Many RV-ers get concerned about leaving their beloved pets in the RV while they’re out and about. Will it be too hot for the dogs? Do we need to leave the AC on for them? The day may start off cool enough, but what if a clear day with lots of sunshine boost the car’s temperatures to unsafe levels?
Waggle is a unique temperature monitoring device designed specifically for RV-ers looking to keep their pets safe. Travelers can rest easy on outings knowing that their pets are comfortable and that they’ll get alerts if the conditions in the vehicle reach unsafe levels.
In this hands-on review, we’ll break down some of our favorite Waggle features and dig into how it can help keep your canine (or cat) safe while on the road!
Why Is Temperature Monitoring in RVs and Cars Important?
Monitoring your vehicle’s temperature when you have a pet on board is essential. Vehicles can quickly reach deadly temperatures on a hot day. Even on just moderately warm, you may be surprised at how quickly your car can get too hot for pets.
How Does Waggle Keep RV Pets Safe?
Waggle is a small temperature monitoring device that can easily be installed onto the inside of your RV or car. The device tracks the inside temperature of the vehicle and will alert you (via text, email, or both) when the temperature has become unsafe.
The temps inside a car can ride nearly 20º F in just 10 minutes, and almost 30º F in 20 minutes! This means that even on a breezy 70-degree day, your car could reach swelting temperatures of 100 degrees or higher in under half an hour.
A device like Waggle means you won’t have to worry about escalating temperatures when you’re traveling across the country – Waggle will let you know when the situation is no longer safe for your fur friend.
How Does Waggle Work?
The Waggle device must be connected and synced with the Waggle companion app on your smartphone. Within the app, you’ll have access to a number of settings. For example, you can choose at which temperatures or humidity levels you want to be alerted, and the frequency at which you want to be notified about the vehicle’s internal temperature.
Some of the most common and useful setting options include:
- Temperature alert. Get notified when the temperature is outside your set range.
- Low battery alert. Get notified when the Waggle battery is running low.
- RV power alert. Get notified when your RV has lost power and your Waggle device is instead running on battery.
- Humidity alert. Get notified when the humidity level is outside your set range.
- Notification settings. Set up email or mobile number alert notifications.
- Alert frequency. Choose the time intervals between alerts.
- Minimum and maximum temperature and humidity settings.
- Temperature unit selection. Choose Fahrenheit or Celcius temperature unit.
- Low battery threshold. Choose at what percent battery level you’ll be notified to recharge the battery.
- Sleek, lightweight device. The Waggle unit itself is small, unobstrusive, and lightweight enough that it should fit seamlessly into any RV or car without issue.
- Tons of setting options. As noted above, it’s great how many settings and options are available, allowing users to customize the kinds of alerts they want to recieve.
- Add Family Members. Waggle also lets you add extra family members to the alert list, so that even if your phone dies mid-trek, family members or friends will recieve the Waggle temperature alerts and jump into action if need be.
- Upgraded Model Options. In addition to the Waggle Lite, which we performed a hands-on review of, Waggle also offers a premium version of their device that includes an LCD screen as well as GPS tracking.
- Rving Network. As a bonus, Waggle has a built-in RVing network you can use to share and discover new RVing tips and popular destinations. You can even track your trips in the Waggle app.
- Vet Chat. The Waggle app also has a built-in online vet chat feature, which you can use to consult with online veterinarians (for an added fee).
- The app isn’t perfect. While the Waggle app is certainly decent enought and functions fine where it counts, I encountered a lot of “dead screens” where I was stuck and couldn’t continue on or exit to the previous screen. I was forced to close the app a few times due to getting stuck on certain screens.
- Monthly Expense. Using Waggle can get pricey, as you’ll have to purchase the device itself ($200-$300 depending on the model) as well as a network subscription ($10-$20 depending on subscription options) that allows the device to use Verizon 4G cellular data to monitor the vehicle and alert you. However, the data subscription is month to month, so you could potentially use the subscription during more critical months and cancel the subscription in milder weather if you feel confident that your pets will be safe in the vehicle.
- The text alerts can be annoying. It’s awesome that Waggle lets you customize ho frequently you get text alerts, and at what temperatures. However, I did find it annoying that every single text alert included a spammy link and no option to dismiss the alerts from the messaging screen. The ability to reply to the text alerts with a “stop” function would be nice.
Our Experience With Waggle
Remy and I don’t travel in an RV, but we drove across the country from Austin, TX to Boston, MA this summer. When you’re a solo cross-country driver, there are always going to be occasions where you have to leave your dog alone in the car, whether to grab some dinner or for a quick bathroom break.
Having Waggle to keep an eye on the car’s temperature allowed me to enjoy my car breaks without stress or concern about Remy, and made the trip overall much more enjoyable.
I’d also suggest posting a sign or note somewhere to your car to let folks passing by know that you’re monitoring the vehicle’s temperature.
Many people get quite frantic when they see an animal alone in a car (and for good reason), and leaving a note will assure kind-hearted strangers that you’re keeping close watch on your pooch from afar!
RV travel with a pet can be pretty stressful, but Waggle offers tremendous peace of mind for pet parents on the road!
Have you used Waggle before? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comments!