Fi Dog Tracking Collar

Our dogs are family, and unfortunately, there are situations where they can lose their way or get separated from their owners. This can happen even to highly trained dogs, such as K9s.

It may occur only once in a dog's life, but if you could magically wave a wand and pay a sum of money to know exactly where your dog is, how much would you be willing to spend? The answer, in the author's mind, would be a significant amount of money.

Well, in this scenario, Fi collars can provide exactly that, but for a more predictable cost. This situation is much more realistic because if your dog actually gets lost, the magic wand scenario won't be there, but Fi will be there if they are wearing the collar.

First, let's consider some numbers based on the aforementioned scenario. The author is an optimist and hopes to have 14 healthy years with their dog, Cody. Let's assume that as the lifespan of the dog. The current price for the device is around $100, and the following numbers are based on data from June 2023. It's possible that monthly fees will increase over the years, but let's keep things simple for now.

A one-year membership currently costs $192, which would amount to approximately $2,880 in fees for the dog's lifespan. A two-year membership costs $336, which would equal $2,352 for the dog's lifespan.

When you consider how painful the event of losing a dog is and the fact that Fi can help rectify that, the author believes it's worth the investment.

Now that the cost aspect has been addressed, which the author considers one of the bigger considerations, let's discuss the performance of the Fi collar.

For clarity, the author has been using the series 2 system for two years. Fi is now on series 3, which offers a substantial performance upgrade. Based on their experience with the series 2 and the device as a whole, it's highly likely that the series 3 does what Fi claims it can do, which is awesome.

The Fi device is relatively small, making it suitable for most dogs. It has a connection system that allows the user to swap the stock collar out with custom ones, which is necessary as they can get dirty over time.

The Fi device utilizes a small base that plugs into the wall. The setup process is straightforward. You set up an invisible fence over a satellite overlay of your property. The base ensures that the device has an extremely long battery life (around a month and a half for the author, even with daily excursions off the property). If the dog leaves the property, you receive a notification with the dog's location.

If the dog is truly lost, you can activate "Lost dog mode." This mode increases the duration of time the device receives GPS data. It works well, particularly in areas with more cell towers. In the author's experience, even in rural areas of New England with limited cell towers, the device still functions and gets you within approximately 50 feet of your dog. However, experiences can vary.

The device is highly durable. Even a 140-pound Irish wolfhound pulling hard on a leash while wearing the collar (series 2) did not cause any issues. The series 3 improves on previous stories of the collar breaking easily. The device is fully waterproof. It has endured hits from dogs playing in the yard, including key nibbling on the neck, without any problems. The author previously had a similar system from a well-known brand, which was made of plastic and constantly broke off during play. That was the turning point for switching to the Fi system.

Customer service from Fi is also commendable. When the author's dog broke the metal faceplate of the device (which is merely a fascia plate), Fi replaced the entire device free of charge, even though it did not noticeably affect performance.

One downside of the device is that if your dog is staying at someone else's home, like dog grandmas or grandpas, for an extended period (perhaps a week), the base should go with the dog, and a fence should be set up at the new address. Fi may have found a solution to this issue, but the author cannot provide further information on that.

Should you get this device even if you have a clingy dog? Absolutely, yes. When scared, dogs often have a significant fight-or-flight response, with an emphasis on flight. If a scary situation occurs, they are likely to bolt and run for a long time, not knowing how to get home. This can be a nightmare for a dog owner. While putting up flyers and searching the area is a good start, most dog owners would not simply stay put and wait. They would be out on the road and in the woods until their dog is found, just like the author.

The bottom line is, if you need this device and you keep it charged, it will be there for you when you need it. The author initially had doubts about the extra monthly cost, but after experiencing a horrific car crash where their dog Cody got separated (ejected) from the car and went missing for 45 minutes, their perspective changed immediately. Cody was luckily found by a passerby who made the connection, but the chances of that happening were incredibly small. Those 45 minutes felt like several hours, and the author even delayed going to the hospital to search for Cody, which was not the smartest move. The situation would have been dramatically different and significantly less emotionally taxing if they had the Fi collar as a standby. So, look no further for your friend-finding tool. This is it.

Check it out here.

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