How to Train Your Dog With an Invisible Fence

All About Invisible Fence Training

Today we’re covering a very important topic when it comes to your new dog containment systems. We’re going to talk about how to train your dog with an invisible fence. 

This is by far the most crucial part of implementing this kind of system. And, people tend to avoid invisible fences completely because they are not willing to put in the time and effort.

It's understandable if you have your doubts as well, but we assure you that the training process isn’t difficult. However, it will require a well-thought-out invisible fence training schedule and some preparations.

Also, if you're looking for a basic explanation of how invisible dog fences work, we got you covered.

Invisible Fence Training Tips 

Before you get started, take five minutes to read through these handy pointers: 

  1. Never leave your pup to learn by trial and error. The negative reinforcement of the invisible fence can be both confusing and frightening for many dogs. Hence, if proper training and supervision aren’t followed, you could end up with a dog that’s too scared to go into the yard alone.

  1. Responsible training a dog for invisible fence systems should involve positive reinforcement techniques — stock up on those doggy treats! If you can almost make the training sessions into a game, your pooch is more likely to listen.

  1. Sessions should be short and frequent. When dog fence training, consider starting with shorter sessions multiple times a day. These will be more effective from our experience. Sessions should last no longer than 15 minutes.

  1. Spend time playing with your furry friend in the containment area before beginning the electric dog fence training. Make sure your pooch feels safe in the area, and train your dog wearing a regular collar and leash in addition to the fence collar. Note: Remove the fence collar between sessions when you first start.

  1. Start off slow. Use audible tones rather than static correction signals to ease your pup into the routine. The audible sound should be enough to warn them of any impending correction via static signals.

  2. Train one pup at a time. Although some dog training fences may come with several collars for multiple pet households, it’s always advisable to introduce each pet individually for training purposes.

What You Will Need to Train Dog on Invisible Fence 

To begin training, you’ll need:

  • Your chosen electric invisible dog fence system with transmitter.

  • A wireless dog fence collar that makes audible beeps and/or has a static correction device attached.

  • A regular collar and leash for keeping control of your pup.

  • Plenty of doggy treats — perhaps some frozen fruits such as blueberries if training in the hot summer months.

  • Patience — your dog won’t learn overnight. For most dogs, 14 days is enough time for successful electronic dog fence training.

Invisible Fence Dog Training Step-by-Step Guide

Preparation for Invisible Dog Fence Training

First things first. Finish installing your fence — paying close attention to the invisible fence manual that accompanies the system. If you need any further instructions on how to install your new containment system, we wrote an article about it.

Place invisible fence flags along the boundary line, a few feet apart from each other. These will act as a visual aid for your dog and help during the training process — you can always remove them later.

Step 1 — Introduce Your Dog to the Invisible Fence Training Area With Audible Signals Only

Now that you have completely installed the boundary zone with the invisible fence training flags and everything is set up — it's time to introduce your canine pal to his new playpen. 

  • The goal at the start of the training process is introducing your pet to the boundary line and making sure he associates the audible beep as a warning sign that lets him know he is close to stepping out of bounds.

  • Place the receiver collar around your pooch’s neck. It should be snug but not too tight. To check — there should be a two-fingers-width between your dog’s neck and the collar. 

  • You’ll also need to put on a regular collar for use with the leash. Attaching a leash to the invisible fence collar can often cause the metal prongs to move or apply unwanted pressure to your pup — something they certainly won’t like! 

Tip: Use a non-metal collar for leash work to avoid interfering with the transmitter signals.

Introduction to the boundary line
  • Walk your dog up to the dog training flags until he can hear the audible beep. Give him a second or two to identify the beep. Then turn around towards the center of the yard and tug the leash. 

  • To apply positive reinforcement, grab a bag of your pet's favorite treats and use them every time your diligent pupil does well. Be generous with praise every time they retreat on their own. 

  • Repeat until your dog reacts to the beep and resists approaching the flags.

  • By the end of every dog fence training session, your dog should feel comfortable near the boundary of invisible fence flags. Try to finish each session with playtime for 5 minutes within 10 feet of these flags.

Remember, making sure your pet associates a positive emotion with the training process is key to your success. Make it fun and cheerful, while maintaining focus and consistency. Set goals and plan every step.

Step 2 — How To Train a Dog With an Electric Fence and Static Correction Collars

Static stimulation is a mild, but irritating tingling sensation that works great for basic behavioral correction. Contrary to what some people believe — it is perfectly harmless and safe for your pet. Most collars that come with invisible fences have the option to choose a lower or higher level of intensity.

Now, not all dog breeds respond equally, especially if there is a difference in size. Even individually, depending on the temperament, you will have to fine-tune the intensity of the jolt. Start small and pick it up from there gradually. 

Remember, static stimulation is there to reinforce and remind your dog that leaving the set boundary zone is a no-no, and not to hurt your pet in any way.

If you need something visual, here’s a handy invisible fence training video:
  • Practice your dog responding to the static signal. As in step 1, walk your dog up to the invisible fence flags and wait for the beep followed by the static. Retreat back to the safe zone, and make sure to praise your furry friend. 

  • Repeat until you achieve the desired goal.

Tip: Make sure to take breaks if your pet seems stressed out or overwhelmed by this phase of the training process. 

