Fi Collar Review

fi smart dog collar

Dogs bring us more love than we can ever explain, and we wouldn’t give them up for the world… but they also spark a lot of anxiety in pet parents. If they show signs of being unwell, are off their food, or swallow something strange, we’re phoning the vet at the drop of a hat.

But that’s not our biggest fear…

We’ve all seen those posters lining the street. Heartbreaking images of adorable pups with the dreaded word ‘LOST’ stamped on the top…

It might seem crazy, but 10 million pets go missing in the US alone – and 1 in 3 pets will get lost at least once in their lifetime! Now, the good news is that up to 97% of these animals do find themselves home eventually… but there’s still that 3%.

If your worst nightmare is losing your beloved pooch (and let’s face it, who doesn’t have this nightmare?!), then you might want to think about getting a GPS collar for them. And the Fi GPS Dog Collar is one of the best ones out there.

Overview of Fi Series 2 Collar

Despite your best efforts, there’s still a good chance your dog might go missing one day. But with the wonders of modern technology, this doesn’t have to be your worst fear anymore. Instead, with the availability of the best dog fence and innovative smart dog collars, it’s just an inconvenience.

Fi-Dog-Collar-review

One of the best dog collars out there is the Fi Dog Collar Series 2. Made by Fi, this collar is more than just an invisible dog fence – it uses Wi-Fi and GPS to keep track of your dog’s location at all times. It even tracks your dog’s activity, whether they’re awake or asleep!

This means you can keep tabs on your active dog remotely from anywhere at any time to give you the ultimate peace of mind.

And you don’t even need to worry about them jumping in a pond and breaking it – it’s fully waterproof too!

Now, if you ever considered trying out Fi’s first model a few years ago but were put off by the price, you’re in luck. The Fi smart collar Series 2 is actually cheaper than the original Fi smart dog collar.

Fi Series 2 Collar

The price of “Fi Series 2 Collar” varies, so check the latest price at

The new Fi GPS collar comes in four colors (gray, yellow, blue, and pink), as well as four sizes. The tracker itself isn’t too big – only about the size of a matchbox with metal clips for added security. But if you’re worried about the collar’s aesthetic being ruined by the tracker, Fi even sells accessory bands separately.

How Does Fi Dog Collar Work?

The Fi dog collar is far more than just a regular dog collar. There are two sides to this piece of tech: the activity tracker and the dog’s location tracker.

Activity Tracker

The activity tracker works exactly how you would imagine. The little box nestled on your pooch’s collar records every step they take. You can peak at their stats, and daily step count in the Fi collar app to make sure they’re active enough.

The Series 2 actually takes it up a notch by including a sleep tracker too. So now you can even track their sleep habits. If your pooch suddenly starts waking up in the middle of the night for some reason, it might be worth investigating.

Location Tracker

But the real reason dog owners and dog walkers are so interested in the Fi smart dog collar is the location tracking.

Most of the time, the Fi collar will function more like an invisible dog fence. There’s a virtual perimeter extending from either the base station at home or your phone if you’re out and about. If your dog ever leaves this perimeter, you’ll get a notification from the Fi app telling you your dog escaped.

This isn’t the same as a standard invisible dog fence or shock collar though. There’s no stimulus telling your dog that they’re near the boundary, and there’s no static or vibrational correction if they leave.

Instead, the Fi dog collar kicks into ‘lost dog mode’, where it uses three constellations of satellites to get a precise location of your dog. With the Fi dog collar around your pup’s neck, the location tracking means they won’t be lost for long.

Subscriptions

Just keep in mind that without a subscription, you won’t be able to use the ‘lost dog mode’. If your pup strays too far away from the base station or your phone, it won’t be connected to Wi-Fi or Bluetooth.

When they’re too far away, the GPS/ LTE technology kicks in to track them down – and that’s what requires a subscription, just like having a plan for your phone.

The good news is that Fi offers a 30-day free trial on their AT&T network. But after that, you have to select a subscription package. Fortunately, there are three prices on offer for different budgets:

fi smart dog collar
  • The 1-year package costs $99, coming to $1.89 per week.
  • The 2-year package saves 5% and costs $186, coming to $1.79 per week.
  • The 3-year package saves 16% and costs $248, coming to $1.59 per week.

Fi Dog Tracker: General & Technical Features Review

The thing about smart dog collars is that you have to take two sides of the collar into consideration: the technical side and the more general bits you usually think about when buying a collar.

General Features

Smart dog collars are all about the electronic, technical features – they’re what make them so special. But a flimsy collar that gets destroyed, doesn’t fit, or breaks easily is no good to anyone.

So, here are some of the general features to be aware of when looking into the Fi smart dog collar.

Size

Since the tracker on the Fi dog collar is a little bulky, your dog needs to be big enough to carry it around. Fi recommends your dog be no smaller than 10 pounds. It’s also important to get the right size. The Fi dog collar comes in four sizes, from small to extra-large.

