Comparison of Dog GPS Trackers

Tagg the pet tracker (

There are basically two different kinds of GPS trackers for dogs.  The more popular design uses a GPS tracker, which is attached to your dog’s collar, and requires a monthly subscription plan to actually track your dog’s location.  Many of these allow you to place a virtual boundary around your yard, and if your dog leaves this area, a text or email alert is sent to you.  If your dog goes missing, you can track their location with texts to your cell phone or maps on a smartphone or computer.

Dog GPS collars available in the US

The other design uses a GPS tracker, which is usually built into a specially designed collar, and has a portable receiver.  The receiver provides you with either a map (e.g. Garmin Astro) or just an arrow with distance (e.g. RoamEO), and you use this to track down your dog.  The receivers have a maximum distance of 7-9 miles and perhaps a minimum distance of 1 mile.  No activation fee or subscription is necessary.  The shortcomings of this design are the limited range and short battery life, and you always have to carry the receiver on you to find your dog.

There are a few companies in the UK such as PawTrax Snooper and Loc8tor Pet that have developed a pay per use GPS tracker.  These are similar in design to the GPS trackers that require a monthly fee, but instead you prepay for a certain number of locations.  PawTrax may now be available for purchase in the US.  Email for more information.

For a more complete list of all the GPS trackers currently available for dogs and cats, check out this Comparison of GPS Pet Trackers.  If you know of any that I have missed, please let me know.  In February I purchased Tagg the Pet Tracker for my own dog, and I plan to write a review on this particular tracker.  Overall, I am happy with the purchase and it seems to work quite well though I have fortunately never had the chance to try it out for real.

9 thoughts on “Comparison of Dog GPS Trackers”

  1. I have heard about the TAGG tracker, and I wonder about their claim for a 30 battery life. That is quite long. I wonder how accurate that is.

    Also, it says it is good for 10 pound animals and up, but I have seen it on a cat, and it is huge on a standard cat. I have a hard time understanding how an average cat will tolerate something so big around its neck.

    Plus, of course, getting a person to put it on their animal to begin with will be the biggest challenge, when the majority of people don’t put any type of ID or collar on their pets in the first place.

    1. I have a Tagg tracker for my dog. The battery life depends on usage – it does seem to last for almost 3 weeks when my dog is only wearing it in the house. The closer the dog is to the base station, the less power it uses. In a large yard, the battery would probably not last as long.

      What I don’t like about it is the way it attaches to the collar – my dog wears a rolled leather collar normally (she has a collie-like mane of fur) but the Tagg is designed for a flat buckle collar so I had to get a separate collar for that. I’d much prefer something that’s more like an ID tag.

      It would work on large cats, but does seem much too large for medium or small cats. (I’d say 15lb-ish cats…much too big for my 6lb kitty.) That’s my experience with it, anyway.

      Re: cats wearing collars…some cats take them off! Ironically, my cat tolerates her collar fine now that she’s strictly indoors…when she was indoor/outdoor (and needed it more!) she often found ways to remove it. Cats, sigh. 😀

  2. Their claim of a 30 day battery life is only if you never take your dog outside of the “home zone” where the tracker remains in power saving mode. I take my dog out of the yard for 1-2 hours a day and for several hours at least once a week. In the past two months, my tagg tracker lasted an average of 15 days before I received a low battery message. When traveling away from home, the tracker lasted an average of 3.5 days. These numbers seem to be fairly in line with their Battery Life Chart: . Apparently cellular coverage can also effect battery life.

    I agree that the tracker looks a bit large for your average cat. Personally I have not tried putting one on a cat yet.

    I also agree that it is difficult to get most people to even put a collar on their cat. In two separate studies on cat collars, they found that between 25-40% of cats wore collars. The most common reasons given for not wearing collars were that the cat was indoor-only (20-60%) or that the cat did not like the collar (13%). Of course, anyone who helps people find their pets knows that many indoor-only cats get lost outside.

  3. I do like, though, that manufacturers are getting closer to something that can be put on cats. If I found something small enough for my cat, I would put it on him. In my opinion, small animals like cats and small dogs tend to be the ones that need it most. Maybe that is just the area I work in which is predominately urban and suburban. But, I do think that if they made a comfortable size for cats, maybe half the size of the TAGG tracker, most cat people would be interested.

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