Best Fences for Dogs 2020 – Reviews & Top Picks

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Tespo Pet Playpen, Portable Large Plastic Yard Fence

Dogs crave freedom, especially when it comes to their own backyard. While we can’t be there to watch over our four-legged friends 24/7, we can invest in making their lives just a little bit safer. Unlike traditional runs and tethers, fences give your dog the freedom of the great outdoors without the risk of them running off or getting into something they shouldn’t.

Whether you’re in the market for a temporary or a permanent fencing solution, the last thing you want to do is cut corners. To help you navigate the world of dog fencing options, we’ve taken the time to put together reviews of popular ready-made fencing products and kits on the market.

So, rather than trying to jerry-rig a fence out of supplies you have lying around or spending thousands on hiring a professional contractor to build one, why not invest in one of these great options instead?

A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

ModelPriceSizes AvailableEditor Rating
PetSafe
PetSafe(Best Overall)

Check Price
500 ft
1000 ft
4.85/5
AMAGABELI GARDEN & HOME
AMAGABELI GARDEN & HOME(Best Value)

Check Price
10 ft4.70/5
SportDOG Brand
SportDOG Brand(Premium Choice)

Check Price
960 feet4.65/5
Tenax
Tenax

Check Price
4'x100'
4'x330'
5'x330'
& more
4.30/5
PAWLAND
PAWLAND

Check Price
20-inch4.10/5

The 8 Best Fences for Dogs – Reviews 2020

1. PetSafe Dog In-Ground Fence — Best Overall

PetSafe

For owners looking for the best dog fence currently on the market, the PetSafe PIG00-10777 Dog In-Ground Fence is our top pick of the moment. This in-ground fencing system includes enough wire to contain up to .3 acres, but you can purchase additional wire to fence in up to 25 acres total! The included collar fits dogs with neck measurements from 6 to 28 inches; additional collars can be purchased separately.

This in-ground fencing system features five different correction modes. While four of these modes rely on static electricity, one uses sound and vibration to let your dog know it’s reached the edge of the yard. If your dog stays in the “trigger” zone for over 30 seconds, the correction will cease. The collar is waterproof, standing up to all different weather conditions.

The collar batteries don’t last long. The system is difficult to install and requires continual maintenance.

Pros
  • No unsightly above-ground fencing
  • Multiple correction levels and options
  • Comes with a waterproof collar
  • Additional wire can fit up to 25 acres
  • Zero-shock correction mode
Cons
  • Collar batteries die quickly
  • May require regular maintenance

2. Amagabeli Galvanized Dog Fence — Best Value

AMAGABELI GARDEN & HOME

Sometimes, the best dog fence is one that is quick, easy, and affordable. One of the best fences for dogs for the money is the Amagabeli Galvanized Dog Fence. This decorative fence comes in 10-foot sections and is 24 inches tall. It is easy to install and makes a great temporary fence.

This fence is made from rust-proof, PVC-coated iron for a classic yet durable appearance. It is ideal for creating a play area or keeping your dog out of your vegetable garden and flower beds. The interlocking fence panels can be folded up and stored without separating each piece, and the slim fence posts can be installed and removed without damaging your yard.

Despite the rust-proof coating, many owners reported that their fence panels rusted shortly after installation. In some cases, it is difficult to connect the fence panels to each other.

Pros
  • Attractive galvanized metal design
  • Folds up for storage
  • Temporary and easy to install
  • Rust-proof coating
Cons
  • Only for small dogs
  • Not entirely rust-proof
  • Panels may arrive bent

3. SportDOG In-Ground Fence System — Premium Choice

SportDOG Brand

If you’re looking for an in-ground dog fence that will last a lifetime, the SportDOG SDF-100A In-Ground Fence System is one of the leading premium models. Just one of these fencing kits can contain around 1.3 acres, but owners can invest in additional wiring to contain up to 100 acres. The included battery-operated collar fits dogs weighing 10 pounds and up; additional collars are available for purchase, and there is no limit to how many collars that the system can contain.

This in-ground fence system uses a tone-and-buzz correction signal before moving onto static electricity correction. Each collar comes with four different static levels, which can be customized to your dog’s needs. The fence transmitter will alert you to potential issues with the wire barrier.

While this in-ground fence kit is mostly reliable, some owners reported inconsistencies in both the wire and the included collar. The receiver sometimes loses the signal.

