FitBark GPS Review [How Great Is It Really?]

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Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link & purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. All opinions remain my own.

[UPDATED OCTOBER 2022]

Welcome to my FitBark GPS Review.

The FitBark GPS is an all-in-one health tracker that is the smallest and lightest of its kind!

FitBark’s GPS version was first introduced to the US market in 2019 and since its launch, sales have skyrocketed!

Fast forward a few years to 2022, and there is a new version!

Introducing the FitBark GPS second generation.

What exactly has changed?

In this in-depth review, we’ll look at all of the features of the FitBark GPS, how it works, its design, pros and cons, plus how the FitBark GPS second generation has improved!

Let’s get to it!

FitBark GPS 2nd Generation What’s New?

FitBark GPS Review - A Golden Retriever wearing a teal coloured FitBark GPS.
Image Courtesy of FitBark.

As of May 2022, the FitBark GPS 2nd Generation is available to the U.S. market.

Let’s look at what improvements were made:

Supports All 3 Major U.S. Wireless Carriers

A major improvement from the first version, FitBark GPS 2nd generation now supports all 3 major U.S. wireless carriers.

It automatically and seamlessly switches between Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile 4G LTE-M networks.

You’ll get the best coverage possible! The embedded sim is separate from your own smartphone’s wireless provider.

Multiple Satellite Constellations

GPS, GLONASS, Galileo, SBAS, and QZSS are all supported to give you state-of-the-art real-time tracking, whether your dog is in an urban or rural area.

3x Antenna Performance

The placement and design of the antennas have been improved to offer better location tracking and overall performance.

Better Escape Detection Reliability

The platform is much smarter and is able to tell the difference when your dog escapes or just takes a stroll around the perimeter of a safe place.

You can expect fewer false exit notifications.

Improved Battery Life

Most pups recharge for 2 hours every 3 to 5 weeks. The previous version’s battery life was 2 to 3 weeks.

Light, Rugged & Waterproof

FitBark GPS 2nd Generation is even lighter than its previous version, weighing only 16 grams.

It is made of high-impact polycarbonate, making it super rugged and durable. It’s not 100% bite-proof, so make sure your pup doesn’t chew on it!

Designed to be sleek and lightweight, it doesn’t stick out past your dog’s collar, unlike other GPS trackers.

Speaking of collars, it fits collars up to 1.5″ wide.

Just like the previous version, it is waterproof up to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes. Great news for water-loving dogs!

Just be sure to let the unit fully dry by removing the soft cover.

What Does The FitBark GPS Do?

FitBark GPS shown in red with the FitBark App shown on an iPhone.
Image Courtesy of FitBark.

The FitBark GPS is an all-in-one health activity monitor.

Not only does it monitor your dog’s sleep and activity, but it allows you to track your dog’s location 24/7.

Below is an overview of its features, and what the FitBark GPS does:

Wi-Fi Safe Zone Alerts

You will be able to create multiple safe zones for your dog around familiar Wi-Fi networks, for example, your home, friend’s house, relatives, or daycare.

When your dog enters or leaves the safe areas you will get alerted on your mobile phone.

Pinpoint GPS Location In Minutes

In case of emergencies, you will be able to track your dog anywhere in the U.S. via the embedded cellular service.

You will receive 1-minute location updates until you are reunited with your dog.

FitBark GPS uses Verizon’s 4G LTE network to send real-time location updates to FitBark’s server and the FitBark app.

A subscription plan is needed and is separate from the service plan for your phone.

Monitor Your Dog’s Sleep And Activity 24/7

Track your dog’s quality of sleep, activity level, calories burned, distance travelled, and overall health and behaviour.

You can set fitness goals with other dogs of the same breed, age, or weight.

Monitor Mobility And Pain

You can invite your vet or dog trainer to monitor any changes in your dog’s mobility, osteoarthritis, or orthopedic rehabilitation.

By following the FitBark Health Index you will be able to catch any early signs of discomfort or disease.

Monitor Stress And Anxiety

Keep an eye on how your dog is doing while you are away, or while he is in the care of others.

By looking at the Hourly View after you leave home, you will be able to discover if your dog is anxious while you are gone.

