How to Train Dog for Invisible Fence? 5 Easy Methods

How to Train Dog for Invisible Fence? 5 Easy Methods

Last Updated on December, 2022

So you want to train your doggo for an invisible electric fence. If your space doesn’t have a physical fence, an invisible fence will work excellently to keep your doggy safe. 

It isn’t difficult to train a dog for an invisible fence. All you need is the right INFORMATION, and you will breeze through the training process.

Quick Summary

An invisible electric fence uses underground wires and a radio-transmitted collar to train a dog not to cross a boundary.

The collar emits a sound or static charge when the dog gets too close to the boundary, which the dog learns to associate with the boundary.

Training flags can be used as a visual aid to help the dog understand the boundary.

How Does an Invisible Electric Fence Work?

a dog lying on the ground

An invisible electric fence uses underground wires and a radio-transmitted collar. These are the two base components of most invisible electric fence systems.

The collar goes on your dog’s neck, while the underground wire should be buried along the perimeter defined for the pooch. (There are wireless invisible fences too!) 

Invisible fences, transmit signals to the collar around your dog’s neck every time your pooch approaches or gets too close to the buried underground wire (the fence line.)

Various invisible systems have various features. Features will differ from product to product, with some offering noise signal correction while others offer static shock correction.

The collar can either be set to emit a noise or sound, a loud beep. Or, it can be set to produce a static charge around your dog’s neck, which is entirely safe and harmless. It’s like a little pinch.

If you are still not a fan of static, most invisible fence systems come with a vibration only feature which you can use as the corrective response. 

These corrective mechanisms enable the dog to be trained to know the perimeter. Over time, your dog will learn not to approach or cross the buried underground wire (the perimeter.)

All invisible fences are electric fences. However, they are not the same as electrified fences, which are physical fences that must be built.

Invisible fences, on the contrary, are beautiful and invisible, meaning the aesthetics of your yard or space is beautifully maintained. 

The receiver collar is an essential part of an invisible electric fence. The features of the collar will define how good the system is.

With the proper training, an invisible fence will work well to keep your pooch safe. Your pooch will learn not to cross the fence line.

Read our complete guide to know more about how invisible dog fence works.

Before You Start Training

a human holding instruction manual and dogs walking on the ground

The first thing you should do is, find the instruction manual for the system you purchased and read it word to word. The INSTRUCTION MANUAL has all the information you will need to get you going on installing the invisible fence

Regardless of your invisible fence system, you will have to do two things. First, bury the underground wire along the perimeter. Second, place the receiver collar around your pooch’s neck. This is how you go about installing the system.

Once the system is installed, you should familiarize yourself with the features of the receiver collar. The features will define the various methods you can use to train your doggy to the invisible fence. 

When you have finished installing the invisible fence and have familiarized yourself with the receiver collar settings, you are now READY to start training your pooch. 

How to Train Dog for Invisible Fence?

a man training a dog

You can adopt a handful of methods to train your dog for an invisible fence. The training process will most certainly include tasty dog treats.

Here are methods for training your dog for an invisible dog fence.

Method 1: The Signal-Only Technique 

As mentioned, the receiver collar that goes around your dog’s neck has various features. This method relies on the sound signal feature of the receiver collar.

With this feature, the collar will beep every time your dog comes near the underground wire (the fence line). This sound is intended to be recognized by your dog, who will learn to understand what the sound means over time. 

You will need, 

  • A dog leash
  • Some tasty dog treats
  • Patience 

Take your dog on a leash and set the collar receiver to signal-only mode. This feature will produce a sound when the collar is close to the underground wire using radio signals.

Step 1: Leash training.

Dog fence training will require you to take your dog on a leash and walk close to the underground wire.

You will want to wait for the signal to go off (the beep sound), and then move your dog away from the spot. Reward your doggy with a tasty dog treat. 

