Is my dog at home or wandering outside? Is it getting enough sleep? Is it getting enough exercise? A dog GPS tracker is a device that can offer answers to these questions.
Pet trackers have technologically evolved to provide accurate GPS location details, escape alerts, and health monitoring.
One such device we will review today is the FitBark GPS dog tracker 2nd Gen.
The improved tracker by FitBark is a combination of GPS and health tracking. For example, you can check where your dog is. You can set safe spaces and receive alerts when your dog breaches such areas.
You can get an insight into your dog’s health with sleep and activity monitoring. For example, you can view the number of minutes it spent resting, playing, or being active. It can also help track conditions like dermatitis or separation anxiety.
It would help if you had a subscription for the tracker and the app to work. The FitBark app is not the best on the market, but it does the job.
So, is the 2nd Gen GPS tracker from FitBark worth the investment? Let us find out.
|Model||FitBark GPS 2nd Gen|
|Dimension||1.86 x 1.18 x 0.61 inches|
|Pet Compatibility||Fits pets 5 lbs and above|
|Collar Compatibility||Fits flat collars up to 1.5 inches wide|
|Battery||Rechargeable lithium-ion polymer|
|Location Tracking||On-board/mobile phone GPS, WiFi, and cell towers|
|Activity Sensor||3-axis accelerometer|
|Internal Memory||Up to 100 days of minute-by-minute data|
|Operating Temperature||-20°C to 50°C|
|Storage Temperature||-30°C to 60°C|
|Subscription||$5.95 to $9.95/mo depending on plan type|
|Customer Service||Knowledge base
|Amazon Rating||3.3 out of 5 (62 ratings)|
FitBark offers tech devices that focus on improving your pet’s health. Their trackers are capable of location and health monitoring.
FitBark 2 and FitBark GPS are the two dog tech devices you can shop for. These trackers are suitable for pets weighing from 3 to 5 lbs.
FitBark offers a 30-day money-back guarantee on their trackers. You can get in touch with their support team through the live chat option that is available 24/7.
Their knowledge base is well-equipped to handle your queries regarding the device, app, subscription, purchases, and troubleshooting.
Who is the FitBark GPS Dog Tracker 2nd Gen For?
If you are a dog parent who wants to keep tabs on your pet’s activity and location, the FitBark GPS tracker is for you.
It is one of the lightweight trackers I have come across. It must be secured using zip ties, which you may find unusual, but it helps keep the tracker in place.
You can also track your dog live to see when it is inside a particular safe place or when it is alone outside.
With the app, you can invite other family members, the dog sitter, or the vet to help you better care for your dog.
FitBark helps track behavioral metrics like rest, activity, and playtime. These metrics may help catch early signs of an illness or injury.
You can set activity goals for your pet. You can also compare their health with that of similar pets.
So, as you can see, location tracking is only one aspect of the FitBark GPS tracker. It excels more in the space of health monitoring.
5 Important Factors we Tested the Product on
We tested the FitBark GPS over the course of two weeks. We focussed on factors like setup, usability, update frequency and accuracy, and app features.
We have categorized the consideration factors into five categories for your convenience.
With the weight being under one ounce, the FitBark GPS is undoubtedly one of the lightweight devices in the dog tracker category.
It can fit dogs weighing 5 lbs to 240 lbs. So, you can use the tracker on your small Poodle or the Great Dane. This is a plus point because most trackers can be used on dogs weighing a minimum of 15 to 20 lbs.
The FitBark tracker has an IP67 rating. This means the tracker will be fine with being submerged in water for 1 meter for 30 minutes. The tracker should be able to withstand the occasional dips in a water body or rain.
Inside the box, you receive the FitBark dog monitor, a black cover, ten zip ties, a charging cable, and a quick start guide.
The black cover is washable. It may get worn out over time. You can buy different covers for the tracker available in colors like pink, fuchsia, purple, orange, blue, and more. These covers add an extra layer of protection to the device.
The zip tie attachment can be annoying. This is because whenever you want to wash the cover or attach the tracker to another collar, you need a new pair of zip ties. It is an inconvenient design feature that FitBark should improve upon.
The FitBark device includes a rechargeable lithium-ion battery polymer battery. The battery life greatly varies depending on the tracking method.
For example, if your dog stays inside your home and occasionally goes for walks around the neighborhood, the battery can last up to a month or two.
If your pup enjoys daily walks and playtime, and you are okay with getting 2 to 5-minute location updates, the battery can last up to 6 weeks. On the other hand, if you need updates with a minute frequency, the battery can drain out in a day.
If the battery is completely depleted, the tracker will take about 90 to 120 minutes to get a full charge.
FitBark says the battery can retain up to 80% of its original capacity after 500 recharge cycles. This was impossible to test from our end, but it is a factor you should note for long-term use.
Overall, though, I am quite happy with the battery performance. A single charge of two hours can easily last up to a week, even when majorly relying on GPS and cellular connection.
Charge the FitBark GPS device to start with the setup. Charging the device is a bit bothersome; you have to remove the tracker cover and clamp the charger while the device is still attached to the collar.
You must download the FitBark app and create an account with dog-specific details like breed, age, and weight. You can buy a subscription plan through the app.
The app performance is a bit hit-and-miss. For example, the data sync between the tracker and the app could have been smoother.
You will need an internet and Bluetooth connection on your mobile device for syncing. If you are facing internet issues or the tracker is not right beside the phone, the sync will not be complete. This is an issue I have noticed in some of the other customer reviews as well.
