Do you ever wonder where your cat goes and what they get up to when they aren’t at home? Well, thanks to cat trackers you can find out. A good cat tracker will show you your cat’s current location, where they have been, the route they’ve walked and much more.
Not all cat trackers are the same so we’re reviewing a selection to help you find one that offers the features you are looking for.
For most users the best option is the Findster Duo (click the banner below to visit their site):
Findster is one of the few digital cat trackers that doesn’t charge a monthly subscription fee.
That alone makes it our top choice, not to mention it’s also packed with plenty of great features (check them out in the table below).
Below are our top four trackers:
The above table is showing our carefully chosen top four Cat Tracking devices currently available in the UK. We have reviewed a range of GPS collar, tag trackers and radio-frequency trackers to find out each of their features, pros and cons – you can read our review of each tracker by clicking the name of the device below or by skipping ahead to the product you are interested in.
If you’re not quite sure which device is the best fit for you please have a quick read through our buyers guide here.
1. Tractive GPS Cat Tracker Review
The Tractive GPS tracker is a brilliant device that combines useful features with a small, lightweight tracker. It is fast, precise and reliable and offers a range of tracking options at a very reasonable upfront price.
Users have said that Tractive is easy to use and allows them to give their cats freedom while having the peace of mind of being able to check where they are at any time.
This tracker allows you to receive live location updates directly to the Tractive smartphone app and with no distance limitations you’ll never be left in the dark about where your curious kitty is.
What We Love
There’s a good reason the Tractive IKATI pet tracker is so highly rated (on the Tractive website the device has received over 1700 reviews scoring an average of 4.5 out of 5 stars).
It is a reliable tracking system that allows you to see where your pet is in real-time and by using historical data and activity information you can also see what your cat has been up to.
This is a multi-layered tracker so rather than just seeing a dot on a map, Tractive takes it that extra mile providing you with information that answers questions cat owners have been asking for a long time.
Using this system, you can get to know your cat better than ever before, it will give you a unique glimpse into your cat’s activity and behaviour when they are not at home and you’ll find out where their favourite neighbourhood hangout spots are.
The app also allows you to set up a virtual fence which means you mark an area as a ‘safe zone’ for example your home and garden, then if your cat leaves this zone you will instantly receive a notification.
This is a fantastic feature that will help to put your mind at ease. If your cat wanders out of the area you are comfortable with then you’ll know about it instantly and if you wanted to you could easily go outside and bring your cat back inside before they wander off too far.
The IKATI tracker works over any distance so you don’t have to worry about the signal cutting off if your cat wanders too far from home. The basic subscription works in your home country and the premium option offers worldwide coverage!
Another benefit of this tracker is the sturdiness of it. The last thing you want is for the tracker to fall off or break while your cat is out and about. The small tracker simply clips to your cat’s collar and can survive whatever adventures your cat takes it on.
The simplicity of the system is a big plus too, it can be daunting to invest in new technology like this but it is actually very easy to set up and connect. You simply need to download the app on a smartphone or iPad, put in the tracker code and then the app and tracker are linked up.
Turn the tracker on and attach it to your cat’s collar and you’ll be able to see their location in the app. The app itself is very easy to navigate and you can fill in details about your cat and even include a picture of them if you’d like to.
The app gives you a couple of different map options so you can view the location on a satellite image or on a standard map.
What Are the Cons?
The tracker clearly has a lot to offer but are there any cons to be aware of?
Here’s a couple of things some users have flagged up:
The Tractive GPS Cat Tracker runs out of battery between 2 and 5 days depending on how much it is being used.
There is a non-exchangeable SIM card within the tracker that relies on cellular networks in order to connect so if there is no mobile coverage in the area your cat is venturing it means you won’t receive the location updates.
This works in the same way as your phone will sometimes have ‘no service’ in some areas. This can cause delays or intermittent service but this is not at the fault of the tracker. If you know your area has poor mobile coverage you may want to find an alternative tracking system to use.
The tracker is recommended for use on cats larger than 4kg so it is not suitable for very small cats or kittens.
The IKATI GPS seems to have a lot more to offer than a standard pet tracking system, below are the key features that make this tracker stand out against other options:
1. Virtual Fence
Something that catches our eye about this tracking system is the ability to create a virtual ‘safe zone’ around your home or your garden so that when your cat leaves this zone you will receive an instant alert either through a notification or email.
