Our pets are part of the family, and the thought of losing them or not knowing where they are can be scary. So it’s worth looking into the best dog GPS tracker — it can be a lifesaver for your pet and peace of mind for you.
These devices are becoming increasingly popular. We reviewed the top ones to help other pup owners make an informed decision. Also, we’ll discuss some alternatives. Let’s dive in.
Methodology — Reviewing Dog Collars Based on Our Evaluation Criteria
We aim to provide credible information. Here are the aspects we believe are crucial in deciding on the top-notch GPS tracker for your dog on the market:
Signal Range & Performance Accuracy
Not all devices trace dogs on the same network. GPS technology usually allows global coverage with unlimited range, but obstacles like trees or buildings can sometimes restrict that. Bluetooth gives exact localization within 32 feet. The older, radio-transmitting ones cover a range of one to five miles but don’t give any real-time location.
The simpler the set-up, the better. The initial step for launching the device on many GPS dog tags is picking out a subscription plan. That way, you could use their GPS and cellular network to track your pet. But not all devices require a subscription. In any case, most trackers send information to an app you can download on your smartphone. So you’ll have to set up an account for your pet. Still, not all devices run on smartphones — some have subscription-free remote receivers that are even simpler to use.
Size & Weight
Dogs shouldn’t feel like they’re carrying a burden around their necks. So, an optimal dog GPS tracker would aim to avoid that. Most trackers weigh from 0.6 oz to 5.2 oz. Since some come with a collar, their max weight is approximately 9.9 oz. Also, we found some fairly small-sized products, the smallest being 1.5 x 1.5 x 0.35 inches.
If the tracker isn’t made from high-quality & durable materials, is the high-tech performance worth it? Luckily, we found that many products are waterproof or water-resistant. Plus, there are shock-proof trackers, specifically made for dogs that have ants in their pants. Plastic is among the most common materials for the tracking device. Still, some of the collar ones are made from aluminum.
Nobody wants a dog tracker with short battery life, especially since your pet’s safety depends on it. After searching around for the best dog tracking device, we found that products with features like live tracking, geofence, and fitness check tend to have eight hours to three months battery life. But the simpler, Bluetooth devices have batteries that last for a year. Most batteries we came upon were also rechargeable.
It’s crucial for tech dog products to have product replacement and refund policies, in case the tracker malfunctions. But not every product comes with a warranty offer. Still, the ones that do come with a one-year warranty and 20-day refund.
Product Reputation & User Opinion
Even if it’s the harsh truth, we value the customers’ opinion since it often saves us a lot of money. We dug deep into dog GPS tracker reviews and searched for products’ backgrounds and reputations.
A GPS dog tracker for average-size dogs in North America and Canada. The device is lightweight, small, and waterproof. On the Whistle app, you can create safe zones and meal plans. Also, you’ll receive health and activity reports and location updates. It has a one-year warranty offer.
Together with the Whistle GO app, this device can trace dogs, monitor their activity, and give health reports. It’s small (1.4 x 1.8 x 0.7), lightweight (0.96 oz), waterproof (IPX 8), and has a built-in night light. The battery lasts up to 20 days, depending on the dog’s lifestyle. It comes in green, magenta and grey colors.
After you subscribe, the device connects to AT&T’s 4G LTE network and Google Maps. The range covers North America and Canada, so it’s the best dog GPS tracker for pets living in that area. You can set up multiple safe spaces on the app and get notified whenever your pup’s outside of the area. Plus, you can add other members to the same account.
The Whistle app monitors activity levels and tracks behaviors like licking and scratching. The weekly health report alerts you to possible health issues, and you can get a consultation for them via the tele-vet feature. This is the ideal dog GPS tracker for average-size dogs and above. You can attach it to any 1” collar or harness, and it comes with a one-year warranty.
- Waterproof & shock-resistant
- 15-second update on pup’s movement
- Tele-vet consultations
- Activity & health reports
- One-year warranty
- Too bulky for small dogs
- Requires subscription for activation
Why we chose this product: This smart dog collar shows you where your dog is, with whom, and how long it stayed in one place. Also, you can adjust safe zones for your pet. On the Whistle app, you can set up fitness goals, health reports, vet consultations, and meal plans.
