Best Dog Activity Monitor: FitBark vs Whistle vs Link AKC & More

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

Technology has come a long way for both humans and pets over the years. Now there’s a way to track your dog’s daily activity (think Fitbit for dogs).

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 with all the things you can do with a dog fitness tracker.

Article Overview

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 a day and to find your pup if it’s 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 (dedicated GPS dog collars also work similarly) 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 how they work, let’s share our top picks for each category. Then we’ll share some other popular dog activity trackers below.

Easiest Dog Activity Monitor To Use: FitBark 2 Review

FitbarkView on Amazon

The bone design of FitBark’s on-collar monitor is cute and smaller than most other monitors and comes in black with colored cover options for an additional cost. The app performs well, and the pet activity tracker is easy to use.

The monitor is strong and durable, so it will survive your dog’s adventures. It has a long battery life (3.5 dog years) and can link to your fitness tracker (Fitbit, Apple, Google).

Key Features

  • Monitors:
    • Activity
    • Sleep quality
    • Distance traveled
    • Calories burned
    • Overall health
    • Behavior
  • Waterproof up to 1 meter for 30 minutes (IP67)
  • Compare your dog’s activity to other dogs of the same breed
  • Share your dog’s activity report with your vet
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • No monthly subscription fees
  • Free iOS and Android apps
  • 1-year limited warranty


Video: FitBark Overview

Watch this 2-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: Whistle 3 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

  • Monitors:
    • Activity
    • Location
    • Sleep quality
    • Distance traveled
    • Calories burned
    • Overall health
  • Waterproof for splashes, rain/snow, shower (IPx7)
  • Keep track of medications, a food log or make notes of things you noticed that day
  • 90-day money-back guarantee
  • Free iOS and Android apps
  • 1-year warranty


Best Dog Activity Monitor For Closely Tracking Health: 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). It has up to a 3-week battery life, is adjustable and comes in 4 sizes (including cats).

Key Features

  • Monitors:
    • Activity
    • Pulse
    • Respiration
    • Heart rate
    • Calories burned and consumed
    • Overall health
  • Water-resistant (IPx7)
  • Temperature alerts (if it’s too hot for your dog, it notifies you)
  • Alerts you and your vet if it detects a problem
  • Share your dog’s activity report with your vet
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Free iOS and Android apps
  • 1-year limited warranty


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 | TaggTractive 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 its pinpoint GPS technology via AT&T, which requires a monthly service fee starting at $7.95.

Key Features

  • Monitors:
    • Activity
    • Location
    • Sleep quality
    • Distance traveled
    • Overall health
  • Waterproof (IP67)
  • Temperature alerts (if it’s too hot for your dog it notifies you)
  • 24/7 access to vet professionals in case of emergency
  • 90-day money-back guarantee
  • Free iOS and Android apps
  • 3-year limited warranty


PetKit Review

PetKitView on Amazon

PetKit is no longer in production. You can still purchase it through third-party sellers, but we’d recommend buying a different tracker with better support.

Tagg Review

TaggWhistle (reviewed above) announced in January 2015 their acquisition of Tagg. It was still called Tagg but was sold under the Whistle umbrella for some time. Whistle has since discontinued its activity monitor.  

Tractive Review

TractiveView 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 precisely 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.

A subscription plan is needed and starts at $5 per month. Unfortunately, it only works on pets who weigh at least 9 pounds. The battery recharges in 2 hours and can last 2 to 5 days.

Key Features

  • Monitors:
    • Activity
    • Location
    • Distance traveled
  • Immersive waterproof up to 1 meter (IPx8)
  • Free iOS and Android apps
  • 1-year warranty


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. 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 techy pup on the block.

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

About The Author:

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.

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 and affiliated sites.
Disclaimer: The information provided through this website should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your health care provider.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

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April 24, 2018 12:37 pm

Which would you recommend for real time tracking of seizures?

Kimberly Alt
April 25, 2018 8:22 am
Reply to  Page

That wasn’t something we considered in our research when we wrote this article. Sorry we can’t be of more help!

Jill Burkoff
March 24, 2018 2:31 pm


We bought the Link AKC GPS collar to be able to keep track of our dog while we are not with her. We had nothing but trouble with the device, so we turned to their Technical Services Group. Not only did they not return calls, as promised, but they were totally inept at figuring out what was wrong with the device! Also, the beautiful collar was peeling in a few days.

