Best Dog Activity Monitor: Fitbark vs Tagg vs Whistle vs Link AKC & More!

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Easy To Use
FitBark logo
Most Accurate
Tagg logo
Track Health Closely
Whistle logo

Technology has come a long way for both humans and pets over the years. And now there’s a way to track your dog’s daily activity (think Fitbit for your pup!)? We reviewed the latest and greatest products in the “dog Fitbit” category including key features and pricing for each. From GPS tracking and fitness monitoring to goal setting and comparing your dog to others of the same breed, you are going to be blown away all the things you can do with these high-tech doggy devices.

What Are Dog Activity Monitors?

Dog activity monitors do just what they sound like they would do: They monitor the activity level — or lack thereof — of your dog. It can be used to track when they play, nap, or walk over the course of a day and to find your pup if they’re lost. You can even use it to keep tabs on who’s hanging out with your dog when you’re not around. Other common features include:

  • GPS to track your dog anywhere, anytime  (there are also dedicated GPS dog collars that do something similar) in case they get lost
  • Bluetooth capabilities to see who’s with your dog at any given time
  • Progress trackers to monitor how often your pup is active (compared to similar dogs)
  • Messengers and to-do lists to keep all your dog’s caretakers in the loop
  • Goal-setting capabilities to proactively help your furry friend live a healthier life

Best Dog Activity Monitor

Now that you know a little more about how they work, let’s share our top picks for each category. Then we’ll share some other popular dog activity trackers below that. Read on to learn more about the best FitBit for dogs for each category to find the best “fit” your active pup!

Easiest Dog Activity Monitor To Use: FitBark Review

FitBark pet monitorView on Amazon

The FitBark was one of the most highly wanted pet items for a Kickstarter campaign. In 27 hours they raised over $80,000 when their goal was only $35,000. The bone design of their on-collar monitor is cute and smaller than most other monitors and comes in a variety of colors. The app performs well, and the pet activity tracker is easy to use. Since 2015, they’ve quickly become a leading product in the market, providing valuable data about dogs and their activity habits that researchers can use for studies.

Fitbark 2

In late 2017, they came out with FitBark 2 which is a new and improved version of the original. Same design, stronger, more durable material, extremely long battery life compared to other trackers (3.5 dog years), interchangeable color covers and the ability to link to your fitness tracker (Fitbit, Apple, Google, Jawbone) and more.

Key Features

  • Understand your dog’s health by tracking his/her progress and the kind of day he/she is having via an activity/time breakdown.
  • See your dog’s progress to other dogs of the same breed, so you see what is normal and what is not.
  • Share your dog’s activity report with your vet, so there’s no doubt about how he/she is doing.
  • Compare your activity level with that of your dog by linking your fitness tracker to FitBark.
  • Waterproof and can recharge without removing from the collar.
  • Free shipping, 30-day money back guarantee and available for dogs anywhere in the world.
  • Light-weight design, waterproof up to 1 meter (for 30 minutes) and no monthly subscription fees.

Price

If you’re looking to buy the original you can use the Amazon link below to find resellers. However, for$69.95 the new FitBark 2 is a great value for improved performance (and flexibility in colors) and is currently available purchase on their website. Both versions include no monthly fees, free iOS and Android apps and 1-year limited warranty.

Video: FitBark Overview

Watch this two and a half minute video to see how this tiny, comfortable clip can provide endless insights into your furry friend.

Click here to read our in-depth FitBark Review

Most Accurate Dog Activity Monitor: Tagg Review

TaggView on Amazon

The Tagg pet tracking system has two main features: It allows you to track your pet’s location via GPS and your pet’s activity from your computer or mobile device, 24/7. Set up a “Tagg Zone,” where your pet spends most of his time, and you can monitor when they’ve left their designated area (or gotten out of it). Locate him easily on Tagg’s mobile website or free app, or if you’re really in a pinch, text “LOCATE” to 52366 and Tagg will send you your dog’s exact, current address. In addition to being a dog fitness tracker, Tagg also provides info on your pet’s activity throughout the day. An activity snapshot allows you and your vet to see at a glance the overall activity level of your dog, while a timeline tracks every walk, run, snooze or sniff. A 90-day timeline allows you to compare your pet’s activity level over the course of three months.