Repeated training sessions are the key to success with any form of training. You want to repeat step 1 a few times to give your dog a feel for what is happening. Once ready, you can proceed to step 2. 

Step 2: Take the leash off. (Off-leash training)

Once you feel your dog is ready to master the lesson, take the leash off and allow your dog to wander the space. You can use stimuli to lure your dog close to the fence line, such as another dog on the fence line’s other side. 

DO NOT lay treats near the fence line to lure your pooch. That will only confuse your dog.

Use verbal commands to correct his behavior and influence his success. When your dog succeeds and learns to move away from the fence line when the beep sounds, reward it with a tasty treat. This will reinforce behavior. 

Method 2: The Corrective Stimuli Technique

This second method is similar to the first method, however, relies on another feature of invisible fence systems. 

The corrective stimuli feature of the receiver collar discharges a slight static charge around your dog’s neck; this is also called a static correction. This feature, much like the sound feature, will work to train your doggy on what to do when they approach the fence line of the invisible fence.

Take your dog on a leash and walk close to the fence line of the invisible fence. Electric dog fences, such as invisible fences, will transmit a signal to the receiver collar, activating the collar based on the selected feature.

a human holding Electric fence collar and a dog lying on the ground

The receiver collar’s corrective stimuli aren’t the same as the sound signal. Your pooch will feel the pinch. The static charge is intended to cause a pinch.

Your dog intends to remember this pinch, which will resultantly train it to move away from the perimeter when it gets too close. 

Use a leash, walk close to the perimeter, allow the corrective stimuli to be activated and then walk away. Reward your pooch with a tasty treat. 

Once you feel comfortable removing the leash, go ahead. It’s time to train your dog off-leash. Allow your dog to understand the process. For instance, you could use another dog to lure it close to the invisible fence. 

The static correction levels can be chosen based on what you think is a good setting for your dog. The higher setting can be too much for sensitive dogs, so ensure you rely on a setting that works best for you and your dog.

Use verbal commands where necessary and when your dog reacts correctly by walking away from the perimeter, reward it with a tasty treat.

Method 3: Use Training Flags

This method relies on using colorful training flags placed along the perimeter to act as a visual aid for your dog. 

A regular fence is easy. The dog sees the fence; the dog knows it’s a barrier. With an invisible fence, the trouble is there is no visible barrier. 

You can use training flags to create a visual barrier for your dog.

This method is best used with the signal-only mode (the sound feature.) The visual aid, coupled with the sound feature, will work to teach your dog about the invisible barrier. 

You want to place all the training flags along the perimeter (the underground wire). Once the visual barrier is in place, take your dog on a leash, and walk towards the flags. When the sound beeps, walk back. Reinforce good behavior with a tasty dog treat. 

a human holding invisible fence flag

With the boundary line well defined by the training flags, your dog will learn to recognize the line of flags as a barrier. You want to then take the leash off, and allow your dog to run free. 

If your dog walks away from the boundary flags, reward it with a tasty treat. 

You can leave the flags in place for as long as you want or for as long as you feel your dog needs them; you don’t have to remove all the flags immediately (remove flags as you wish).

Over time, you can begin removing the flags, and your dog will know not to cross the perimeter, especially with the sound or static correction feature enabled.

Method 4: Positive Reinforcement

Constructive reinforcement techniques can be very useful when training your furry friend. Over time, though the fence is invisible, your dog will learn about boundary awareness.

During the learning process, you want to use constructive reinforcement to better train your pooch. 

Positive reinforcement relies on treats and love to reinforce good behavior. ‘You’re a good boy!’ or feeding them a tasty doggy treat should be the way to reinforce good behavior.

This can be a powerful tool in your arsenal when training your pooch for an invisible fence. 

Though the fence line with invisible fences is not visible when your dog stays within the containment area or reacts correctly to the receiver collar signal, reinforce that behavior with praise, toys and treats. This is an integral part of all training sessions. 