The safe zone is fully customizable; it’s easy to move, change and activate/deactivate too. This allows you to personalize the tracking experience and means you don’t always have to be refreshing the map to know your pet is safe and close to home.
2. Live Tracking
After setting up the tracker and connecting it with the app you can see the exact location of your cat. The live tracking mode updates the location of your cat every 2-3 seconds so gives you an accurate, up to date location.
As well as receiving the live information you can also see where your cat has been over the last few minutes allowing you to determine the direction they are going in.
3. Location Map with History
You can view the location map with the history of where your cat has been. In this mode, you can choose a date and time and view where your cat has been over that period.
You can also see a heat map which shows you where they have spent the most time.
4. Activity Information
Another interesting feature of the IKATI is that you can actually see your cat’s activity levels. This can be very helpful in monitoring their health and fitness.
The Tractive IKATI tracker is one of the most complete tracking systems available to help cat owners keep a closer eye on their adventurous companions.
The tracker itself weighs less than 30g and can be used for cats larger than 4kg. It can be attached to most collars using the rubber clips and it sits comfortably without being irritating for your cat.
The battery lasts between 2 and 5 days (depending on signal and usage) and can be fully charged in just a couple of hours by simply plugging it into a USB port:
The IKATI tracker is durable, 100% waterproof and is shock-resistant too. It has a helpful light and sound feature that can be controlled from the app and helps you narrow down your search and more easily locate your cat at night or in a dense area.
What You Get in the Box
When you buy the Tractive IKATI set you will receive:
- The GPS Tracker
- A USB Charger
- User Instructions
This system requires an active subscription plan in order for it to work.
There are two plan options available:
The basic plan is the cheapest option and costs £6.99 on a monthly plan, £44.99 on a yearly plan (£3.75 a month) or £79.90 (£3.33 a month) on a two-year plan.
The basic plan includes:
- GPS Tracking (2 – 60 minute intervals)
- Live Tracking
- Activity Monitoring
- Home Country Coverage
This plan offers more features and costs £54.99 (£4.58 a month) for a one year plan, £89.90 (£3.75 a month) for a two-year plan or £179.90 (£3.00 a month) for a five-year plan.
The premium plan includes:
- GPS Tracking (2 – 60 minute intervals)
- Live Tracking
- Activity Monitoring
- Public & Family Sharing
- Worldwide Coverage
- Unlimited Location History
- Data Export Option
- Premium Customer Service
It’s great to see a tracking system that has been developed specifically for cats and this one works really well.
You may think that with lots of features and tracking options the app would be confusing or complicated to use but it’s really not.
The ease of use and customer support is fantastic and although using this product requires a subscription, it is worth the price. The Tractive IKATI answers all of your questions about your cat’s escapades and will make sure you bring them home safe and sound if they ever get lost.
Weight & Size: The Tractive Cat Tracker weighs 30g, is 72mm x 29mm x 16mm is suitable for use on cats weighing more than 4kg.
- Live tracking mode
- Easy to use app
- Abundance of features
- Can personalize the map by adding a ‘safe zone’ geofence
- Requires an ongoing subscription to work
Top Tip: Worried about letting your cat out on its own even with a tracker?
Use a cat harness and lead to help them safely get accustomed to their surroundings before giving them complete freedom.
2. Findster Duo Tracker
The Findster Duo is a GPS tracker that doesn’t charge you a monthly fee, doesn’t require cell coverage and works everywhere. This well-designed tracker looks smart, works well and offers users multiple features.
Findster stands out from competitors because it doesn’t require a monthly subscription in order to use it.
This “pay once, use forever” system is an option that pet tracking systems have been lacking and before you worry that this means you’ll miss out on features, you won’t!
You get everything you need to track your pet including many features that are often seen on ‘premium’ subscriptions with other systems for example; family and friend sharing, location history and activity tracking.
The Findster Duo+ allows you to track your cat in real time and has a range of 0.8km in congested urban areas and around 4.8km in open outdoor areas. It is best suited for tracking your pets outside rather than remote monitoring or indoor tracking.