Pros
  • Works with an unlimited number of collars
  • One waterproof collar included
  • Contains up to 100 acres
  • Multiple correction modes
Cons
  • Inconsistent receiver quality
  • Portions of the wire may go offline
  • Collar lacks durability

4. Tenax 2A140073 Select Pet Fence

Tenax

Fencing in large areas of land can be expensive and time consuming, but the Tenax 2A140073 Select Pet Fence can help you cut down on both of these costs. This black polypropylene fencing comes in four sizes: 3.75 by 50 feet, 4 by 100 feet, 4 by 330 feet, and 5 by 330 feet. The mesh holes measure less than 2 by 2 inches.

This fencing offers durability without the installation costs or aesthetic of a visible fence. It’s also a great option for areas where traditional fencing won’t fit, such as wooded plots of land. You can install this fencing with metal T-posts or on pre-existing structures.

Some owners report that this fencing won’t stand up to rabbits or other animals, resulting in holes in the mesh. The same is true for dogs, who can easily chew through the fencing.

Pros
  • Wide range of sizes available
  • Low-cost alternative to traditional fencing
  • Quick and easy to install
  • Nearly invisible
Cons
  • Easy to chew through
  • Flimsier than other options
  • More difficult to install than expected

5. PAWLAND Step Over Fence

PAWLAND

If you need a small dog fence for indoor and outdoor use, the PAWLAND Step Over Fence is a versatile option to have. You can choose from a three-panel or a four-panel model, measuring 60 inches or 80 inches wide, respectively, with a white or espresso finish.

This wooden fence can be used as a playpen, room divider, or fence, while easily folding up for storage or transport. While this step-over fence definitely won’t contain an entire yard, it’s a great option for owners of puppies and small breeds who need to keep their dog in one spot while they tend to the garden or grill or just enjoy the outdoors.

Although you can utilize this fence outside, it’s intended for indoor use. The small size and temporary design also mean this fence should be used under supervision — determined dogs could easily escape by pushing the panels. If your dog does push this fence over, multiple owners reported that the fence broke after falling over.

Pros
  • Easily folds away for storage or travel
  • Can be used indoors or outdoors
  • Fence can be turned into a room divider or playpen
  • Multiple color options to match your décor
Cons
  • Intended primarily for indoor use
  • Not a permanent fencing option
  • Breaks easily if tipped over

6. Tespo CB05PB Plastic Yard Fence

Tespo

If you’re looking for a portable indoor/outdoor fence that’s a bit more durable, then the Tespo CB05PB Plastic Yard Fence might be worth looking into. This small, foldable fence is ideal for small dogs and can contain up to 20 square feet. This fencing kit includes 12 panels that can be set up to be either 20 or 28 inches tall, as well as connector pieces and anti-slip mats.

Each panel can be connected with an included mallet, and owners also have the option to create functional doors using the included zip ties or other tools. If you need to contain a larger area, multiple kits can easily be connected with the included supplies.

Because of its size and overall durability, this fence won’t work for medium or large dogs. Even when used for small dogs or puppies, the fence needs to be thoroughly reinforced to prevent falling over. The transparent plastic is also easy to chew or scratch through.

Pros
  • Lightweight and portable for indoor/outdoor use
  • Great temporary fencing for puppies or small breeds
  • Can be expanded with additional kits
  • Everything needed for assembly is included
Cons
  • Only for small dogs and puppies
  • Requires reinforcement
  • Not chew- or scratch-proof

7. eXtreme Dog Fence Standard Grade Kit

Extreme Dog Fence

If you’re more interested in an underground fence than a physical one, the eXtreme Dog Fence Standard Grade Kit is another option to check out. This kit comes in many versions, so you’re sure to find one that fits your specific needs. First, you can choose a wire length from 500 to 2,500 feet. Second, you can choose a system for one to five dogs.

With the 2,500-foot kit, you can contain up to six acres without using extenders or additional kits. The collar receivers are waterproof, not water-resistant, and can be completely submerged down to 10 feet deep. Each kit includes training flags and is manufactured in the United States.

As with an electric fencing option, some owners reported that it just didn’t work for their dog: Even with the collar receiver on “High,” their dogs walked right through the boundary. Also, some owners claimed that the collar prongs burned their dog’s skin, but it’s unclear whether this is a malfunctioning product or user error. For unknown reasons, this fencing may not work for more than a few months.

Pros
  • Many different kits available
  • Largest kit contains up to six acres
  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Includes training flags and splicers
Cons
  • Collar prongs may injure skin
  • Some dogs are unbothered by boundary signal
  • Some fencing kits fail after a few months

8. PetSafe PIF-300 Wireless Fence

PetSafe Wireless Fence

This fencing option is another electric kit: the PetSafe PIF-300 Wireless Fence. However, unlike other electric fences we’ve reviewed so far, this model is entirely wireless. Once installed, this system can contain a circular area of up to 0.5 acres and includes one waterproof receiver collar.