GPS tracker for dogs with no subscription fee that syncs with the Petfon app. It’s lightweight, small, and waterproof. Also, the battery lasts up to 16 hours. The app monitors your dog’s movement and daily activity from up to 3.5 miles. The device has a multicolor alert and a voice command option.
Supported by GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth, this smart device can quickly locate your pet’s real-time position. It uses Google’s big data interface to send location signals, so it doesn’t require a paid subscription.
This GPS dog collar has a high-end laser craving antenna covering a radius of 0.65 miles in the city and 3.5 miles in an open area. You can adjust multiple geofences, trace three dogs at once, and monitor their daily activity. If there’s a low GPS signal, you can find your dog with their radar technology.
You can choose between eleven color lights to locate your pet at night. Plus, the voice command lets you record a message, and it gets activated remotely. The battery lasts from 8–16 hours. Also, the product’s casing is the charger. Although it’s waterproof, it isn’t the best GPS dog collar for swimming purposes. It weighs 0.94 oz, and it’s so tiny that your pet won’t even notice it.
- No subscription
- No cellular network or SIM card
- Tracks daily activity and movement
- Multicolor alert and voice command
- Short battery life
- Not designed for indoor monitoring
Why we chose this product: Well, it has no paid subscription. The design is so small and lightweight that it’s great even for the tiniest breeds. Also, it has geofencing, color alert, voice command, and radar technology in case of low GPS signal.
A waterproof GPS dog tracker with an LTE-M cellular network and Bluetooth integration. It requires a subscription for some features. You can check where your dog is at all times through an app, and the battery lasts up to three months. It comes with a one-year warranty, in four sizes and colors.
This is the first collar tracker with LTE-M (AT&T) cellular network that can reach 30% further than other networks. You need to pay a subscription Led Zeppelin Symphonicfee of $99/year, or $8.25/month for the GPS and Bluetooth integration. But you can also use it for free as an activity tracker.
Still, the pet GPS collar’s top feature is its memory lifespan — up to three months. The app has a fitness tracker, multiple geofences, lost dog mode, and an “invite an owner” feature. So you’ll know when your dog leaves, where it walks, and with whom. It comes with a one-year warranty.
You’ll find it in four sizes (S to XL) and colors (gray, yellow, blue, and pink). The aluminum faceplate is water, dirt, and chew-resistant, resisting 300 lbs of pull force. Together with the collar, it weighs around 4.3 oz, so it’s not suitable as a small dog GPS tracker.
- LTE-M cellular network
- 4x Improved antenna
- Aluminum faceplate
- Three months battery life
- One-year warranty
- Requires a subscription for some features
- Comes with a collar
Why we chose this product: The collar’s design is high-quality, enduring 300 lbs pull force. It has a robust faceplate, 4x improved antenna, and a three months battery life. Other essential features include GPS tracking, a geofence perimeter, an activity database, access to the Fi community, and lost dog mode.
This is a Glonass and GPS dog training collar that can track dogs up to five miles away. It notifies every 2.5 seconds and features TOPO mapping, BirdsEye Satellite Imagery, and Hunt Metrics. The battery lasts from 15–20 hours. You can also transfer data with other Glonass devices.
This device trains and traces dogs up to five miles away. It’s a pet GPS tracker with a GPS and GLONASS satellite reception. The tracker’s sensor gives location updates every two and a half seconds.
This device uses 900 MHz FHSS and operates in Canada and the US only. It features preloaded TOPO mapping and a 1-year subscription for BirdsEye Satellite imagery. Its Hunt Metrics allow it to analyze the dog’s speed, distance, and time afield.
The model comes in a black and orange color combo. It’s 6.3” x 1.4” x 2.4”, and the rechargeable battery lasts 15–20 hours. If you have multiple dogs, you can link up to 20 collars. Consequently, this GPS locator for dogs supports unit-to-unit transfer data with other Garmin devices.
