Our Highest Rated Invisible Dog Fence Picks This Year

Did you know that over 6 million pets get killed on US roads every year? (Source)

Keeping our dog safe and secure on our property is a must if we want to prevent anything from happening to them. It is their nature to be curious explorers and only one of the many traits why we love them. We certainly want what’s best for them, and luckily, we live in times where everything is possible.

The electric fence system is one of those inventions that make the life of us pet owners that much easier and stress-free. You can create an invisible wall that can keep your dog in place without you worrying about it leaving the safety of your property. There are huge benefits of using such systems over traditional fences and we will show you why.

If you are in a hurry, and you just want to check our editor’s choice here they are:

5 Top Rated Wireless Dog Fence Systems

ProductNameMain FeaturePrice
PetSafe compare imageBest Overall Value
PetSafe System
Covers up to 1/2 square acre area surface
with up to 90 feet in all directions,
adjustable to fit all breeds
PetSafe Stay&Play compare imagePetSafe
Stay + Play
Covers up to 105 feet in all directions,
fully adjustable, Water and Dust design
FocusPet small imageBig Yards
Covers up to 500 (1640 ft.) meters
in all directions, collar fits dogs from
6 up to 26 inches neck sizes
Havahart small imageCurrently unavailable
Havahart Radial-Shape
Covers up to 11 acres in range
Collar fits 14 up to 26 inches neck sizes
PetFender small image for two Dogs
Pet-Fender Portable
Covers up to 700 feet in all directions,
set for two dogs, suitable for
8 and up to 120 pounds

PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System – Best Overall


  • Covers up to 1/2 square acre area surface with up to 90 feet in all directions
  • Expandable functionality allows adding infinite number of pets to the system
  • Portability means that is easy to carry along no matter where you go
  • Five levels of correction that include tone only function
  • Fully adjustable to fit all dog breeds
  • Water, Dust and Dirtproof design
Image PetSafe - The Ultimate Wireless Dog Fence System
For a reason, PetSafe is our Editor's pick and the highest rated wireless dog perimeter system

When you’re in need of a solution that will take all of your worries away regarding your pet’s movement restrictions, PetSafe has a nearly perfect solution for you. It creates a wireless boundary fence that can cover wide open areas for allowing maximum movement freedom.


  • Allows adding any number of pets as long as you have compatible collars
  • Impressive autonomy 30 days battery life for
  • Fully weather and environment proof
  • Easy to setup and customize
  • Comes with boundary flags included
  • Excellent included manual covers training too


  • Unstable performance over uneven terrain
  • Limited range might not fit everyone

The unlimited expandability and great features make it a wireless fence system that you just have to put on top of your shopping list.

PetSafe Stay + Play Wireless Fence


  • Covers up to 3/4 square acre area surface with up to 105 feet in all directions
  • Expandable functionality allows adding infinite number of pets to the system
  • Portability means that is easy to carry along no matter where you go
  • Five levels of correction that include tone only function
  • Fully adjustable to fit all dog breeds
  • Water, Dust and Dirtproof design

Another great product from PetSafe, their Stay+Play Wireless Fence covers more ground which allows your pooch to explore your backyard completely stress-free. It also has the benefit of being able to expand and support many pooches within a single boundary which is ideal for owners of more than a single canine.


  • Allows adding infinite number of dogs
  • Great three-week battery life
  • Fully weather and environment proof
  • Easy to setup and customize
  • Portable and easy to move
  • Comes with boundary flags included
  • Excellent included manual covers training too


  • Unreliable performance over uneven terrain
  • Expensive (for some)

If you need more ground for your pet while still keeping it inside of the invisible fence, Stay+Play proves to be an attractive product with only minor nitpicks that prevent it from being perfect.

FOCUSPET Containment System


  • Covers up to 500 (1640 ft.) meters in all directions
  • Collar fits dogs from 6 up to 26 inches neck sizes
  • One hundred levels of correction
  • Water, Dust and Dirtproof design
  • Comes with lots of additional accessories

When you need the longest range for the fence boundaries without using underground wires, FOCUSPET has a product that delivers. Its Wireless Containment System offers a fantastic range that will keep even the most active pooches satisfied.


  • Easy to use and setup
  • Provides a vast surface area signal cover
  • More than enough adjustment steps
  • Fully featured packaging with lots of useful add-ons
  • Very affordable price


  • Minimum range is only 20 meters from transmitter
  • Battery on the collar doesn’t last very long time
  • Best to use on level terrain with no objects

If you ignore some minor disadvantages, this could be a perfect choice for owners with big open yards.

