Marking Utilities and Obstacles

The first thing we need to do is have your underground utility lines marked so you know where to be careful when digging.  811 is a free service that alerts water, sewer, electricity, cable and gas suppliers to mark your property with the route of any underground utility lines.  Simply call 811 and the utility companies will mark their underground utility lines with either flags or spray paint.  It can take up to  a week so you will want to call now.  If you have privately installed any utilities like a septic system or lines for gas cylinders you will want to mark these as well.  Most utilities are deeply buried (over a foot deep) and you will only be burying the cables a few inches deep so usually underground utilities are not an issue, but it is better to be safe than sorry and dig carefully in areas where utilities are located.

If possible mark the location of any sprinkler system lines or low voltage power lines for any outdoor lighting system you have had installed.  If you can’t determine the location of these lines, make your best guess.  Damaging a sprinkler line or a low voltage power line is not a big deal, both are easy to fix.  Just be sure to shut off the water and power before you start digging.

Diagram Your Yard

On grid paper, sketch a rough map of your property showing any buildings, paths, driveways, garden beds,  underground utilities and other obstacles.  Figure out which parts of the garden you want to give your dog access to and which parts you want to block access to.

Decide where you will locate the transmitter box.  The transmitter should be located near a power outlet and protected from the elements.  Inside a garage or electrified shed is ideal.

Now determine where you will run your fence.  The fence needs to make a complete loop starting and ending at the transmitter box.  You will use a pair of wires twisted together in places where you want the dog to be able to cross the wire safely. For more details on twisted wire, see here.

Design Principles

Some things to keep in mind when deciding on the placement of wires:

  1. Cross utility lines at right angles – you want to avoid running wire close to a utility line for an extended stretch because, in some rare instances a boundary wires running close to a utility wire can induce a signal in the utility wire making part of your home wiring trigger the collar receivers.
  2. Round corners –  boundary wires should turn corners gradually, avoiding sharp 90 degree turns.
  3. Separate parallel boundary wires – Boundary wires emit signals that will cancel each other out, so you want any boundary wires that are parallel to each other to be at least six feet apart.  Similarly, if your neighbors have a dog fence, keep your wires about six feet from theirs.

Sample Layouts

Perimeter Dog Fence Layout

Dog Fence Basic LayoutThe most popular layout runs along your yard’s perimeter.  This layout allows your dog access to the entire property.

The twisted wire joins the house transmitter box to the boundary wire.  This enables the dog to safely walk over the twisted wire path.

Where possible lay the boundary wire two yards back from the road to give a good safety buffer for you dog and to allow a space for pedestrians.  Also try to allow three yards between the boundary wire and the house on at least one side to allow the dog room to pass between the front and back yard.

Backyard Dog Fence Layout

The challenge in doing a backyard only installation is that you want the house side of boundary to be inactive so your dog can freely enter and exit your home without getting the correction. However, for the system to work, you still need a full loop of single (untwisted wire). There are a number of approaches you can take:

Backyard Dog Fence LayoutThe easiest way to make a complete loop, while only giving the dog access to the backyard is to make a loop that goes tight around the front of the house too. This completes the loop, but there is not enough space around the front of the house for the dog to have access to the front yard. When you do this type of layout, it is important to do a quick check with the collar inside the house to make sure that the signal is not inadvertently spilling into the house in rooms where you dog will stay. If there is a problem, just decrease the boundary width, or move the wire a little further from the front of your house.

Dog Fence Gutter LayoutAnother popular method is go high over the back of your house. Run the wire up a downspout on one side of the house, across the gutter, and down the downspout on the other side of the house. This vertical height over the ground gives your dog enough space to get in and out of the back door without triggering the correction. As always, you want to test with the collar at the back door to make sure there is no signal accidentally reaching down where the dog will walk. Also test rooms near the gutter line to make sure there is no signal spilling into those rooms. If there is unwanted spill, turn down the boundary width setting on the control box until you are getting no spill.

Dog Fence Layout Double LoopThe final method is to go around the three sides of the yard, then double back on yourself to make a U-shaped loop. The two opposite wires need to be separated by at least six feet to avoid the signals from one loop from interfering with the other.  If they are too close you will not get a nice strong signal along the boundary, and you may have dead spots where there is no correction at all. If you already have a tall fence in place, on way to achieve this without digging is to run one leg of the wire along the top of the fence, and the return leg along the bottom of the fence, so you get the necessary separation.

Exclusion Zones

You can also add small exclusion zones to keep your dog out of small areas within your property. For example you may want your dog to have full access to your yard except a small garden bed.To do this you loop some boundary wire around the area you want to protect and join the loop to the main loop with some twisted wire.

The hourglass layout contains the dog in both the front and back yard, but does not allow the dog to cross between the front and back yard. This is great if you want the dog with you in the front or back yard but do not want them crossing between them.
Note that the two loops are connected to each other on the left hand side of this diagram and that they both connect to the transmitter box on the right hand side.

