There are lots of options out there for keeping your dog safe in the yard. Invisible fences have been around since the 1970s and have a proven to be successful containment solutions for millions of pups. They rely on the dog wearing a collar and receiving a static correction within a proximity to a boundary line. The first versions relied on buried wire and an indoor transmitter paired with a radio frequency collar. As invisible fence technology advanced, “wireless” base station versions were introduced, and more recently GPS fences.
Traditional invisible fences use an underground wire and radio frequency base station housed indoors.
- Wire stays in place under the ground
- A customized fence of any shape can be laid
- The technology is decades old and has been used by millions of dogs.
They are great if you have an irregularly shaped yard or need to keep the dog out of certain areas (like a driveway or garden).
- You must dig a trench in the yard (which can be time consuming or expensive)
- The wire can be damaged by lawnmowersor frozen ground and must be repaired in order for the entire system to function
- Since the system is proximity-based, some dogs can jump over the wire and escape
Wireless invisible fences like PetSafe's Free to Roam Wireless Fence™ and Stay & Play Wireless Fence® rely on an indoor base station/radio transmitter and allow for a certain radius of movement within them.
- Since the unit relies only on the base station, you don’t need to worry about wires
- These systems are often less expensive, you can take it if you move
- The wireless invisible fence is limited to a fixed circular perimeter
- It can be difficult to fine-tune and can be tricky to place given the size and shape of the property
- It can be affected by topography—for instance, the circle can be shifted blocked by hills or tall structures
GPS-based invisible fences, like SpotOn Virtual Fence, are powered by satellites. The most recent upgrade to invisible fence technology, GPS invisible fences eliminate the need for buried wires and base stations and can be used anywhere there is a GPS signal (basically anywhere on the planet).
- You can create an invisible fence anywhere without the need for a power source so you can use it anywhere
- You can create invisible fences of any shape and any size
- You can create fences over tricky terrain
- You can store multiple locations at one time
- If the dog escapes his invisible fence, you can receive an automatic smartphone notification
- Because the technology all needs to fit into a self-contained unit, the collar tends to be larger than traditional invisible fence collars
- Because the battery powers the collar, the fence, and all communications to and from the satellite and cellular networks, the rechargeable battery runs about 24 hours
Though the many invisible fence options vary in capability and price point, there is one constant to all: you must properly train your dog to understand and respect his boundaries. Visit SpotOn's training resources to learn more about training your pup to any style invisible fence.