Havahart Radial-Shape Select Fence


  • Covers up to 11 acres in the range
  • Collar fits dogs from 14 up to 26 inches neck sizes
  • In Home boundary breach alert feature
  • Enables owners to track movements of dogs
  • Suitable for use with up to two dogs
  • Comes with rechargeable batteries included
Image of Havahart radial shape with collar

When you require massive free roaming area most likely for more than one k9 then Havahart’s Wireless Radial-Shape Select Fence proves to be a unique and very effective solution. It even allows you to fully track movements of your pets within the free roaming area which is a must when they have so much ground at their disposal.


  • Easy to understand manual allows quick setup and installation
  • Offers incredible signal radius
  • Full movement tracking function
  • Comes with included spare rechargeable batteries
  • Comes with a 10-year manufacturer’s warranty


  • Transmitter unit neither weather nor waterproof
  • Collar battery life is mediocre
  • Frequently out of stock at major resellers
  • One of the most expensive systems on the market

There isn’t a better choice than Havahart’s Radial-Shape for pet owners who want to give their dogs lots of roaming space while still keeping an eye on them. Just be mindful of the lacking customer support service and the need to change batteries on the collars after just three days of use.

Pet-Fender Portable for two Dogs


  • Covers up to 700 feet in all directions
  • Transmitter has a rechargeable battery unit
  • Comes ready and set for two dogs
  • Suitable for dogs from 8 and up to 120 pounds
  • Features four levels of static correction
  • Expandable – more dog collars can be added
  • Water, Dust and Dirtproof design

The third generation of Pet-Fender’s Portable for two dogs improves on previous iterations and brings new features that pet owners will surely appreciate. Now there is a bigger capacity rechargeable battery included inside of the transmitter which allows it to operate continuously for 25 hours. A great functionality for those of you who take your dogs on vacations and go away for the weekend.


  • Easy to use and customize
  • Decent signal radius suited for two dogs
  • Rechargeable transmitter is ideal for traveling with your pets
  • Excellent battery autonomy on both the collar and transmitter units
  • Fully water and weather proof
  • Great customer support


  • Price is a bit steep when not on discounts
  • Expensive additional accessories

You should consider Pet-Fender’s solution if you like to frequently travel with your dogs and want to keep them safe.

5 Highest Rated In-Ground Dog Fence Systems

ProductNameMain FeaturePrice
SportDog compare imageBest Overall Value
Comes with 1000 ft. of 20-gauge
boundary wire, 100 flags, training DVD,
and detailed manual covering up
100 acres with add-ons
Stubborn compare imagePetSafe
Covers up to 1/3 of an acre surface area,
expandable for up to 25 acres
with add-ons, for pets with neck
sizes from 6 to 28 inches
eXtreme compare imageSecond Generation
Fully customizable in-ground
wire length choice, highest quality thick
wires and isolation comes with a
10 Year Manufacturer’s Warranty
Sit Boo Boo compare imageRechargeable
Sit Boo Boo
Covering 1.2-acre area, users can set
either vibration or shock mode,
five correction level adjustments
YardMax small imagePetSafe
Cover 1/3 of an acre with expandable
into a maximum of 10 acres with
add-ons, exclusive ReadyTest and
PerfectFit Test

SportDOG Brand In-Ground Fence System


  • Comes with 1000 ft. of 20-gauge boundary wire
  • Sufficient for covering up 100 acres with add-ons
  • Four static selectable correction levels
  • Transmitter equipped with built-in lightning strike protection
  • Expandable with use of additional collars
  • Comes with 100 flags, training DVD, and detailed manual
  • Fully field-tested weatherproof system
Image of SportDOG - Our Editor's Pick and the higest rated inground dog fence product
Top rated wired dog fence choice, SportDOG gets our recommendation for this category

When you need to custom design the invisible fence for your pet, there is nothing more ideal than an in-ground system. Our experience with SportDOG’s solution left us very satisfied and confident with its performance. Not only does it allow for easy installation and use, but it also works great on our active dog in real-life use conditions.