The tag is shockproof and waterproof so should be able to handle any adventures your cat takes it on. However, some users would like to see a more secure tag attachment system.
The battery can last up to 7 days depending on usage and you can turn the GPS tracking on at the press of a button. When the GPS is not on, the tag will still be tracking your cat’s activity levels. The activity data is saved in the app where you can see summaries and your pet can earn badges by reaching goals and milestones.
When using the Findster App you can monitor your cat’s live location, see their location history and you can also create safe areas. You will be immediately notified if your pet leaves the marked area. The app also includes a built-in radar which shows you your distance from your cat and helps to guide you directly to their location.
The Findster tracker also has an LED light to help you track your pet in the dark. The LED lights also indicate to you when the device is paired, turned on, turned off, has a good battery level, has a low battery level, is charging or is fully charged. There are other indications too such as a blue light to show when an update is in process.
Weight & Size: The tag weighs 21g and is 5cm x 5cm x 1.3cm, it is recommended for use on pets over 3.5kg.
- No monthly fees
- Easy to use
- Does not require cellular coverage
- Built-in radar shows your distance from your cat
- Communication range limited in built-up areas
- The battery life is short if in constant use
3. Weenect Tracker
The Weenect 2 is an impressive device that allows you to track your cat using the Weenect GPS app which is available on iPhone and Android.
The app allows you to live track your cat with pinpoint accuracy and no distance limitation. You can see where they are in three distinct ways:
- Map – This shows a simple map interface with the location of your pet clearly mapped out on it making it easy to find where they are.
- Compass – Yes, you’ve guessed right, this method shows a simple compass showing the direction and distance of your pet.
- Radar – This is a cool virtual reality type interface (think Pokémon Go), which shows you where your cat is and how far away they are through a camera interface.
One of the most unusual features of the Weenect 2 is the fact that it can be used to call your pet! The Weenect 2 uses a microphone and speaker to allow you to call your cat from the app on your phone to calm them down or tell them to come home. You get up to 10 minutes of call time per month and the built-in microphone means you will be able to hear your cat too so you will quickly know if your cat is in distress or stuck somewhere.
The Weenect 2 tracking device communicates with the tracking collar every 30 seconds regardless of how far away your pet is. One of the useful features of this tracker is that you can get the collar to ring, this is particularly useful if your pet has disappeared within the confines of your home.
Being able to get the collar to ring or vibrate can also be used for training purposes to teach your cat to come home when they hear the sound. The best way of doing this is by making the collar buzz or ring when you feed your cat so they associate the two events. Then when your cat is out and about and the collar buzzes they will know that if they come home they will get food.
You can also view your cats recently location history, allowing you to learn more about their territory, behaviour and movements. You’ll get to know your cat’s usual routine and their favourite hangout spots.
A few of the other features of the Weenect 2 Cat Collar are:
- Very good battery life lasting up to 3 days when left in standby mode and 3-hour recharge time.
- Allows you to set up Geofences so that you can receive alerts if your pet wanders too far.
- Water-resistant casing which will keep the tracking collar fully operational regardless of the weather.
Weight & size: this tracker is one of the smallest and lightest GPS on the market weighing only 25g.
- Great price & full of features
- Voice call from any distance
- SIM card fee a minimum of £3 a month
4. Tabcat Tracker (AKA Loc8tor)
The Tabcat uses radio frequency to track the location of your cat. You get a small, discreet tag to attach to your cat’s collar and a stylish receiver handset that will guide you in your cat’s direction.
The handset uses a light system to tell you the direction of the strongest signal so you can be led directly to your cat.
As the tracking system uses radio frequency as opposed to GPS you can accurately find your cat indoors or outdoors at close range. The range of the Tabcat Tracker is 122 meters (400 feet) (on a clear line of sight) so it isn’t as far as other systems but the good thing is that it does precisely track to within 2.5 centimeters of your cat. Tabcat insists the range is sufficient as cats tend to stay close to home but it is important to keep the range in mind as cats can travel a lot further than this if something catches their eye!
A cool feature of the Tabcat system is that when you press the ‘locate’ button it activates a beep on the tag. You can train your cat to associate this beep with a treat by pressing locate and giving your cat a treat a few times. Before long, your cat will be making their own way home as soon as they hear the beep.
