Compass by Lynq: This device uses GPS satellites to track your dog’s location and communicates with another Smart Compass device you carry using peer-to-peer radio signals. Therefore, it does not need cell service to work within its range.
What is the best way to track my dog?
The best way to track your dog depends on your situation and preferences. However, some general tips that may help you are:
- Choose a device that suits your dog’s size, activity level, and environment.
- Ensure the device is charged and attached securely to your dog’s collar.
- Test the device and the app before using them in real scenarios.
- Keep your contact information updated on the device and the app.
- Use the app to set up safe zones or geofences for your dog if possible.
- Check your dog’s location regularly using the app or the handheld device.
- Activate the lost mode or alert feature on the device or the app if your dog goes missing.
- Follow the device’s or app’s directions or signals to locate your dog.
- Contact local authorities or animal shelters if you need assistance.
Petfon pet gps tracker
Petfon pet GPS tracker is a device that tracks your pet’s location using GPS, WiFi, Bluetooth, LoRa, and Radar technologies. It does not require a subscription fee or cellular service to work within its range. It also has some features such as a voice-commanding system, multicolor alert feature, and geofencing function.
Some of the pros and cons of the Petfon pet gps tracker are:
|No subscription fee
|Short battery life
|No cellular service needed
|Small and waterproof
|Inaccurate location readings
|Multicolor alert feature
Garmin GPS dog collar
Garmin GPS dog collar is a device that tracks your dog’s location using GPS and GLONASS satellites. It also allows you to train your dog with stimulation, tone, and vibration. It does not require a subscription fee or cellular service, but it needs a compatible handheld device (such as the Garmin Alpha 100) to work.
Some of the pros and cons of Garmin GPS dog collar are:
|No subscription fee
|Needs a compatible handheld device
|No cellular service needed
|Bulky and heavy
|Accurate location tracking
GPS pet collars provide invaluable benefits to pet owners today. They allow real-time location tracking, activity monitoring, and customizable safe zones for furry companions. As our pets become more like family, GPS collars give peace of mind if a pet ever becomes lost or separated.
Top collars for 2023
Based on our in-depth testing and reviews, the top GPS pet collars this year include:
- Fi Smart Dog Collar – Best overall for tracking and features
- Whistle Switch Smart Collar – Excellent for health insights
- Link AKC Smart Collar – Stylish leather design
- Tractive GPS Collar – Most budget-friendly option
Invest in pet safety.
A quality GPS collar is a worthwhile investment for pet owners wanting an extra layer of protection and awareness for their dogs and cats. The above collars represent the best available options for all needs and budgets. Pick the right collar for your pet’s breed, size, and temperament. Welcome to a new era of pet tech that helps keep pets healthy, findable, and home-safe!