As a dog owner, you know that your dogs aren’t just pets or companions, they are part of your family as well. You love them and they love you too. But when your dog decides to go off on an adventure and doesn’t return home, you feel the same level of heartbreak and shock as you would in the case of a missing child.
With the advancements in technology, it is much easier to keep an eye on your pets. By purchasing a GPS collar for your dog, you don’t spend hours searching for a missing dog or worrying about their whereabouts.
Though it may not seem practical to put a GPS device on your child, by simply using a GPS collar on your dog, you can easily find them and take them back home safely.
In this article, we’ll learn about GPS dog collars, the several different options available and where to buy the ones that will best suit your requirements.
What Is A GPS Dog Collar?
There have been major advancements in the world of technology and “tracking technology” has not been left behind. The technology world has found an effective way to help us keep our dogs and other pets safe and that’s by using GPS Pet Trackers.
This cutting edge technology makes it possible for you to know the exact location of your dog in real time. With GPS trackers, you can look up the history of places your dog visits every day while you were away.
They also allow you to set a pre-determined boundary area or geo-fence such that it alerts you immediately your dog leaves this area. The technology usually requires some form of cellular service and towers for it to work.
GPS dog collars are available in different shapes and are made in different sizes as well. Most of the companies that manufacture these devices make use of various types of technology.
The most common ones track your dog’s movement and tells you its precise location within a specific region. Others will allow you to monitor their fitness and wellness levels while some go further by implementing technologies that helps you to track your dog’s vitals.
So, whether your own concern is about your dog escaping, getting stolen, or lost, you can now utilize these devices to help you avoid these situations. And if they ever occur, you can easily recover them and keep them even safer.
Things To Consider When Choosing A GPS Dog Collar
There is a wide variety of GPS tracking devices available for your dogs in today’s market. However, it is very important to be aware of your own requirements before choosing one.
Identify Your Requirements
The first thing to do is to identify your own requirements. That way, you’ll be able to know what features you need in a GPS dog collar, which will help you to avoid unnecessary expenses.
Don’t select a collar based on some cool features and then end up wasting your resources. Some of these “cool” features may turn out to be useless. Also, some GPS dog collars require a subscription fee, thus it is important to consider the subscription fee and the actual cost of the collar.
Make Sure It Is A Real GPS Collar
Ensure that what you are buying is indeed a real GPS dog collar meant to help you track your dog’s location. You may be surprised that there are several cheap imitations that can’t do what they claim to do.
Durability Of The Device
When choosing a GPS dog collar, go for the ones that are both hit-resistant and waterproof. This is because you always want to be available and keep tabs on your dog every time. A waterproof and hit-resistant collar is thus important in cases where your dog scratches its neck against a rough surface or decides it wants to swim!
Size And Weight
You’ll find most GPS dog collars to be quite small and lightweight. However, it is important to check the size of your dog as some collars may be uncomfortable for smaller dogs. The right size should be a collar that fits perfectly around your dog’s neck without any need to strangle it.
Battery Life Of The GPS Collar
Though it can be recharged, if the battery life of your dog’s GPS collar is short, then you risk running out of power when you need it the most.
You should be aware that the number of features a collar has also increases the rate at which its battery power is consumed. Thus, it is advisable to go for collars that have pro-grade batteries as they have longer battery lives than regular ones.
You should look out for GPS dog collars that are implemented with a technology that allows you to set a safe zone for your dog. With such a collar, if your dog by any chance, leaves this safe zone. You will be notified immediately.
Buying A GPS Dog Collar
There are several GPS Dog collars available on the market today. You’ll find them on Amazon, PetSmart, eBay, PetCo, Best Buy, and Chewy.com.
They are also available on the websites of some manufacturers. Most of these collars, however, do not come cheap. This puts an emphasis on why it important to first consider the guides laid down in the previous section.
The Link AKC Smart Dog Collar is the most popular GPS Dog Collar and rightly so. It has an inbuilt GPS and activity tracking systems that allows you to monitor not just your dog’s movements accurately but also its fitness and exercise levels.
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The collar is made of genuine leather and is available in a variety of sizes from small and medium, to large and extra-large. The collar also allows you to monitor your dog’s temperature, and with its remote-controlled light with which you can see your dog even in the dark.
This device does come at a big price. The GPS tracking feature requires you to pay a subscription fee of $9.95 per month.
It can also be paid yearly as $95.40 and every two years as $166.80. It compensates for its expensive price by providing you with an opportunity to upgrade the collar whenever your dog outgrows it. It also comes with a three-year replacement warranty.
The price is not only the downside of the Link AKC Smart Dog Collar, there are some other issues – mainly because it’s a new and innovative device. It’s a relatively heavy tracker, so it’s not suitable for smaller dogs. It also has a short battery run-time compared to other trackers and has a tendency to send “false alarms.”
The Whistle 3 Pet Tracker & Activity Monitor is also one of the best options on the market: It reliably sends timely alerts when it leaves a safe zone, operates via an intuitive app, and its battery holds a charge much longer than its competitors. It keeps track of your pet’s activity, too — a useful extra if you want to hold yourself accountable for giving your pet the exercise they need.
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Plus, the hardware is low-profile, waterproof, and easy to secure on the collar of any pet who weighs eight pounds or more. The device costs $80 and requires about $10 per month for cell service.
If you live in an area that gets better coverage from T-Mobile than AT&T (the Whistle’s cell provider), if you want a tracker that can be accessed via desktop and not just a mobile app, or if you don't care about activity tracking, the Trax Play GPS Tracker is also a good option.
It has fewer features than the Whistle does, but it tracks accurately and its app is incredibly easy to use. The Trax retails for $99, and cell service is about $9 per month.
The Nuzzle – Smart GPS Collar is also another popular dog tracking device in the market today. This smart collar will keep you up to date with what your pet is doing throughout the day using GPS, Bluetooth and an activity tracker.
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It comes fitted to a collar but can also be mounted on your own collar or harness using the supplied attachment. Various factors such as temperature can be monitored using the Nuzzle GPS tracker for dogs dedicated app and you can even add multiple pets.
You can also set up a geo-fence so that you get notified if your pet wanders off. Unlike some other animal trackers, there are no subscription fees.
Its battery also lasts longer than most GPS pet trackers as it can last up to five days, so you won’t have to juice it up every evening.
To charge it, just slip out the tracker and plonk it in the charging base, so there’s no need to take off the collar itself. All these devices can be found on Amazon and other popular stores.
It’s Worth Buying A GPS Dog Collar
The kind of peace of mind that these devices provide is undebatable. Our dogs bring a lot of love into our lives and ensuring their wellness and safety is the least we can do.