Letting your dog run free in your yard can be a wonderful experience. Of course, that means you need to set up a boundary to keep your dog safe from wandering off your property. If you’re unable or unwilling to build a physical fence, you’ll need to purchase either an invisible or a wireless fence.
With an invisible fence, you bury in-ground wires to create a customized border for your dog that matches the shape of your property. If you’d rather not dig up your yard, a wireless dog fence can offer an effective alternative, creating a circular radius boundary around your home and yard.
With multiple options available, it may be overwhelming to find the best invisible or wireless fence for your property. We’ve done the work for you by listing the eight best invisible and wireless dog fences and ranking them. We’ve also included detailed reviews, quick-reference pros and cons lists, and a helpful buyer’s guide.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|PetSafe PIG00-14582||1/3 acre||4.50/5|
|Extreme 1D500FT||1/3 acre||4.40/5|
The Eight Best Invisible & Wireless Dog Fences — Reviews 2020
1. PetSafe Stay & Play Wireless Fence — Best Overall
We selected PetSafe Stay & Play as the best overall wireless fence. With helpful features and no wire to install, you’ll be able to easily provide an effective boundary even if you own a stubborn dog.
After enabling the indoor transmitter, this wireless fence offers a circular range of up to 3/4 acre of coverage. It takes only about an hour to two hours to fully set up. The entire system is portable to any location with an electrical outlet. Keep in mind that metal objects and uneven surfaces may impede the signal, causing uneven or ineffective coverage.
The included collar can fit dogs 5 pounds and heavier, with neck sizes between 6 to 28 inches. The collar provides one tone mode and five levels of adjustable static to meet the challenge of a dog who’s determined to run off.
PetSafe comes with small flags to help you mark off the border for training purposes. If your dog breaks through the boundary, which some exuberant dogs will do, the static-free reentry feature doesn’t emit a corrective shock, which is helpful for proper training. Multiple dogs can be contained under one fence system by purchasing additional collars.
2. Sit Boo-Boo Electric Fence — Best Value
For the best invisible dog fence for the money, we recommend Sit Boo-Boo electric fence. At a great price, you’ll get 500 feet of durable 20-gauge solid copper core wire. It can be expanded up to 20 acres of land with additional purchases. The insulated wire can be installed above ground or buried, and it has built-in surge protection.
The included collar comes with a receiver powered by a long-lasting rechargeable battery. The receiver is waterproof and built to withstand being submerged up to 3 feet, as well as harsh weather conditions. Collars from other brands can be purchased separately and paired with this system.
Sit Boo-Boo provides three modes — tone, vibration, and static — with seven corrective settings. The auto-train feature automatically adjusts the correction levels up or down based on how close your dog is to the fence. You have the option of upgrading to a remote device for more training options.
Sit Boo-Boo offers inconsistent customer service. In many cases, it offers support for common issues such as malfunctioning collars. However, we learned of other instances with frustrated customers.
Our premium choice goes to SportDOG in-ground fence systems. Although more expensive than similar invisible fences on our list, SportDog comes with the capability to cover 1-1/3 acres of land. With the additional purchase of more wire, you can extend coverage up to an amazing 100 acres of land.
The SportDOG fence system contains a rechargeable, waterproof receiver and collar, as well as a remote. The collar offers three modes: tone, vibration, and seven levels of static. As you train your dog, you can set the collar to respond to the fence, the remote, or both. Separately purchased additional collars allow you to train up to three dogs. The battery pack on the collar is rather large and may be uncomfortable for medium to smaller dogs. Also, the collar may malfunction by either failing to work or over activating in static mode.
Installing the wire in the ground over a large distance may take several days. Also, you’ll need to maintain the area around the wire. The helpful transmitter feature alerts you in the event of a wire break. It has a built-in lightning protector.
4. PetSafe In-Ground Dog Fence
You can cover up to a 1/3-acre yard with PetSafe in-ground dog fence. This system provides you with 500 feet of wire and the capability to contain up to five acres of land with additional wire purchases. The wire can be installed around the perimeter of your yard.
The included collar is waterproof and lightweight enough to fit dogs weighing 8 pounds or more. The battery-operated collar comes with the replaceable PetSafe RFA-67 battery already installed and a low-battery indicator.
The collar offers a tone mode and a static setting with four adjustable levels. The overcorrection feature automatically shuts off the static correction if your dog stays in the boundary zone for over 30 seconds. This fence system allows you to contain an unlimited number of dogs with the purchase of extra collars.
The main complaints about this fence system relate to durability. The snap on the collar may break, and the wire may not weather well. Also, there’s no surge or lightning protection feature.
5. Extreme Dog Fence
The standard grade kit from Extreme Dog Fence provides 500 feet of heavy-duty 20-gauge wire to create a 1/3-acre containment area. With the purchase of additional kits, you can increase your coverage up to 6 acres. You’ll also receive a digital transmitter, training flags, splice kits, and a collar with one replaceable 6-volt receiver battery.