Key Features

  • GPS tracking systems knows where your dog is at all times and helps you locate his exact whereabouts in seconds.
  • Tagg will text your dog’s location right to your mobile device.
  • Activity monitoring with timelines of one day to twelve months.
  • Ambient temperature sensor tells you when your dog is too hot or cold.

Price

Whistle Acquired Tagg

We should note that Whistle (reviewed below) announced in January 2015 their acquisition of Tagg. It’s still called Tagg but sold under the Whistle umbrella with the grey and white coloring now too. The only major difference is its size which is a bit bulkier and not recommended for smaller dogs (under 10 pounds).

Best Dog Activity Monitor For Closely Tracking Health: Whistle Review

Whistle 3 Dog Activity MonitorView on Amazon

The Whistle 3’s sleek, attractive design does three things at once: tracks your dog (or cat)’s GPS location, activity and pet care history. This clip on-collar activity monitor tracks rest patterns, allows you to set fitness goals and gives you easy access from your smartphone at any time via the free app. It even gives you a map of your dog’s steps down to the exact paw up to 3,000 miles away. However, Whistle’s accuracy and advanced features come at a price. There’s a monthly subscription plan required (starting at $6.95/month) which uses AT&T’s cellular network and is only available in the U.S.

Key Features

  • Track activity and rest with a visual summary of your dog’s daily activity. Set a daily goal and monitor your pet’s progress.
  • Keep track of medications, a food log or make notes of things you noticed that day.
  • Continue to get updates on your pup’s progress while you’re away with Whistle’s WiFi capabilities. Just connect Whistle to the network where your pup is spending her day, and you’ll be able to track her progress even if you’re not around.
  • Whistle pet tracker uses Bluetooth to show with whom your pup is spending time. (Note: You’ll need to sync the phones’ of both parties with Whistle 3 via Bluetooth to receive this information.)
  • Share your adventures with other pet owners through photos.
  • Battery life up to one week (no base station required) and waterproof.

Price

Whistle offers a 90-day money back guarantee, free shipping and unique accessories on their website. There is also a $30 discount until December 15th, just use code GIFT30.

Best Dog Activity Monitors

Below are other dog activity monitors that we’ve reviewed. Although they weren’t winners in our three categories, one may be a good fit for your pup.

Link AKC | Petkit | PetPace | Tractive Motion | Voyce

Link AKC Review

Link AKCView on Amazon

Unlike the other many activity trackers we reviewed that clip on to your dog’s existing collar, the Link AKC is a collar itself with a removable and rechargeable tracking unit. It comes in five sizes, and all are adjustable in a stylish light brown stitched leather. One unique feature of this smart collar is the built-in LED light that helps your dog be seen at night and sound alert to assist in training both of which can be controlled remotely using the app. It’s similar to the Whistle with it’s pinpoint GPS technology via AT&T which requires a monthly service fee starting at $7.95.

Key Features

  • Three GPS zones for your pet’s location: with you (within Bluetooth range of your phone), near base station (around certain radius of where charging device is plugged in) and away (not lost, but outside the safe zone).
  • Vet records and reminders, temperature alerts and activity tracker.
  • Virtual scrapbook to record and remember adventures with photos and notes.
  • 24/7 access to vet professionals in case of emergency.
  • Battery life up to 2 days and water resistant up to 3 feet.
  • 90-day money back guarantee and 3-year limited warranty.

Price

Petkit Review

PetKitView on Amazon

Petkit’s activity tracker is a cute little disk about the size of a half dollar coin and weighing only 0.3 ounces. It’s available in a variety of colors and comes with two sizes of bands for attaching to your dog’s existing collar. What we love about the Petkit is that it tracks meal consumption which can then calculate approximate calories consumed as well as sleep quantity and quality. This data combined with your dog’s activity translates into a fitness report and overall mood score. The only downside is this tracker doesn’t include GPS (but could be a good thing since you’re not paying an additional monthly fee).