The tag, although small and lightweight, is not waterproof or even water-resistant. You can buy additional covers to help protect the tag from water damage but the lack of built-in water resistance does seem like a bit of an oversight.
Tabcat have decided not to use GPS within their tracker as they have found it too be too large for comfortable use on cats, it also has a short battery life and a tendency to lose signal if your cat is indoors and is less accurate than radio technology. The Tabcat tracker is noisier than a GPS tracker as it uses a series of lights and beeps to guide you and the beeps increase in frequency as you get closer to your cat.
The Tabcat tracker is simple to use, requires little set up and has no annual subscription fee.
Weight & size: the Tabcat tag weighs just 6 grams making it one of the lightest on the market. The circular tag are the smallest we have seen at 3.2cm x 3.2cm x 0.5cm.
- Small, lightweight tags – ideal for smaller cats
- No annual fees
- Beep sound which you can easily train your cat to respond to
- Range limited to 122m
- No mobile app
5. petTracer Review
petTracer combines multiple tracking technologies in one device meaning you can receive accurate and reliable location data for your cat even when GPS is not available.
The tracker does not come with a dedicated app but you can easily use the browser on any phone, computer or tablet to access your personal account on the petTracer portal. The combination of technologies means that petTracer can be used to find your cat both indoors or outdoors accurately and effectively within the 1 mile collar range (there is a 3.14 square mile maximum area coverage with this device).
The three types of technology used to obtain an accurate signal are:
- Motion Sensor – the motion sensor can help save battery life as it increases or decreases the amount of GPS positions needed to get your cats location.
- GPS – coordinates are collected by GPS signal.
- Radio – the exact location is sent via radio which allows you to view your cats position in real time.
The radio signal means you can find your cats location even when there is no GPS reading. This can often happen if cats are in closed spaces, particularly if they have found their way into garages or outbuildings.
Rather than being a device that you clip onto a collar, the petTracer is itself a lightweight collar. It is designed specifically for use on cats and is durable while remaining flexible and comfortable. The collar battery lasts up to 30 days on one charge which is the longest battery life of the cat trackers currently on the market. You will receive an email to alert you when the battery is low, a full charge takes 2.5 hours.
There are four search modes to choose from:
- Fast: GPS position sent every 10 minutes when cat is active and every 60 minutes when not active
- Standard: GPS position sent every 30 minutes when cat is active and every 3 hours when not active
- Slow: GPS position sent every 4 hours when cat is active and every 24 hours when not active
- Search: GPS position sent every 15 seconds.
You can view your cat’s historical data by choosing the time frame you’d like to know about and selecting the map type you would like to see. There are three map types allowing you to view the exact locations of your cat illustrated by circles, view their routes using lines or see where they spend most of their time using a heat map.
The petTracer can handle all weather conditions and has an LED light to help you locate your cat when it is dark outside. Another important feature is the safety buckle that will release if your cat gets into trouble or the collar gets snagged on anything. The petTracer has interesting features but the coverage, need for a constant Wi-Fi signal and high cost let it down slightly.
Weight & size: The petTracer collar weighs 34g, its minimum circumference is 21.5cm.
- Long battery life of up to 30 days on one charge
- More accurate location data
- Works indoors and outdoors
- Requires a subscription (minimum of 1 year)
- Short distance coverage
6. Tailit Tracker
One of the newer cat trackers on the market, the Tailit Tracker is possibly the smallest cat GPS tracker available at the size of a 50p coin. It may be small but with a battery life of two weeks, it packs plenty of power too.
Thanks to the small size of the tracker it can be used on all cats, many of the cat GPS trackers are bulky, awkward and heavy which mean they are only really suitable for larger cats but the Tailit Tracker ensures even smaller cats can be comfortable and safely tracked.
This device also comes with an easy release collar so it will open if there is pressure put on the collar ensuring if the collar gets snagged or stuck your cat will be safe.
It’s not only your cat’s safety that is a priority for Tailit, they also ensure the cat tracker is encrypted in order to protect your cybersecurity – something that many GPS trackers do not take into account. This additional security also means that less data is being used which supports the battery life too.