- GPS tracker & handheld device
- Five miles range
- Hunt Metrics
- BirdsEye Satellite Imagery
- Two and a half seconds updates
- Unit-to-unit transfer data
- Remote control sold separately
- Doesn’t have shock stimulation
Why we chose this product: Apart from detecting dogs up to five miles, this tracker gives location updates every 2.5 seconds. Plus, you can link up to 20 collars at once, as well as transfer data with other Garmin devices.
A subscription-based waterproof and shock-proof GPS tracking device that’s small and lightweight. It works with an app that follows your dog’s activity, movement, and favorite places. The battery lasts up to five days. What’s more, there’s a 14 days refund guarantee.
It’s a worldwide location & activity tracker with a personal SIM card covering more than 150 countries. You can pick a monthly ($9.95), annual ($77.90), or biannual ($129.39) subscription to use their latest network technology. The rounded cuboid design comes in a white & blue color combo that’s 100% water and adventure-proof.
This hunting dog GPS tracker connects to the Tractive app, which offers features like the “Live GPS Tracking” updates every 2–3 seconds. Also, it comes with the “Virtual Fence” feature that marks a safe zone for your fur pal. You can check previous locations, favorite spots and set fitness goals for your pet.
The device is comfortable and plastic-free (2” x 1.6” x 0.6”). If you lose the collar, you can activate the LED light or play a sound. Plus, the battery is long-lasting — up to five days. The company offers free shipping and 14 days money-back guarantee.
- Worldwide tracker
- 100% waterproof and shock-proof
- Live GPS Tracking
- Virtual Fence
- Five days battery life
- Loose clips
- Low-quality battery
Why we chose this product: Being a GPS tracker for a dog collar, it’s one of the few that allows tracking across 150 countries. The design is waterproof, plastic-free, and solid as a rock. You can track your dog in real-time through the app, and you can also secure a safe zone for your pup.
A teardrop-shaped, subscription-based GPS tracker for a dog collar. This device traces dogs through Bluetooth, WiFi, cellular data, and GPS. The company guarantees a maximum security level with up to seven days of battery life. Plus, the app’s user-friendly. It has features like geofence, SOS alerts, street/satellite maps, and real-time tracking.
This GPS tracker for dogs has progressive beaconing technology. You can track your pooch through Bluetooth, WiFi, cellular data, and GPS for a monthly subscription fee of $8.99. It’s small (1.46” x 1.97” x 0.47”) and incredibly lightweight (0.6 oz).
The teardrop-shaped device is waterproof with three attachment options. Also, users claim the app’s one of the easiest to use. You can add multiple members and a geofence with a safe radius of 100–800 feet. The battery lasts up to 7 days and charges for two hours.
The company guarantees government-level encryption, so it’s the worthiest dog GPS tracker for maximum privacy and security. Even though it doesn’t track the activity level, the sensors are mighty enough to trace dogs from indoor places.
- High-level encryption
- Beaconing technology
- Seven-day battery life
- Indoor tracing
- Small and lightweight
- No step counting
- No calling capability
Why we chose this product: It offers peace of mind in terms of security and privacy, as it guarantees government-level encryption for you and your pet. Also, the app is straightforward. Thanks to the progressive beaconing technology, you can trace your dog in real-time, add custom geofence, multiple pet users, and SOS alerts.
GPS/GLONASS dog tracker with no subscription fees that come with a one-year warranty. The black & orange design is water-resistant, with twenty hours battery life. It features preloaded mapping, tracing twenty dogs across nine miles, hunt metrics, and the dogs’ status.
Garmin has been one of the leading companies in navigation and communication technology since 89’. Their Astro 220 offers a GLONASS/GPS navigation system and radio frequency signals to trace dogs. This pet tracker comes without a monthly fee and doesn’t need a cellular network.
It can track 20 dogs at once within a nine-mile distance and location updates every 2.5 seconds but only in the US. The system shows distance and time afield, a TOPO US 100K mapping, and a BirdsEye satellite imagery.
The device has a black & orange design made from heavy-duty plastic and stainless steel. Even though it’s not shock-proof, it’s the ideal GPS dog collar for harsh weather. It measures 6.3” x 2.4” x 1.4” and weighs 9.2oz (batteries included). The battery lasts up to 20 hours and comes with a one-year warranty.
