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AirTags may be a convenient way for tracking dogs that might get off leash or otherwise lost, but there are dangers associated with the practice, as outlined by a report from The Wall Street Journal.

dewey-airtag.jpg

At 1.26 inches in diameter, AirTags are able to fit easily on a dog's collar, but that size also makes the tracking devices small enough to swallow, at least for a medium to large-sized dog, and a quick internet search indicates multiple incidents where dogs gobbled up an AirTag.

Dog owner Colin Mortimer told The Wall Street Journal that the AirTag on his dog Sophie's collar went missing. He tracked it with the Find My app and was able to get it to play a sound, with the beeping coming from the stomach of his other dog, Sassy. Sassy was able to throw the still-functioning AirTag up, but sometimes these incidents can require surgery.


Over on Reddit, a user's doberman swallowed an AirTag, while another user reported watching a dog at the dog park eat an AirTag. A MacRumors reader also saw a swallowing incident with a dog and an AirTag, suggesting accidental AirTag consumption by dogs is not super rare. In fact, a Louisiana vet told The Wall Street Journal that he had treated six dogs that had swallowed an AirTag in the last 18 months, and in each case, the AirTag had initially been attached to the dog's collar.


Apple does not recommend that AirTags be used for tracking pets or children, and in fact, has said that it is not something that people should do, as AirTags were designed for tracking items rather than living creatures. AirTags that are swallowed may pass safely through a pet's digestive system, but there can be complications if the AirTag should come apart.

There is a CR2032 battery inside the AirTag, and if damaged, some batteries can leak a caustic substance that can damage a pet's stomach or mouth, if the battery is chewed, or lead to poisoning. Ann Hohenhaus, a senior veterinarian at the Schwarzmann Animal Medical Center in New York said that if a dog eats an AirTag, it needs to come out "as quickly as possible."

Dog owners who do attach an AirTag to a pet collar should look for one that is as secure as possible, with no hanging component that a dog is able to reach or chew through, such as the TagVault from Elevation Lab. There are many AirTag dog collar options on the market, but there is no oversight for these products nor does Apple recommend any of them, so they should be used with caution.

Article Link: Report Highlights Danger of Using AirTags for Tracking Dogs
 

Supercyborgninja

macrumors regular
Jul 22, 2022
193
387
Oh shoot that's scary, can't use an AirTag on my GSD cause I walk her off leash & she's rarely in a collar. Luckily since a puppy we've had her left in the front yard or had her get to the front from the back..or even once she got into an adjacent neighborhood. Luckily she always comes to the front of our door when she's done being a hooligan lol.
 
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antiprotest

macrumors 601
Apr 19, 2010
4,141
14,761
This just means you need a collar that completely seals the AirTag rather than allow it to dangle. The problem is poorly designed AirTag collars.

Dogs can swallow all sorts of things around the house anyway. And just like if you have kids in the house you need to organize your things with that in mind.
 
This just means you need a collar that completely seals the AirTag rather than allow it to dangle. The problem is poorly designed AirTag collars.

Dogs can swallow all sorts of things around the house anyway. And just like if you have kids in the house you need to organize your things with that in mind.
True but the main issue is it contains a battery that can leak a caustic substance that can damage a pet's stomach or mouth.
 

atomic.flip

macrumors 6502a
Dec 7, 2008
816
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Orange County, CA
One of my Siberian Huskies will eat alcohol swabs and bloody bandages. Literally nabs them and swallows them whole. LOL

He even swallowed and entire 6 inch long and inch in diameter pork rib with the meat on it. That actually gave me a scare. But guess what. Nothing happened. He was just fine.

Someone getting an X-ray for their dog eating an AirTag is just ridiculous. If the dog can swallow it they can likely pass it in their stool.
 

atomic.flip

macrumors 6502a
Dec 7, 2008
816
1,487
Orange County, CA
True but the main issue is it contains a battery that can leak a caustic substance that can damage a pet's stomach or mouth.
The chance of that happening during a routine voyage through the alimentary canal is extremely minimal.

We implant more dangerous battery powered things into people on a regular basis and those have no means to exit the body without surgery.
 

Kabeyun

macrumors 68040
Mar 27, 2004
3,416
6,445
Eastern USA
The chance of that happening during a routine voyage through the alimentary canal is extremely minimal.
“routine voyage” 🤣

We implant more dangerous battery powered things into people on a regular basis and those have no means to exit the body without surgery.
Any permanently-implanted, battery-containing medical device has more than an IP67 rating.
 
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ipedro

macrumors 603
Nov 30, 2004
6,285
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Toronto, ON
Dogs can eat anything lying around the house, whether or not they're used on the dogs themselves. This is just a clickbait story because anything with "Apple" attached gets hits.

Sure, it's not the best real time tracker but if you live in a city with lots of iPhones, the Find My network is accurate enough that if you lose your dog, you'll have a general idea of where they went off to.

I used it as peace of mind when I travelled, knowing that my dog was still at my friend's house instead of trying to escape and find her home. Best $29 I've ever spent on my dog.
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2004
5,604
19,844
Dog owner Colin Mortimer told The Wall Street Journal that the AirTag on his dog Sophie's collar went missing. He tracked it with the Find My app and was able to get it to play a sound, with the beeping coming from the stomach of his other dog, Sassy.
It's obvious what happened here. Sophie was trying to escape from the clutches of Colin Mortimer. The plan was for Sassy to swallow Sophie's AirTag so she couldn't be tracked while she ran for help, but Colin caught onto their scheme before Sophie could get away.
 
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HobeSoundDarryl

macrumors G5
I want to track a 🦈 Shark or 🐬 Dolphins in the Pacific Ocean (Follow the marine life journey). Would that be possible???

Feed one of these hungry dogs to the shark? ;)

Dye one of these hungry dogs fur to make it look like a big beach ball for the dolphins? ;)

OK, OK, there’s an app for that basically using a variation of the same concept.
 
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