Global Positioning System (GPS) dog collars are still relatively new.
However, as technology has advanced, it makes sense that dog owners, especially those of us who love adventures, all over America are looking for ways to use GPS technology for safe guarding their pets!
Whistle GO & GO Explore
As GPS dog collars become more popular, vendors of all kinds claim they make the best one.
After scouring reviews, ratings, and specifications we’ve compiled a list of the best GPS dog collars on the market.
Top 5 GPS Dog Collar Reviews
1. Whistle GO & GO Explore
The Whistle 3 GPS Pet Tracker is one of the most affordable and reliable models on the market today. This small device clips onto your dog’s collar for easy use. Its combination of advanced nationwide tracking, proactive alerts (text, email and app notifications), as well the extended battery life (up to 7 days) makes this one of the bestselling GPS collars. Because it connects to your cellular network, however, expect to invest in a low-cost monthly subscription package.
- Easy to set up and use
- Extremely lightweight
- Can track multiple dogs at once
- Compatible with iOS and Android phones
- Deletes information after 24-hours
- While the service plan is low cost, monthly subscription fee may negate the initial low-cost of this item
Bottom Line: The Whistle 3 GPS Pet Tracker has all the features you could want in a GPS dog collar. If you can afford the monthly subscription, this is the best overall GPS collar on the market. As a bonus, the Whistle 3 also includes an activity tracker that lets you know how much sleep, exercise and rest your dog is getting.
2. Tractive 3G Dog GPS Tracker
The Tractive 3G Dog GPS Tracker offers an affordable, yet highly sophisticated device that is compatible with iOS and Android phones. In addition to GPS services, the Tractive 3G allows you to set up a virtual perimeter fence that will automatically notify you via text of your dog’s location once breeched.
The low-cost monthly subscription feel allows you to maintain coverage of your pet’s location at all times when the device is attached to your dog’s collar.
- Low-cost solution to a serious problem
- Invisible perimeter fence
- The Tractive 3G battery will last up to 5 days only and must be detached to charge
- The lowest subscription plan ($5) adds another $60 annually to the cost of this model
Bottom Line: Slightly larger than the Whistle 3, the Tractive 3G offers many features any dog owner can appreciate. We especially like the virtual perimeter fence feature that immediately alerts you when our pet breeches it.
3. Garmin Alpha 100 TT 15 Dog GPS
The Garmin Alpha 100 is an expensive, fully-loaded GPS dog tracker that packs a serious punch. This tracker comes with all of the bells and whistles – including a collar, highly-sensitive GPS, LED beacon light, rescue mode, stimulations (vibration and tone), and a handheld tracking device.
The Garmin Alpha 100 does not connect to your smartphone, so there will be no subscription fee. For those who train or hunt, you can track up to 20 dogs at a time on this device.
- There is a one-time investment cost for the Garmin Alpha 100
- Rescue mode can extend the life of your battery up to 45 hours
- This collar is extremely expensive
- Also a bit larger and more complicated than many of the other devices
- While it is rechargeable, the standard battery life is only 24-hours
Bottom Line: If you are a serious hunter, outdoor enthusiast, or trainer – the Garmin Alpha 100 may be worth the hefty price-tag. It comes with all of the bells and whistles a high-quality GPS dog collar should, however, and has plenty of happy customers.
4. Link AKC Smart Dog Collar with GPS Tracker
The Link AKC Smart Dog Collar with GPS Tracker is perhaps the sleekest, most attractive model on our list. (It is also one of the only ones to come with its own collar.)
Nestled inside a tan leather or black sport collar, the Link AKC tracker is available in four different sizes to ensure your dog is comfortable. It also includes bonus features, such as a LED light, temperature safety alert, vet record database, and nationwide tracking.
The Link AKC Smart Dog Collar has a compatible app that can be used with iOS and Android phones.
- Beautifully crafted, the sleek design and tracker incorporation into the collar makes for a popular choice
- Ability to store additional data, such as vet records and activity history
- Fashionable, but a little heavier
- May be too heavy for smaller dogs despite the “small” collar size
- Battery will only last up to 3 days
Bottom Line: Slightly more expensive than some of the other models, the Link AKC Smart Dog Collar with GPS Tracker is a beautiful item that does more than just locate our dog.
