9 Reasons to Buy a Dog GPS Tracker
Colleen Stinchcombe is a freelance writer with two dogs. She writes about pets for Whistle Labs, Rover, and Woman’s Day.
Remember when smartphones and smartwatches seemed like just nice-to-have gadgets—you know, before you started using them and realized they were actually total must-haves? That’s exactly how pet parents will feel about getting a dog GPS tracker.
Ahead of gifting season, we pulled together all the great reasons to buy someone (or, ahem, yourself) a dog GPS tracker. Because this must-have pet parent gadget does a whole lot more than tell you where your fur baby ran off to (though it does that, too!). Here are nine reasons to add it to your list.
- It’s not the same as microchipping your dog.
Getting your pet microchipped is a great first step in keeping them safe, but it’s important to know the difference between a microchip and GPS for dogs. A microchip can only help your pet find their way back to you if they’re brought into a vet or shelter that can read that chip—and even then, only if your information is kept up to date. A dog GPS tracker is more proactive in that it will alert you if your pet gets out of their safe zone and will show you their location so you can find them quickly.
- It doubles as a fitness tracker to make sure your pup is getting all the exercise they need.
Just like your own activity tracker might help you stay on track, a fitness tracker for your dog will help your best friend get the activity they need. Dog GPS trackers log your dog’s steps and help you spot patterns between their activity and other important details (like if your puppy tends to get into trouble on days when they aren’t getting enough exercise).
Plus, the Whistle tracker will give you an in-app nudge when your pet is close to their move goals but hasn’t quite hit them, and your pet can earn badges for achieving certain goals. Hey, we can all use some encouragement.
- It makes feeding your dog the right amount of calories basically foolproof.
Are you mostly relying on the back of the dog food package to tell you how much to feed your pooch? While that can be a helpful guideline, Whistle trackers can give you a more tailored recommendation based on how many calories your dog is actually burning—which, as you probably know, can fluctuate. If summer is nonstop-hiking season for your pet but winter tends to be quieter, you’ll have help adjusting portions appropriately.
- It can offer peace of mind—no matter how sneaky your pet is.
Hard as you try to reinforce fences or carefully squeeze yourself in and out of your front door, some dogs are just bonafide escape artists. Or maybe your pet is typically a homebody, but they get especially jumpy when away from home, like when you take a road trip. For these situations, and so many more, dog GPS trackers offer additional peace of mind. Whistle GO Explore gives you location tracking plus the ability to set up geofencing. Any time your pet leaves the geofenced area, you’ll get an alert—so you’ll always know when your pet is on the move.
- And it even helps you keep track of your dog in the dark.
Winter’s shorter days probably mean early morning and nighttime walks are in your future. Whistle GO Explore has a night light built-in so that you—and any cars going by—know exactly where your dog is.
In case you’re trying to find your pet after dark, you can also turn it on via your mobile phone. The light can flash fast, slow, or stay on continuously, depending on what you need, and it turns off automatically after 30 minutes, so you won’t run the battery down if you forget to turn it off.
If only the squirrels would wear one, too.
- You’ll know when and where your pup goes for a walk—even when you’re not there.
Ever wonder where the dog walker takes your pup when you’re not home? Are they getting in some solid steps and sniffs? With a dog GPS tracker, you’ll get to see when and where your dog goes, even when you’re not the one walking them. And if you have a particularly rambunctious pet, you’ll have location tracking should they outwit the dog walker and head out on a solo adventure.
- Some dog GPS trackers even offer health monitoring in addition to location tracking.
Not all dog GPS trackers provide health monitoring. But Whistle GO Explore combines the best of both worlds to track your pet’s location as well as several important health markers—like licking, scratching, sleeping, and drinking.
Sometimes it’s easy to notice when your dog’s habits have changed, and other times it’s a lot harder—especially if you’re not home all day. Is your dog really scratching more, or are you just imagining it? Do they have a newfound obsession with licking parts of their body, or were you just super focused on how cute they were before? Maybe you’re concerned your pet isn’t getting enough sleep at night or is slower to get through their water bowl.
The Whistle tracker helps monitor these activities so you’ve got hard data to back up your hunches. You can look at your pet’s behavior on a weekly or monthly basis to see how things have changed over time, and you’ll get an alert when the tracker notices differences in your pet—so you can rest a little easier.
- All of this means that you’ll have more data to share with your vet.
Life is busy, and sometimes it’s hard to remember the small details about your dog’s habits when it comes time for their check-up. Have they been licking more or less? Drinking more or less? Small changes can really matter when it comes to early disease detection.
Whistle trackers monitor these crucial details to make it easier to update your veterinarian. In the app, you can email a 30-day report directly to them in a tap. We’re not sure if your vet hands out awards, but you probably deserve at least a nod as Pet Owner of the Year for that.
- And if you have more questions, you can chat with a vet from the Whistle app.
OK, so this one is specific to Whistle trackers, but we think it’s worth mentioning. With a Whistle GPS tracker, you’ll also have access to virtual vet support when you need it most—like when you need to know if that thing they just ate or pooped is no big deal or a very big deal.
Know someone who could really use a dog GPS tracker in their life? Buy a Whistle tracker for the pet parents on your list, or share this post as a not-so-subtle-hint to the gift givers in your life.