  • Easy to use due to the handy guide and DVD instructions
  • Comes with plenty of wire length out of the box
  • Supports shock, vibration and tone warning modes
  • Can support longer perimeter areas with add-ons
  • Wire-break alarm present on the transmitter
  • Long lasting 9V batteries for the collar


  • Bulky transmitter and collar
  • 500 ft. of wire included unlike 1000ft. being advertised

Basing final thoughts on our time with the SportDOG’s in-ground fence system – we agree that it performs great in all aspects. It just as well might be the best choice if you are looking for a wire based fence solution to keep your dog safe.

PetSafe Stubborn Dog


  • Covers up to 1/3 of an acre surface area
  • Expandable for up to 25 acres with add-ons
  • Ideal for training stubborn dogs
  • Features tone and vibration warnings
  • Collar suitable for pets with neck sizes from 6 to 28 inches
  • Supports unlimited number of added collars

PetSafe’s model combines a comfortable movement space with nifty training features that can help you even if you have hard to train pooches. Believe us when we say it that the collar will help your pet behave and stop running away in no time at all.


  • Gives lots of freedom of movement for active dogs
  • Comes with everything you need right in the package
  • Reliable and robust transmission system
  • Fully water and dust proof collar
  • Long length of wire included


  • Collar is bulky and too fragile
  • Strongest shock warning level is way too powerful

Overall, if you own a small to medium size pooch, PetSafe’s product might be a nice choice. We only wish that the included collar uses stronger materials since it is easy to break and damage which is a significant disadvantage.

eXtreme Professional Series


  • Available models for use with one or more dogs
  • Fully customizable in-ground wire length choice
  • Uses highest quality thick wires and isolation
  • Fully waterproof and submersible dog collar
  • Allows owners to design the boundaries completely
  • Comes with a 10 Year Manufacturer’s Warranty

As the brand name states, you are looking at an ultimate quality level product with Extreme’s Professional Series. The quality of every piece of equipment is up to the highest standard and something not that many other brands backup with ten-year warranties.


  • Uses highest quality wiring and electrical components
  • Instructions are easy to follow and understand
  • Quick setup and adjustments to get the fence working
  • Power surge and lightning protection
  • Fully water and weatherproof collar design
  • Good warranty and customer support


  • Flimsy collar construction not that durable
  • Very expensive for what it is

It’s hard to understand how Extreme Dog makes this product out of high-quality internal components and yet doesn’t apply the same logic for the outer housing materials. We suggest that you avoid this system due to its unreasonably higher price tag seeing how there are better models available from the competing brands at much more affordable prices.

Hidden Dog Fence by Sit Boo Boo


  • Useful both as a barrier and a training tool
  • Users can set either vibration or shock mode
  • Both warnings methods are harmless
  • Five correction level adjustments
  • Adequate for covering 1.2-acre area
  • Lifetime Replacement Warranty

Sit Boo-Boo offers a lot of in-ground fence for the very affordable asking price of its hidden dog fence. They even add an eBook as a bonus that will help you train even the most stubborn breeds. Their 90-day money back guarantee and lifetime replacement policy make this a truly standout product.


  • Excellent fence system
  • Doubles as a training program
  • Highly customizable in every aspect
  • Easy to install and set up
  • Affordable price


  • Low-grade quality of the included wire
  • The collar needs frequent recharging
  • Better suited for use with small and medium size dogs

If you happen to be a proud owner of more miniature dogs, then the Hidden Dog Fence might be a great alternative product. It doesn’t cost too much while still being able to offer most of the functionality of similar products from other big brands.

PetSafe YardMax Rechargeable 


  • Able to cover 1/3 of an acre with
  • Expandable into a maximum of 10 acres with add-ons
  • Features five adjustable static correction levels
  • Has a tone mode for training
  • Exclusive ReadyTest and PerfectFit Test
  • Compatible with Pawz Away Mini, Threshold, Indoor and Outdoor Pet Barriers
  • Three-week rating for the collar battery autonomy

The YardMax in-ground system from PetSafe combines all of the necessary elements needed to create an easy-to-customize invisible containment area. This model allows your dog to have all the movement freedom it requires each day to stay happy and healthy. If you own two or more pooches, you can quickly expand into a bigger fence just by adding more of compatible wires and a suitable number of additional collars.


  • Compatibility allows easy expansion
  • Great amount of space for a single dog with out of the box kit
  • Comes with an included collar contact signal tester
  • Very lightweight receiver
  • Rechargeable battery lasts more than three weeks on a single charge


  • Not so good for training
  • Basic functionality at a premium price

YardMax by PetSafe is a decent fence solution that works great on all sizes of dogs. We only wish that the price was not so steep since there isn’t that much functionality included which is not the case with some of the other similar competing products.

