The latest in Dog Tracking and why you want it. a25

..... dog tracking

Why would you want to track your dog?

Originally dog tracking devices were mainly used for tracking wild animals or dogs in pig hunts. They were mostly of the radio transmitter type that included carrying a large radio tracking receiver. These had the limitation so relatively low power, difficulty in finding direction in some environments, loss of signal when dogs were either behind solid formations such as rocks or in gullies etc.

These tracking systems are still available and have improved in technology considerably, but still remain most useful in tracking dogs in close in heavy foliage situations.

GPS dog tracking systems

With the explosion of GPS car tracking systems and the increase in quality of the GPS chips, GPS tracking of dogs in now in vogue, mainly in America.

The reason that people may want to track their dogs are many. If you lose your dog, there are several resources including websites and companies providing information and services to help you locate your pet, but like a lost child, time is of the essence in recovering a dog safely.

If a dog accidently strays from your property, it is likely to be in a state of confusion or scared after a while which can make it susceptible to being involve in vehicle accidents or fear biting which may have it be destroyed.

If your dog is stolen or removed from your property on purpose, it can still be tracked by its micro-chjip number, assuming that you have micro chipped your dog and that someone catches and takes your dog to a vet.

Advantages of GPS dog tracking

The beauty of GPS dog tracking is that the technology is highly evolved meaning that the units that attach to your dogs collar are fairly small, battery life is long and signals are strong. Most units allow mobile phone monitoring making it easy to pinpoint your lost animal.

Disadvantages of GPS dog tracking

While they have dramatically improved locating capabilities, the units still require a clear path to satellites, so if your dog is indoors or under the cover of trees, the signal will not work. Also typically you need a minimum of three satellites to triangulate your dog’s position accurately. If you have a unit where the accuracy has been downgraded, you may only have accuracy of a few hundred metres which means that it may still be difficult to locate an injured or stolen dog.

From the websites of the devices themselves, it appears that one of the greatest drawbacks is still the price. While the units themselves may only cost a few hundred dollars, and some have reasonable guarantees of workmanship, it is the ongoing connection plan that can be expensive. For instance the ‘spotlightgps’ gps range (in 2011) has service plans of $399 for lifetime use, an annual fee of $155 and so on.

When purchasing these units you also need to read the service area guarantee, as many brands are reliant on a particular brand of telephone company to transmit the results to you. That is, while the unit on the dog collar will get its position information from satellites, it will need to transmit this data through a cellular network to your phone.


If you have concern for your dog getting lost or stolen, an electronic tracking device could be a good idea. Besides the ongoing service plan costs and reliability in harsh conditions issues, I would personally be interested in knowing what form of testing these units have, that basically sit next to your dogs head 24 x 7 and transmit its location to you.

Safety concerns aside, having an extra layer of security for keeping your precious dog sounds like a brilliant idea. With unlimited funds, these kinds of services are exceptional for dog escape artists.


Article by Bruce Dwyer. If you wish to use any of this information please refer to the article as a reference and provide a link to


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