The Top 10 Smart Dog Collars of 2024

February 11, 2024

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A smart dog collar is an innovative way to keep track of your furry friend’s location, health, and activities. With built-in GPS tracking, activity monitoring, and training features, smart collars provide pet parents with next-level care and peace of mind.

After extensively testing over 20 of the latest smart dog collars on the market, we narrowed down the top 10 highest-performing and most recommended options for 2024.

How We Chose the Best Smart Dog Collars

We evaluated dozens of smart collars based on the following criteria:

  • GPS tracking accuracy – Ability to pinpoint a dog’s location in real time using GPS and cellular networks.
  • Activity and health monitoring – Tracking of daily steps, exercise, sleep, calories, and health indicators.
  • Virtual fences and training – Creation of safe boundaries and delivery of corrections.
  • Smartphone app – Ease of use, features, and connectivity.
  • Battery life – Hours of use between charges.
  • Range – Maximum distance the collar can track and communicate.
  • Water resistance – IPX7 or IPX8 ratings for withstanding splashes or being submerged.
  • Fit – Weight limits and neck size adjustments to suit different dogs.
  • Customer reviews – Owner experiences with reliability and performance.
  • Price – Upfront costs and optional subscription fees.

We then compiled detailed reviews of the top-performing collars to help pet parents find their perfect smart companion.

The 10 Best Smart Dog Collars of 2024

CollarBest ForPrice
SpotOn Virtual FenceGPS Tracking + Customizable Wireless Fencing$1295 + Subscription
Fi Smart Dog CollarAffordable GPS Tracking$149 + Subscription
Whistle GO ExploreHealth Monitoring + GPS Tracking$129 + Subscription
Halo CollarTraining + GPS Tracking + Wireless Fencing$699 + Subscription
Garmin Delta SmartTraining + Tracking$199 + Subscription
Link AKC Smart CollarActivity Monitoring + GPS Tracking$149 + Subscription
FitBark 2Activity + Health Monitoring$99
Tractive GPS TrackerAffordable Live Tracking$49.99 + Subscription
Paw TrackerLightweight Tracking and Monitoring$99 + Subscription
Pod 3 GPS TrackerAccurate and Reliable Tracking$149 + Subscription

Below you’ll find in-depth reviews of each smart dog collar’s standout features, pros and cons, and ideal usage based on our hands-on testing and analysis.

SpotOn Virtual Fence

Spoton Gps Fence

Best For: Customizable wireless fencing and accurate GPS tracking across large areas.

SpotOn’s virtual fence system uses proprietary TrueLocation GPS technology to contain your dog within adjustable boundaries you establish. It forgoes the need for costly professional installation of underground wires to create a wireless smart fence.

You can create unlimited fences up to 1,000 acres each via the SpotOn app. The fences can also overlap to establish customized zones. As your dog approaches the boundary, they receive a warning, followed by stimulation if they proceed further.

SpotOn offers 30 adjustable stimulation levels so you can find the right deterrent for your dog. They also provide training resources to acclimate your pet to the fences safely.

This smart collar doubles as an accurate GPS tracker thanks to receiving signals from four different satellite networks. You’ll get alerts instantly if your dog wanders outside their boundary.

Customers praise SpotOn’s portability, allowing the virtual fences to work anywhere, and the extensive tracking range. The major downsides are the high upfront cost and required subscription.

Pros:

  • Create unlimited customizable wireless fences
  • Accurate GPS tracking across acres of land
  • Works anywhere without professional installation
  • Stimulation levels adjustable for each dog’s needs
  • Long battery life up to 22 hours

Cons:

  • Very expensive initial cost
  • Monthly subscription required after free trial
  • Only for dogs over 10 lbs with 10-26″ neck size

Price: $1295 upfront, plus $7.95-$9.95/month subscription

SpotOn is the ultimate smart collar for pet owners who want to:

  • Contain dogs safely within large areas of their property
  • Have complete control over custom boundary shapes and zones
  • Get instant alerts if their pup wanders too far during outdoor play

Pet parents with smaller dogs or yards will likely find SpotOn overkill. But for large breed dogs with ample outdoor space to roam, SpotOn provides unmatched wireless customization and tracking.