  • Small: Fits dogs with a neck circumference of 11.5” to 13.5”. Perfect for Boston terriers, Frenchies, and pugs.
  • Medium: Fits dogs with a neck circumference of 13” to 16.5”. Perfect for bulldogs, corgis, and beagles.
  • Large: Fits dogs with a neck circumference of 16” to 22.5”. Perfect for poodles, Siberian huskies, and golden retrievers.
  • Extra-large: Fits dogs with a neck circumference of 22” to 34.5”. Perfect for bloodhounds, great Danes, and mastiffs.

Design

The Fi dog collar comes in four colors to choose from: gray, yellow, blue, or pink. But there’s also the Fi Maker program which lets you choose different designs and materials. These custom-made designs can let you have your dog’s Fi collar made of leather or even beads!

Material

Somehow, active dogs manage to get their teeth into anything if they’re determined enough. That’s why the Fi collar is resistant to chewing. It has an armored aluminum faceplate as well as internal metal armor. This ought to stop stronger dogs ripping through it – and it can withstand up to 300 pounds of pull force too (if you can hold on that long!).

Still, even if your dog does manage to wreck it, the collar comes with a 1-year warranty, and you can buy a replacement webbing design. The durability even extends to the tracker, attached to the collar with metal clips – considerably more secure than similar collars which use Velcro.

Technical

As durable and colorful as the Fi smart dog collar is, the smart technology is what makes it stand out from other collars.

Battery life

One of the Fi collar’s best technical features is its battery life. While it does depend on the activity of your dog, the Fi collar’s battery life can last up to three months and is fully rechargeable.

Of course, if you have to put your dog into ‘lost dog mode’, it can only be expected to last up to two days. This is due to how frequently the collar communicates with satellites for a precise location. Still, if your pooch does run off, the battery lasts long enough for you to find them again.

The battery uses smart power management, making sure to automatically connect to Wi-Fi access points and Bluetooth whenever possible. This makes sure the battery lasts as long as it can. When the battery life reaches 20%, though, you’ll be notified via the Fi app.

Waterproof

If you want your dog to be let off the leash, you can’t expect them not to dive into a body of water. After all, dogs love finding any excuse to get wet!

But don’t worry about strapping an expensive piece of kit to their neck. The Fi collar is completely waterproof with a rating of IP68. This means it can be submerged up to a depth of 1.5 meters for 30 minutes – that makes it perfect for wet adventures!

LED Light

There’s nothing like a nighttime walk with your pooch – but letting them off the leash is a scary thought if you can’t see them. That’s why Fi has included an LED light on the dog’s collar. It can light up in seven different colors and can be activated easily through the Fi app.

Location Tracker

No matter where you are, so long as your pooch has its Fi collar around its neck, you can check its real-time location at any time – even if they’re lost.

fi smart dog collar

When at home, the collar connects to the base station, which creates a circular safe zone. You can adjust the radius of the zone via the app, but it has to be a minimum radius of 60 feet. The other problem is that the safe zone can only be circular – you can’t adjust the shape.

If you want, you can even get additional base stations if you and your pup go to other family members’ houses regularly. Or you could get an additional one to make an even bigger safe zone if you have a huge property.

When you’re out and about, the collar connects to your phone via Bluetooth to take the geofence with you. You can even allow other people, like a dog walker, to get the app and connect to the collar too, so you always know who your pooch is with.

Lost Dog Mode

But what about if your dog steps out of the safe zone? If this happens, you’ll get a notification on your phone, and the collar switches to its GPS and LTE-M network. Remember: this isn’t a shock collar, so there won’t be any shock or vibration to tell your dog they’re leaving the safe zone.

When your dog escapes, you can activate the ‘lost dog mode’ on the Fi mobile app, which turns on live location tracking – this is where the subscription for the cellular plan is needed.

Using its three constellations of satellites, the collar sends a notification to you every minute to help track them down, and their location is accurate up to 10 to 15 meters – close enough to find them. Even if it’s night, the collar has a red, pulsing light so you can spot them in the dark.

halo collar review

Activity Tracker

One of the features you’re likely to use a lot is activity tracking. As your pooch wears the collar, it reports your dog’s daily activity, where you can see everything in the accompanying app. It counts the number of your dog’s steps and even gives you an idea of how many they took on each walk.

The app even gives your dog a daily step goal – just like we humans have – to make sure they stay active and healthy. Just remember – there’s no definitive number of steps a dog needs, and it always varies between different dogs and breeds. So, feel free to customize your pup’s goal if it’s too low or too high.

It’s especially important not to have the step goal too high for younger puppies. Remember – they’re still just babies who are still growing. You should ensure they don’t exercise too much because that can strain and injure their developing bones. Fi knows this, which is why they’ve introduced a ‘strain score’ for you to stay beneath.

But for those of you planning to go on long adventures with your canine companion, you can compare your stats with other Fi users on the app. See how your pooch’s fitness stacks up next to dogs of a similar breed. It’s a great motivator to get them out on more walks!

Sleep Tracker

Sleep tracking is the newest feature that Fi came out with for their Series 2 collar – and it’s one feature that gives them the edge over similar dog tracking collars.