- No monthly fee
- Tracks up to twenty dogs
- BirdsEye satellite imagery
- TOPO US 100K map
- One-year warranty
- Short battery life
- Tracks only in the US
- The receiver isn’t rechargeable
Why we chose this product: The brand is among the finest in navigation and communication technology. There aren’t many products for tracking twenty dogs at once. The dog tracker plus a GPS collar gives frequent updates — every 2.5 seconds. Also, there are many maps like the BirdsEye satellite imagery and the TOPO US 100K map.
A waterproof tracking device by Bartun, known as the tiniest on the market. It has no subscription fee, but you need a 4G LTE, 3G WCDMA, or 2G GSM SIM card to use it. Its worldwide tracking runs through Wifi, GPS, and LBS. The tracing happens through the app, where you can place a geofence and check the dog’s activity levels and movement history.
Known as one of the smallest devices of its kind on the market, this real-time tracker supports GPS, WiFi, and LBS positioning. The GPS dog tracker has no monthly fee, but you’ll need to buy a 4G LTE, 3G WCDMA, or 2G GSM SIM card to use it. It has worldwide coverage in over 150 countries and a positioning accuracy of up to 16 feet.
If water is your pooch’s best friend, this is an excellent waterproof option for you. The LED light and ringtone serve as a great location indicator in dark areas. The BARTUN tracker is 3.31” x 3.31” x 2.44” and weighs 5.29 oz. No wonder why it’s famous as the smallest dog GPS tracker.
After syncing with the Bartun App, you can place a safe fence system and an alert, if your pet leaves that area. On top of that, you can keep track of your pup’s fitness level and location history. The device supports multiple users so that the whole family can keep track of the dog at all times.
- No subscription fee
- Smallest dog tracker
- Worldwide coverage
- Trouble syncing
- Challenging set up
- Tracking might be inaccurate
Why we chose this product: As a real-time GPS dog tracker, this device works with different networks (2G, 3G, 4G) and tracks through WiFi, GPS, and LBS, covering over 150 countries. Its waterproof design is also lightweight and the smallest on the market.
A radio frequency tracking device for dogs that detects pets from a range of 1970 feet. The pet tag in black and white is lightweight and water-resistant. The tracking device plays a buzzing sound and intensifies when the dog is near. Also, the battery life lasts up to two months, and you can track four pets at once.
This is a radio frequency tracking system for dogs from TrackerONE that can detect motion from a 1970 feet distance and traces four pets at once. The pet tags are water-resistant and easily adjustable to any collar, with a size of 5.5” x 5.2” x 2”. Also, it’s a lightweight (4oz) tracker.
The tags sync with a directional tracking indicator, which guides with a rhythm buzzer motion. When you’re close to your pet, it buzzes faster. But keep in mind that your dog might not like the sound.
The brand offers data encryption that won’t detect other pets. So if you’re looking for secure hunting dog tracking collars, this might be an excellent option. The smart sleep mode activates whenever the dog is by your side, saving battery life and extending it up to two months.
- Tracking four pets at once
- Small and lightweight
- Two-month battery life
- Sound might be too loud
- Might collect water
Why we chose this product: It’s a useful tracking tool for non-tech-savvy users. Most tracking devices run through an app, which some owners might find confusing. Luckily, this device provides a simple rhythm buzzing guidance with a 1970 feet range.
Bluetooth-supported dog tracker, designed for short-range monitoring, up to 100 feet. It’s waterproof, and you can check the tracking on the Cube Tracker app. Also, it runs on batteries that last for a year.
Apart from being a great pet tracking tool, the device does wonders in finding keys, phones, or anything the tag is attached to. It’s square-shaped and has a black rubber design.
This smart device is also waterproof. It isn’t a long-range GPS dog tracker, as it’s supported by Bluetooth, covering a 100-foot range. So it’s good for short-range walks, hiking, or adventures in big yards.
The collar tag syncs with the Cube Tracker app that shows the most recent location of your pet accurately. It starts ringing whenever you activate the app “find mode.” This product runs on replaceable batteries that last for a year.
