The Pawfit 2 dog GPS tracker and a small but powerful dog collar accessory. It’s a dog tracker, an activity and health monitor ‘fitbit’, and has a bunch of additional features for keeping your dog safe. But how does it perform? Lets find out in this comprehensive Pawfit 2 review.
As a smaller, mainly UK (Europe and North America are covered in the tracking), name in the dog tracker market – I wasn’t sure what to expect from the Pawfit. What surprised me most was the attention to detail of many of its features, it has clearly had a lot of thought put into it, the little extra features are ingenious and and the design feels premium despite its reasonable price tag.
But before we go into the inner workings, I’ve put together a handy summary table of the Pawfit 2 key features:
Pawfit 2 Overview
The UK designed Pawfit 2 is a lesser known but beautifully designed dog GPS tracker. Primarily it uses inbuilt GPS for both real-time and historical tracking data which relays directly to the users phone via the Pawfit app. In addition it is awash with features such as activity monitoring, a virtual fence, tamper alarms, heat sensors, voice ID and voice commands you can record yourself.
Given the size of the tracker, the quality of the components are high – from the crisp audio speaker to the high quality text-to-speech used in the voice ID.
But before I go on to reviewing the Pawfit, let’s dig deeper into the core features of the GPS collar.
Pawfit 2 Pet Tracker Features
Before we move onto the app and how this all works, let’s dig into the features. There are quite a few, some of which I’ve not seen before in a pet tracker.
The GPS location tracker is the core feature of the Pawfit. Using a combination of real-time tracking when needed and historical ping tracking for general use, your dog can be tracked and located using Google maps embedded on the app.
A separate tab on the app also shows historical Google maps tracking to see where your dog has been over the past seven days.
Also known as a dog fitbit, activity monitors are similar to those used by their human counterparts. It measures the movements of your dog including steps, active hours, rest hours, calories burned and distance walked. This can be broken down by day, week or month and includes a breakdown of times when your dog is active or resting.
Referred to as a safety zones by Pawfit, a virtual fence allows you to set up safe zones on a map where your dog should, and shouldn’t, be. For example, if you want to set a safety zone around your property, you can set it on the app. The app will then alert you if your dog leaves the designated area. You can set multiple zones and customise them when needed.
Other than when you first register the Pawfit, the safety zone is oddly buried in the app but can be found by going to Profile, selecting your pet, scrolling down to tracker settings and tapping Safety Zone.
Audio ID Tag
This was a really cool feature. Often dog trackers come with little stickers where you write your name and number should the dog (or the tracker) go missing. By default when you press the button it welcomes you to Pawfit, but once registered you can select a combination audio message with, for example, your dogs name, your name and your contact details. If your dog (or tracker) gets lost – anyone who finds it can press the button at the top and will hear an identifying voice message.
The voice was also phonetically accurate, another nice touch that adds that extra attention to detail.
Remote Voice Commands
Using the app you can record multiple voice commands that will sync directly to the GPS tracking collar. Loud and clear from the trackers speaker, these can be used for recall and dog training purposes.
What’s In The Pawfit Box?
When the device arrived, I was surprised at the size of the box. It’s compact and even with all the components, is lightweight.
The Pawfit itself is a small device, around the size of a 9v battery, and very light. This is wise, particularly for smaller breeds of dogs, as it stops the tracker being heavy or sagging on a dog collar. It’s well designed, with materials, colours and shape like an Apple product.
The quick start guide was fairly comprehensive and made setting up the tracker easy. In addition, the app itself has a handy wizard. I never ran into any difficulty with the setup and felt the “journey” has been well thought through.
Included is a charging cradle which the Pawfit clips onto as well as a charging cable. The charging cable is around a metre long and connects to the charging cradle. The cable is a standard USB and can either be plugged into an adapter, computer or standard USB port for charging.
Finally, to attach the tracker to a collar, there’s a collar strap and attachment. These are both sturdy and once secured to a dog collar or harness would not easily come off.
The majority of the configuration is done using the app. This requires a nominal monthly subscription.
Subscription and Registration
The Pawfit 2 app is available to download free on the Apple or Android store. Start by creating an account, I used email address but on the iPhone version there was also a Sign in with Apple or Facebook option. Once in, accept the location permission and Bluetooth access.
There’s a nice wizard to guide you through the rest – but you set up a profile for your dog including breed, age and weight.
To activate your Pawfit tracker you’ll need to add the Tracker (device) ID at the back. It’s the smallest font imaginable but thankfully there’s a QR code option.
This is the point where you need a subscription. The cost of this is very reasonable. There are two options, Basic or Premium, as well as various billing options (monthly, six months, one year and two years) with prices varying based on length. A breakdown of the plans is below:
For this review, I opted for the Basic Monthly as it fit my needs. It let me pay on card or PayPal and was very clear if I wanted to Auto-Renew or just pay manually – a nice touch, I’m not a fan of hidden auto-renews. Once done I was registered and ready to go!
The Pawfit 2 App
Like the product itself, the Pawfit app is well designed and stable. After registering it asks you to create an initial virtual fence, you can do this later, but for now I created one around my home.
The next part of the setup was my favourite bonus feature, the voice ID. You can create a virtual voice which activates when you press the ID button on the tracker itself. You can create a combination of your dogs name, your name, address and phone number.
The final step lets you set the minimum and maximum temperatures. This will alert you when the area surrounding the tracker gets too hot or cold. I just stuck with the default, but this would be particularly useful when during summer and winter seasons. Combined with the virtual fence, for example, you could be alerted if your dog is getting too hot while outside.