This tracker operates with a user-friendly app that is available in multiple languages to help break down any barriers between the users and a smooth, easy to understand experience. When live tracking is turned on the location updates every 5 seconds so you can see exactly where your cat is at any time. This system of tracking when you need it (rather than tracking constantly with automatic updates) helps to conserve battery life so you don’t need to charge the collar every day and worry the tracker will run out of battery when you need it most.
If you’ve narrowed down on your cat but they are on the move you can activate ‘live’ which will show your cats real-time position on the map (updating every second). This feature can be used for 5 minutes before you need to approve further use as monitoring the location live uses more battery. This is an amazing feature for emergency situations.
There is a light and a sound feature on the Tailit Cat Tracker, this helps you to find your cat in the dark or if they have hidden. These features are particularly helpful if your cat has become trapped or is hiding and you still cannot see them even when you are close to their GPS location.
Another interesting feature of the Tailit tracker is that when your cat is indoors, it uses a Wi-Fi chip to locate your cat. Although this doesn’t show your cats exact location within the house, it will show that your cat is inside and then you can use the sound and light features mentioned above to find them.
There’s also a backup LBS location system that helps to locate your cat when they are out of GPS signal and out of Wi-Fi signal. The LBS location will show you the area your cat is in allowing you to narrow down your search. Again, the sound and light features will be useful here to pin-point your cat’s exact location.
Weight and Size: At only 23g and a size of 27mm x 42mm x12mm this may be the smallest cat GPS tracker available.
- Small tracker size
- Long battery life
- Utilizes multiple location technologies
- Offers light and sound features to help you pin-point your cat’s location
- The instruction manual is very basic
Pawtrack are an experienced company that have been making tracking collars for cats for over 10 years. They offer cat collars in three sizes so you can ensure you get the perfect size to comfortably fit your cat.
Use coupon code Tux2 for 2 months free tracking
One of their unique selling points is the fact that they have their GPS on the back of the neck, rather than slung under the cat’s chin as they commonly are with the majority of trackers. This makes a crucial difference when it comes to accuracy, as the GPS antenna is facing the sky to help get the best positions possible and ensure that they will get as much signal as possible.
The Pawtrack collar offers automated tracking that updates every 6 minutes as well as on demand tracking. This can help you to see where your cat goes and will help you to build up an idea of your cat’s behaviour. There’s no limit to how much you can track your cat and how much data is used so you can track your cat as much as you want.
There are four levels of tracking used on the Pawtrack collar, this includes Wi-Fi that recognizes when your cat comes home or goes out and will send you a notification to let you know. When your cat is at home the Wi-Fi chip will connect to the home Wi-Fi and will automatically shut down the collar to conserve battery.
The collar also uses GPS, cellular and beacon tracking systems to ensure you can always get an accurate location on your cat even when they are in challenging environments. The tracking system comes with 2 detachable rechargeable batteries which each last up to 2 days.
To track your cat, you will need to log onto the app (multiple users can log into the same account which is very handy). The app is full of great features: there are the usual geofence and low battery alerts, but there are also heat maps, animated playbacks and path drawings showing what your cat gets up to. You can also see up to a month’s tracking on your screen.
For those more technically minded you can send a .csv with all your cats’ data and GPS positions on it.
For Android users, there is an additional feature of a Wi-Fi beacon in case your collar is lost, it will help guide you in by turning the collar into a mini Wi-Fi hub.
Weight & Size: The collar weighs just 35g and they are available in three different sizes.
- Sleek, smart design
- Two batteries for constant tracking
- Great value
- User-friendly app
- 2-day battery life
Use coupon code Tux2 for 2 months free tracking
8. Whistle Tracker
The Whistle Tracker is a tracker suitable for both dogs and cats, it has not been designed specifically for cats but it is recommended for use with pets over 3.6kg so it should be fine for medium to large cats.
It may not be the best choice for smaller cats as it is quite a chunky tracker.
Once you have charged the device and attached it onto your pet’s collar you can log onto the Whistle App and monitor your pet’s location and activity. The tracker uses GPS, Wi-Fi and cellular technology to provide you with your pet’s accurate location.
The Whistle Tracker allows you to track your cat’s location, the live mode gives you real-time tracking that updates every 15 seconds. You can set up safe places on the app and receive alerts when your pet leaves the safe zone or has achieved activity goals.