So long as your dog stays within the safe zone, your dog deserves praise; most dogs do. Any training session should include plenty of elements of positive reinforcement.

Use your words to reinforce behavior and encourage your dog along the learning process. The positive association will help your dog learn better and faster, hence remember and rely on this technique.

Method 5: Distraction Training (The Final Step) 

This method is a great way to test your dog’s training progress. 

A squirrel could be running on the other side of the perimeter. All of a sudden, your pooch could dash or try to cross the perimeter of the invisible fence. 

Hence, it is vital to use distractions on the other side of the perimeter to entice your dog to cross the boundary. This method is also a great final technique to train your doggy for the invisible fence off-leash fully.

a dog sitting on the ground and looking the invisible fence flags

You could, for instance, place another dog on the other side of the perimeter. This will entice your dog to cross the perimeter by creating a distraction.

Dogs are usually easily distracted unless they are trained to avoid distractions. Hence distraction training should be the final step in your training process. 

Use a distraction and allow your dog to free roam, enticing your pooch to cross the boundary. Use verbal training to correct behavior if your dog gets distracted and tries to leave the containment area. 

When your dog gets it right and responds correctly to the signal or sound, reward them with praise and treats.

Invisible Fences with Training Programs

Some invisible fence systems come with training programs. These training programs are expert tutorials designed to train your dog to understand an invisible fence. 

With the system installed and the receiver collar appropriately fitted, you can start teaching your pooch by relying on the specific training program designed for the product. 

Relying on these products requires less thinking and figuring out. You will have all the steps specific to the invisible fence system you purchased. 

Here are the two most recommendable invisible fences with training programs. 

Halo 2+ 

It’s not your regular non-metallic collar; big difference. This product is fabulous. It uses GPS tracking to designate the containment area defined by a Halo collar around your dog’s neck.

With Halo 2+, you won’t have to spend time digging your yard to bury any underground wire. (It’s complete WIRELESS)

Halo 2+ uses a mobile app and GPS tracking to define an area in your yard where your dog will be able to free roam. The collar will produce a return signal when your dog leaves this designated area or crosses the boundary. 

The return signal will work to improve boundary awareness and doesn’t harm your dog in any way. 

Halo is designed by the world-renowned dog behaviorist, Cesar Millan

Mastering the Halo system is simple. The system comes with video lessons by Cesar Millan, accompanied by expert Halo dog trainer Heather Mickelson

Their training program has been effective on all dogs. Anyone can complete the training program; it isn’t hard to follow. 

a dog is wearing halo collar

Regardless of the breed or age of your dog, this training program will be effective. The training program can be watched on any device and can be finished at your own pace. 

Choosing an invisible fence system with a training program designed specifically for the product is better than playing the guessing game with other systems.

Halo 2+ also gives you access to the Halo Dog Park, a virtual dog park for dog owners. This is the place to go for special training events and further help training your dog. 

The system uses Bluetooth-enabled Halo Beacons to designate the containment area. The mobile app is easy to use and understand and comes with loads of training information. 

With Halo 2+, you can define more than one area. This means it isn’t a one-off single fence. You can define new boundaries on the mobile app and can change boundaries based on need. 

Since it doesn’t involve burning wires, you can use the Halo Collar even on dog retreats. 

All in all, Halo 2+ has features that benefit you, the user. The unrivaled training program of Halo Collar is one of the main reasons to consider this product. 

SpotOn Fence

SpotOn is another excellent GPS-tracking-based dog collar that doesn’t require you to spend time burying underground wires. It, too, comes with a fabulous training program aimed at helping you train your pooch for an invisible fence. 

There are no underground wires, just the collar and the mobile app

Using the app, you can designate a containment area, and your dog will then be able to roam free and chase birds. 

Most dogs do not like being cooped up in small spaces. This app allows you to choose the dog’s containment area, the back yard or the front lawn. You can define new boundaries and alter existing boundaries using the mobile app. 

