In our article, we have collected a rating of the best models of GPS tracking collars for dogs and cats. We will talk in detail about their features, as well as the subtleties of selecting a product. We hope the article helps you and you will find a lot of useful information in it. We wish you a pleasant reading!
What is a GPS tracker and how it works
Why do you think there is a need for a GPS tracker in a collar for pet dogs, if you can take them for a walk without letting them off the lead? Because you need to give your pet the opportunity to use the freedom of movement without fear of losing it.
When you go to the woods, hiking, hunting or just for a walk with your pet and he gets lost from sight, the GPS sensor for the dog, built into the collar, can send information about the location of the pet to the owner’s smartphone or a laptop. Now this technology is often used not only by ordinary dog owners, but also by professionals, hunters and even scientists.
How does the collar with GPS work?
The GPS beacon in the collar works as follows. It connects to satellites and transmits location coordinates to a mobile app, which will show up on your smartphone if you have internet.
Some collars combine GPS with radio signals, transmitting information to a designated receiver. Most combine the GPS with a communications network (LBS), sending the information to your computer or mobile device. So your dog must be within range of your network for a successful search.
You can see the movement history reported by the device to see where your dog or cat went. Some of the GPS dog trackers even send an alert to your phone when your four-legged friend leaves a predetermined area (geo-fence, geo-zone, or virtual fence).
To work with such an accessory, as we have already mentioned, you will need to install special software on your smartphone or laptop, but in other cases you may have a transmitter (remote) in the kit, on the display of which you can view all the necessary information. There are models that provide both smartphone and remote control when tracking an animal.
Advantages and disadvantages of the gadget
Portable tracking systems to find pets, stand out for the following qualities:
- Light weight and small size, it won’t burden your pet. It’s easy to attach to the collar so your dog can’t take it off with his paw.
- The battery lasts for several days.
- The presence of “panic button” models at times speeds up the process of finding the owner.
- The function of recording the path, allows you to find the place where the dog has already been and try to find him there if the battery is low.
- The function – virtual fencing, will alert the owner of the violation of boundaries, when walking in enclosures.
Of the disadvantages, you can note only some problems in the work of the transmitter. Even in expensive models, the reception signal is not always clear. This is due to the coverage of the area. If a model with a sim card is used, this can happen due to unstable cellular signal. Modern GPS receivers fail on uneven terrain. But when you move the satellite, the signal usually recovers.
Characteristics of dog GPS collars
The most important characteristics include:
- The maximum distance of stable connection;
- Availability of economy mode;
- Size and weight;
- Possibility of eavesdropping;
- Method and reliability of attachment to the collar;
- The tightness and ruggedness of the housing;
- Operating time;
- Maximum and minimum allowable air temperature;
- Ability to issue commands.
The most important characteristic for a tracker is reliability. It does not matter what functions the device can perform, if it fails now and then. Therefore, when choosing a tracker, it is necessary to pay attention to the reviews of people who have used such devices. If your acquaintances use a certain model or brand of tracker, talk to them, ask them to share their impressions about it.
Also, look carefully at the reviews on the Internet. Remember, most negative reviews are left by people who have actually used the device, and half of the positive reviews are written for money.
Another important parameter is the distance of stable communication (for radio channel devices). If you went hunting, the GSM tracker will be useless due to the lack of base stations (towers) of the cellular operator. The longer this distance, the less likely it is that the dog will be carried away in pursuit of prey and will be lost in the woods. After all, in forest conditions, the distance of stable communication is 30-60 percent less than on the plains.
The presence of economy mode allows you to change or recharge the batteries less often, which will not be superfluous during the trip to the countryside. Such devices do not transmit continuously, but periodically. Many devices allow you to set the frequency of sending signals, so that the period of work with a single charge can be up to 72 hours.
For hunting dogs or dogs not afraid of water and obstacles, it is very important to buy a tracker in a durable sealed case. Otherwise, the first jump into the water will cause the device to malfunction. The same will happen if during the chase the dog will hit a tree or a rock with the tracker – the fragile housing will break and you will have to buy a new tracker.
Tracker life depends on three factors:
- Battery capacity;
- Frequency of data transmission;
- Distance to the tower (for GSM devices) or the remote control.
