What Device Should I Put to Track Pet’s Location?

Pet’s location

A missing pet can be a serious problem. In order to save nerves and find a fugitive as quickly as possible, it is better to take measures in advance. We talked to an expert on how you can pet track the location of the pet, and found out the pros and cons of chipping and collars with GPS-trackers and geolocation apps.

In what cases can an animal be tracked with a chip?

Chipping is the procedure of placing a special capsule under a pet’s skin with an injection. It takes a few minutes and is painless for the pet. The implanted chip contains information about the pet and its owner, including contact information as well as a special code. Many people think that thanks to chipping, they will be able to track their pet’s location at any time. But this is a misconception.

The implant under the skin can only be read by a special scanner. The rest of the time it doesn’t “emit” anything or transmit any information. The chip will only help locate a lost animal if someone finds it and brings it to a veterinary clinic that has the ability to read data from such chips, according to lawyer Anastasia Komagina. “What’s more, you have to understand that there is no single database for chips. Therefore, the chip is some chance for the pet to return home, but far from a guarantee,” she noted.

How can I pet track the whereabouts of my dog?

One can use a collar with a GPS tracker to track the location of the dog. Such devices are compact and waterproof, so you can find your pet even in bad weather. The owner can see where the pet has run away in a special mobile app, through a browser or by SMS with the coordinates sent by pet tracker. Some collars also have a geofencing feature. This can be used to set a specific area, and pet tracker will send a notification to the owner when it leaves the area. Before you go for a walk, you need to charge the device’s battery.

To date, such collars are not in great demand among people, as Komagina notes. It’s mostly used by hunters because their dogs spend all day running around in the woods, she said. Despite the convenience of these devices, they have a serious disadvantage: the operating time. “Unfortunately, the GPS only works for battery life. Depending on the manufacturer, the device on the collar can run for about two days. Therefore, if the dog is missing, you need to react instantly,” the expert explains.

What remedies may be suitable for a cat?

Miniature collars with a GPS tracker can be worn not only on dogs, but also on cats. However, Anastasia Komagina believes that for animals that do not walk, a simple medallion with the owner’s contact information is sufficient. “If a cat does not walk, and it should not walk in the city in our modern conditions, a medallion is enough. If it pops up in the entranceway, it will be easy enough for the neighbors to return it to its owners,” believes Komagina. She reminds, that cats usually do not run away far unlike dogs, which can run a few tens of kilometers during a day.

Medallion-addresser is a popular product, which can be found in any price category. There are also NFC (short-range wireless high-frequency communication technology) tags made in the form of a lightweight medallion that can be hung on a pet’s collar. Such a tag allows to know the data of the owner by means of a QR-code, which can be scanned with a smartphone camera. At the same time the owner of the lost pet will receive an e-mail notification of the time and place of the scan with GPS coordinates. But the tag itself cannot transmit information, so it is not a full-fledged replacement for a collar with GPS function.