This unique electric fence uses a radio signal to mark your dog’s approved zone — if they leave the area, a gentle correction shock is administered through the collar. Since all it takes to get this kit up and running is to plug in the power cord, you can take it almost anywhere you and your family go. The containment zone can be expanded with additional systems, and you can use as many collars with the system as you need. This kit also includes training flags.

One of the biggest complaints about this fencing kit is that the containment zone seems to “move” without adjusting the unit. While this might not seem like a huge deal, it makes it difficult to train your dogs and may make them scared to move around the approved zone. Also, some owners reported that the collar wouldn’t respond to leaving the zone until their dogs were well past the zone’s edge.

Pros
  • Extremely quick and easy installation
  • Does not require in-ground wires
  • Expandable with additional kits
  • No limit to the number of collars that can be used
Cons
  • Zone edge may “move” for no reason
  • May be a long delay between leaving the zone and correction
  • Some collars do not emit warning beeps

Buyer’s Guide

There is a wide variety of fencing options available to dog owners. However, few of those options will work for all, or even most, dogs. Here’s how to narrow down the right DIY fence for you and your four-legged family members:

Permanent vs. Temporary

Most dog fencing options can be broken down into two categories. On the one hand, we have permanent fences. While these are typically more expensive and require a decent amount of labor to install, this cost is balanced out by a longer lifespan and durability. However, the permanent nature of these fences means they’re a poor option for renters or dog owners who expect to move frequently.

On the other hand, temporary fences are generally cheaper and easier to install. Because of this, though, they also tend to be less sturdy than their permanent counterparts. While temporary fencing is great for owners who aren’t able to install a permanent fence, they often don’t stand up to large dogs.

Height

When shopping for a new dog fence, you should carefully consider how high the fence must be to safely contain your dog. If your dog is not yet full-grown, keep in mind that a fence that contains them now may not do so in a few months.

But despite what many dog owners want to believe, most fences aren’t guaranteed to keep a dog in, especially a large, determined dog. In fact, some dogs can jump over six feet into the air.

The same is true for in-ground electric fences. While a well-trained dog will respect the boundaries set up by their owner (and reinforced by a shock collar), many dogs will pass right through these boundaries and accept the discomfort without a second thought. For maximum security, no dog should be left completely unsupervised in any type of fence.

Indoor vs. Outdoor

Tenax 2A140073 Pet Fence
Image credit: Tenax 2A140073 Pet Fence, Amazon

While most of us picture a contained yard when asked to think of a dog fence, this is just one type of fencing available. Many pet supply companies also offer portable fencing that can be used both indoors and outdoors.

Because of the portable nature of these fences, most are designed for puppies and small breeds. Still, these products can be a great way to keep your pup out of trouble while you do chores around the house or lawn.

Materials

The material your new fence is constructed from doesn’t just determine its cost and longevity. In many cases, it will also decide whether or not your fencing actually keeps your dog where it belongs.

Although plastic fencing is an economical alternative to materials like wood or metal, it is also extremely easy for some dogs to chew through. When selecting a fence for your own canine companion, be sure to take any bad habits into consideration before spending money on something that won’t last!


Conclusion

For most owners, investing in a secure fence is a necessary cost of owning a dog. However, chain link fencing is far from your only option. In fact, many of the best dog fencing kits do away with this traditional material altogether.

Our top pick is the PetSafe PIG00-10777 Dog In-Ground Fence. This DIY fencing kit eliminates the need for an unsightly or high-maintenance above-ground fence and can contain up to 25 acres. With the included waterproof collar, you can choose from multiple correction levels, included a zero-shock mode. If you have multiple dogs, additional collars are easily purchased separately.

In many cases, dropping hundreds of dollars on a dog fence just isn’t an option. For owners of small dogs and puppies, the Amagabeli Galvanized Dog Fence is an effective yet affordable alternative. This fencing is attractive while still keeping your dog in (or out) of a designated zone. Each panel features a rust-proof coating, and the fence easily folds for storage.

On the other hand, we recommend the SportDOG SDF-100A In-Ground Fence System for owners looking to invest in a premium solution. This kit is compatible with an unlimited number of receiver collars, with one waterproof collar included. Multiple systems can effectively contain up to 100 acres at once. The multiple correction modes also let you customize each collar to your dog’s specific needs.

Whichever fencing solution you choose for your own home, we strongly believe that the peace of mind you’ll gain makes this investment a no-brainer. Once your new fence is installed, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without a safe, designated place for your dog to just, well, be a dog!


Featured image credit: Tespo Pet Playpen Portable Large Plastic Yard Fence, Amazon