How to Install Your New Wireless Dog Fence

how to install an invisible dog fence

The SpotOn Virtual Smart Fence is the easiest wireless dog fence to install. Why? Because it requires no installation at all! With the SpotOn System, you don’t have to use buried wires or bases station to create your invisible dog fence. All that is needed is the SpotOn Collar, an app-enabled smartphone, and a good pair of sneakers. “Installing” your virtual smart fence is as easy as heading outdoors for a walk!

How to install your new invisible dog fence

The possibilities are endless since the SpotOn Virtual Smart Fence System works anywhere that there is a strong GPS signal— which includes much of the earth's surface. How do you tell if your collar has a GPS signal? The letters "GPS" will turn from red to green on the collar display to indicate that you've got a GPS lock, so you'll always know when you are good to go!

Where is the best place to install my new wireless dog fence?

Let’s start in the backyard. Though the SpotOn System is completely portable and great for traveling with your dog, it's best to start in the place that is most familiar to your pup—your home.

When planning where to create your first virtual smart fence, make sure you give your pup an area large enough to play. We do not recommend creating a fence (or map) of less than 80 feet at its narrowest location. Though we don’t recommend creating a virtual fence that is too small, there is no maximum size limit so feel free to extend your virtual smart fence as far as you can safely go.

The SpotOn System also allows you to create circular fences. The smallest is the 20-meter circle. Need something bigger? There are several preset circles that range from 20-1,000 meters.

Since you don’t need a professional to install the SpotOn's GPS wireless dog fence, once your dog has been trained to your property, you and your pup have the freedom to get out and see the world! You are able to save up to 10 fences at a time on your SpotOn collar, so you can create virtual fences at the places you frequent—a vacation spot, the dog park, the beach, or a friend’s house.

How to install your new invisible dog fence

Before you create your first virtual smart fence (or map), it is helpful to understand when your dog will hear the tones and receive the (optional) static correction. The collar makes a series of audio warnings.

When your dog is about three meters from the boundary line, he will hear an alert tone. Think of this tone as a friendly “come here boy!” If he progresses beyond the alert tone, he will hear a harsher sounding warning tone. Think of this tone as a stern “come!”

The SpotOn training programs will teach your dog to respond to the alert and warning tones before crossing the perimeter, but as all dog owners know, dogs can have a mind of their own. The final warning is a static correction that is intended to quickly get your dog's attention.


Here are some helpful hints for creating your first virtual smart fence.

  • Determine the shape and size of the area you would like to install your fence and place the included flags along the boundary as a guide (these are not only helpful for walking your map but will also be used when training your pup)
  • Set boundary lines at least 15’ from a hazardous area like a street or waterway
  • Use the Pause feature to easily maneuver around or over barriers like ponds or bushes. Simply press the “Pause” button while walking your perimeter, then press “Resume” when the terrain allows you to continue your path. SpotOn will automatically “snap” a straight line between the two points. This is also useful when your virtual smart fence needs to pass through a building (like your house).
  • Avoid crossing your own path. Overlapping areas that you have already walked will result in an invalid map. To avoid this, select “End” just before you reach your initial starting point. The collar will snap a straight line between where you started and where you ended, ensuring that you always have a closed map.
  • Rename, activate, and deactivate your maps with the smartphone app.

One you have “installed” your first GPS dog fence, it’s time to begin training! Before you begin, check out this helpful article on training your dog to his virtual smart fence. Since you and your dog are in this together, make sure you follow one of the SpotOn training plans for an efficient and effective training experience. Not sure which plan to use? Take the training quiz here.


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