FitBark is a great way to monitor your dog’s separation anxiety to see if it has improved or worsened.

Monitor Itchiness And Skin Diseases

The FitBark nightly Sleep Score will help you track any skin conditions in your dog that develop over time such as dermatitis, hot spots, or flea allergies.

Your dog could be up all night scratching and licking and a low sleep score will be an indicator of that.

Link To Your Human Fitness Tracker

Be active and stay healthy right alongside your dog.

If, you own a fitness tracker like the Fitbit, Apple Watch, HealthKit, or Google Fit device you can link it to the FitBark.

FitBark Watchface

The FitBark Watchface is available for Fitbit Versa 2, Versa and Ionic.

Once you install the app, you can glance at your Fitbit and get updated on your health, your dog’s health and his location.

FitBark GPS Design

FitBark GPS with a black cover.
Image Courtesy of FitBark.

Alright, let’s talk about the design of the FitBark GPS.

Not only is the FitBark GPS favoured for its health and activity tracking, but its design is pretty impressive!

Unlike other dog GPS trackers that are heavy and bulky, FitBark GPS is small and light. Let’s take a closer look:

Shape

The FitBark GPS is shaped like a tiny bone that fits dogs of all sizes from a tiny Chihuahua to a large Leonberger.

This tiny bone-shaped device is durable, lightweight and waterproof.

Material

Made of high-impact polycarbonate, it is super durable and rugged.

Weight

As mentioned above, the FitBark GPS 2nd generation is even lighter than its previous version.

Weighing only 16 grams, it is much lighter and designed to be flat and non-bulky.

It won’t stick out past your dog’s collar, and it can fit collars up to 1.5″ (38mm) wide.

Waterproof

If your dog likes to play or swim in the water, no problem!

The FitBark GPS is waterproof and can be submerged up to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes.

Just be sure to allow the unit to fully dry by removing the soft cover after it has been in the water.

Battery Life

Battery life on the FitBark GPS 2nd generation is typically 3-5 weeks.

It takes 120 minutes to fully charge a dead battery.

Factors That Directly Affect Battery Life:

  • Bluetooth Proximity: FitBark GPS will use less power if connected to an owner’s mobile device. The more authorized owners nearby, the better. If fewer owners are nearby, day or night, the more power it will use to reconnect or scan for your WiFi Safe Places.
  • Wi-Fi Signal: The Wi-Fi signal strength could affect the battery life. If you are in a congested Wi-Fi area, it could be harder for the FitBark GPS to locate your Safe Place Wi-Fi network. The harder it is to locate your network, the more battery power is drained.
  • Cell Signal: A weak cell signal impacts the battery life. This will happen only when the FitBark GPS is not in a Wi-Fi Safe Place, or when it is not connected to an owner’s device.
  • GPS Signal: If the device gets lost (solo mode), it will try to understand its location by acquiring a GPS location. This will use more power, affecting the battery life.

Different Scenarios and Battery Life:

  • If your dog is always with you and within Bluetooth range of your phone, you can get 30-plus days of battery life. Providing you have the FitBark mobile app running in the background at all times with Bluetooth on.
  • If your dog is typically in a Safe Place such as your home with a good Wi-Fi signal, and you do a couple of 30-minute walks daily without any Bluetooth connectivity, then you can expect to get 20 days of battery life.
  • If your dog enjoys daily alone time and is typically in a Safe Place with a good Wi-Fi signal you can get 10 days of battery life. This is if your dog likes to spend a few hours a day outside without any Bluetooth connectivity and without the FitBark mobile app running in the background.
  • If your dog is lost and is outside of a Wi-Fi Safe Place with no Bluetooth connectivity and no FitBark mobile app running in the background, the battery life will be 4 days.

How To Set Up The FitBark GPS

If you are a new user you can easily set up your new FitBark GPS device by following these steps:

1. Create Your User Profile

After you have downloaded the FitBark App from either the IOS App Store or the Google Play Store, you need to open the app and create your account.

This is your personal profile, your dog’s profile will be created later.