The collar with the attached receiver is lightweight and extremely waterproof with the ability to be submerged up to 10 feet. It has one tone mode and a static mode with seven correction levels. The purchase of extra collars allows you to have additional dogs on this system.
Two sets of different size prongs inside the collar allow you to adjust for your dog’s size and coat length. A set of rubber comfort covers helps protect your dog’s neck. Unfortunately, some dogs have still received skin injuries after wearing this collar.
Helpful features consist of frequency encoding to prevent interference issues, temp check and wire check to alert you if the fence isn’t functioning properly, and 12x battery check to monitor the battery charge. However, we found that the battery life is short and that there’s no surge protector.
6. Pet Control HQ Wireless Electric Fence
You’ll receive two ways to boundary train your dog or dogs with the Pet Control wireless electric fence. The 492 feet of heavy-duty 20-gauge wire is durable enough to be installed above ground or underground. The included remote gives you another portable and versatile option for training your dog. This system offers a surge protector and a test light indicator.
The collar contains a waterproof receiver powered by a rechargeable battery, and the battery life averages a few days. The collar is lightweight and adjusts to most size dogs. Multiple dogs can be trained with the purchase of additional collars. The remote allows you to train up to three dogs. There are 10 levels of either vibration or shock but no tone-only setting. This collar features three levels of automatic progressive correction as your dog approaches and nears the boundary wire.
You can adjust the length of the contact probes between a smaller and a larger size, depending on your dog’s coat length. We found that the collars may lack durability. Also, some dogs sustained skin injuries after use.
7. COVONO Electric Dog Fence
If you’re looking for an affordable invisible fence, consider the COVONO electric dog fence. The 650 feet of wire can contain up to ¾ of an acre. This system is capable of being expanded with the purchase of additional fence kits.
The adjustable collar suits most dogs over 10 pounds and as large as 120 pounds. You may have to make sure the collar doesn’t loosen, which renders it ineffective. The collar and the receiver are waterproof and use a rechargeable battery. The battery life lasts fairly well.
Unlike other more expensive products on our list, the receiver on the collar does not have multiple levels of shock or other modes such as vibration or tone. It does have a speed detection feature, which increases the shock in proportion to the rate of speed of your dog advancing toward the fence.
While you will save money, you may be settling for lower quality construction of the wire, which may not be durable enough to allow the fence to work.
8. Free Spirit FS-FENCE In-Ground Fence
The Free Spirit in-ground fence kit allows you to contain one dog in a 1/3-acre area. You can buy additional kits to extend the area up to one acre.
The waterproof collar adjusts to fit a wide range of dogs from 5 pounds and higher, with neck sizes between 6 inches and 26 inches. Also, the receiver on the collar uses a rechargeable battery, which lasts quite a long time and only takes two to three hours to recharge.
You can choose between three modes: tone, vibration, and shock with five correction levels. The collar increases in warning as your dog advances the fence. It begins with a tone, followed by vibrations and eventually, shock correction if your dog ventures too close. We learned that you’ll need to remove the collar when your dog returns indoors to avoid being unnecessarily shocked.
Although this in-ground fence has an inexpensive price, it does not offer much coverage space to make it a good value. Also, the wire is not built with durable material, and a surge protector is not included in the kit.
Are you ready to buy and install an invisible and wireless fence kit around your property? Before you make a purchase, take a moment to read through our useful buyer’s guide as we take a closer look at the difference between wireless fences and invisible fences which use a wire. And, we’ll also go over what makes a high-quality dog fence and what issues to avoid.
Wireless vs. Wired
A fully wireless invisible dog fence uses a transmitter plugged into a power outlet. The transmitter emits a circular, doomed shape boundary. It’s easy and quick to set-up and generally offers up to ¾ acre of coverage. Similar to all invisible fences, your dog wears a collar that creates feedback in the form of a tone, a vibration, or a shock when your dog reaches the border’s edge.
Wireless units can be set-up anywhere you have a power source making them portable and great for traveling. However, they do have some shortcomings compared to invisible fences that use a wire. If you choose a wireless unit, be sure to recognize that the signal can be interrupted by a metal roof or metal structures as well as stucco siding, multiple trees, or hills and slopes in your yard.
If you want to contain your dogs in a larger area such as over several acres and/or you prefer to establish a perimeter that has a customized shape, you’ll need to install an invisible fence that uses a wire. While some invisible fence kits state that the wire doesn’t have to be buried, in-ground wires provide the most consistent performance. Installing the wire in-ground usually takes a day or two. It may take longer depending on how large of an area you’re covering and any challenges your property may present such as crossing your driveway.
What makes a high-quality invisible and wireless dog fence?