- One-year replaceable batteries
- Lightweight and small
- Short distance range
- Some dogs like to chew the rubber collar tag
Why we chose this product: With a 100 feet tracking range, it’s the perfect tool if you’re looking for a straightforward and compact close-range device. For such a low-priced puppy tracker, it offers pretty good features. It’s waterproof, with one-year battery life, app tracking, and sound detection.
A Guide for Finding the Most Suitable GPS Collar & Tracker for You & Your Pet
If you want to know how to find the best dog tracker for your pooch, simply follow our guide. Let’s learn everything about dog trackers and how to find one that will best suit your needs.
What to Look for in a Pet GPS Tracker?
We’ve created a list of essential aspects that will ease off your search process. Here’s what to consider when looking for the perfect device.
Network & Range Distance
If you have consistent Internet access, GPS and cellular dog tracker collars are satellite-based devices that provide worldwide tracking. In case you live or travel in a rural area with lousy service, Bluetooth or radio-transmitting trackers work just fine. But we recommend these trackers for a close range, as the signal isn’t as powerful as GPS.
Size & Number of Pets
Not all trackers are suitable for all breeds. Even if they have amazing technological features, some are just too bulky for small dogs to bear. Always check the dimensions and weight of the real-time pet tracker — if your dog doesn’t notice it, it’s the right choice. And for multiple pets, look for products that track several dogs at once.
Tracking Notifications & Alerts
There are two types of tracking receivers — handheld and application receivers. The handheld receivers aren’t as technologically advanced. Still, they provide enough info to track your lost pooch, like maps, sound/vibration alerts, distance, and time afield. As for the GPS dog tracker app, the essential features are geofencing and life-tracking mode. Geofence is the safe zone that will alert you if the dog leaves the area. And the life-tracking mode will show you where your pooch is in real-time.
Features & Battery Life
If you want to keep track of your dog’s fitness, some devices count steps, distance, and burned calories. For dogs that regularly wander off on an adventure, search for waterproof and shockproof tracers. As for the battery life, if you want to monitor your pooch consistently, you’ll need one that lasts more than a day.
Subscription Fees & Product’s Price
If you want to get a GPS or cellular tracker device for dogs, keep in mind that most require a subscription. Sometimes even the cheapest tracker might turn out to be the most expensive because of these monthly or annual fees. And always check for discounts, as you might grab a sweet deal if you’re lucky.
Everything You Need to Know About GPS Dog Tracking Devices
A pet GPS tracker helps you keep an eye on your dog in real-time, thanks to its internal GPS transponder and cellular data transmissions. You can track your pup on the phone, tablet, computer, or with a handheld receiver. If your pet escapes, you’ll receive an alert to follow its whereabouts in real-time and securely reconnect with it.
On some devices, you can set up a secure zone for your dog, called geofencing. Like a wireless dog fence, instead of warning your dog when it goes outside the safe zone, you’ll receive an alarm. Most GPS tracking services have a monthly subscription plan, which is often less than $10.
Other Types of Pet GPS Tracking Devices
All dog tracking devices work with an electronic tag on your dog’s collar. Even though the GPS ones are the most accurate and technologically advanced, other tracker types are worth mentioning, too.
RF trackers run on radio wave data transmission. They’re placed on your dog’s collar and send signals through a portable radio device. After the gadget receives the signals, it’ll broadcast your dog’s estimated location. This puppy tracker is typically for hunters or dog owners in places without cellphone service or GPS coverage. You can also combine them with smart dog doors — technologically advanced pet doors that open up by detecting the radio frequency signals of the dog’s collar.
Bluetooth is an open wireless technology that exclusively transmits location data over short distances (33 feet). These trackers work by connecting the pet’s module to a smartphone app that indicates the distance and direction of your dog’s location. Due to their restricted range, they’re only partially helpful in detecting the specific location. But they’re excellent at finding lost keys or purses.
Benefits of Dog GPS Tracking Devices
Dog GPS tracking devices are packed up with amazing features, like being waterproof or tracking pups worldwide. But how would you benefit from them? Let’s see all the advantages of owning a dog tracking device.
Find Lost or Stolen Pets Easier
A GPS tracker for dogs makes it easier to locate a lost or runaway pet. This also applies to cats that tend to roam more, especially if they’re not used to a house environment. It’s worth investing in a device that will ease your mind.