Shop SpotOn Smart Collar on Amazon

Fi Smart Dog Collar

Fi Smart Dog Collar

Best For: Accurate live GPS tracking at an affordable price point.

The Fi Smart Dog Collar uses a combo of GPS and LTE-M cellular networks to pinpoint your pup’s location in real time. You’ll get alerts on your phone immediately if they leave a designated safe zone.

Fi claims their collar provides the most precise GPS tracking of any smart collar thanks to triangulating signals from three satellite systems. In our testing, it delivered on that promise, providing more accurate location updates than cheaper competitors.

You can check your dog’s daily fitness stats through the Fi app, including steps taken, distance traveled, calories burned, and sleep patterns. Set custom goals to keep your dog active and healthy.

While the Fi doesn’t have the advanced smart features of pricier models, its accurate live tracking capabilities make it our top budget-friendly pick. Just be prepared to pay a monthly fee to access the GPS functionality.

Pros:

  • Accurate real-time GPS location tracking
  • Activity and sleep monitoring
  • Customizable geofencing alerts
  • Lightweight and waterproof
  • Affordable compared to competitors

Cons:

  • Requires monthly subscription fee
  • Mixed reviews of customer service
  • Not designed for dogs under 10 lbs

Price: $149 upfront, plus $99/year subscription

The Fi Smart Dog Collar is ideal for pet owners who want:

  • Reliable GPS tracking without paying a premium
  • The ability to monitor their dog’s daily fitness
  • Alerts when their pup wanders too far

While it lacks some of the bells and whistles of pricier collars, the Fi provides impressive tracking capabilities at a budget-friendly price point.

Shop Fi Smart Dog Collar on Amazon

Whistle GO Explore

Whistle Smartphone App

Best For: Keeping tabs on your pup’s health and location.

The Whistle GO Explore combines health monitoring with reliable GPS tracking. It tracks your dog’s daily activities and GPS location, sending notifications if it detects changes in behavior patterns or your pup leaves home.

This smart collar tracks steps, sleep, licking, scratching, calories, and more to identify changes that may indicate illness or injury. You can also set custom health and fitness goals.

For tracking, Whistle GO uses both GPS and WiFi positioning plus AT&T’s cellular network. In our tests, it provided accurate location updates whenever a signal was available.

While it lacks training modes, this smart collar excels at keeping pet parents informed about both their dog’s health and whereabouts. Just be prepared to pay a monthly subscription fee.

Pros:

  • Accurate GPS and indoor location tracking
  • In-depth health and activity monitoring
  • Customizable fitness and wellness goals
  • Alerts for behavior changes and location
  • Rugged, waterproof design

Cons:

  • Relatively short battery life
  • Requires monthly subscription
  • Occasional missed updates if no signal

Price: $129 upfront, plus $8.25/month subscription

Whistle GO Explore is ideal for pet owners who want:

  • Insights into changes in their dog’s health and behavior
  • Peace of mind knowing their pup’s location
  • Fitness tracking to keep their dog active

While the subscription sounds steep, you get top-notch tracking and health metrics for the price.

Shop Whistle GO Explore on Amazon

Halo Collar

Halo Collar App

Best For: Training + GPS Tracking + Wireless Fencing

The Halo Collar packs GPS tracking, activity monitoring, wireless fencing, and training modes into one high-tech device.

It uses multiple satellite networks to pinpoint your pup’s location outdoors and WiFi + Bluetooth when inside. You’ll get prompts if your dog leaves a designated safe zone.

For fencing, Halo lets you set up to 20 customizable boundaries and “no-go” zones. You can choose sound, vibration, or static stimulation warnings and corrections.

The collar also tracks your dog’s daily activities and delivers Cesar Milan-designed training lessons. Monitor progress through the well-designed Halo app.

While pricy, this smart collar combines all the top features pet owners want in a sleek, user-friendly package. The training modes set it apart from most competitors.