5. Eureka Technology MARCOPOLO Advanced Pet Tracking Tag Monitoring System
The Eureka Technology MARCOPOLO is another high-dollar item. This self-contained, waterproof device connects to your dog’s collar and starts locating your pet with the touch of a button. With no subscriptions and a rechargeable battery, the device comes with a handheld tracker that helps you search for your dog for up to 6 weeks!
- You can set a perimeter range with the MARCOPOLO that will alert you should your dog wander too far
- Easy to use
- Plenty of users have raved about the quality and durability of this tracker system
- Obstacles can block the transmitter signal, which can prolong your search in heavily wooded areas.
Bottom Line: As a high-dollar item – you expect quality. The MARCOPOLO delivers that and more, being named an Amazon Choice buy.
GPS Dog Collars: The Low Down
If you’re looked through our top picks above, but want some more information, we’ve put together a buyer’s guide with some more details below.
What exactly is a GPS dog collar?
According to the American Humane Society, over 10 million dogs and cats are reported missing every year. They further estimate that 1 out of every 3 pets will be lost at some point in their lives. Additionally, of all dogs caught and sent to an animal shelter, only 22% will be reunited with their families.
Microchipping your dog is essential. It’s one of the first things an animal shelter will check for when a lost dog is brought in. However, not all owners remember to register their pet’s microchip or to update their information should they move or get a new phone number. Because of this, many microchips fail to provide the necessary information to reunite with their dog.
That makes a GPS collar even more important. A GPS collar provides real-time updates on your pet’s location. This helps increase your ability to locate your missing dog in any situation. Best yet – it helps you locate your dog quickly before something more serious or fatal can occur.
Who needs a GPS dog collar?
Every dog owner should consider investing in a GPS collar. Whether your yard is fenced or you always walk your dog on a leash, accidents happen.
Dogs are curious and playful by nature. If they see an opportunity to investigate a noise, smell, or object outside of their home – they are going to check it out. Unfortunately, one little adventure outside can lead to a much larger one within seconds. A GPS dog collar gives you a little peace of mind for those “what if” situations.
Hunters and hikers, in particular, will also appreciate the value of a GPS collar. The wilderness is a vast area and it can be easy to lose your dog out there. Additionally, if a dog is injured while tracking an animal (or chasing one for fun!) a GPS collar can help you locate your wounded companion quickly.
Features Worth Considering
GPS dog collars are more sophisticated than more other dog collars available today. However, because of their digital advancements, these collars tend to come with a larger price tag. To help ensure you invest in the best model, let’s take a look at the most important features.
A GPS collar that dies after a short amount of time is pointless. Quality GPS collars should have a long-lasting battery to give you as much time as possible to locate your dog.
A good GPS collar needs to be durable. From waterproofing to hit-resistance, a GPS collar needs to stand up to every aspect of a dog’s life.
Some GPS collars restrict your dog to a 5-foot area. This is not ideal. The best GPS collars allow your dog plenty of room to roam while still keeping you updated on their location.
Size & Weight
You will want a GPS collar that is as small and light as possible. This helps to keep your dog comfortable while wearing the device.
How your GPS collar relays information to you is important. Not all of these devices use the same technology. Some may only be accessible from your computer or an included handheld device, while others may utilize your smartphone or specific apps to provide real-time updates.
The Best GPS Dog Collar for Your Pet
All things considered, any of the GPS dog collars listed above make of a good investment. (As big fans of dogs, anything that increases your dog’s safety is a win-win to us!)
However, there is one clear winner in our eyes.
Whistle GO & GO Explore
The Whistle 3 GPS Dog Tracker is the best GPS dog collar for your pet. The lightweight, durable nature of this small device make it a reliable choice even for the smallest of dogs.
Hopefully, you can locate your dog quickly with the help of the Whistle 3 GPS Dog Tracker. However, even the best devices may not help you recover your pet as quickly as you would hope. The long-lasting battery makes this a must have device for any owner.