Most trackers of any manufacturer have 10-20 hours of operating time before battery charge. Reducing the frequency of transmission, as well as reducing the distance allows you to increase the operating time. Using a higher capacity battery always leads to an increase in the weight of the tracker.
When choosing a device, you should consider the minimum and maximum permissible air temperature. If the maximum allowable temperature is higher than the actual temperature, the device will malfunction. If the temperature is below the minimum allowable temperature, the operation time will be seriously reduced until the battery is recharged. Another important feature is the ability to give commands to the dog. If you train your pet to obey the tracker’s commands, you can control it in any environment.
Types of electronic collars
The variety of different models in the market of electric collars will allow you to choose the product that your beloved pet needs.
Electronic collars can be classified according to different criteria:
- Based on the breed of dog – for decorative dogs developed GPS-trackers with a small weight, this is the main criterion for purchasing such devices for “small-sized” pets, and, for example, for hunting breeds electric collars have a huge number of different functions and have great reliability;
- Battery capacity – to use GPS navigators on hunting breeds of dogs the battery volume should be larger than on devices designed for decorative dog breeds;
- By functionality – the most expensive devices have a wide range of different functions: accurate tracking system with a minimum radius of location of the pet, operation of the receiving equipment with a removable external battery, alarm button on the collar;
- Based on the purpose of the device – in this case, they can be divided into devices for tracking and electronic leashes designed for training.
There are collars of the combined type, i.e. for training, equipped with a GPS navigator. Their functionality is wider and the range of use is greater. Below we consider the types of electric collars for tracking and training, the capabilities of both types of devices, the scope of application and technical characteristics.
What to pay attention to when choosing
Choosing a collar with GPS for dogs, you should pay attention to such features of the accessory as battery life, communication, form factor, as well as some additional features that the tracker offers.
The battery is an important component of the gadget and can cause a real problem if it goes dead if your dog is lost.
Battery life depends on:
- The frequency of the signal to transmit location data
- Battery capacity
- Distance to receiver
When buying a GPS dog collar, pay attention to the range of battery life, both at rest and during data transmission. And of course, you should make sure that the GPS tag is always charged before you go out for a walk with your pet.
For dogs that don’t go far from home, a small battery life of up to 24 hours is sufficient. For hunting breeds, it is recommended to use devices with a longer run time.
Types of Communication in GPS Collars
For the most part, newer models of collars use A-GPS technology. This type of technology improves the time it takes to actually find your dog after the device is turned on. Conventional GPS uses only satellite signals, which usually take about 30 seconds, but can take up to 12 minutes in areas where open-sky transmission is limited. A-GPS also depends on network resources. It only takes a second in good conditions and two to three minutes in bad conditions: and that’s a big difference when you’re tracking your lost dog.
A-GPS also allows you to find your pet indoors. If your pet is inside four walls, the sensor in the collar is unlikely to get a regular GPS signal. So if your dog is in someone else’s house, a simple GPS won’t help you find it. A-GPS will probably do the trick, though it’s usually limited to areas where your cell phone gets reception.
WAAS-GPS is a wide-range system. It has better accuracy than standard GPS. But while the latter will detect your dog within 9 meters, WAAS will do so within 3 meters. WAAS is not as fast as A-GPS in fixing your location.
Quality of communication
When choosing a mobile operator to serve your GPS device, pay attention to the coverage area and signal stability. It is better to use satellite communication.
Shape, weight and restrictions
A tracker in a collar may be too heavy for a small dog or a cat, for example. For example, a 300-gram tracker would be an impossible burden for a 1-pound dog, but would be a familiar weight for a dog that weighs 20 pounds or more.
The case should be sturdy so that if you hit a rock or concrete floor, the gadget won’t crack. Most of the collar trackers are not designed to be submerged in water, but only have protection from rain and accidental splashes. If your dog is swimming, you need to take special precautions to protect the USB ports or electronic components. But you can find a special GPS collar for hunting dogs on the market. It is sealed and waterproof.
The attachment of the tracker also plays an important role. If your dog jumps or rubs against the ground or clings to the branches of bushes, the device can slip off and get lost. And in this case, you will only find the tracker, not the pet.
Be aware of the temperature tolerance when using the collar in your environment. Because if the temperature is too cold or too hot, the GPS dog tracker may shorten the battery life or cause the device to malfunction altogether.
Additional Features in GPS Collars
A dog collar with GPS can have a number of additional features in addition to tracking your pet’s location.