2. Pair The FitBark GPS To Your Phone

Make sure Bluetooth is on in your IOS or Android device, and select “set-up device”.

Plug the FitBark GPS device into the charger only when prompted by the app.

The LED will start blinking rapidly to show it is in pairing mode.

After 10-20 seconds the “next” button appears and once the FitBark App connects to the FitBark GPS, the screen will display the text “woof”.

3. Create Your Dog’s Profile

You’ll be able to fill in all of your pup’s personal information such as name, age, breed, weight, medical conditions, location, as well as what lifestyle you want for your pup.

Choose from Average, Active, or Olympian lifestyles.

4. Attach The FitBark GPS To Your Dog’s Collar

The device can be attached to your dog’s collar (up to 1.5″ wide) by using 2 zip ties that are included.

The following video shows you how to attach it:

5. Firmware Update

You may be prompted to update the device’s firmware.

Just follow the on-screen instructions.

Depending on how extensive the update is, it could take a couple of minutes to 1 hour.

6. Create Your First Wi-Fi Safe Place

The Safe Place feature provides you with entry and exit notifications and allows the device to save significantly on power.

It is recommended to set up your home as your first Safe Place so that your pup’s health data sync regularly.

You will be able to add more Wi-Fi Safe Places later on from the app settings, which will allow you to achieve a longer battery life.

7. Choose A Subscription Plan

The FitBark GPS requires an active subscription plan.

All new subscriptions come with a 30-day money-back guarantee from the time of activation.

You can choose from a monthly plan with no long-term commitments, a 1-year plan, a 2-year plan, or a 3-year plan.

FitBark GPS subscription plan pricing.
Image Courtesy of FitBark.

What Is Included In The Box?

FitBark GPS shown in a box.
Image Courtesy of FitBark.
  • FitBark GPS Dog Health Monitor
  • 2 Black Covers: Different case colours are sold separately.
  • 10 Zip Ties:  You will need 2 zip ties to attach the device to your dog’s collar. If you decide to change dog collars you will need to use 2 new zip ties. Additional zip ties can be purchased separately.
  • Charging Cable
  • Quick Start Guide

How Much Does It Cost?

The FitBark GPS 2nd generation is priced at $49.95 plus a subscription plan (monthly, 1-year, 2-year, or 3-year).

If you purchase from fitbark.com you receive:

  • Free Shipping
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee: You can try FitBark for one month and if you don’t love it you get your money back, and FitBark will even pay for the return shipping (U.S. residents only).
  • 1-Year Limited Warranty.
  • Support Chat is available 24/7.

FitBark GPS Pros And Cons

Pros:

  • Best design compared to other dog GPS trackers. It is the world’s smallest and lightest dog GPS tracker.
  • It fits all dogs and breeds. Dogs that weigh 5 pounds up to 240 pounds can wear a FitBark.
  • FitBark’s customer service is fantastic! Live Chat Support is available 24/7 and they respond quickly.
  • It is easy to set up, and the FitBark App is easy to use.
  • It is durable and waterproof, which is ideal for dogs who love to run, play, and swim in the water.
  • Tracks your dog’s location anywhere in the U.S., and gives you peace of mind. It’s another layer of security even if your dog is microchipped.
  • It works even if you travel outside of the U.S., as long as your dog is in the U.S.
  • The battery life is pretty impressive, 3-5 weeks.
  • It supports all 3 major U.S. wireless carriers to give you the best coverage. It is separate from your mobile phone account.

Cons:

  • The GPS version is only available in the U.S. at this time.
  • To use the GPS you will need to purchase a subscription plan. The good news is that you can change or cancel your subscription at any time.
  • The battery life is 3-5 weeks on average, which is pretty good, but, if you’re used to the FitBark 2 (non-GPS version), then you are used to the battery lasting up to 6 months.
  • It cannot be used on a harness, you must attach it to a collar that is no wider than 1.5″.

How Does The FitBark GPS Differ From The FitBark 2?

Obviously, the main difference is that with the FitBark GPS you are able to track your dog’s location anywhere in the U.S.

With the FitBark GPS, you will receive alerts every time your dog enters or exits a Wi-Fi Safe Place.

