Pet tech has taken a dramatic leap forward in recent years — no more so than with the advent of geofencing technology that enables dog owners to keep their pups contained without having to erect a fence or bury a wire underground.
But what really is geofencing? And how does it work?
Geofencing may be relatively new terminology for most of us, but the idea is really quite simple.
A geofence dog collar utilizes GPS (Global Positioning System) technology to enable you to easily create virtual boundaries at home, or just about anywhere you want — provided you have good coverage, of course.
And when we talk “good coverage” – we’re talking good cellular service or being within range of your home’s Wi-Fi network. Reliability and coverage can wane when you’re in areas with spotty cell coverage, or unreliable Wi-Fi.
Because let’s be real —a GPS dog collar works a little different than some of the other GPS products you might be used to (think car navigation systems or your phone’s map/directions app). There can be a big variation in what you’ll see, so it’s important to adjust your expectations.
How a GPS Dog Collar is Different From Other GPS Devices
The two biggest differences are accuracy and responsiveness. Your car’s GPS antenna is on its roof, pointed directly up at the sky, and even with that – it has trouble tracking you when you are in the middle of a crowded city or are driving through a tunnel.
A GPS dog collar packs its antenna into a tiny portable package and then points it down at the ground, with a big dog head in between it and the sky (where the satellites are!). This can affect the accuracy of the signal quite a bit. But don’t worry, these types of collars should still be precise enough to help you understand where your dog has been frolicking when he’s not in your yard, or aid you in finding him in the unfortunate event that he goes missing.
Responsiveness is the other thing you should know about. GPS collars have a pretty small battery as compared to your vehicle, and they are designed to provide containment and tracking functionality for as long as possible. Given that, information about your dog’s GPS location will probably update only once every few minutes. This may feel like a long time if you are staring at the app, but again, should be sufficient for nearly all people and pets.
So, while many pet owners today are discovering that a dog collar enhanced with geofence technology offers a wealth of benefits when compared with physical fences or those that use underground wires, many still don’t quite understand how it really works.
What to Know About Geofence Containment Systems
Unlike a physical barrier or buried wire system, geofence technology uses GPS data to allow you to drop pins onto a satellite image of your location.
A geofence dog collar will recognize these boundaries and automatically deliver the desired corrections and alerts if your pet strays outside them.
Yep, we’re talking endless backyard hangouts without worrying if she’ll run into the road — or after the neighbor’s cat. It’s containment that you can create in the palm of your hand, bolstered by satellite technology.
At Wagz, we’ve been fine-tuning the canine geofencing experience for a number of years and are thrilled to report that the Wagz Freedom Smart Dog Collar offers several game-changing features that both you and your dog will love.
But, before you access all geofencing has to offer, remember to adjust your expectations surrounding GPS technology as we mentioned above, and make sure wherever you decide to use the tech that you’re in a good area with adequate cellular coverage or in-home Wi-Fi connectivity.
And of course, training is key. This means it is necessary to spend time helping your dog understand the location of geofence boundaries and the alerts that help keep him safely contained.
During training, you'll try different stimuli, individually or in combination, to see what is most effective for your buddy.
To learn more about whether Wagz is right for you and your pup, we invite you to explore our website (including helpful sections on geofencing and our unique connective technology) or contact the Wagz team with a question.