Key Features

  • Monitors activity, sleep, calories, overall health and even mood.
  • Use the app to see real-time statistics.
  • Scuff-free surface is durable and compact, light-weight design is comfortable.
  • Must be within Bluetooth range. (If you’re away from your pet you can’t see the real-time stats.)
  • Water resistant up to 1 meter for 30 minutes.

Price

PetPace Review

PetPace View on Amazon

PetPace is a smart collar system that tracks data including temperature, activity, pulse, respiration, calories (consumed and burned) and heart rate variations to detect health trends and potential concerns. The 1.5 oz collar collects data throughout the day and communicates with the base station every 1-2 minutes (when within 1,000 feet) and alerts you and your vet at the moment it signals a problem. You can also log in to an online account or use the app to see your pet’s dashboard to see trends, health history, daily progress and more. Note: the gateway base requires an Ethernet port to transmit data and a yearly monitoring plan (but could be worth it for the in-depth health analysis and ability to share data with vet).

Key Features

  • Uses sophisticated technology to analyze health data like temperature, heart rate, respiration and position (sitting, standing, lying down).
  • Proactively lets you know when there is a potential health problem, which is especially good for elderly pets or ones with chronic conditions.
  • Has undergone 10,000 hours of testing on thousands of cats and dogs.
  • LED indicator lights on both the collar and Gateway base station.
  • Waterproof, 3-week battery life, adjustable and comes in 3 sizes: from cats up to larger dogs.
  • 30-day Money Back Guarantee and 1-year Warranty.

Price

Tractive Motion Review

Tractive Motion dog monitorView on Amazon

Attach the Tractive MOTION to your dog’s collar and data will be sent directly to your smartphone. The tracker collects data 24/7 so you know exactly what your pet is doing. Your dog gets points for the level of activity throughout the day, and you get notified if your pet is being too lazy. It tracks ambient temperature so you can see the correlation between the environment and your dog’s behavior. The tracker is waterproof so your dog can still play in the water. However, make sure you’ve always got your eyes on your dog. This tracker does not have GPS installed in it.

Key Features

  • Sends real-time stats to your phone so you can see how active your pup has been up to that point.
  • Tracks your dog’s motions, how much she moves and when.
  • Captures ambient temperature and light to see how it relates to your dog’s activity.
  • Syncs data via Bluetooth, not WiFi, so if you’re away from your pup you won’t know its current activity.
  • Charges via USB and has a decent battery life.
  • 100% waterproof.

Price

Voyce Activity MonitorVoyce Review

Voyce was previously available as an activity monitor for dogs but is no longer available.

An Active Dog is a Happy Dog

Wondering how your dog’s breed activity level compares to others? Check out our article with data from FitBark to see how your dog competes. And if you really want to pimp out your dog’s collar, you can add even more bling including a dog camera and smart ID tag. Then your dog will definitely be the smarted pup on the block.

What activity tracker does your dog use? Would you recommend it to others?

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.
Sara is a writer for Canine Journal. She adores dogs and recently adopted a rescue pup named Beamer. Whole she may be adjusting to life with another being to care for, she needed no time to adjust to all the extra love.

Leave a Reply

41 Comments on "Best Dog Activity Monitor: Fitbark vs Tagg vs Whistle vs Link AKC & More!"

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James
So what would be the best tracker if your looking more toward the activity tracker. I’m trying to find one that gives me accurate readings for distance when I bring my dog hiking so I can see the difference when she’s running around vs what I’m hiking which would be the preferred in this case?
Kimberly Alt
We chose Tagg as the most accurate, so I would consider it for your needs.
Jeff Butler
Until December 17th, get 20% Off at Fitbark with code FBRUV, just use this link to get started!
Isabelle
I use PetPace for my 12yr old English Toy Spaniel that went into congestive heart failure just under two weeks ago. I’ve been on a google frenzy since that terrifying day. I have to say that PetPace is amazing. It may seem pricey but it does everything PetPace describes. The collar probably accounts for half the cost and the rest is for the subscription to the monitoring service.