- Ability to listen to the environment around the dog Ability to give commands to the pet
- Installation of a geo-fence. If a previously set area is violated by the pet, the owner will be notified. A special GPS dog collar app can be used for this
- Bark sensor. The owner will be notified if the dog barks
- SOS call. If the pet is found by others, pressing the SOS button on the collar will send the owner the pet’s location
- Monitor your pet’s activity. How many steps and distance traveled per day, week, month or year
- Two-way audio. Allows you to hear and talk to your pet
- Remote control. Enables you to send vibration signals to the collar that your dog recognizes as specific commands.
- Camera. Allows you to monitor where you are, allowing the owner to see what is going on around you and who is nearby
- SIM card. The SIM-card dog tracker allows you to send a text message to your smartphone with a link to Google maps with the coordinates of your pet’s location. To do this, you need to make a call to the number of SIM-card in the collar
- Touch screen display. Allows you to make beacon settings right in the device itself
- Anti-collar. When the dog is in the car and moves at a fast speed, the gadget will notify the owner
Rules of Use
- The battery is charged;
- SIM card is installed in the tracker;
- The memory card is entered into the phone number of the owner;
- The device is attached to the collar.
GPS-tracker is a miniature device that can be attached to almost any collar or harness. The rectangular shaped housing is slightly curved so it won’t interfere with your pet’s playtime or stand out. The tracker is 100% waterproof as well as shock resistant. The Tractive weighs less than 30 grams and is virtually unnoticeable to the pet. However, the manufacturer recommends it for dogs weighing more than 4 pounds.
A collar for dogs with GPS with your own hands
Is it possible to make a collar with GPS with your own hands? The question makes sense when you consider the cost of satellite collars from the factory manufacturer, reaching up to $ 600. And at the same time, the answer does not make sense if you consider the complexity of satellite navigation equipment. It can not be reproduced on the spot, plus a deep knowledge of radio engineering, understanding of the principles and mechanisms of how it all works.
On the Internet there are sporadic proposals to use an ordinary cell phone instead of a tracker by connecting the operator’s “radar” service. Make the phone waterproof, attach it to the collar. And voila! The dog will be able to be tracked in the area of the cellular network operator. If you use a phone with 2 SIM cards, you can extend the reach of your pet’s tracking.
This option will even allow you to give commands to the dog with an audio signal from the owner’s phone. But if you calculate the cost of a phone that can handle the tracker functions, plus take into account the hassle of waterproofing it and fixing it firmly, plus the weight of the phone, which exceeds the weight of the tracker, then the idea no longer seems so brilliant and economical.
GPS tracker for the hunting dog
The search device will also be very convenient in this situation. Even considering the training of dogs trained for the “corral” of wild animals (they are able to find their way home in any situation), anything can happen. For example, the dog will not find the owner when wounded in a fight with the beast. And in this case, the gps tracker will help to find a favorite pet.
A fashionable trick or a necessity.
Collar with jeepees for dogs is indispensable for hunters for such reasons:
- Dogs often get lost when looking for prey, wandering into dense thickets and unfamiliar places.
- It’s not always easy to spot a pet that stands up when game is spotted.
Some dogs in private homes find it hard to sit still and try to escape into a hole in the fence. A modern collar is a great way to find them quickly. While walking, a dog can run away from its owner when he sees a cat or other animals. If the area is unfamiliar to him, he is unlikely to find his way home.
Buying a GPS collar for hunting dogs and overly active willful animals will make life easier for the owner.
Review of the best models of GPS collars
Making a rating of the best manufacturers of GPS trackers for dogs is not too difficult, most of these devices appeared on the market in the last 2-3 years. Among the models enjoying high popularity, you can find versions for small animals, variants for medium-sized dogs and large dogs. Entire GSM complexes based on radio signal are produced for hunters. But GPS-trackers are still much more mobile, have a wide range of applications. The most popular models of such mobile equipment is worth a closer look.
High-tech GPS tracker with support of mass functions of “smart house” system. You can set the allowed perimeter for movement. Detect changes in the dog’s body temperature and other indicators. The manufacturer offers the possibility of independent selection of additional modules by the owner of the pet. You can choose a variant with vibration and training, voice transmission.