While this is a tracker, it has a lot of features dedicated to your pet’s health and fitness and is not too dissimilar to a Fitbit! Your pet’s activity is tracked and the app takes a record of the distance travelled, active minutes and calories burned which can be a very helpful feature if you are trying to increase your cat’s daily activity. Whistle also tracks behaviours such as licking, scratching and napping. You can be notified of behaviour changes and can even email the pet health reports generated to your vet.
There are a few tracking device options available from Whistle including the Whistle Go Explore and the Whistle Go. There’s only a couple of differences between the two devices, the Go Explore is more expensive and has an extended battery life offering up to 20 days vs. the Go’s 10 days. The Go Explore also features a built-in light and has more effective waterproofing, aside from this they share the same features. With either device, you’ll get an alert when the battery needs to be charged and when your pet is in your Wi-Fi range the device goes into a power-save mode.
The Whistle Trackers requires an active subscription to work, each pet needs its own subscription which can quickly get costly if you have more than one cat you want to keep an eye on. Depending on the plan you are on, you may be charged an early termination fee if you decide this device isn’t right for you so be aware of this when choosing which plan to sign up for.
Weight & Size: The device weighs just over 25g and is 35mm x 45mm.
- Good battery life
- Accurate location tracking
- Whistle Go Explore features a light that makes night tracking a lot easier
- Not specifically designed for cats
- Requires a monthly subscription to work
PawScout is a Bluetooth-enabled tag that allows for short-range tracking. It is best suited for keeping an eye on your cat indoors or in the garden.
If you want to track your cat while they are out and about then this isn’t the best choice but if you have a cat that spends most of their time indoors and you want a small, inexpensive tracker that shows you on a radar where they are in the house then PawScout is a fantastic option.
Amazon (US only):
The tag is small, lightweight and customizable so you can choose the design and include your contact info like traditional pet tags often have. The tag has a 6 – 12 month battery life, is water-resistant and has a communication range of around 300 feet (which is impressive for a Bluetooth connected device).
A big draw of the PawScout is the features offered by its app, you can create a digital profile for your pet featuring important information such as your contact details and your cat’s medical records. When you track your pet, you can see both your location and your pet’s location on the map.
Something that’s really neat is that you can see pet points of interest such as vets, groomers, parks and pet-friendly restaurants in your area on the PawScout map.
One of the key features of the PawScout app is that it allows you mark your pet as lost and fill out vital details including where you last saw them, the circumstances and your contact information. This report is then shared and nearby PawScout users will be notified of a lost pet in their area. If another app user comes close enough to your pet they can notify you that they’ve found your pet and you’ll receive the date, time, location and contact details. This community pet tracking can be very helpful in bringing your cat home safely.
On the app, you can see how many PawScout users there are in your area and there is a search & discover tab that allows you to see content from other users. It’s a good idea to download the app and take a look at how popular PawScout is in your area to ensure there are enough users to be able to help you locate your pet if they do go missing (currently PawScout is mostly used in the USA and Canada so elsewhere the user communities are very small).
Weight & Size: This tiny tag weighs 5g and is approximately 4cm x 5cm x 1cm so it can be used comfortably on cats of all sizes.
- Very affordable
- Long battery life
- Small, lightweight tag
- No monthly fees
- Not suitable for long-distance use
- Does not have the most accuracy
Amazon (US only):
When you are looking to purchase a cat tracking device, there are a few important factors to consider. Below we answer some of the most frequently asked questions:
What is a Cat Tracker?
A cat tracker is technology that you attach to your cat’s collar, the tracker sends out signals that lets you know your cat’s location. Generally, cat trackers will use either GPS, mobile data or radio to send signals back to the receiver. Many trackers have dedicated mobile apps that record your cat’s location history and allows you to view their live location on a map. If the tracker does not have an app then it will have a browser page that you will need to log into to view the location information.
Many cat trackers clip onto collars or are built into a collar themselves which can be easily fitted to your cat. Having a tracker built into the collar reduces the risk of the tracker coming off as sometimes tags can become snagged or fall off.