Figure 8/Hourglass Layout

Single-sided Boundary Layout

With a bit of inventiveness, you can create a single sided boundary. The only stipulation is that the twisted wire section can only be half the length of the looped boundary wire. For example, if your loop is 100 feet in a circle, you can only run 50 feet of twisted wire back. This install is very popular with people who live in a rural setting and they want to protect their dog from running out onto the freeway. You simply run a long length of twisted wire from the wall transmitter out to the road. Create a long, skinny loop of boundary wire, remembering to keep the parallel sections a minimum of 6 feet separated to avoid the wires interfering with each other. The key for success of this installation method is run your loop far enough along the road so that your dog doesn’t run around it.

Lake Front Layout

On a lake front property, if you’d like to incorporate the lake into your fence you have several options.  Do note that there is no danger for your dog to receive a correction when swimming.  The correction level will not change or pose any sort of safety threat.  When incorporating the lake, it’s useful to know if your lake front gradually gets deeper or simply drops off.  Depending on what you’re trying to accomplish will determine how you go about incorporating the lake.  It’s recommended when sinking wire into a lake to run it into a water hose or irrigation hose and sink it to the bottom.  This will protect the wire from critters and fishing hooks.

Lakefront Option One is to simply submerge extra boundary wire out into the lake at your desired distance. Do you want your dog to just be able to walk into the lake a few feet so she can get a drink or lay down in the water to cool off? Or do you want to sink the wire over 10 feet so that she can go for a deeper swim or freely jump into the boat when the family goes out? You’re goal will determine how much wire you plan to sink. Dog Fence Lake Installation Option 1
Lakefront Option Two if you have enough yard space, you can use a double back approach to create a three-sided boundary. Simply set an extra length into the lake when doubling back so that your dog will not be able to easily run around the fence. Dog Fence Lake Installation Option 2
Lakefront Option Three is a modification of the first where you incorporate the dock and boat house, but the lake is otherwise not incorporated into the fence plan. Dog Fence Lake Installation Option 2

Gate on the Boundary

Dog Boundary Gate LayoutThe Boundary Gate allows you to create a “gate” along the boundary where there is no correction. This is useful where you have a physical gate that you want to use in this section instead of the electronic fence. For this layout to work, you will need to use the double back layout and keep the parallel wires separated by at least six feet. Where you get to the non-correction gate area, you will bring the two wires together and twist them.

Since this requires a lot of extra wiring, many people find it easier to use a non-layout solution. Instead when they create a virtual gate, training the dog that when they you take off their collar and give them permission, they can walk through the gate without fear of correction. This is covered in more detail in the Dog Fence Training section of the website where we look at walking your dog through the boundary.

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{ 252 comments… read them below or add one }

Karen Swift March 12, 2015 at 12:30 pm

Hello! I have 2 dogs, each weighing aprox. 50#. One is a 9 yr old male Sharpei/Beagle (a SharpEagle!) mix named Fugly and the other a 4 yr old APBT female named Andie. Fugly is hard to train and used to free range on our 4 acres and our neighbors 16 acres but I think with proper training he will be happy in the 3 acres I plan to fence, he is getting older and doesn’t wander as much as he did, more happy just laying in the sun. Andie is our problem as she’s a Pittie and the neighbor isn’t found of the breed. She is also VERY smart but very sensitive as well. I think she will be easily trained to stay in her boundary area but I fear her reaction to a correction may make her fearful or anxious. I AM willing to spend the time training both dogs the proper way and do think it will be worthwhile. I have another issue and that is we do have a metal roof on the house as well as the barn. Our yard layout is similar to your Backyard diagram with our home having the back side of the house butting up against a ditch about 4 feet away from the back. so the dogs would have access to the front of the home and 3 acres of yard. The barn is also situated in the same fashion with the backside in line with the house and butting up against ditch. My plan would be to install the wire 10 feet from the metal roofline on the backside of the home and barn if possible, with the twisted wire coming in thru a window on the back of the home, there is no door, all doors are on front side of home/barn. Thus the dogs would stay out of the neighbors yard as well as the ditch. I THINK this would work but would like your opinion on my situation with the metal roof as well as my dogs temperment as my daughter is very much against an underground wired system. Installing a chain link fence would be costly as well as unattractive and hard to do as our driveway runs in front of the home. We also live in Northern Michigan with very cold winters as well as snow cover and i would be upgrading to 14 gauge wire if i go with the PetSafe YardMax system.

ADMIN – Hi Karen. You will need 2,000 feet of boundary wire to contain your dogs in a 3 acre perimeter loop. We recommend the PetSafe Stubborn Dog Fence (PIG00-10777) for Akitas, Bulldogs, German Shepherds, Pitbulls, Rottweilers, etc. Have your dogs used correction collars before? What is the full adult weight of your dogs? We recommend installing a “Power Pole” with an electric outlet installed 10 feet away from all large metal objects. Then, connect the transmitter to the electrical outlet in a “Weather Proof” box to keep it dry. Next, install 10 feet of twisted wire to the wire loop terminals in the transmitter. Finally, splice the ends of the twisted wire to the boundary wire that goes around your perimeter loop.