Choosing a Perfect Dog containment system:
In Ground vs. Wireless

Keeping a dog safe and in one place is a must for both, their protection and the safety of other animals and people outside of your yard. As most of you already know, dogs are smart and resourceful when it comes to finding new ways of escaping their confines. While it wouldn’t be a big of a deal when the owners are home and spot them immediately – such incidents can be stressful when someone calls you to report your dog wandering around the neighborhood on its own. Sometimes, if your pet is aggressive you will even have to get a heavy duty cage in order to keep them confined. Otherwise, if you want to accommodate more space for your pet a good exercise pen would do just fine.

In Ground vs. Wireless? Which one is better for you

When fences and walls don’t seem to make the cut, the majority of runaway pet owners turn to using invisible, electric powered boundaries that ensure that your pet stays where it is supposed to be. These devices not only free you from stress and worries, but they also keep your pet safe from harm that might happen to them on the outside of your property. It is not uncommon that pets get hit by oncoming traffic the moment they step outside on their own mostly due to confusion and disorientation.

When it comes to modern pet containment systemsthere is the choice between in-ground and wireless fences. Both are effective for keeping your curious dog safe in the confines of a predetermined space of your home. While both solutions have their pros and cons – there are some considerations that you must be aware of before making a purchase.

Training matters

To fully benefit from either type of electronic fence – your pooch must have some training to know when to stop from performing destructive activities. Breaking through and running away with a collar that keeps shocking him is not something that you want it to experience. If there is no previous learning process – the chances are that your brand-new confinement system will fail miserably.

It is essential that you make your pet understand and acknowledge the existence of the non-visible boundaries of its dwelling area. The dogs are smart, and they soon learn that if they move out of the designated area – correctional measures follow suit. Take your time and help it find out the limits of the space and you will never have to worry about runaway episodes ever again.

Dog residential area planning

There are notable differences between wireless and underground fence systems, and one of the major ones is the restrictions regarding field shape that your dog inhabits. Like all animals, our furry pals need all the space for running which they can also guard and call their own. If you want to keep your pet happy, then give it all the free space that you can spare to let him live a happy life.

When you already have a plan for the living area that your puppy will occupy to go along with the scenery of your home, then you might want to avoid from choosing wireless systems altogether. Because of the specifics of the technology the boundary area is always circular in shape. It limits its use for owners that need the rectangular or another type of terrain shaping.

wireless vs in-ground fence

Luckily, the inground dog fence offers plenty of customization options which means you can define both the dimensions and area shapes the way you want or need. Homeowners can even make individual off-limits areas that will keep your noisy pet from wandering where it isn’t supposed to go. In-ground systems are great when you need to shield different objects on your property from the damage that your dog might inflict.

Regarding terrain, there is no limit to where you can place “invisible walls” regarding both ground material, elevation or plant life on your property. The rule for setting up wireless dog fences on flat terrain enables best results regarding signal quality. Also, your best option is to avoid keeping your pet in areas where there are metallic objects to prevent signal interference and potential malfunctions.

Maintenance requirements

The good news about this type of devices is that they require no checkups once you first install and turn them on. The collar is the only part of the system that needs maintenance, and it is the easiest possible procedure – battery change or recharge. The only major work that you will need to perform is during the setup phase, and after that, it is a carefree affair all the way.

Wireless kits are easiest ones to set-up while in-ground ones require more handy work although it is nothing too difficult nor demanding. Because you need to place the boundary wire under the terrain surface, you will have to get your hands dirty a bit, but that is just about it. Considering the high customization factor of in-ground systems, we feel that they are well worth the effort.

Overall reliability

When it comes to durability, our pick goes to above ground electric dog fence as it seems to be slightly more reliable than the in-ground counterparts although only when it comes to malfunctions and lower maintenance requirements. As for the main feature, signal reception strength, and effectiveness, ground-based systems perform significantly better. Because it relies on signal transmission through air, wireless can occasionally get weak due to environmental and object interference, as we all know from using our mobile devices.

You will never have to worry about signal loss or invisible boundaries failing with an in-ground system, on the other hand. With this type of set-up there are no interferences nor are there limits to object placement in the predetermined confinement area. Most owners seem to experience and report back the best results and because it mostly prefer this type of electronic dog fence.