I recommend you go through the app articles on FitBark’s help center. The app design could be more intuitive. The documentation can help you better understand and use the features.
Safe places are areas where your pet is well looked after or is safely contained inside a boundary. For example, these safe places could be your home, office, the dog sitter’s home, or daycare centers.
FitBark recommends you pair such safe areas with a trusted WiFi connection. This will help preserve the battery. You can then receive entry and exit alerts.
For example, if the dog walker takes your dog out of the home to a safe place for a walk, you will be notified. Similarly, when the dog is back home, you will be notified.
The FitBark app works on a unique BarkPoints system. It uses the built-in 3-axis accelerometer activity sensor to distinguish between active, play, and rest time. It assigns points to each of these categories. The more the sensor moves, the more points it rewards.
The tracker can also measure the quality of your dog’s nocturnal sleep. By default, the app measures this metric between the time window of 1 to 5 AM. You can change this time range through the app.
These metrics are important because they can help you catch the symptoms of an illness. For example, if your dog has a leg injury, its active time BarkPoints will be lower. If your dog cannot sleep well at night, it could be sick or in pain.
You can add your vet to the account so they can also remotely monitor these metrics.
As I have mentioned, the FitBark tracker excels more in health monitoring than location tracking.
The zip tie attachment type is unusual and must be replaced frequently. But it does help keep the FitBark device in place. The device, with its polycarbonate housing, is durable. The IP67 rating is a plus, but do not get the device drenched in water for long.
If you want a dog tracker, especially for its GPS capabilities, the FitBark may not be the best choice. For example, if the dog is in a safe place or the tracker uses cell towers to provide location details, the refresh rate is between 2 and 5 minutes.
If your pet is lost, you would expect the tracker to provide updates every few seconds. But the FitBark tracker updates the location every minute, even in the live tracking mode. A minute is enough for the dog to sprint and take a completely different route.
The accuracy of alert notifications depends on the WiFi and cell signal quality. So, in rural settings, expect the alerts to be delayed.
The tracker performs well in terms of health monitoring. You can view activity and sleep data daily, weekly, and monthly. This data can help you monitor your dog’s health long-term and identify issues with changes in routine.
What Sets the FitBark GPS Dog Tracker 2nd Gen Apart from its Competitors?
If you want to measure your activity levels with that of your pet, you can import data into the FitBark app. Human fitness trackers like Fitbit, Google Fit, and HealthKit are compatible with the FitBark app.
Additionally, fitness trackers and smartwatches like Apple Watch, Garmin watches, and Samsung Galaxy also work with FitBark.
You can set goals and try to get healthy alongside your furry friend. It can be a fun bonding experience.
Should You Purchase the FitBark GPS Dog Tracker 2nd Gen?
The FitBark GPS is for dog parents looking for lightweight trackers. It is a mid-priced product with low subscription plan rates.
If you are okay with receiving location updates once every few minutes, FitBark will work for you. If you need frequent updates, explore other dog trackers.
If you need insights into your pet’s daily activities and health details, FitBark is one of the ideal options available.
Read through the pros and cons before making a purchase decision.
- The FitBark GPS tracker is one of the lightweight devices available.
- It can track rest, activity, and playtime.
- It can provide basic location-tracking information.
- It can measure nocturnal sleep quality.
- It has a long-lasting battery life.
- You can create multiple safe places connected to WiFi.
- Location updates can be delayed.
- Location tracking works only in the US.
The FitBark GPS dog tracker 2nd Gen is priced at $99.95.
You will need a subscription plan for the FitBark tracker to work. Here are the plans offered:
All new FitBark subscriptions come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you find the tracker is not for you, it can be returned within 30 days at no extra cost.
If, for any reason, your FitBark account goes dormant, you can reactivate it without paying any additional fees.
You can shop for FitBark GPS colored covers, zip tie packs, and charging cables. You can get these accessories from $5.95 to $9.95.
No, the FitBark tracker, with its embedded SIM and subscription plan, works independently of the carrier you have on your phone. So you can continue to use your existing carrier plan.
Yes. The GPS tracker must communicate with the FitBark app and the servers through the 4G LTE-M cellular networks, so a monthly fee is necessary. You can choose a monthly, 1-year, 2-year, and 3-year plan.
Soft dog collars with a width of not more than 1.5 inches work best with the FitBark tracker. Thicker collars with buckles may also work, but ensure the zip ties are comfortable and fit snugly.
The FitBark GPS dog tracker 2nd Gen is a combination of a location and health tracker.
The tracker has a durable housing and has an IP67 rating. It has a good battery life that can last up to a week for active dogs.
It provides location details by using WiFi, cell towers, Bluetooth, and GPS. You can typically expect location updates every 2 to 5 minutes.
The tracker uses the built-in activity sensor to distinguish between different activity types. It can monitor sleep quality. These metrics can help monitor your pet’s health and notice issues earlier.
I recommend the FitBark GPS tracker to pet parents interested in health monitoring and less frequent location updates.
Carson Harris is a highly qualified author and expert in GPS tracking technology. With a background in electrical engineering and machine learning, he has established himself as a trusted source of information. Carson’s work experience at Garmin and Panasonic has further enhanced his expertise. He possesses creative skills in website design and AI applications. Known for his clear and concise communication, Carson’s articles on Trax Family’s website provide valuable insights on GPS trackers.