When buying a cat tracker there are a number of different features and functions that you should be aware of before making a purchasing decision:
1. GPS or Radio Frequency?
Radio Frequency trackers are much simpler and therefore much cheaper to both purchase and run, a big bonus is that they require no annual fees (something that is very common with GPS trackers).
However, radio trackers are limited in that they provide pretty much none of the trackable data which you get in abundance with GPS trackers. GPS trackers allow you to accurately locate your cat at any moment and record all of your cat’s activity from the convenience of your phone.
If you’re not fussed about having tons of data about what your cat does and where exactly he goes then a Radio Frequency tracker would be the logical choice. If you like to have access to loads of data and like to be able to quickly and effortlessly pin-point your cat’s location you should definitely invest in a GPS tracker.
2. Battery Life
The variation in battery life of cat trackers is huge. Some of the smaller trackers barely last a day while others (often larger devices presumably with bigger batteries) can last more than a week. This is particularly true of GPS trackers as they tend to record a lot of data and often have automatic updates which means the location is frequently being recorded and stored – something that uses a lot of battery.
If you can’t be bothered perpetually charging yet another electronic device then make sure you opt for a tracker that has a longer battery life. Having a longer-lasting tracker can also provide you with peace of mind as you know it’ll more likely have battery when you need it most.
Pro-tip; Radio Frequency trackers use significantly less battery (they last for weeks!).
3. App Functionality
Most GPS trackers make use of mobile apps for ease of use.
Some apps offer very basic functions such as location updates every two minutes and nothing else. Whereas more advanced apps such as the Tractive have a huge array of functions including virtual fencing, calorie tracking, measuring distance covered, top speed and more!
Don’t make the mistake of presuming that just because the tracker you bought has an app it is going to be able to do everything you could ever dream of, do your research first and make sure the app has all you need.
Most apps can be downloaded from the app store or Google play before you purchase a device so it is a good idea to do this before investing to allow you to get a feel for the functions and usability of the device. Many apps are very user-friendly and easy to navigate which is a big plus for those less tech-savvy.
4. Geo Fencing
Geo-fencing is a really useful feature that some of the tracking devices enable. It is basically a virtual fence that you can draw around your home, garden or safe area.
If your cat leaves the safe area (moves beyond the virtual fence line) then you will receive an instant notification alerting you. This is very handy and allows you to act quickly if they leave the area when they are not supposed to.
5. Price Range
You can expect to pay between £60 – £150 upfront for a good tracker depending on what you are looking for.
However, it is important to remember that most GPS trackers will charge an annual (or sometimes monthly) subscription fee which covers the cost of mobile data usage, this can quickly add up and can easily add £30-£50 per year to your initial cost. Some trackers offer different levels of subscriptions (standard or premium) which provide access to different features so make sure you read the purchasing information before buying the tracker to find out if a subscription is required and what will be best suited to your needs.
There is a vast range in size differences from one tracker to another.
The smallest tracker featured on this page weighs only 5 grams, while the biggest weighs 35 grams.
Each of the trackers are light enough for a cat but some are bulky or awkward in their size and shape. This may be the case particularly with the larger trackers or smaller cats. The smaller the tag, the more comfortable it will be for your cat but battery life tends to be reduce with size so it may be worth going for a slightly bigger tracker for a longer battery life.
The Future of Cat Trackers:
We have looked at a range of cat trackers in this review and they all bring different things to the table. It is exciting to think about the potential future development of pet tracking technology and we will be certain to keep this article updated with new devices and new innovations available in the UK’s cat tracking industry.
With current cat trackers we see room for improvement in the following areas:
- Smaller tracking tags – a few of the trackers we have looked at are already getting closer to smaller tags but at the moments the smaller tags often mean sacrificing battery life or capabilities.
- Longer battery life – the battery on most of the cat trackers drains very quickly, requiring regular charging. The battery life of a tracker is so important, you don’t want to worry about the tracker running out of charge when your pet is out or missing.
- In-built cameras – There’s been a couple of trackers that have experimented with the use of a camera but none have had a good go at doing a great job of it. We have reviewed a few home cat cameras, many of which also dispense treats but it would be great if more trackers were willing to incorporate a camera into their tracking devices. We would love to see a feature where you can turn the camera on from your phone and see live footage of what your cat can see.