So, without further ado, let us explore in more detail what each system has to offer and how both you and your dog can benefit from using it on your property. We will help you understand distinct advantages and disadvantages that will ultimately help you decide on which variant you should opt to buy. Keep reading to find out how you can benefit from using either wireless or ground-based fence system to keep your dog safe even when you are not around.

In Ground (Wired) Fences 101

Wired Dog Fence Guide

When you need to create a living space for your dog without limits, then in-ground electric fences are the only way to go. Regarding signal reliability, they are the better choice since you never need to worry about your pet leaving the designated space.


By using an in-ground wiring setup, hence the name, these underground fences for dogs allow pet owners to design and shape the restricted space to their liking. The system takes into account the possible need for owners to create off limit areas on their property which is something that makes this solution superior to the wireless ones. Not everything is ideal, so we will further explore both the advantages and disadvantages of its use and performance in detail.


While it might be confusing to some people that anyone would pick a wire based solution instead of the wireless ones we must point out that in the case of invisible dog fences, sometimes this is the only reasonable choice. When you have an active pet that likes to explore vast areas of land, setting up this kind of solution is a must. Since the transmitter uses a flexible wire for signal distribution, it means that you can shape it any way you require.

This versatility makes it perfect for protecting swimming pools, guest houses and even other smaller areas of space where you have flowers, trees or food growing. This customization level offers owners unlimited freedom when designing the dwelling areas for their pets. The underground part of its name comes from the need for the wire to be dug in below the surface to keep it away from damage however it can sit above ground too on regular fences and poles.

When you have an enormous amount of open space that measures in acres, then picking in-ground system is not only ideal, it is the only choice of invisible fence that you have at your disposal. Since there are virtually no restrictions when it comes to signal wire length means that you can create enough space for your pooch so that it never feels limited in movement freedom or area of ground that it can cover. So, in such a case even if you “place” invisible walls your pet doesn’t necessarily ever feels confinement while still being safe and protected.

Dog And Woman Playing With A Stick

Most of the in-ground wireless fence systems come with additional accessories and features that further extend their usability and convenience factors for their owners. Marker flags, vibration, and sound enabled collars to allow you to further blur the line between your dog’s freedom and movement restrictions. If you don’t want the collar to emit shocks you can switch it to vibration or sound warning mode which is not as frightening although less efficient.

The flag markers are perfect for setting them up as visual cues at the borders of confined space to help your puppy know the limits. Line break alarms are another feature that indicates the possible perimeter hole which helps the owner track down the wire malfunction for easy and quick replacements.


Being a system that needs bellow surface of the ground area means that owners need to do some digging during the whole setup process. While it may not seem like a big deal considering that the signal wire is thin if you have a lot of areas to cover then there is a lot of digging necessary. If you want to give your pet lots of living and movement space – you will have to get your hands dirty and put your back into it, that’s for sure.

golden retriever running near flags

Another significant disadvantage is the fact that the line can sometimes break and the whole fence loses its integrity. While such incidents are rare, it doesn’t mean that it cannot happen to you. It can occur because of the weather changes, ground movement or even because of the activity of animals that live below the surface.

If the line does malfunction, then the owners find themselves in a very stressful situation of finding where the line broke. The line that is now covered by a layer of grass and almost entirely impossible to trace after months or even years of working just fine. Modern in-ground fence systems often come with an onboard wire break alarm which will immediately inform you of the catastrophic perimeter malfunction.

In-ground fence break detectors are the only way that will help you discover such a failure. Using them, the owner can easily trace the wire below the surface and locate the malfunctioning spot fast. Once you find the issue – it’s time to replace it which brings us to another important disadvantage – wires.

You need lots of wire length to cover even the small areas of your property. Most in-ground fence kits come with modest amounts of it included in the first place which creates a hassle for owners. If you have the need of covering lots of surface area and protect individual objects on your lawn – you will need to buy additional wiring which further increases the cost.

RELATED: How Much Electric Fence Costs?

As for the price, it can often be another big disadvantage too. These systems are complex which always means a price increase over the non-wire using models which make them difficult to recommend for the majority of dog owners. If cost is your concern, then you probably shouldn’t be considering in-ground fence systems at all.