Invisible and wireless dog fences have several different parts which all work together to keep your dog safe and contained. From the collars with receivers to the durability of the wire, we’ll explain what you should give consider before you buy a fence system for your property.
Collars Equipped with Receivers
For the invisible fence system to work, your dog must wear the specially designed collar equipped with a receiver. Make sure the collar is properly and comfortably fitted around your dog’s neck. If it’s too loose, your dog won’t feel the sensation to indicate the boundary. If it’s too tight, your dog may suffer skin irritation, abrasions, or infections. Always remove this collar when it’s not in use. Extended wearing leads to a higher risk of injury.
Rechargeable batteries are preferable for receivers. Look for long battery life and low battery indicators for better performance. Also, make sure the receivers and the battery area is waterproof to avoid damage to the unit and potential harm to your dog.
High-quality invisible fence systems offer collars that emit three different modes of feedback to alert your dog of the border’s edge. Tone mode beeps, vibration buzzes, and static or shock sends a small electric jolt. Look for a shock mode with adjustable levels of intensity. Also, make sure the receiver is in good working condition to avoid malfunction of either not working at all or over-correcting your dog which can lead to trauma or injury.
If you have a stubborn dog or a dog with an excitable temperament, you may need to use the stronger levels to prevent your dog from crossing the boundary. Some better fence systems give your dog a gradually increasing warning as your dog nears the edge. Keep in mind that no invisible dog fence is foolproof for every dog. Some dogs will endure the discomfort and break through the fence.
Not All Wires are Created Equal
If you want to get the best value for your purchase, be sure the wire on your in-ground invisible fence system is made with heavy-duty 20-gauge wire. Since the wire is outside in the elements and potentially the meal of a mouse or similar wildlife, you’ll need to make sure the wire is built for durability. Once the wire is damaged, the fence ceases to work.
Double check that your invisible dog fence comes with a surge protector. In the event of lightning or other electrical event, you’ll need the protection for your system to continue to function. If the kit doesn’t include a surge protector, look into whether it’s compatible for one and install it yourself.
The PetSafe PIF00-13663 Stay & Play Wireless Fence is our top pick for the best overall wireless fence system. This invisible fence takes only an hour or two to complete the easy set-up. And, unlike in-ground systems, it’s portable to take with you on trips where there’s access to an electrical outlet. With a collar that fits most dogs, the receiver has a tone mode and five static levels making it ideal for stubborn dogs. This fence system can contain multiple dogs with purchase of extra collars.
We selected Sit Boo-Boo Electric Fence as having the best value. At a great price, you’ll get 500 feet of highly durable 20-gauge solid copper wire that can expand up to 20 acres of land with additional purchases. The wire can be installed in or above-ground and has surge protection. The waterproof and weatherproof collar has a long-lasting rechargeable battery, three mode choices, and seven correction settings, and auto-train feature. This fence system is compatible with separately purchased collars and a remote device.
The SportDOG SDF-CT In-Ground Fence Systems is our premium choice. The initial kit covers up to 1 1/3 acres with the potential to span 100 acres with additional purchases. The rechargeable, waterproof collar has three modes and seven levels of static. A remote comes with purchase and is capable of training up to three dogs at a time. The collar can be set to respond to the fence, the remote, or both components. This fence system provides a built-in lightning protector and a transmitter feature.
Hopefully our thorough reviews, our useful pros and cons lists, and our informative buyer’s guide has helped you find the best invisible and wireless dog fence for your yard or large property. Allowing your dog to run free within safe boundaries can be a happy event for both you and your dog. With the right invisible and wireless fence, it can be possible to open your door and let your dog roam without worry.
Featured Image Credit: Free Spirit, Amazon
Emily started this blog out of pure passion. She LOVES her 3 dogs; Chew Barka, Cooper & Nelson, and spends countless hours every day playing with them.
When she’s not nerding out on dogs, you’ll find her on a snowboard or in the kitchen baking chocolate brownies.
She’s been featured in PetAware, Dogtime, and ModernDog.
- A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- The Eight Best Invisible & Wireless Dog Fences — Reviews 2020
- 1. PetSafe Stay & Play Wireless Fence — Best Overall
- 2. Sit Boo-Boo Electric Fence — Best Value
- 3. SportDOG In-Ground Fence Systems —Premium Choice
- 4. PetSafe In-Ground Dog Fence
- 5. Extreme Dog Fence
- 6. Pet Control HQ Wireless Electric Fence
- 7. COVONO Electric Dog Fence
- 8. Free Spirit FS-FENCE In-Ground Fence
- Buyer’s Guide
- Wireless vs. Wired
- What makes a high-quality invisible and wireless dog fence?
- Collars Equipped with Receivers
- Feedback Modes
- Not All Wires are Created Equal
- Surge Protector