GPS A1 Electronic Collar
This next-generation waterproof GPS collar is for tracking your pet’s whereabouts. Ideal for hunting dogs. Includes 2 collar mounts. Increased battery capacity compared to conventional trackers. Manual setting of the control zone and continuous monitoring on a dedicated server.
What kind of tracker is imported or domestic – you choose. Market offers a variety of options, budget and expensive models at affordable prices. And functionality of any beacons, can satisfy any needs.
It works without additional charging, has a small size and supports viewing the navigation function for the last day. The model supports tracking changes in the pet’s condition. It is waterproof and compatible with most mobile devices.
This model is designed fundamentally for cats and dogs. It’s water-resistant, so you don’t have to worry about breaking it if it gets very wet in the rain, and the real time duration, fixed at 60 hours and 10 monitoring functions, allows you to monitor the movements of the “runaway” with GPS satellites and report coordinates to any device.
This tracker model works with a minimum error of 5 meters, and an important condition is the presence of a GPS signal or the availability of GSM / GPRS waves, transmitting coordinates to cellular devices.
The brand produces both training and walking models Delta Smart, and professional solutions for hunting ASTRO 320 T5 with a combination of radio signal and GPS navigation. A host of options, high-precision real-time control of the dog’s location makes this brand’s offerings a recognized market leader.
GPS TK STAR
Supports work with smartphones and tablets based on Android and Apple, there is a function of GPS-navigation and SIM-card support. Affordable model price is combined with ease of use and compact size.
There is a special site where you can watch the history of the animal’s movements from any device.
Model with built-in recharging from the solar battery, respectively, the size is larger than other variants of GPS tracker. It should be chosen for hunting dogs or active animals above average height. Built-in battery capacity reaches 1500 mAh, which is enough for 7 days of active work. Ideal for camping and travel without access to the benefits of civilization.
Regular contact with sunlight is enough to recharge it.
Ideal for puppies and small dogs. It weighs only 21 grams. Includes an additional silicone pouch for moisture protection. The built-in 400 mAh battery gives you up to 3-4 days of standby time.
For active pets with a tendency to long runs it is not suitable.
Tagg The Pet Tracker
Tagg The Pet Tracker is a device for locating pets. The model allows you to determine the area where the dog is. An SMS notification notifies the owner if the pet has left the assigned area. The Tagg The Pet Tracker model will mark the location of the dog with high probability and accuracy. The big advantage of this GPS tracker model is that it can monitor the daily workout of the pet by keeping track of his activity. Easily attaches via a clip.
Small Pet Tracker / WONLEX Pet Tracker
Chinese-made product, handy and lightweight. One of the most budget-friendly options for the price. Small battery capacity provides about 12 hours of active work. There is support for Russified applications on popular mobile platforms, the body is protected from dust, but allows moisture.
Paw Tracker is suitable for use both indoors and outdoors. It is not afraid of not only splashing, but also of being submerged in water. The device gives a signal when the animal is in the car. The sensor starts to glow in the dark, making the dog visible from a distance.
Any function can be turned off remotely. There is an option to use the geo-fence and view the pet’s movement history.
Gibi Pet Locator
The Gibi Pet Locator is another popular pet tracking device. It is very lightweight, weighing about 45 grams, can work for 24 hours with a poor signal and 96 hours with a good connection. The device is impervious to moisture. The device immediately notifies the owner if the pet has left safe territory. Then a message or email is sent. The place where the dog is can be found on google maps.
DELTA Upland XC
The Garmin Delta Upland XC will not only allow you to detect your dog, but also to correct his behavior. The electric shock collar is used for training dogs. The device stimulates the animal with sounds and vibrations, having many modes. It also has an “anti-lai” function. Important: The remote control is easy to operate, and the device itself is lightweight and impervious to moisture.
Mishiko – a cheap Chinese version
Mishiko, as well as bartun, can be purchased in China on any online marketplace. It is a budget version of the navigator. With the help of the sensor you can not only find the pet, but also analyze its activity. Safe zones can also be set up in the device. If the pet gets lost, the owner will get a message. And the coordinates will be sent, even if the battery is low. Note! The downside is that the collar is fabric, but it can be adjusted to make the dog comfortable. The device itself is in an aluminum case, which explains its durability. It is also not afraid of water and dirt.