Wireless Dog Containment Systems Explained

How Wireless Pet Fence Systems work

When the shape of the restricted areas is of no concern and ease of getting the system up and running in not time at all and with as little effort and maintenance is a priority for you then wireless products offers the best performance and value.

How does wireless dog fence work?

These sophisticated systems operate using a wireless signal spectrum that uses information exchange between the transmitter and the receiver in the collar to impose movement range restrictions. It gives your pet a wide range of movement freedom that mostly depends on the transmitter’s power which determines its operating range. Once the signal breaks off between it and the collar, your pooch receives shocks or other types of stimulating signals that bring it back to the designated area.

There is plenty of convenience of going wireless instead of wired only. If you do not mind having a circular shape of your pet’s residential movement free space in return, you get an electric dog fence without wire and no digging involved whatsoever. Another great thing about it is that is very reliable and requires no maintenance besides the battery changes for the collar.

How effective are wireless fences?

Because of its simple operating principle, these invisible protective barriers work very efficiently and reliably. As long as there is no signal interruption or interference, there are slim chances that this type of area safeguarding for dogs can ever fail. As soon as your pet tries to leave the designated area, the collar reacts and warns it to turn back to stop the incoming stimuli that can be in the form of shocks, vibration, and sound.

dog running near the invisible fence

Since the wireless signal spreads around the transmitter in a circular area and because of the nature of radio transmission, it will even pass through solid objects. We always suggest opting for models that feature a transmitter that uses the power cord for best signal strength and overall reliability. Additionally, some of the newer models even feature an incoming alarm notification on your smart device in case the perimeter suffers a breach.

Is it Safe?

Needless to say, safety is the top priority of these devices, and they always comply with CE, FCC, and ROHS Certification. It ensures that they go through quality testing procedures and also comply with wireless signal health regulation standards. The wireless radio the transmitters emit, and the dog collar receives are entirely harmless to both pets and their owners as well.

As for shock, vibration or audio stimuli that most of the collars feature, they go through the same testing procedure to ensure no harm comes to the dogs. The system in its entirety is animal cruelty-free, and you do not need to worry about your pet’s wellbeing while it is using the electrical components to make it stay inside of the fence. If you are not comfortable with shock signals then perhaps you should look for models that use vibrations and sound cues to restrict and control your pet’s movements.


Another neat feature, when you are not limiting yourself with wires is the freedom of deciding where to place your wireless fence system. Since the position of the transmitter defines the range and the dimensions of the barrier you can easily move it around and put it where you need it most. In case you need to take you invisible dog fence with you – it is as easy as packing it and bringing it along on your trip.

Models that use batteries for the central transmitter unit offer the most portability since you can place them and take them with you wherever you need to keep your pooch safe. Say you want to go on a vacation and your dog comes along and needs to stay somewhere safe overnight. With wireless fences, this is not an issue anymore, and it is simple to pack it all up, bring it along and set it up no matter where you are.


Naturally, the primary benefits include wire-free design, no digging required, easy to set up from the box feature, reliability, and almost zero maintenance. Let’s also not forget to mention the affordable price for even the most advanced models. Usually, you also receive an accessory pack that consists of useful marker flags, phone notification apps, and other useful smart features.

Two dogs playing in the yard

Portability and affordable price are appealing features that are the main selling point in most cases. Owners like the plug and play functionality that makes it easy for them to conveniently carry the system wherever they need it up and running. For active people who like to take their pets along for vacation trips and move them frequently while keeping them safe at all times, these systems are just indispensable. You can even allow them to play with ball throwing toys without the fear that your pet will go outside the set perimeter.


Thankfully, disadvantages are few which makes this type of product shine in the hands of the customers. The only consideration that somewhat lessens the efficiency of the whole system can be the signal interference. Manufacturers always advise owners not to place other radio transmitting devices in the vicinity of the wireless fence system to enable signal interference-free operation.

We also strongly advise you not to place the transmitter unit near objects that also send out lots of wireless signals through the air. Also, if possible avoid placing the unit near large metallic objects and structures which can also lessen its range and efficiency

two dogs playing near flags

Important Considerations Before Buying

Before we even begin discussing some of the considerations we have to point out some basic facts first and foremost. Using any dog fence is mostly a necessity and not even necessary for most dog owners at all. You see, most of the users have a previous negative experience where their pets were involved in some bad ending kind of accidents.