Step 3 — Introducing Distractions to Your Underground Fence Training

Your dog should now be familiar with the dog training fence boundary line and is retreating without your interference.

  • Before you start fence training without your pup on a leash, introduce distractions. These could be their — favorite toys, familiar people, or other pet pals walking by. 
  • Ask a neighbor or another family member to throw one of your pooch’s favorite toys into the garden while you hold your dog on a leash. Gauge their behavior and gently correct if they move too close or over the boundary.

Once you're happy with their reaction and feel assured that your pet won't give in and cross the line, it's safe to move on to the next step.

Step 4 — How To Train a Dog on Invisible Fence Without a Leash

Now you’re completely confident your dog can retreat from the invisible dog fence without your interference. You can move to the next phase — removing the leash.
Off Leash Dog Training
  • Stand in the yard and watch how your pet behaves on his own, stepping in from time to time if needed. 

  • It’s perfectly normal for your curious student to challenge the boundary a few times now that he has the freedom to run around the whole yard. Provided he doesn't step over the boundary line and leave the area completely, you should be happy with the results.

  • Similar to step 3 above, monitor how your pooch reacts to distractions when they’re introduced just outside your yard’s limits. How does your pooch behave when other animals enter and leave the zone?

Remember, invisible fences are there to contain your pooch within an area, not to keep out other dogs.
  • Supervise your pet a little bit longer but gradually decrease the amount of involvement. Stand back and reap the rewards of your success.

  • Eventually, you can remove the invisible fence training flags. But do this gradually — don’t remove all the flags at once! Take down alternate flags and assess your dog’s progress. If they start to overstep the boundary too frequently, halt removal, and wait until your dog is ready to try again.

Tip: Flag removal can take up to four weeks — although it is dependent on your dog.


If you have successfully completed all the steps — we congratulate you! 

Now, you have a much better understanding of training a dog on an invisible fence. So, pat yourself on the back and give your dog a whole bag of treats, you both deserve it. 

If you have any doubts, you can always come back to this guide and repeat some of the steps until you're satisfied with the results. Remember, this is the hardest part of implementing an invisible dog fence into your household, and we can't stress enough how important it is to go through it. 

Patience and consistency are key when learning how to train your dog with an invisible fence. Hopefully, the time you spent with your dog was fun and also a very special bonding experience that brought you even closer. You can finally rest assured that your favorite furry friend can enjoy a safe and secure environment.
If you’re looking for a long-term solution when it comes to training your pet and correcting their behavior, an invisible fence is one of your safest bets. Now, make sure you fully understand your possibilities and responsibilities towards your furry friend. These things can easily become an instrument of abuse if you don’t use them correctly. That doesn’t always mean it’s the owner’s fault, but it does correlate with owner’s ignorance or lack of experience.
As far as your budget goes, you won’t damage it too much. As we said earlier, these fences aren’t cheap but are certainly a good investment, especially if you own a problematic dog. Many people spend hundreds of dollars on professional trainers, and they don’t always guarantee success. This way, you can take a role of a trainer even if you don’t have any experience, and train your pet according to your own preferences. It does take a bit of effort and time, but it definitely pays out in the end.

How To Train a Dog With Invisible Fence FAQs

How Long Does It Take Training a Dog on an Invisible Fence? 

Every dog has different training needs — some dogs are quick learners and may master it in a week or so. Yet, most brands suggest a minimum of 14 days to three weeks.

How Do You Stop Your Pooch From Running Through an Invisible Fence?

Some dogs can be more stubborn than others, and further training may be required. You may need to remind your dog where the boundaries are by walking with your pooch along the permitted dog training fence lines with the flags in place. 

It may also be worth checking whether the collar is still active or that the batteries have run out. Remove the collar from the dog’s neck and try walking over the boundary yourself while keeping hold of the metal prongs on a low static shock setting. If in doubt, check the invisible fence training instructions.

How Old Should a Puppy Be for Invisible Fence Training?

Most experts and manufacturers recommend a puppy is at least 8 weeks old before electric fence dog training. Puppies typically start to grasp basic training concepts around eight to 12 weeks of age.

You should also consider the physical development of a puppy and whether their neck muscles and overall size are sufficient to wear the receiver collar.

Can a Dog Jump Over an Invisible Fence?

No. The signal from the wire that’s used in traditional underground fence training containment systems is 360 degrees — your pooch will not be able to run through it, jump over it, or dig under it without receiving a static correction shock. More advanced wireless systems that transmit a signal to a specific distance will warn the pup if he tries jumping over the boundary lines. 

Although an invisible fence containment system may not seem as secure as a physical barrier, they’re much easier to install, and ideal for tenants who may not be able to erect a permanent fence. (They also don’t need planning permission like some physical barriers may need before installing!)

Is Electric Fence Dog Training Harmful to Your Dog?

Invisible fences, also known as underground or wireless electric fences, are generally not harmful to dogs when used correctly and responsibly. With the correct dog fence training and the static stimulus not set too high, most dogs will quickly learn to avoid crossing the boundary.

Be patient though, and never increase the static level too high just because your dog doesn’t always obey the stimulus. Positive reinforcement — as in, offering your pooch a reward when he retreats from the border — works much better than a stronger shock. This can often cause confusion or even aggression in some dogs.