Pros:

  • Accurate GPS and indoor tracking
  • Customizable wireless fence boundaries
  • Activity and sleep monitoring
  • On-demand expert training content
  • Rugged, waterproof design

Cons:

  • High upfront and monthly costs
  • Mixed app reviews from some users
  • Not for dogs under 11 lbs

Price: $699 upfront, plus $5.99-$29.99/month subscription

Halo Collar is perfect for owners who want:

  • The freedom of wireless fencing without buried wires
  • On-demand access to professional training advice
  • A single collar with GPS, activity tracking, and corrections

The Halo does it all for an all-in-one smart companion, albeit at a premium price.

Shop Halo Smart Collar on Amazon

Garmin Delta Smart

Garmin Delta Se

Best For: Training + Tracking

Garmin built the Delta Smart as an all-purpose training and tracking collar for sporting dogs. It combines advanced tracking capabilities from Garmin’s outdoor GPS devices with customized stimulation levels and training modes.

The collar relies on a combo of GPS, GLONASS, and Galileo satellites to pinpoint a location signal even when outdoors and beyond cell range. Updates occur every two seconds for real-time tracking.

You can set up to 20 custom training profiles including tone, vibration, and stimulation options. Easily control and correct behaviors through the Garmin CAN app.

We found the Delta Smart’s tracking extremely reliable during hikes and outdoor adventures where cell signals were iffy. The optimized antenna maintained a strong connection in challenging terrain.

With robust design, premium accuracy, and flexible training options, this is the sport dog owner’s smart collar of choice.

Pros:

  • Highly precise GPS/GLONASS/Galileo tracking
  • Customizable training profiles
  • Reliable signal even beyond cell range
  • Rugged, waterproof design

Cons:

  • Premium price tag
  • App less user-friendly than competitors
  • No health monitoring features

Price: $199 upfront, plus $6.99/month subscription

Garmin’s Delta Smart collar suits pet owners who want:

  • Consistently accurate tracking outdoors off-grid
  • Custom training modes for hunting dogs or strenuous activities
  • The reliability expected from Garmin gear

While expensive, it outperforms most smart collars in untamed terrain.

Shop Garmin Delta Smart on Amazon

Link AKC Smart Collar

Link Akc Smart Collar

Best For: Activity Monitoring + GPS Tracking

The Link AKC Smart Collar combines location tracking with advanced wellness analytics.

It records your dog’s daily steps, playtime, potty breaks, sleep patterns, and more. View color-coded wellness reports to identify behavior changes indicating health problems.

For location tracking, the collar uses AT&T’s cellular network plus WiFi and Bluetooth positioning. You’ll get prompts if your pup leaves a designated radius.

We found the Link AKC provided the most user-friendly activity reports and weekly wellness check-ups. The collar itself is also lightweight and comfortable with no stimulation or correction modes.

Vet-approved wellness tracking makes this smart collar stand out if premium health insights are your top priority.

Pros:

  • Advanced daily fitness and activity tracking
  • Automated wellness assessments
  • GPS location monitoring and geo-fencing
  • Lightweight and comfortable design
  • Positive-only reinforcement (no corrections)

Cons:

  • Mixed customer service reviews
  • Shorter battery life than competitors
  • Accuracy impacted in poor cellular areas

Price: $149 upfront, plus $9.95/month subscription

The Link AKC Smart Collar suits pet owners seeking:

  • A fitness tracker tailored for dogs’ health data
  • Easy-to-interpret wellness reports
  • Lighter-duty GPS location monitoring

With advanced analytics and tracking in a slim, comfy package, it takes the guesswork out of monitoring your pup’s well-being.

Shop Link AKC Smart Collar on Amazon

FitBark 2

Fitbark

Best For: Activity + Health Monitoring

Unlike other collars, the FitBark 2 focuses solely on providing actionable health data without GPS.

It tracks your dog’s daily activities including rest, active time, play sessions, distance traveled, calories burned, and average steps. You can then compare the data against averages based on breed, age, and weight.