Once the safe zone has been adjusted on the mobile app, you can leave your dog UNSUPERVISED.

Any family member can use the training material provided within the app to learn everything they need to help them train their dogs for the system. 

What is excellent about SpotOn is that no area is too big. You could even designate a 1000-acre area. This can be great for farm owners and hunting dogs. 

a dog wearing spoton collar and lying on the ground

The benefits of relying on a system are many. The technology is beautiful and seamless, and you won’t have to worry about figuring out how you should use the system to train your dog. 

The training program provided with SpotOn takes away the guessing game. 

If you have many dogs, you can buy more collars for your other dogs and use the mobile app to determine and designate the area. 

StopOn is one of the few RELIABLE electric dog fence systems that works with GPS to keep your dog happy, safe and carefree. 

Essential Tips for Training Dogs for Invisible Fences

If you find yourself training dogs on a system without a training manual, you will have to opt for the methods discussed in this article to train your pooch.

Here are some tips that will help you along the training process.

Tip # 1 – Doggy Treats

When training your pooch for an invisible electric dog fence, you must rely on positive reinforcement to teach them good behavior. 

Use some tasty doggy treats, the ones your dog enjoys the most, to assist in your dog’s training. 

Tip # 2 – Repetition

With dog training, repetition is critical. It will take your dog more than one go at anything to learn what they are supposed to. 

For instance, it will take time for your dog to understand the warning beep. Frequent sessions and repeated training will teach your dog what the warning beep stands for.

In time, it will learn and understand the central point behind the training. 

Tip # 3 – Have Patience

It would help if you gave your pooch the time needed to learn and master the training. If you have ever tried training your dog, you will know it is usually a slow process. 

It takes time to teach your dog to sit or stay. Training your dog for an invisible fence is no different. 

Please have patience, and give your pooch the time it needs to learn the training. You can be completely confident that giving your dog enough time will master the invisible electric dog fence. 

a human training a dog

Tip # 4 – Familiarize Yourself with the System

Regardless of which wireless electric dog fence you opt for, take the time to study the manual and learn the ins and outs of the system. 

The more accustomed to the settings and features of the product you are, the easier it will be for you to train your dog using that system. 

Pet owners often find it overwhelming to train dogs to do anything. Hence, study the system well, and you should be fine. 

Tip # 5 – Learn the Training Process

You must understand what you must do to train your dog for an invisible fence. The better accustomed you are to training your dog, the greater the likelihood of success.

Remember, dogs respond well to reinforcement that is NOT negative. Try to avoid negative reinforcement during the training process.

Pick the best training mode for you and proceed with what you know and have learnt. 

FAQs

Training your dog for an invisible dog fence isn’t the hardest thing in the world. You only need some tasty doggy treats and the patience to see the training through. 

Although invisible fences are not 100% effective, they are good at what they do. They work well to keep your pooch safe and from harm’s way. 

On a positive note, invisible fence systems come in various price ranges, all having various features. With prices starting at a few hundred dollars, you should be able to find a working system in your price range.

Regardless of the weather, an invisible fence will work to keep your dog within the containment area. 

So long as you have trained your dog well to an invisible fence, a warning beep can be sufficient to ensure your dog’s safety.

Final Thoughts

Training your dog to identify and be aware of an invisible fence isn’t difficult. Compared to a non-metallic collar, these wireless fence systems and collars work marvelously to create a safe zone for your pooch. 

An invisible fence is attractive to many people, so many of you are now considering invisible electric fences for your dogs. In time, you will learn to leave behind that long leash and allow your pooch to run free.

If you need help choosing an excellent invisible fence, I recommend you read our article on the best invisible fences in the market. 

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Stefano Giachetti
Stefano Giachetti is always excited to share his knowledge and love of animals with you through our blog, IPetGuides. And he has always loved animals and has been blessed to have many pets throughout his life. Currently has a Pomeranian Dog Breed.

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