Is there a GPS tracking device for my dog or cat without a SIM card?

14 May 2021

Find out now which GPS trackers function without a SIM card and discover the advantages and disadvantages of gps pet tracking devices in general!

Is there a gps tracker for my dog or cat without a sim card

This topic might be familiar or of interest to you already. You’re searching for the perfect GPS tracker for your dog or cat and want to know the answers? Look no further! Here’s what this article will clarify for you:

  1. Is there a GPS tracking device for our four-legged friends without a SIM card? Why do some trackers need a SIM card and others don’t?
  2. Advantages and disadvantages of a non-exchangeable SIM card
  3. 4 things to know before buying a GPS tracker

These GPS tracking technologies do (or don’t) need a SIM card

To give you an overview of this topic, we’ve analyzed the 4 most common GPS tracker technologies, which do or do not need a SIM card below. Find out which GPS device best fits to your needs:

Overview of the various type of GPS trackers
GPS Tracker: A GPS transmitter can be attached to your dog or bike and the collected GPS data is transmitted from the tracker to your smartphone, using an integrated GSM module and SIM card.

  • Worldwide localization: this means no distance or range limitation
  • Automatically connects to the best network available for precise localization
  • Protection against theft with real-time tracking
  • Localization possible: You can check directly on your smartphone, where your dog is, no need to send an SMS prior to that
SIM card:Costs:Area of applicability:
Necessary, since the GPS data is transmitted via the local mobile network. Positioning is possible.Small acquisition cost (ca. 50€) and a marginal subscription plan fee required for the SIM card (starting at 3.75€ / month)
  • End consumer
  • Owner of a pet
  • Recording of the route (for truck drivers for e.g.)
Satellites or Iridium Tracker: This technology does not use GSM, but 66 GPS satellites, found around the planet. For this reason, the technology is less dependent on external factors, so the tracker’s operation is less restricted (for example when used in a dense wood):

  • Worldwide positioning
  • Very precise positioning and worldwide coverage
  • Protection against theft, due to the real time tracking
  • Positioning is possible
SIM card:Costs:Area of applicability:
Necessary, since the GPS positions are sent to a separate device.Very high acquisition costs (starting at 100€ up to 600€) and relatively low costs for the running subscription (ca. 10€/ month).
  • Sportsmen
  • Containership
  • Operational utilization
  • Protogear
  • YB
GPS Logger: This GPS device records the route, but can be viewed on your PC only after the hike or walk has come to an end.

  • No active tracking, only passive
  • Very exact positioning and worldwide coverage
  • No protection against theft, since no real-time tracking is possible
  • No positioning possible
SIM card:Costs:User and producer:
Not required. The recorded route is not communicated to a smartphone.Only acquisition costs (ca. 50 – 150€).
  • Hikers
  • Biers
  • Skiers
  • Renkforce
GPS Navigation Systems: Here, there is an extra monitor built into the GPS module.

  • No active positioning, only passive
  • Worldwide coverage
  • Real time communication, but no protection against theft
  • No positioning possible
SIM card:Costs:User and producer:
Not required, since the route is not communicated to a separate device, but can be directly viewed on the screen.Only acquisition costs (ca. 100 – 350€).
  • Cars
  • TomTom
  • Garmin

Note: The table provided above offers a basic overview and understanding. No detailed information related to individual devices is given.

In order to have a clear answer to the question whether there is a GPS tracker without a SIM card: Yes, there is such a device. Nevertheless, GPS trackers without SIM cards have various areas of operation.

The answer to the question “Why do some GPS trackers need a SIM card and others don’t?” is the following: If the GPS device has to communicate the recorded route or data further to a smartphone or separate device, a SIM card is needed.

For locating your four-legged friend, we recommend a GPS tracker (option 1). There are trackers designated especially for pets, like the Tractive GPS Tracker for dogs and Tractive GPS Tracker for cats, both designed to fulfill the individual needs of that specific pet.

Did you know there is also a Bluetooth tracker for pets? Discover the differences between a GPS and Bluetooth tracker, so you can choose the right device for you!

dog gps tracking device without sim card

(Non) exchangeable SIM card: This is what you definitely should know before purchase

For every use case, there is a fitting tracker. When you are searching for a perfect tracking device for your pet, the GPS tracker with a SIM card is definitely the best option to go for.

You may ask yourself which alternative is better: a fixed, integrated or exchangeable SIM card? In order to help you with this decision, we’ve compiled the following advantages and disadvantages.

Overview for advantages and disadvantages of a non-exchangeable SIM card in a GPS tracker

Advantages of a non-exchangeable SIM cardDisadvantages of a non-exchangeable SIM card
  • 100% waterproof
  • Subscription, depending on the usage
  • No tinkering necessary
  • No need to load the SIM card
  • Less effort and stress

For the tracking of your dog or cat, the use of a GPS tracker with a non-exchangeable integrated SIM card is recommended, since your furry friend may often come in contact with water.

Be aware of these 4 things, before buying a GPS tracker

In this overview, you’ll  find an overview of 4 things to consider before buying the best fitting GPS tracker for your pet:

Battery life:
How often will the tracker be used?
Size and weight:
Does the tracker fit to my pet’s size and breed?
Is the device waterproof?
Additional features of a GPS tracking device
Does it offer activity tracking? Does it have a breakaway mechanism, to avoid strangulation? Does it come with an exchangeable battery?

In order for you to find the best fitting GPS tracker for your beloved furry friend, here’s an a comparison between the different Tractive GPS tracking devices.

Discover Tractive GPS

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