Isnâ€™t it heartbreaking to see a sign up on a utility pole with a picture of a beloved lost pet? Sometimes even the best behaved dog can get away when youâ€™re out walking, or can slip through a fence. The use of GPS systems in dog collars is poised to be one more way to prevent dogs from becoming lost, along with the traditional name tags and microchip implants.
Hunters have been using GPS dog collars for years to keep track of bird dogs and retrievers out in the wild. Now pet owners are using them to be able to pinpoint their dogâ€™s location should he get off his leash or out of the yard. Garmin, RoamEO, and PetSafe are three brands that are now making GPS dog collars.
Garmin has been making GPS collars for hunting dogs for quite some time now. Their current version is the DC 40. The GPS â€œpuckâ€ is integrated into the collar itself, allowing the system to be used with most receivers. It also hasÂ PIN-based lock, which makes it so other people (whose motives might not be good) cannot track your dog. This model can support up to 10 dogs per receiver. Even in dense growth, the DC 40 is made to allow tracking at distances of up to seven miles, and thereâ€™s no subsscription required. This collar runs on a rechargeable batter that lasts for up to 48 hours, and both collar and receiver are waterproof. They donâ€™t come cheap at $500 or more, but for a hunter who has a lot of money and training invested in a talented hunting dog, it may well be a good investment.
The RoamEO PUP is a less costly alternative at under $300, but it lacks some of the high-end features of more expensive models. The RoamEO PUP can track two dogs at a time. It tells you which direction you need to go to get to your dog, and also how far away from your dog you are. The electronics are integrated into the collar, and it switches on when fastened around your dogâ€™s neck and back off when you remove it. There is no subscription required.
The PetSafe GPS dog collar is a little different in that the collar itself is relatively inexpensive at $99.95, but you are required to subscribe to a monthly service that notifies you if your dog roams outside a pre-programmed boundary by sending you a text or email message. You can track your dog online, or by talking to one of the customer care specialists.
People are more attached to their dogs than ever, and the loss of a pet can be heartbreaking. GPS collars are expensive now, but this is a potential growth area to the GPS market thatâ€™s only beginning to be tapped.