Tracking activity is one thing, but understanding a dogs internal health is critical – my dog seemed healthier than a 5yr old on the outside (albeit, he had started to slow down on walks). He also had a cough 5 days before his decline. I can attest that if I had the PetPace collar earlier, I have no doubt I would’ve been able to avoid a $3K pet emergency hospital bill as the collar has been developed to detect problems well before they manifest in a way that owners are able to see.

It also has activity goals and a weight tracker too for pets that need to shed their chunky monkey form which tracks calorie intake and activity levels at the same time.

For a collar that is able to do all this, together with provide alerts to your (and your vet!) via smartphone, email etc… I think its worth the cost, peace of mind, and ability to prevent a decline in quality of life/health for our beloved pets.

Henry Aruca
Hello Sara.

Great article. I noticed your editor’s note regarding Voyce.

“Editor’s note: As of December, 2016, it appears that Voyce is no longer available. We are monitoring the situation.”

They are definitely out of the market. Just confirming in case you’d like to update the article.

Again, great article.

Thanks,

Henry

Kimberly Alt
Thank you Henry, we will make the appropriate updates!
Which product has the widest range? i.e. 2 or 3 miles from home?
Kimberly Alt
These devices work similarly to activity trackers for people. They track the activity levels throughout the day. Then to sync the data you have to be within about 30 feet of your phone for bluetooth to work. These won’t sync 2 or 3 miles from your home unless your phone (or whatever device you are using) is with your dog.
R. Witkes
I had a Tagg tracker to start. I went through the growing pains along with everyone else when Whistle took over – false breaches, not charging, etc. I worked with Customer Service (I thought most of them were great – some better than others) and, although there were some frustrations, they resolved all my issues. I have 3 trackers and they all work perfectly now. I get proper breach notifications, GPS locations sometimes immediately and sometimes up to three minutes – but that’s what they advertise so no complaints, and the running tracking on the map is superior to TAGG, although the map itself is not quite as good. I don’t use the activity monitor because we walk 6 miles a day so I know my dogs get proper exercise.

I highly recommend the Whistle which works even in 3000 acres of wooded area and ponds – it’s waterproof, as well. I have several friends using Whistle and everyone is having the same positive experience. Work with the company – be persistent – I think their product is well worth the money.

Ernesto Egoavil
I bought two of them for my dogs. First of all the units were not easy to set up, even though they are supposed to. The things didn’t work well the first couple of days. After I got them to work the first time I had to charge them back, one of them never came back on, but the worst part of all of this is the Customer Service. They took forever to get me an answer (which they never really did) and they wanted me to do all this work, send them pictures, troubleshoot over and over, and the days kept passing by. And every time I talked to them they say the same thing “We’ll get back to you within 24 to 48 hours” (which they never did). Meanwhile I am paying a monthly fee to keep the GPS’s on. Finally I requested a full refund and they told me their favorite phrase “You’ll hear from us between 24 and 48 hours”. Meanwhile the time on the “subscription” is still running. It has been 48 hours already, and yet to hear back from them.
Kimberly Alt
So sorry they didn’t work out for you. So our readers know when they read your comment, which dog activity monitors are you referring to?
Ernesto Egoavil
I am sorry, I should’ve mentioned it was the Whistle. Don’t get it. Just because if it breaks, you won’t get a fix right away; and if you are not satisfied, you’ll probably have better luck getting your money back faster by playing the scratch off lottery.
Kimberly Alt
Thank you for clarifying which device you purchased. I hope you find another dog activity monitor that works better!
dont know anymore
I’m on my second Whistle tracker and like the last one it has quit tracking my dog’s activity. I have never been able to get more than 5 days before it quits working. If you are looking for a GPS tracker don’t get a Whistle. The GPS part works great but the tracking activity stinks.
Mark
Has anyone tried the Heyrex monitor?
Britt Jennings
Regarding Whistle’s recent acquisition of Tagg…Whistle took a great company and within the last month, has completely run it into the ground. I have been a loyal Tagg customer for years. I depend upon my pet trackers daily. I work in the veterinary field and have recommended Tagg to clients. No more! Ever since the switch to Whistle, I have encountered nothing but problems. The trackers are not accurate, take long periods of time to update, and one of mine seemingly dropped off of the face of the earth 18 days ago. By this I mean that though the tracker is physically right here in my kitchen, the app locator shows that it is in the middle of the woods over a half mile away, and that position has not budged for 18 days! I have spoken to 4 different customer “advocates” at Whistle, after wait times exceeding 30 minutes and some times over an hour, and while they are all perfectly “understanding” and pleasant on the phone, not a single thing has been done to rectify the situation. I was even told that a manager could not help me. Supposedly my case is in the “Technical Escalation Que,” which pretty much means there’s a long ass list of similar problems ahead of mine and no one knows when, or if, the problem will be fixed. I have also communicated with “advocates” via email who have then seemingly vanished with no further replies. Great job at ruining a good product, Whistle.
Jennette Ricks Hunt
I agree, don’t buy Tagg or Whistle. I bought a Tagg Pet Tracker and after two weeks it stopped charging. Little by little, it was using what battery remained and would not recharge when I docked it to the station, as it had during the first couple of weeks. I contacted customer service and they “escalated” the issue to Tech Support because reportedly my device had failed to completely update its firmware a few days prior. I waited to hear from Tech Support, but they never contacted me. I contacted customer support again and they reiterated that Tech Support was looking into the issue. Finally, I received an email from customer support they said that Tech Support wanted to reattempt sending the firmware update to my device. In order to do that, I would need to first charge my device by docking it to the station (the device’s failure to charge was the reason I contacted customer support). I have sent multiple emails in response, one of which was a request to talk by phone, and I have not heard back. My GPS tracker serves a critical role in my ranch operation, so I am quite frustrated with Whistle’s support/service. I am looking for a better alternative to Whistle.
Customer service is beyond awful!! I have spent over an hour on hold with “customer service” if that is what they call it- and no one ever picks up!!!