The other major user base includes homeowners that need a way of limiting their furry pet’s movement around their property. They don’t want their dog sniffing around or damaging valuable items. In some cases, they use it to create guarding pathways for added layer of security. Rare are the instances where people use these invisible fences to limit their dog’s movements simply.

Size of your Pet 

Naturally, before making a decision, owners need to consider the size of their dog first. Depending on your pet’s size you need to give it enough freedom of movement and provide it with a suitable dwelling space. The size of your pooch is a major deciding factor in the choice of going for either wireless or in-ground fence solution.

Dog on lawn with training flags

The golden rule is that smaller breeds need less space while larger ones require lots of it to run and stay healthy. Always make sure that your pet gets enough room to feel like it’s dwelling inside of a spacious living space. For smaller dogs, the wireless systems will do just fine, while the larger dogs usually require in-ground wire laying although it doesn’t always have to be the case.

Dog’s Weight

The weight of your dog is another major factor that determines what type of invisible fence kit you should choose to buy. Mostly the size matters in the case of the collar receiver and the strength that it can exhibit on your pooch. The heavier your pet is, the more power the stimulant component must provide to keep your fence integrity intact.

For smaller weight pets, the standard wireless kits will do just fine. On the other hand, if you own a medium to big weight dog then you should ignore everything except the collar warnings strength. In such case always go for models that have a toggle between shocks, vibration, and sounds.

Coat Thickness

The thickness of your pooch’s coat also plays a significant role in how the collar will affect its behavior if it breaks the boundaries of the fence. Again, you should focus your attention on the collar and not that much on the transmitter itself. The hairs of the fur reduce the effectiveness of the deterring signals that the collar emits when the pet goes past the fence limits.

Three Brussels griffon dogs with rough or smooth coats

The consideration is the same as with the weight in essence. If your pet has a thick coat of fur, then go for collars with stronger stimulator components. On the other hand, for smaller dogs, the standard models will do just fine. Some dogs are more sensitive to stimuli from the collar then others so monitor your own to find the best setting.


Well, this is a difficult consideration seeing how it’s mostly dependent on the breed and training. The level of determination of your pet decides how much time it will take for it to get used to living between the invisible walls of the electric dog fence. We always suggest lots and lots of training. However, your results may vary.

Some dog breeds like huskies and pit-bulls are so stubborn that they will endure even strongest shocks without returning to the fence area. It is always for the best that you place some visual markers like ribbons, poles or flags to help your pet understanding the limits of its dwelling space. You can remove them afterward when your dog learns the boundaries and gets used to them.

Size of the Yard

To most of the homeowners, the size of their backyard represents an essential consideration even before they get their dog and bring it home. When every bit of space of your property matters to you – dog fences enable you to keep all of your objects and decorations intact while keeping your pet safe and sound at the same time. You can create and ideal space for it to freely roam while still maintaining the rest of your property free and available to other activities.

The choice of the fence plays a significant role in such scenarios. If you want more options and customization about the shape of your pooch’s dwelling areas, then in-ground systems prove best for such planning. Otherwise, if you don’t mind the circular shape of the barrier space, then wireless solutions offer versatility and portability. It will all depend on the position of your house and objects on the lawn.

The smaller property is usually best suited for wireless products while larger areas of open space sometimes need the use of the in-ground systems. If you don’t like to get your hands dirty, then wireless is the way to go. If you need to customize the restricted and off-limits areas for your pet, then placing wires is the best and only choice you have in such circumstances.

Installation Guide

No matter how complicated they might seem at first glance, electric dog fences, both wireless and in-ground are very easy to install, setup and use. Every component is easy to assemble and place, and you can’t do anything wrong if you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. For those of you that need more details about the whole setup process in more detail – keep reading to find out the what and the how.

How to install wireless dog fence

This devices are very easy to work with mostly because there are very few parts that make the whole product. The majority of available products usually includes a transmitter base unit and the dog collar which houses the receiver which makes it very easy to install and even take it wherever you need to keep your pet safe.

The whole setup process is easy to understand and takes less than an hour from start to finish. First of all, homeowners need to choose the central location for the transmitter base installation. The next step involves either plugging the unit into a power outlet or installing the batteries which are specific for the model you bought.

Once you get the power running all you have to do next is to turn the base and proceed to pair it with the included or any other compatible dog collar receiver unit. The pairing process takes seconds to connect the two devices together. For additional settings, it is best that you read the manual to understand the pairing procedure better.