Believe it or not, your dog’s sleep is a good indicator of its health, a bit like humans. So, it’s important to be aware of how they’re sleeping each night – hard to do when we’re trying to get some shut-eye as well.

The Fi collar tracks the dog constantly, whether they’re sleeping, just napping, or fully awake. Amazingly, the technology can even differentiate between a dog sleeping and napping with surprising accuracy.

The app shows your pup’s sleep stats by hour, day, week, and even month. Keep an eye out for any unusual sleeping patterns, like having to wake up for water regularly. You never know, it might mean the trip to a vet.

Setting Up the Fi Collar

If you want, you can start setting up the collar before you even get it. By using the Fi Maker program, your collar can have its own custom-made design.

Once you have your collar, you only need to pop it around your pup’s neck and set it up on the app, which is available on both Android and iOS. After you register for an account, you create a profile for your dog, including their name, gender, breed, birthday, weight, and photo.

It’s a very user-friendly app, but it’s worth spending some time familiarizing yourself with the five tabs at the bottom.

The first tab is called ‘Live’. This shows your dog’s current location along with the collar’s battery level and a timeline of their activity. It shows their last walk’s duration, distance, and step count.

The second tab is called ‘Discover’ and is essentially Instagram for dogs. You can see photos of other dogs uploaded by nearby Fi users that you can like and comment on, as well as add your own.

The third tab is ‘Rank’ and shows how your dog’s step count stacks up compared to other Fi dogs nearby, with specific leaderboards for breed and state.

The fourth tab is ‘Activity’ and shows your dog’s daily activity as a graph you can view by the hour, day, week, or month. It also includes a graph of your dog’s sleep activity, showing your pup’s total time asleep and number of interruptions.

The fifth tab is called ‘Profile’, where you can view and edit your public profile. Here, you can also access your settings to add and edit safe zones.

Pros and Cons of Fi Collar Series 2

Pros

  • Long battery life
  • Waterproof
  • Option to add multiple users to the app
  • Set desired geo-boundaries
  • User-friendly app
  • Social, fun aspect of the app
  • Accurate GPS tracking
  • LED light for visual tracking at night
  • Quick escape alerts
  • Ability to track sleep and activity

Cons

  • More expensive than regular collars (but more affordable than some other smart collars)
  • Requires a subscription for full GPS functionality
  • Not suitable for smaller dogs under 10lbs

Fi Series 2 Collar

The price of “Fi Series 2 Collar” varies, so check the latest price at

Fi Collar Alternatives

With lots of GPS dog collars out there, you’ll find plenty to choose from. However, the Fi collar has the edge over several others.

One advantage is the Fi company itself, which always pays attention to customer feedback. For example, they made sure the newly released Series 2 had better Wi-Fi integration and better accuracy.

Another pro of Fi collar is how it uses the LTE-M network. This is much more effective and wide-reaching than using just LTE, 3G, 4G, or 5G networks.

However, there are still other similar dog collars that are worth comparing.

The Tractive and Whistle Go Explore collars are similar to the Fi in many ways. They allow you to set up and customize safe zones and virtual fences, show your dog’s location history, and use satellite signals to track your pup’s location.

However, where the Tractive dog collar has an edge over the Whistle dog collar by recording the altitude and speed of the collar for better accuracy. The Tractive also gives live location updates every two to three seconds, whereas the Whistle collar updates the location every 60 seconds.

Fi vs Halo

On the other hand, the Halo 2+ collar is the next-generation, state-of-the-art smart dog collar. With similar features to the Fi collar, the Halo 2+ also includes location history, and location data updates, and requires cellular coverage.

fi smart dog collar

However, while analyzing Fi vs Halo, it is noteworthy that the Halo dog collar goes one step further by including stimulus corrections to stop your pup from escaping the invisible fence. But it’s worth noting the Halo collar’s much higher price tag.

Halo Collar

The price of “Halo Collar” varies, so check the latest price at

Compared to the Whistle and Tractive collars, the Fi collar has similar features but still comes up on top with its unique sleep tracking capability and superior location tracking technology. Though the Halo dog collar may be more high-tech, the Fi collar’s price is much more reasonable.

Conclusion

According to this Fi dog collar review, with the huge range of features on offer, the Fi collar is absolutely worth the price – especially since it’s cheaper than Series 1 when it was first released.

The Series 2 improves on all the things its predecessor did so well, but with even better location tracking, a longer-lasting battery life, faster escape alerts, and even a sleep-monitoring feature.

If you want to give your pup freedom and let them off the leash as much as possible, the Fi smart collar is all you need for peace of mind. Say goodbye to nightmares of losing your dog, and hello to extra freedom!

Matt Twinley
Matt spends his days working with Halie, his adorable cockapoo puppy, by his side. Having owned a variety of pets his whole life, Matt is passionate about animals and always feels most at home with a furry friend. He loves learning about animals and how to care for them. When he’s not researching and writing about how best to care for animals and pets, you can find him going on adventures with his dog or writing about mythical animals for his book.

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