Ok- I finally got some results- found a helpful rep. So they’ve gone from 1 stars to 3 stars- for now. 🙂

Kimberly Alt
Hi Joe, thanks for the comment! Mind telling us which company you are dealing with? It may help a reader decide which one to buy! Thanks so much!
Kristi Snyder
I had hoped to purchase the new and improved WhistleGPS with the pre-order campaign, but due to the time lag, purchased a TaggGPS to keep tabs on our wandering black lab. The Tagg app was ok, definitely more powerful online than it was on mobile. The ~3 minute lagtime between out of zone and notification is a bit longer than I would like as she’s already down the road and in the neighbor’s yard at that point. However, it is waterproof (lab swimming approved), cleans easily (farm dog tested), tracked general activity in a fun way and can be used to find a black dog in the woods on a moonless night. With the sad news from Whistle that the new product will be basically a rebranded Tagg unit (not that I am surprised given the acquisition), was on the fence about purchasing one for our beagle mix and have decided to upgrade both dogs to the new model. The new Whistle app (after the annoyance of having to do something new wore off and it finally synced correctly with the TaggGPS unit) really isn’t bad. Using the app on Android lollipop, like the enhanced features of tracking medications, food and some photos in addition to the activity and location monitoring. Wish our communications in the US would move along so Whistle could have produced the slimmer designed product, but for now, this is a product that meets our needs. Now I have to get myself a fitness tracker!
Kimberly Alt
Kristi thanks so much for sharing your experience with the trackers! This will definitely be helpful for our other readers!
backtonature
Would like to see some discussion now that Whistle has taken over TAGG. As a TAGG customer, who was gobsmacked by the Whistle email today telling me I had no more tracking until I downloaded their 1 star app. I’m not a happy camper.
Noesnana
Nothing but trouble since Whistle took over. The program is useless, I get false notifications when my dog is right next to me but don’t get notified when we leave home. Whistle blames everything but their Co. I’ve been told it’s my base location which is the same as it was when it was Tagg, low battery even though the device says it’s 50%, etc. No help from them. My 5 star Tagg is now a 0 star Whistle.
Tony Escamilla
Tagg certainly had some issues but at least it worked. We were forced to download the Whistle App this morning (10/6/2015). My wife walked my dog and was nearly 3 miles away before I received an alert. When I tried to track my dog (as a test), the Whistle App was useless. It gave me a coordinate that was 1 hour old and got hung with a message that says “Tracking Lucy (my dog’s name)…” It’s been “tracking” for a while now and I have no way to find my pet. At least with the Tagg App, when she left the zone I would track her in real time. This Whistle App is useless. My dog is halfway across town!!
victoria
I agree. I had very little issue with Tagg compared to Whistle which only serves to frustrate. Do not purchase a Whistle. Right now all my money is being refunded until they can hire developers that know what they are doing. The last customer service agent pointed me to Fit Bark.
Noesnana
Between the false breach of zone notifications and then not being notified at all, the new Whistle based system is useless. Never had issues with Tagg other than a slight delay when we would go out of our zone in walks (testing).
samsid
Thanks, was about to purchase the Whistle for my dog but now will wait until a better product comes along.
Tony Escamilla
