We tested the high-tech ‘smart collar’ that works like a Fitbit for your dog

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Is this Fi smart collar is the ultimate gadget for dog owners?

That may sound like a bold claim, but it’s already got a pretty strong resume. The Fi Series 2, the company’s latest in its line of high-tech puppy products, is literally like a Fitbit or Apple Watch for dogs.

Shop: Fi Series 2 Dog Collar, $149

Credit: Fi

This thing does it all. It has GPS tracking, an “escape detection” feature that lets you know if your dog runs away and a glowing LED bulb to help you find your furry friend in the dark.

Then, there are the fitness features — including a whole app dedicated to tracking your pup’s sleep and walk schedule, so you can always make sure it’s staying healthy.

On top of that, it’s basically indestructible. It’s waterproof, has three months of nonstop battery life and can withstand up to 300 pounds of pull resistance.

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So it’s easy to see why this collar has gone viral on TikTok, and even been named one of TIME’s best inventions of 2021.

Still, there’s a difference between reading about something and actually trying it. Thankfully, the nice people over at Fi were kind enough to send In The Know a collar so we could try it out ourselves. To see how our pets — and their humans — liked the collar, check out the clip above or keep reading below.

How well does the Fi Smart Collar work?

In trying this gadget, our first task was finding the perfect pup for the job.

Thankfully, this editor has plenty of wonderful dogs in his life, including the star of our collar-testing video, Yogi.

Credit: In The Know

Yogi and his human, Nick, both agreed to help us out with this video. To do that, Yogi wore his new smart collar for two straight weeks, while Nick used the Fi app to keep tabs on his sleep, fitness, location and more.

At the end of our trial period, we asked Nick what he thought about the collar. First and foremost, he used the app to keep tabs on Yogi while he was out of the house — the collar has a mega-accurate GPS that shows exactly where your pup is at all times.

He also used it to track Yogi’s fitness. During a walk or a day out in the park, the app would automatically notify Nick when Yogi had gotten the right amount of exercise in a day (each dog’s fitness suggestions are unique to their age, weight and breed, which you can add to their bio in the app).

Ultimately, Nick preferred the GPS feature and found the fitness and sleep tracking a little less important. That said, he acknowledged that different types of dogs — and people — might want to keep closer tabs on those stats.

Meanwhile, Yogi seemed very impressed by the collar. Even though he couldn’t literally review the gadget, he looked happy and energized running around the park to show it off.

So is the Fi smart collar worth it? Ultimately, it depends on what kind of dog you have — and what kind of relationship you have with them. If you travel a lot, or have a job that keeps you out of the house, it’s certainly worth the peace of mind. If your dog likes to run away, this makes a major difference too.

And of course, if you’re worried about your dog’s exercise or sleep schedule, then the Fi app is the perfect way to work on that. Also, just as important, the collars are really, really cute.

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