One day, the device just shut itself off and would not come back on. They even offered to give me 2 months of free service. After 4 days, calls NOT returned, and multiple calls, they gave up and offered to replace it. Once the new device arrived, it would not link to my network. The reason??? They were too lazy or stupid to enter the device’s ID number so it could be recognized. Two days and multiple calls later, I gave up.

We paid upfront for one year of monitoring, so with the free time and the fact that the device only worked for maybe 2 weeks while they screwed around trying the troubleshoot the issues, I expected a full refund for the service. When I got my bill, they had deducted 2 months for service. My call to Customer Service was a COMPLETE JOKE. They said they do not refund for used time. THERE WAS NO USED TIME. The damn thing was mostly broken. Every time I reminded them of that, they would repeat that they do not refund for used time. I have the transcript because the responses were so stupid, I just had to save it.

So…here I am warning you NOT to waste your money!! I have changed over to the Whistle 3 and we will see what happens.

February 15, 2018 2:16 am

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
February 15, 2018 10:15 am
Reply to  James

We chose Tagg as the most accurate, so I would consider it for your needs.

Jeff Butler
December 12, 2017 3:43 pm

Until December 17th, get 20% Off at Fitbark with code FBRUV, just use this link to get started!

February 23, 2017 10:31 am

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
January 17, 2017 4:34 pm

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.



Kimberly Alt
January 18, 2017 11:31 am
Reply to  Henry Aruca

Thank you Henry, we will make the appropriate updates!

June 24, 2016 2:50 am

Which product has the widest range? i.e. 2 or 3 miles from home?

Kimberly Alt
June 24, 2016 11:51 am
Reply to  Sov

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
April 23, 2016 11:26 am

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
April 7, 2016 6:13 pm

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.

Richard Fishbein
September 13, 2018 10:46 pm

I had to keep buying new devices every time each one stopped working. They want me to buy ANOTHER updated model and I’m fed up with Tagg/Whistle. I want to try a different company that gives me one that works or a replacement at no cost. Activity monitoring & especially GPS tracking are the key features we’re looking for. Which company should I try?

Kimberly Alt
April 8, 2016 9:39 am

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
April 8, 2016 9:43 am
Reply to  Kimberly Alt

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
April 10, 2016 2:18 pm

Thank you for clarifying which device you purchased. I hope you find another dog activity monitor that works better!

dont know anymore
March 30, 2016 12:44 pm

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.

March 10, 2016 11:28 pm

Has anyone tried the Heyrex monitor?

Britt Jennings
October 24, 2015 4:56 pm

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
January 5, 2016 1:44 pm
Reply to  Britt Jennings

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.

October 10, 2015 2:18 pm

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
October 12, 2015 10:52 am
Reply to  Joe

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
October 9, 2015 4:38 pm

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
October 12, 2015 10:50 am
Reply to  Kristi Snyder

Kristi thanks so much for sharing your experience with the trackers! This will definitely be helpful for our other readers!

October 6, 2015 8:57 pm

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.

November 16, 2015 1:47 pm
Reply to  backtonature

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
October 6, 2015 3:18 pm

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!!

November 19, 2015 1:23 pm
Reply to  Tony Escamilla

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.

November 16, 2015 2:03 pm
Reply to  Tony Escamilla

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).

December 21, 2015 8:30 am
Reply to  Noesnana

Thanks, was about to purchase the Whistle for my dog but now will wait until a better product comes along.

Tony Escamilla
November 20, 2015 12:22 pm
Reply to  Noesnana

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
October 10, 2015 2:02 pm
Reply to  Tony Escamilla

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
November 20, 2015 12:09 pm
Reply to  Casey Mcbride

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).

November 16, 2015 1:57 pm
Reply to  Casey Mcbride

Absolutely ruined and useless now.

July 17, 2015 8:10 am

Do you think that these Dog Activity Monitors are stylish for your pets?

D. Simel
June 24, 2015 8:53 pm

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.

January 26, 2015 1:07 am

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
January 28, 2015 2:23 pm
Reply to  kendra11

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:

January 17, 2015 6:46 pm

What about the Tractive GPS Pet Tracker?

Michelle Schenker
January 19, 2015 6:16 pm
Reply to  Circus_boi

We actually added Tractive to your article in late Fall 2014 so be sure to read to the bottom of this article. Thanks!

November 5, 2014 8:24 pm

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
November 6, 2014 3:16 pm
Reply to  Bellaboots

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!

October 15, 2014 4:42 pm

I’m missing my Tractive Motion in the comparison 🙁

Michelle Schenker
October 16, 2014 11:48 am
Reply to  Donovan

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!