So true. My dog was sitting next to me the other day and I received a notification that it had left the zone and was about a 1/4 down the road.
Casey Mcbride
I couldn’t agree more. The Whistle app is a complete disaster. They took a great product and ruined it. All Whistle had to do was tweak the Tagg app, leave it alone and sit back and make money. As it is, I am researching other products and plan to cancel Whistle as soon as I find a replacement. I need to track in real time also.
Tony Escamilla
If you do end up finding a good product please share. We continue to have nothing but problems with Whistle. It went from what potentially was a pet life saving GPS product to a “Fit Bit” for pets (which by the way, doesn’t work well either).
Noesnana
Absolutely ruined and useless now.
AtakanBaranAkgul
Do you think that these Dog Activity Monitors are stylish for your pets?
D. Simel
Whistle is worse than its predecessor, Tagg. Signed up to receive new monitors that were to have arrived in February. No one answered my customer service calls, but in late March, I received a congratulatory email, informing me that my tracker would arrive at the beginning of April. Customer support was still unreachable, but I received another congratulatory email, at the end of April, informing me that my dogs’ tracker was in the mail. A month later, after many more attempts to get someone from customers service on the phone, my trackers arrived. One works; one does not. I have spent hours waiting for customer service representatives to answer. I have spoken with four different representatives, all of whom told me that they would “escalate” my problem to some sort of tech. guy. Each representative has promised to call back once the problem was fixed. Not one has done this, forcing me to wait more hours for someone to answer. The representatives are all “very sorry” and “understand” my “frustration” but each has led me back to square one. This is a ridiculous company that is unprepared for the rollout of its new – and supposedly improved – product. Their excuses should not be a customer’s problem. I will send back and try a competitor.
kendra11
I am wondering if any of these products record when a dog is barking? All are stated as “activity level” and undoubtedly he gets up to bark, but he may also get up and *not* bark. I would love to find a product that can monitor that.
Sadie Cornelius
Kendra, that’s a great question. To my knowledge these do not record barking data but that would be a great feature to add on. You might also try a Dog Camera to monitor your dog’s barking activity. We just wrote a review of those here: https://www.caninejournal.com/doggie-camera/
Circus_boi
What about the Tractive GPS Pet Tracker?
Michelle Schenker
We actually added Tractive to your article in late Fall 2014 so be sure to read to the bottom of this article. Thanks!
Bellaboots
Looked up Tagg because the deal seemed to good to be true. Turns out it was as it is $9.95 monthly instead of yearly… Still not bad if you dog takes off a lot but I just want location services for the rare occasion she sneaks out of my fenced yard or gets off her leash. I’m thinking the Whistle GPS version fits my budget a little better so I think I will wait until summer 2015.
Michelle Schenker
Thanks Bellaboots, It looks like there were a few updates that needed to be made since we initially researched, fact-checked and published this review. Thanks for the heads up and the details for Tagg are now accurate. Thanks and keep us posted on Whistle!
Donovan
I’m missing my Tractive Motion in the comparison 🙁
Michelle Schenker
Hi Donovan and thank you for letting us know about this product. What do you think of it? We would love to have a first-hand account as we are reviewing this product to add to our article. Thanks!

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