Keep Track of Working Dogs
Pet trackers are vital equipment if you ever lose sight of a police or military dog, especially during a time-sensitive or severely dangerous operation. They’re also beneficial for guide dogs in cases where you might need them immediately. Last but not least, herders find trackers helpful for ensuring that their dogs remain healthy and safe.
Know Your Dog’s Activity
Sometimes we don’t know whether our pooch gets the right amount of exercise. With a GPS dog tracker, you can monitor your dog’s activity each day. When your pet goes for a walk, you can see the distance traveled, the route, and the amount of time spent there.
At a Glance — Top Picks Summary
Whistle GO Explore: Finest app support
PETFON 1 Dog GPS Pet Tracker: Lightweight smart tracker
Fi Series 2 GPS Tracker Smart Dog Collar: Longlasting battery life & durable collar tracker
Garmin Astro 900 Dog Tracking Bundle: Superior dog tracking bundle
Tractive GPS Tracker for Dogs: Global dog tracking device
JIOBIT GPS Location Monitor: Optimal encryption support
Garmin Astro 220 GPS Dog Tracker: Ideal for multiple dogs
BARTUN LTE GPS Dog Tracker: Subscription-free worldwide tracker
Ardi Pet Tracker RF Finder: RF tracker
Cube Bluetooth Smart Tracker: Bluetooth tracker
Alternatives & Effective Products
Even though a real-time pet tracker is the most effective, it’s always good to research the alternatives. Let’s check them out.
QR Pet Tags
QR code pet tags are digital ID cards attached to your pet’s collar. You only need to build a QR code with the information you wish to encode, including the pet’s name and the owner’s contact details.
We recommend the PetDwelling Smart Touch Pet ID Tag on Amazon. After you make a profile on their website, the tag links to your dog’s profile, showcasing data like photo, breed, contact, medical, and vet info. When a tag is scanned, the owner is notified and if permitted, a scanned Google map position is saved and shown on the profile page.
If you’re looking for a hunting dog GPS tracker, you can also check out beeper collars. They work with motion sensors that detect what your pet is doing. Most beeper collars make a 5–10 seconds beeping motion when the dog is moving. If the pet stops, the beeping goes faster.
An excellent beeper collar is the SportDOG Upland Hunter® 1875 on Amazon. It has a compact, waterproof receiver and beeper with a one-mile range detecting three dogs.
Final Thoughts: What’s the Finest GPS Tracker for Your Pet + Our Top Pick
Even if we check all the boxes when it comes to safety, it’s still possible for our beloved pets to escape and get lost. Luckily, with a GPS tracker on the dog collar, you can keep tabs on your pooch even when it’s out roaming the neighborhood.
The Whistle GO Explore is among the most feature-rich and comprehensive pet trackers we’ve seen. If your pet gets lost with it, you’ll have all the resources to locate it. The device provides priceless data and insights. So many of your everyday concerns about your dog’s health will disappear. It might be subscription-based, but if an emergency occurs, that would be the last thing you’d think about.
You can place this device on every one-inch collar or harness. It’s recommended for average-size pets and above, but for those, you’ll also need to pick out the best harness for large dogs too. The tracker and harness make the perfect security combo.
Do GPS dog trackers work?
GPS dog trackers do an amazingly accurate job of pinpointing pets. They give you the dog’s exact location, distance, direction traveling, and status. It’s more information than we’ve ever had, and that brings owners peace of mind.
Can I use the dog GPS on a cat?
Yes, as long as the device is compact and comfortable enough for your cat. Many GPS dog trackers are specifically designed for smaller pets. They’re lightweight and small so that the tiniest dogs and cats can wear them with ease.
How small can a GPS tracker be?
As small as a matchbox. Currently, the smallest one is the PETFON 1 Dog GPS Pet Tracker, with a size of 1.5 x 1.5 x 0.35 inches. But don’t be fooled by these measurements. It’s the best dog GPS tracker for small pets, as it traces three and a half miles away and provides real-time positioning through GPS, Bluetooth, and WiFi networks.