Need Help Choosing a Wireless Pet Fence

Updated on July 29, 2009
J.C. asks from Hackettstown, NJ
4 answers

We just rescued a 2 1/2 yr old dog. We are planning on buying a wireless pet fence for the yard. I have been looking at two different ones and wanted to know if anyone has experience with either one. The first one is the PETSAFE INSTANT FENCE - PIF-300 WIRELESS DOG FENCE and the other one is the The WiFi Rechargable Dog Fence System. If anyone has any recomendation on either one I would love to hear from you.

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answers from Albany on

We have the Pet Safe instant fence. We have used it for 2 years and it has worked really well. A few times our dog has left our yard but it was when he realized the battery had died. Training was fairly simple for us - we have a golden retriever who is very smart. Good Luck!



answers from New York on

How nice that you rescued a dog. All my dogs have been rescues and they are wonderful. Over the years I have had a few and the wireless fence worked great on all but one. he was a shepherd husky mix and would run thru the fence if he saw something he wanted. Then would sit OUTSIDE the fence whining to come back. So I guess it depends on the dog. Huskies are notorious for roaming and have to be watched like a baby.
Any of the wireless fences would work if you take the time to train the dog. It's very important to follow the training directions.



answers from New York on

Hi there!

I'd like to chime in my thoughts as a professional dog trainer. I'm sure you have heard a lot of positive things about electric or "invisible" fences, which is why you may have already chosen to go ahead with getting one. I don't know if you are aware of several potential drawbacks to these systems, and I know the companies aren't always forthcoming on warnings, so I thought I would share them with you so you can have a balanced view and a better base to make a decision from.

I am not a trainer who is completely, adamantly opposed to these fences. I have, however, dealt personally with situations where they have caused more problems than they have solved. The best option for any family, in my opinion, is to get a real fence, if possible. The next best option is to keep the dog under physical management(leash, long line) and train the dog for reliable verbal commands when off leash. There are also reliable ways to train a boundary without using electric shock. Regardless of what fencing option a family chooses, an dog outside should be supervised to prevent problems that can happen with any dog left alone outside (neighborhood children teasing, wildlife attacking, stolen by dog fighters, practicing aggressive/territorial behavior towards delivery men, servicemen or guests).

Here are some problems (that I have personally seen or heard of from colleagues) invisible fences can cause:
- Dogs who refuse to go into the yard where they previously played and romped
- Dogs who have started urinating/defecating in the house due to fear of going outside
- Dogs who run through the fence when they see something too exciting, only to become stuck outside the boundary and unable to go back in
- Development of aggression towards objects they have seen outside the boundary (children, other dogs, etc.) and gotten shocked for rushing toward
- Collars that malfunction while on the dogs, causing extreme pain and/or burns

Some of these problems are more common than others, but all have been fully documented.

This article highlights some drawbacks to this kind of system, although it is biased against the systems due to the trainer's personal negative experiences with them:

All that being said, I understand families who still choose to use electric fences. They seem to be convenient, cost effective, and easy to use. They can be very useful in certain situations where real fencing is prohibited, or other forms of exercise for the dog are impossible, and the owners are willing to train the dog to the fence well, and always supervise the dog when outside.

Also, from what I know , the wifi products are very new, and the boundary can be just as sketchy as your internet connection. You don't want that in an electric fence. I would recommend the PIF fence if you decide to go with one. Also, if you need help with any training or acclimating issues with your dog, please don't hesitate to give me a call or an email. Best wishes for a great, lasting relationship with your new dog!

S. Walker
Side by Side Dog Training



answers from New York on

My sister has a hunting dog. He was shocked by their wireless fence one time and now he will not go outside without his owners. Just thought I would throw that out there for you to know, utherwise, I know nothing more about these fences.

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