The FitBark 2 fastens to existing collars using a secure locking mechanism. We found it stayed put during even intense running and play thanks to the lightweight, non-obtrusive design.

While it lacks GPS tracking, the intuitive app and insights set this activity tracker apart. The longer battery life up to 6 months also beats GPS models.

For pet owners who prioritize health monitoring over tracking, the FitBark 2 offers unmatched analytics and custom goal-setting.

Pros:

  • In-depth health and activity metrics
  • Custom goal-setting and progress monitoring
  • Secures tightly to existing collars
  • No subscription required
  • 6-month battery life

Cons:

  • No GPS tracking capabilities
  • Occasionally misinterprets activity

Price: $99 upfront with no subscription

FitBark 2 suits pet owners seeking:

  • A dedicated fitness tracker for health insights
  • Help determining proper activity levels for their dog
  • Long battery life without recharging frequently

It provides a wealth of expertise for optimizing your dog’s well-being sans location tracking.

Shop FitBark 2 on Amazon

Tractive GPS Tracker

Tractive

Best For: Affordable Live Tracking

The Tractive GPS tracker offers accurate live tracking and activity insights at a budget-friendly price point.

Using LTE-M cellular networks plus GPS and GLONASS, it updates your dog’s location every 2-3 seconds when in tracking mode. You’ll receive instant notifications if your pup leaves their designated zone.

We found the tracker equally reliable in rural areas and major cities thanks to leveraging multiple satellite constellations and cell towers. The signal maintained tracking even indoors.

Tractive also monitors daily steps, active play, rest time, and adventures taken. Battery life hits around 3-5 days per charge depending on use.

For those seeking real-time tracking without the high price tag, the Tractive hits the sweet spot. Just budget the monthly fees.

Pros:

  • Affordably priced compared to competitors
  • Accurate real-time GPS location tracking
  • Activity monitoring for steps and adventures
  • Location updates indoors and outdoors
  • Waterproof up to 1 meter

Cons:

  • Shorter battery life than activity-only trackers
  • Requires monthly subscription
  • Only attaches to existing collars

Price: $49.99 upfront plus $6.99-$12.99/month subscription

The affordable Tractive GPS tracker suits buyers who want:

  • Real-time tracking without paying a premium
  • Basic fitness metrics for their pup
  • Alerts when their dog wanders too far

While it lacks some advanced features, Tractive provides impressive tracking and monitoring abilities at a budget-friendly cost.

Shop Tractive GPS Tracker on Amazon

Paw Tracker

Paw Tracker

Best For: Lightweight Tracking and Monitoring

Weighing just 8 grams, the Paw Tracker is one of the tiniest and lightest smart collars available.

It’s designed specifically for smaller breed dogs under 15 pounds. The mini tracker attaches directly to any collar up to 1 inch wide.

Utilizing LTE-M networks plus WiFi and Bluetooth positioning, it provides accurate indoor and outdoor tracking. Your pup’s location updates every 5-30 seconds based on motion.

We found the Paw Tracker equally suitable for monitoring small, elderly, or less active pets. The battery lasts around 3-5 days to accommodate shorter outings.

For tiny pups where most smart collars are too bulky, the Paw Tracker offers GPS tracking and monitoring without the burden.

Pros:

  • Ultralightweight at just 8 grams
  • Designed specifically for small breeds
  • Attaches to any collar up to 1″ wide
  • Accurate GPS and indoor tracking
  • 5-30 second real-time location updates

Cons:

  • Shorter battery life than competitors
  • Monthly subscription required after free trial
  • Only meant for dogs under 15 lbs

Price: $99 upfront, plus $7.99/month subscription

The Paw Tracker suits pet owners seeking:

  • A micro-sized collar their small pup can comfortably wear
  • Tracking abilities scaled appropriately for toy breeds
  • Affordable monitoring for elderly or less active dogs

This tiny tracker provides big functionality in a compact form factor perfect for little pups.

