Sad Fact: 1 in every 3 pets will get lost in their lifetime. Fortunately, GPS technology has now made tracking your pets simple.

How Pet Tracking Works

If you’ve ever used the Iphone App “Find My Iphone” then you’re already familiar with basics of how pet tracking works. To keep things very simple, we created this easy to follow video.

As you see, the systems all have the same end game whether we are talking about tracking collars for dogs, cat tracking GPS, or pet tracking systems.

They all depend on a system. The system is composed of 1) a locator device, i.e. the receiver, 2) the control center which can be a cellular device, such as an Iphone or Galaxy, or a web based platform and 3) Global Positioning System satellites and cellular networks.

Most devices use GPS, Wi-Fi, mobile data or a combination thereof and as you may have guessed it, tracking collars will only work so long as they are charged.

Know What You’re Getting With Your GPS Pet Tracker

This is the most important difference among pet tracking devices on the market. Although there are GPS trackers that are now shifting towards cellular coverage systems, there are still a few very good options for true GPS devices.

The main difference is that true GPS systems use the Global Positioning System Satellites and don’t rely on mobile carrier networks for service.

For instance, say you are out in the wilderness looking for you cat or dog. It’s possible that there would be no cellular coverage, in which case the cellular GPS system would not work, however a true GPS dog tracker would work.

Think of it in the same way you’d compare a Garmin GPS vs Google Maps. No connection, no directions.

In most cases, however, the signal strength and coverage area for cellular pet tracking collars is perfect for most settings and will only continue to get better.

Available Features

The more common ones now feature user friendly App interfaces that make it extremely easy to locate your pet. To check out our top choices, see our article on the top 3 pet tracking systems.

With the standard locators, you get the most important features:

  • Custom safe zones
  • Quick alerts
  • Real time monitoring
  • Works without internet or cell access
  • Ultra long battery life
  • No subscription

With some, you can use a single monitor with multiple collars. The Marco Polo pet tracker allows this. It’s actually one of the few that uses it’s own radar like system as opposed to GPS or cellular networks like the Tractive GPS Pet Tracker.

As we mentioned above though, you don’t have the convenience of everything in your phone and you don’t get quite the visual user experience you’d normally get from mobile GPS locator devices and their app interfaces.

How Long Do They Stay Charged?

Like pricing, the battery life of a pet GPS varies among manufactures and greatly depends on the use and settings. For example, Podtrackers device has a battery life that ranges from 6hrs to 5 days based on the mode.*

Some require more frequent charging, while others can last up to 10 days without needing a charge.

Pricing Models and How Much Pet Trackers Cost

Most of the dog and cat tracking systems out there are based on a 1 time purchase plus a small monthly subscription fee. You may find some that just require you to pay for the tracking collar or tag but as mentioned, most require a subscription to actually use the interface.

Price Range: There are new companies starting up all the time but we’ve found that the actual collars and GPS trackers range from $45.00 to $300.00+

Subscription Costs: Once again, the monthly subscription cost of cat and dog tracking GPS devices ranges quite a bit but not as much as the 1 time payment amounts. They range from $4.99 to $16.95+

About Pet Tracking GPS

No one wants to think about losing their pet. Thankfully with the help of technology and the advent of pet tracking GPS collars and Microchips, locating your pet has become as easy as checking your email.

In our mini blog, we’ll compare the two types, give you some of the pricing models and compare our top 3 pet tracking devices/systems.