Plus, it syncs your dog’s health data typically every hour via Wi-Fi without the need of a smartphone nearby, unlike the FitBark 2.

FitBark GPS is slightly bigger, weighing 16 grams vs 10 grams for the FitBark 2.

The battery life of the FitBark GPS 2nd generation is 3-5 weeks compared to 6 months for FitBark 2.

The FitBark GPS requires a subscription plan vs no additional fees for the FitBark 2.

If you are upgrading from the FitBark 2 to the GPS you can keep your existing profile and all of your dog’s historical data.

RELATED ===> The FitBark 2 Dog Activity Monitor Review.

Final Thoughts

As an all-in-one health and activity monitor and location tracker, the FitBark GPS is pretty impressive!

FitBark takes great pride in its design, battery life, easy integration with human fitness trackers, and its platform which is used and trusted by over 100 vets and research institutions.

Not only is the FitBark GPS a great device for any dog owner who wants to improve their dog’s health and monitor their activity levels, but it is an added layer of security if heaven forbids your dog gets lost.

Even if your dog is microchipped, having a GPS tracker will allow you to track your dog’s exact location, with updates every minute.

The FitBark GPS is only available to the U.S. market at this time. Hopefully, in the near future, it will be available to other countries.

However, for now, if you don’t live in the U.S., you can still take advantage of everything the FitBark 2 offers.

Have you tried the FitBark GPS for your dog? Do you currently use a FitBark?

Share your thoughts and comments below, plus if you have any questions, please ask! I would love to hear from you!

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I am the proud owner of a Golden Retriever named Ellie. She keeps me busy, and when she is resting, you can find me working on my blog. She is always close by though. I live in Stirling, ON Canada with my husband, and we both enjoy the never a dull moment life with our Ellie.

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10 thoughts on “FitBark GPS Review [How Great Is It Really?]”

  1. What a great gadget! I love it! It is really a helpful thing not only when dogs get lost but also when dogs need our help concerning their health. 

    My dogs have never been runners! They love me too much and they don’t take more than three steps away from me. They’re amazing! But it is just with me, not my husband or kids! Our Chloe ran several times away from my husband but she always came directly home, to me. 

    However, I always wondered how they feel when I am away. I would love to know it. Yet, we live in Europe and we hope it will be available in the EU too, soon. 
    Thank you for reviewing this valuable product!

    Reply
    • Hello,

      Thank you so much for sharing your story.  I am also lucky to have a dog that never leaves my side (a Golden Retriever).  She also doesn’t leave my husband’s side either.  We are pretty fortunate that way.  But, as with any dog, if there is a scent that she picks up or decides to chase a cat, rabbit or another small animal, she would be gone.  Having a GPS tracker is an added security measure.

      Just like yourself, I am hoping that the FitBark GPS will become available to other countries.

      You mentioned that you would love to know how your dog acts when you’re away, well, the FitBark 2 is available worldwide (non-GPS version).  The FitBark 2 would be a great device that would allow you to monitor your dog’s sleep and activity levels 24/7.  This way you can discover any changes in behaviour from your dog while you’re away.  

      The FitBark 2 is available worldwide, and FitBark offers free worldwide shipping and a 30-Day money-back guarantee.  It’s definitely something to consider.

      Thanks again for taking the time to comment.

      Jenny.

      Reply
  2. I can’t believe that this is so cheap. Less than $50 and with all those features, I am honestly amazed. I would probably pay that for the GPS tracker alone, but to have all those extra features and to be able to link it to my Apple Watch, well, I’m blown away. 

    The battery life, for me, is quite acceptable as this is done easily when playing with my dog. ( I have a Malti-poo cross called Chi, a barker and a little biter, lol). But can you please tell me, how much is the subscription plan you talk about? 
    Apart from that, it all sounds amazing. One last question, what is the smallest size lead that it can be attached to? “Chi” is a biter, but he doesn’t bite his collar, so that would be the best place for it.

    Thanks 

    Stephen 

    Reply
    • Hi Stephen,

      Yes, the FitBark GPS is priced very well, considering all of its features, it’s a really great deal!

