Buying Guides

Tracking device for dogs – How to find a missing dog?

As a dog owner, you always share that special bond with your pet.  You do take special care of them by feeding them with their favorite foods, shelter, and taking them to hospitals for regular check-ups.  However, you cannot keep track of them all the time and with over five million pets go missing every year in the united states alone, loosing your pet would definitely be a heart-breaking situation for most.

Hence, I recommend having a tracker device for your dogs that lets you know their whereabouts easily.  With a tracker attached to your dog’s collar you can easily find them when they get lost.  There are hundreds of different pet locator devices available in the market, so you don’t have to super search to find one.  But finding the best tracker for dogs is not that simple.  Don’t worry! we’re here to help! Our dog tracker buying guide lets you pick the right one for you.

How do dog trackers work?

A dog tracker device usually uses either GPS, Radio Frequency, Bluetooth or sometimes Wi-Fi.  The tracking range varies across the technology the dog tracker uses.  The tracker gadget generally looks small that you can securely clip onto your dog’s collar which transmits and receives signals in order to find its exact location.

tracker for dogs

GPS Dog tracker:  A GPS tracker for dogs usually uses the same technology (triangulation) we find in our smartphones.  The dog tracker device contains a GPS chip and a sim card slot.  GPS is used to acquire the pet’s location, and cell signal is used to send real time tracking details to your smartphone.

Therefore, with a GPS dog tracker you need a steady cell coverage and if you are living in an area that are not covered by cellular networks you won’t be able to track your dog.

Radio Dog Tracker: A RF dog tracker device usually uses the radio frequency (2.4ghz) to communicate between the devices.  They are normally short-range, but more accurate than GPS trackers, cost effective, and offers longer battery life.  These types of trackers are useful for dog owner who reside in remote areas, as well hunters and rescuers.

Bluetooth Dog tracker: A Bluetooth based dog tracking device can be used when your dogs are within the 33 feet range or say inside your premises.  However, if it moves beyond the Bluetooth range then it might become difficult to track them.

Wi-Fi Dog tracker: A Wi-Fi dog tracker is not so usual tracking method and you won’t find many selling it because they are expensive and larger in size.  Wi-Fi based dog tags usually uses access points to pin point its location real-time and they are generally ideal for indoor purposes only.

If my dog is microchipped can I track him?

The most common question I get from dog owner’s is that why I need a dog tracking device if my dog is microchipped already.  There’s lot of difference between a microchip and a GPS or Bluetooth enabled dog tracker.   With microchip your lost dog can be found, but only if they are brought to a kennel and scanned by a vet, provided the microchip also contains the owner’s information.

Therefore, a dog that is micro-chipped cannot be tracked in real time and if you need to do that you need to have a dog tracker device.

How to choose the best tracking device for dogs?

As with every other gadget you purchase, first you need to pin down your requirements and then finalize on one right tracking device.  Here are some of the things you might need to consider before buying a tracker for dogs.

  • Dog tracker size:  As dogs come in various size and weight, choosing the right sized dog tracker device is highly recommended.  Choose one that won’t interfere with the behavior and movement of the dog, and that fits snuggly.
  • Design:  Look for a tracker that is made up of robust material and can withstand any weather condition.
  • Accuracy:  Make sure that the dog tracker that you buy has good quality GPS chip in it for the greatest accuracy.  If you live in remote areas where there’s no cellular networks then using RF dog tracker is recommended.
  • GEO-Fence:  This is a must have feature for a dog tracker as it alerts you whenever your pet leaves pre-set safe zone.
  • Live-Tracking:  Having a real-time tracking on a dog tracking device lets you see where your pet is now instantly.
  • Battery Life:  A GPS enabled tracker typically offers two to five days of battery life depending on the usage and network.  Most GPS devices comes with rechargeable battery. Bluetooth and Radio frequency dog trackers will usually last much longer.
  • Cost:  A typical GPS dog tracker will usually cost between $80 to $200 for the device alone and additional $10 to $20 as monthly subscription fees.  Both Bluetooth and RF dog tracker can be bought for one-time charge without any subscription fees.


If you want peace of mind and also want your pet to be safe, then a tracker device is a must have for every dog owner.  By simply attaching it to your dogs’ collar, you can keep track of it all the time.  As always, treat your dog with love and respect.