Before pairing ensure that the collar holds a full battery charge or insert-replaceable batteries if the model you bought uses those instead. Make sure to turn it on and set it up according to the manufacturer’s specifications, and you’re all set.

How to install invisible fence wire

Installing the in-ground or the invisible dog fence, which is another common name, requires a bit more effort although it is nothing too worrisome. Before you even power the whole system, you will first need to dig in the wiring bellow the ground surface. We suggest that you use flags, string or measuring tape to predetermine the line where the wire will create a closed loop perimeter area.

After the measurements are complete, get on with the digging to hide the wiring. You need two or three inches of depth for the small trenches that will keep the installation below the surface safe and protected from both your pet and the weather elements. Ensure that there is no damage on the wire surface since this might cause it to malfunction after you install it.

When that step is complete, next comes attaching the wiring to the transmitter base. Make sure that the unit is off before connecting it and the wire to prevent electrical shock! After the wiring plugs into the appropriate connection port on the base unit, turn the device on, and it will show a signal LED light to indicate a good working perimeter fence. If this is not the case – make sure to check the connection or the wireline before proceeding to the next step.

After successfully connecting the wiring to the transmitter it is time to pair it with the dog collar unit. Make sure that it is charged adequately before switching it on. Another indicator light will show a successful connection if everything works as it should. As always be sure to check the manufacturers manual for additional setup procedures.

Are electric dog fences cruel?

No one likes animal cruelty, and neither do the makers of all dog related merchandise and products. Naturally, because of the way electrical dog fences work it is reasonable to suspect and raise doubt about the whole operating method. While we do not intend to defend any of the conflicting viewpoints, we can show you the arguments that indicate that there is no cruelty involved in these devices at all.

RELATED: Are Electric Dog Collars Safe?

brown dog playing on the grass

It is a wide known fact that these systems use a method known as classical conditioning a.k.a. Pavlov reflex to make sure that your pet stays safe within its confines. It is possible thanks to the link between the transmitter and the collar. Once the connection fails due to the perimeter range breach, the dog receives a shock or other type of stimuli like vibration and sound to make it return.

Some dog breeds are known to have a higher pain tolerance, and they do not perceive shocks as harm but more as a tingling sensation that annoys them. The dogs with thick fur coats do not even feel pain yet experience heating spots that warn them to come back. Either way, if you have a concern about the use of shock stimulation, then we suggest picking collar models that have vibration and audible cues instead.

These are less efficient ways of keeping your pet inside the perimeter although they are gentler in effect. Do consider the fact that most models come with sensitivity settings that are easy to customize to suit your pooch in the best possible way. Either way, these devices are not considered animal cruelty and shouldn’t be treated that way since they save lives of dogs worldwide and keep their owners sleep better at night knowing that their pets are safe and sound.

golden retriever walking near flags


Our closing thoughts narrow down to only two out of the ten products that we have in our review guide, and both of these excel with their respectful features. We always like to find the alternatives to similar products, which are in functionality terms, somewhat distinctively different. In the end, we conclude our article with the satisfaction of knowing that our effort enables our readers to have the luxury of choice based on their requirements and our expert findings.

The Editor’s choice for the best wireless dog fence goes to PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System that manages to wow us and so many other satisfied customers with its wealth of useful features and overall performance. It is a shining example of how wire-free invisible fences serve a great purpose of keeping all types of dog breeds safe and near their homes without any disadvantages. Of course, this product also stands out with its affordable price which makes it available to the wider customer base which is a win-win scenario for both the manufacturer and the end user.

Image PetSafe - The Ultimate Wireless Dog Fence System

The SportDOG Brand In-Ground Fence System wins our Editor’s Choice award for the best in-ground dog fence solution due to its versatility, impressive expansion features and most of all keeping the price within reach of all potential customers. We especially appreciate its ability to cover an incredibly vast amount of ground. Having so many useful accessories included also won it some important points, and we find the added instructional DVD a great help both to experienced and beginner dog owners alike.

Image of SportDOG - Our Editor's Pick and the higest rated inground dog fence product

Needless to say, you can’t go wrong with picking up either of these excellent dog electric fence solutions. They offer reliable performance, ease of use and serve their purpose ideally. Now it only matters what you require and which type is your preferred one. Whatever may be the case, either product will certainly leave you impressed!

If you find this article helpful and informative – be sure to check out some of our other editorials about everything related to our furry best friends!