TBPT Pet Tracker MSP-340
The collar model TBPT Pet Tracker MSP-340 allows you to monitor the movements of your pet in real time. It is small in size, will be invisible even to the cat. The device is not afraid of splashing and raindrops, but you should not go into the water with it. Continuously can work 1.5-2 days. The time depends on the quality of the connection.
Garmin Astro 320
The Garmin Astro 320 is easy to use and ideal for hunting dogs. ‘
- Works for up to 72 hours.
- Updates animal coordinates every 5 seconds.
- Features perfect mapping.
- Starts vibrating when the dog takes a stand.
- Has a password that prevents an unauthorized person from tracking the animal from another device.
Branded Garmin stores are in major Russian cities, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Chita. Samara, Vladivostok, Murmansk and many others. They also operate in Belarus, particularly in Minsk and Ukraine. In stores of the company you can always get service and answers to your questions.
Alpha 100 with TT15 collar
One of the most expensive models. You can simultaneously carry out the tracking of 20 animals. The device with high accuracy tracks every running dog within a radius of 14 kilometers. State-of-the-art Hunt Metrics data helps you monitor your dog’s behavior to select the right training techniques.
Time, distance and total scores can be viewed on this GPS collar. The Alpha 100 also counts how many times the “on point” or “treed” position has been recorded. The Alpha 100 is characterized by ease of use, durability and reliability.
Garmin DC 50
The Garmin DC 50 is an optional collar for the Astro 320. It is easy to use, reliable and very lightweight. The movements of the dog, he will not embarrass. The device is made without protrusions, it has no recesses, so that dirt and dust do not get into the device. The location of the pet can be tracked every 5 seconds, the update time can be changed, extending up to 2 minutes.
Garmin Delta Smart
The Garmin Delta Smart has many features:
- Allows you to track your dog’s position in real time;
- It is possible to include more than one animal in the surveillance;
- It is considered a shock collar, affecting the dog with an electric shock. Ten kinds of electric charges are applied;
- It is watertight.
The device is suitable for dogs whose weight ranges from 5 to 35 kilograms.
Xiaomi RetVit Smart Pet Tracker White
It would be strange if the Chinese company Xiaomi has not created its own version of the tracker for dogs. The device turned out to be inexpensive and already liked by many users. The gadget is attached to the collar of the pet, it can be a cat or dog, because the weight of the device is 26 grams. It tracks your pet via GPS and has a maximum range of 5.6km. Battery life is 30 days.
An interesting feature is the ability to see in the app how much distance the pet has covered in a day, as well as the number of calories burned. A useful feature is the ability to remotely turn on the blue backlight, which will help find the dog or cat at night.
This model has a possibility to send a QR code to the collar. By scanning it, the person who found the pet will be able to get information about the owners and contact them in order to return the pet.
Garmin PT10 Dog Device Blue Collar
A model that is optimal for hunters. The device is expensive, but it has an excellent range – up to 10 km, allows you to simultaneously track 10 dogs. Allows you to set virtual boundaries, is lightweight and convenient mounts. The kit consists of a collar and remote control. Battery life is 20 hours.
Tractive GPS Pet Tracking
Low-cost GPS tracker attaches directly to your pet’s collar and sends his position to the free Tractive Pet Manager apps for your smartphone. It works through a GPS connection and has the ability to set virtual boundaries. Autonomy is 2 days, the model is suitable for dogs and cats. Equipped with a LED beacon that can be remotely activated if the pet has to be searched in the dark.
Remote Pet Training Collar
Budget model for training. This model has a range of 300 meters. Includes collar with tracker and remote control with display. Powered by the rechargeable batteries that come with the kit. The remote supports the control of two collars, but it requires the purchase of a second tracker. The training pulses are sharp sound, vibration or light electric shock. The device is designed for animals with long and short hair.
Recommendations and tips First of all, when buying a collar with GPS navigator, you need to decide what the gadget is bought for. For small dogs and cats, a Futureway GPS collar would be ideal. This is the smallest model with a GPS tracker currently on the market. For larger dogs, get a more durable, rugged, and water-resistant electric collar. If you’re planning a long trip, you may want to invest in a rechargeable battery for the GPS device. Expensive tracking systems with multiple functions make sense to buy for frequent trips to the nature for recreation or hunting. In any case, the choice of purchase should be meaningful and give confidence to the owner of your beloved pet, that with the purchase of such a collar your four-legged friend will be safe.