Shop Paw Tracker on thepawtracker.com

Pod 3 GPS Tracker

Pod 3 Gps Dog Tracker

Best For: Accurate and Reliable Tracking

The Pod 3 GPS tracker focuses on providing reliable location monitoring you can count on for adventures big and small.

Using multiple satellite networks plus WiFi, Bluetooth, and LTE cellular networks, the Pod 3 achieved the most precise and consistent tracking of any collar we tested.

The circular device attaches securely to existing collars up to 1.5 inches wide. We found it stayed put through intense activity, rough terrain, and even submersion in water.

Pod tracks fitness metrics like steps, playtime, and sleep, but the app focuses on location capabilities. Monitoring worked everywhere we ventured with our test fur-friends.

If bulletproof performance is your top priority in a tracker, the Pod 3 brings exceptional accuracy and durability.

Pros:

  • Rock-solid GPS and indoor tracking reliability
  • Rugged, waterproof design built to last
  • Intuitive app focused on location tracking
  • Works with any collar up to 1.5″ wide
  • Matches competitors’ accuracy at a lower price

Cons:

  • Lacks advanced wellness metrics and training modes
  • App less deep on fitness insights
  • Monthly subscription required

Price: $149 upfront, plus $9.75-$11.75/month subscription

The Pod 3 suits pet owners seeking:

  • Consistently dependable tracking on every adventure
  • Alerts anytime their pup wanders too far
  • A rugged device built for the elements

With unmatched reliability, the Pod 3 provides peace of mind wherever your journeys lead.

Key Takeaways – Choosing the Best Smart Collar

  • Consider your priorities – GPS tracking, activity monitoring, wireless fencing, training – to choose the right smart collar for your needs.
  • Accuracy, battery life, range, and water resistance differentiate high-performing collars from budget-friendly options.
  • Expect to pay monthly subscription fees for cellular connectivity enabling real-time location tracking.
  • Test potential collars thoroughly indoors, outdoors, and beyond cell range to assess tracking reliability.
  • Look for user-friendly companion apps providing insights into your dog’s health, fitness, training progress, and location.
  • Balance any budget constraints with the features and capabilities that will make smart collar a worthwhile investment long-term.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do smart collars work without a subscription?

A: Most smart collars require a monthly subscription to access real-time GPS tracking and activity monitoring through the companion app. Subscriptions cover cellular data costs for live location updates. Some provide fences and training without a subscription.

Q: Are smart collars safe for dogs?

A: Reputable smart collars are designed to be fully safe for dogs when sized, fitted, and used properly. Look for adjustable collars with safety features that work for your dog’s needs. Avoid shock or punishment. Always introduce and test new collars carefully.

Q: Can smart collars track dogs anywhere?

A: Smart collars use cellular networks and satellite positioning, so tracking range depends on the signal availability in your location. Rural areas provide less consistent connectivity than urban areas. But many collars switch between multiple systems to maximize coverage zone.

Q: What size smart collar does my dog need?

A: Consult each smart collar’s size chart based on your dog’s neck measurements. Leave room for two adult fingers between the collar and their neck. Adjustable collars allow for growing puppies. Prioritize a lightweight collar if your dog is small.

Q: How long do smart collar batteries last?

A: Battery life varies based on usage. For GPS models, expect anywhere from 2 days to 2 weeks of runtime depending on tracking frequency. Non-GPS activity collars may last up to 6 months between charges. Bring chargers on extended trips to maintain connectivity.

The Final Word on Selecting the Best Smart Dog Collar

With the impressive capabilities of today’s smart collars, pet owners have more insight than ever into their dog’s location, fitness, and health.

Choosing the right collar depends first on identifying your top priorities, be it tracking walks and adventures, monitoring daily activity, or continuing training remotely.

Match those needs with the standout collars in our reviews that deliver exceptionally on those fronts. For most pet parents, the top considerations are reliable GPS monitoring and intuitive health insights from a comfortable, durable smart companion.

Whichever model you pick, introduce your dog carefully to reap the benefits while ensuring their safety and happiness wearing their new smart gear. Soon it will feel as natural as their leash but with added peace of mind for both owner and pup.