      The FitBark GPS is priced at $49.95 U.S. Dollars, plus a subscription plan.

      You can choose between:

      Monthly Plan for $9.95/month,

      1-Year Plan $7.95/month

      2-Year Plan $6.95/month

      3-Year Plan $5.95/month

      As you can see, the better deal is going with a longer plan.  

      I will update my post to include these prices.

      As for the collar size, the FitBark GPS can only be attached to a collar, it will not work on a harness.  It will fit collars of any size as long as they are not larger than 1.5″ (38mm).  

      FitBark GPS is available in one size only, but, it is small and lightweight, which makes it ideal for dogs of all sizes.  There is a video on the FitBark website that shows you how to attach it to collars that are smaller than 0.8″ (20mm).  The instructions are the same as in the video that I have included above.

      I hope this has answered your questions.  Please let me know if you have any more questions.  I would be happy to help.

      Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.

      Jenny.

      Reply
  3. Let me just start off by saying that I am a proud dog dad myself : ) Anything that I can do to help keep my boy safe sounds like a great investment!  This seems like a great tool especially for those who may be away from their dog for a while.  Having GPS tracking could certainly be a lifesaver.  Fortunately, my dog loves his bed too much, and would never leave the house unwillingly.  Having said this, it would still be a great tool for emergency-type situations.

    Reply
    • Hi Andrew,

      The FitBark GPS has proven to be a lifesaver for many dog owners already!  It certainly is a great tool that gives you peace of mind, especially in emergency situations.  Not only that, but many dogs run away when they hear loud noises like fireworks or thunder, having GPS tracking during those situations would be beneficial.

      It’s great that your dog loves the comfort of his bed too much to leave the house on his own, Lol!  My Golden Retriever is also one that doesn’t venture far away from me or food, Lol.  But, if she were to smell something or chase after a cat or other animal, she’d be gone.  Being able to track her whereabouts is just an added safety and security feature.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts and taking the time to comment.

      Take care,

      Jenny.

      Reply
  4. What a great product! Dogs do have a tendency to run after rabbits or birds or other potential prey, even cars, so having a GPS attached to the collar is fantastic! I never even knew there was such a device. It’s truly amazing how a tiny thing like a FitBark can measure all sorts of health issues in a frisky canine with a furry neck. Someday, if I ever get to have a dog, I really want one!

    For now, I’m hoping someone will invent a FitMeow! My little Marlon is always trying to sneak outside, which would not be a good thing in this neighbourhood.

    Reply
    • Hi Neko Cat,

      What a clever name for a device for a cat, the FitMeow!  Maybe you should invent one.  That being said, the FitBark can be worn by other animals including a cat.  The only thing is, you wouldn’t be able to use any comparisons or baselines for health and breed, as you are able to with dogs.  With a dog you are able to compare your dog to other dogs who are the same age, weight, and breed, that’s just not possible for a cat.

      I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts.

      Jenny.

      Reply
  5. A GPS unit just for dogs? Better yet, a FitBit designed for our pup? We live in a place where there’s a lot of forests out our back door and I often walk our pup off-leash up there. Sometimes he just gets on a scent and takes off for 15 to 20 minutes. I’m really confident that he’ll always come back, but I’d be lying if I said I haven’t had a few moments of panic, especially when we go for a walk around sunset. I’d love to have a way to track him from my smartphone. I’m going to look into this for the holidays. Thanks! 

    Reply
    • Hi Tucker,

      Having a GPS tracker on your dog can prove to be life-saving.  As dog owners, we know our dogs best and can be confident that our dog will always return to us, but as you mentioned there are times when our dogs send us into a panic mode.  Dogs have an amazing sense of smell and can wander off to follow a scent trail to who knows where!  Leaving us to wonder and worry where they are and if they are in trouble.  It is times like that where a GPS unit like the FitBark is a great idea!  

      I think that you will find the FitBark GPS to be an invaluable device for your dog as well as you.  If you own a Fitbit, you can track your health and activity to that of your dog and both of you can motivate each other to get healthy and stay healthy.

      I want to thank you for sharing your thoughts and taking the time to comment.

      Jenny.

      Reply

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