The rest of app is very simple to use. The main page, Map, contained the majority of the features. It gives a GPS signal strength and last known location. Pressing Find gives a more accurate GPS result, this live link lasts for 10 minutes but will drain the battery quicker. This is all done on an embedded Google Map, which makes it both familiar and accurate with street names etc.
Next is the light button. When pressed, the light button flashed the light green on the top of the GPS tracker for up to 10 mins. It’s not a very bright light, perhaps if you were close in the dark with the tracker pointing in that direction then you’d see it – otherwise I couldn’t think of many uses for it.
The alarm button sounds an alarm on the tracker for up to 10 mins. It was surprisingly loud which is handy if you’re searching for either your dog or the tracker. It may be worth testing it first on your dog that it doesn’t scare them away upon hearing it. Mine got used to it after a few seconds.
I love the voice feature. I recorded a number of my own voices on the app and sync’d them to the dog tracker. Commands were clear (the quality of the speaker on the tracker is superb) and I could select and play them with the app.
The next tab is the Activity monitor. As with many dog fitbits, it shows the number of steps taken as well as various figures (active hours, rest time, calories and distance) which can be broken down on a daily, weekly or monthly basis. It’s all touch controlled, so I could slide between all the different dates and times with a finger.
The rest of the app (History and Walk tabs) are concerned with historic data. Also using Google maps it’s a log and diary of where your dog has been with additional information such as walk duration, average speed, distance and number of steps being shown on the Walk tab.
Overall it’s a nice app, I found it stable, it didn’t crash or hang the entire time I was using it. There’s all sorts of little additions and features they’ve added. A professional, quality experience which didn’t feel rushed or ill-thought out.
Using the Pawfit 2 GPS Collar
So what’s the Pawfit 2 like to actually use on a daily basis? Overall I found the experience very positive. I’ve found with other trackers that the battery barely lasts a day, but the Pawfit held its own and lasted a few days of active use before I charged it (charge time from flat is around 2.5 hours). It will let you know when it’s running low – but for peace of mind I tend to charge trackers any couple of days anyway. Before writing this review, I’d read people online saying the battery runs down over time. This isn’t unusual in devices of this time, but I may update this review in a year if I find the same.
My partner and I use dog harnesses rather than collars when taking our dogs out, though I did try it on both. The Pawfit attachments fitted nicely on both a Ruffwear and a Mekuti dog harness. The side touching the dog was soft rubber and wasn’t coarse or rubbing against their skin.
One of the payoffs for securely attaching the tracker to a collar and harness are the plastic/rubber cradles. When taken from the cradle I then had to attach a part (collar attachment) at a 90 degree angle, push the orange clamp in and twist, then once over the harness strap, then clip the rubber part (collar strap) together the four rubber points on the back part.
This is fine, because once attached to the harness – you can just remove the tracker itself and leave the attachment on. But if you want to remove the whole thing from the collar/harness it will be a bit of a challenge.
Unclipping was fairly easy, just remember to push the orange clamp and twist. You can then charge and repeat. I worry about losing the bits of plastic as they’re all required (you can buy replacements for a couple of bucks if needed) but to ensure it doesn’t fall off, I see why they’ve designed it this way.
Generally I found the signal of the tracker to be good. But in certain locations the GPS struggled, the app reported it was weak or needed attention. This corresponds to some online reviews I read which complained about accuracy. I didn’t find it inaccurate however, generally even on occasions when I did experience a poor signal, I found both the historic ping and live location to be fairly spot on.
Though I’d configured the app over wifi, my data plan (you’ll need a phone with data) phone (4G/5G) worked great when out and about. At points my phone signal dropped to 3G, however I was still able to live track the Pawfit. Like using a Google Map app, the Pawfit app updated regularly and location was fairly accurate – even when the live Find wasn’t active. Looking back at the historical data of our walk showed the correct route we took.
The Pawfit is waterproof and dust proof to an IP68 standard – this means it may be submerged in up to 3 metres of water for 30 minutes. This is good for both rain and swims in the lake. However, make sure you dry the Pawfit before putting it back on charge. If your dog has been swimming in sea water, it’s worth rinsing it down with warm water to get rid of any salt that may have gathered. Also, as with anything with a speaker – make sure dust or water isn’t blocking it as it may affect the sound.
When my partner took my dog out for a walk, I got an alert that he had left the safety zone and another when returning. I set up a few safety zones, including when I was out at a local park, they worked perfectly – I neither received false reports or inaccurate readings.
Overall, I really enjoyed using the Pawfit GPS dog tracker. It was well made, cleverly designed, of a high quality, easy to setup and reliable to use. It’s not flawless, but it is a well priced, feature rich product I would happily use to track my dogs with.
Note: This is a review of the Pawfit 2 dog GPS tracker – primarily within the UK and Europe. For USA readers, there’s a slightly different Pawfit 3s tracker with the same features reviewed in this article.
- Packed with features
- Good battery life between charges
- Nice app - good UI, easy to configure
- Beautifully made
- Nice touches such as voice ID, waterproof, alarms
- GPS accuracy can be inconsistent depending on location
- Battery will run down over time
- Collar / harness clip a little clunky
An excellent GPS dog tracker. In design and features - the iPhone of the dog tracker market.
A beautiful GPS dog tracker with is both style and substance. It looks good, is lightweight, very compact and they haven't cut corners on the components. In addition to being a tracker, it has a wealth of features. The GPS can be a little off depending on location and the attachments are a little clunky, but overall it's a reliable little product that will serve both dog owners and dog walkers well. Recommended.
Editor and Head Writer | K9Gadget Magazine
Having worked in the technology sector for many years – he now immerses himself in all things dogs. Writes about subjects ranging from dog food to canine psychology with a little bit of pup technology thrown in. He’s been writing for nearly 15 years on the topics he loves. Lives in London.