Jack Sanders March 11, 2015 at 12:21 pm

I want to do your lakefront layout – allowing my dogs not to leave the property – but to go in the lake as much as they want. I understand the layout – but we have SOOOOO little property that here is my question……………how close can the two wires be to each other in order that the dogs still get a correction. Can I aline the wires within say….5 inches of each other ??- is the connection only broken if I touch or twine the wires together? Or must they be a certain distance apart?


ADMIN – Hi Jack. We recommend keeping a 5 foot distance between two boundary wires that run parallel with each other. If the boundary wire is too close together, there will be signal interference problems with the electric dog fence system. The purpose of the twisted wire is to cancel the signal at the transmitter. We recommend running 10 feet of twisted wire from the transmitter to the perimeter loop.

JoshA February 26, 2015 at 8:32 pm

Considering the PIG00-11115 for a .3 acre in-city residential lot near Seattle, WA. We are renting the house and have approval from the landlord to bury the perimeter wire. However, we would like to take the system with us when we eventually move. What is the easiest, and cheapest way to do this? Take the power unit with us and buy new wire? Can I lay the wire on top of the ground at the rental house and then roll it up and take with us to another house?

ADMIN – Hi Josh. What is the age, weight, breed, and temperament of your dog(s)? Yes. Many of our customers that move install the boundary wire on top of the ground with Lawn Staples until they move. Then, they remove the Lawn Staples from the ground, roll up the boundary wire, disconnect and unplug the transmitter and install their underground dog fence system at their new house.

April February 4, 2015 at 1:24 pm

I am getting a invisible fence to contain my livestock guardian dog, The box will be either in my house or in an outside building/barn. How does the layout work for fencing an area away from the location of the box? All your layouts include the house.

ADMIN – Hi April. What is the age, weight, and temperament of your livestock guardian dog? What is the model of your invisible fence? Does your building/barn contain metal siding or a metal roof? The layouts on the website represent the typical residential home owner’s property. Have you drawn out your layout? We recommend customers to e-mail us their drawings so that we can help them decide on the best lay out for their underground dog fence.

annie February 1, 2015 at 7:30 pm

Hi! I want to thank you for all of the great information! Reading through all of the questions and your extremely understandable answers, has made my decision to “get wired” less stressful and I’m pretty confident that I can do the job right – My two Springers (Sam and Ollie) thank you and so do I – :)

ADMIN – Hi Annie. What is the age, weight, and temperament of your two Springers? What is the size of your containment area? Will you be containing your pets in a perimeter loop? Have you reviewed the PetSafe YardMax PIG00-11115 under ground dog fence?

John January 14, 2015 at 12:33 am

If i get a 1000 ft wire (16 gauge ) once i have made the loop will i need to cut the excess wire and splice the two together? If so how do i splice and connect the wire

ADMIN – Hi John. Before you begin splicing wire, note the locations of all splices in your perimeter layout for future reference. This will make it easier to locate a wire break (e.g., bad splice, nick in the insulation, severed wire break). We recommend making your splices waterproof. Gel-filled splices are included in your original containment system. To make a splice, strip approximately 3⁄8 inch of insulation off the ends of the boundary wires to be spliced. Make sure the copper of the wire is not corroded. If the boundary wire is corroded, cut it back to expose clean copper wire. Insert the stripped ends into the blue wire nut and twist the wire nut around the exposed copper wires. Ensure that there is no copper exposed beyond the end of the blue wire nut. Tie a reinforcement knot 3 to 4 inches below the blue wire nut. Ensure that the wire nut is secure on the wire splice. Once you have securely spliced the two wires together, open the lid of the gel-filled splice capsule and insert the blue wire nut as deeply as possible into the waterproof gel inside the capsule. Snap the lid of the capsule shut. For proper system performance, the splice connection must be waterproof. Note: If your splice pulls loose, the under ground dog fence system will not function.

John January 12, 2015 at 5:40 pm

We are strongly looking into a fence for our 10month old stubborn lab. The problem is if we got the fence we would not keep the wire that comes with it and would upgrade to a more durable wire (most likely 16 guage). We are going to use the first backyard option that wraps around tightly to the front of the house. How do we detirme how much wire we need? Our total yard area is two acres but since the wire is going around the front of our house and the backyard that makes things difficult. Any suggestions? Thanks!

ADMIN – Hi John. What is the weight of your Lab? Does your Lab understand and follow the basic commands (e.g., come, sit, stay)? You will need 1,500 feet of boundary wire to contain your Lab in a 2 acre backyard perimeter loop. Will there be a lot of traffic (e.g., mowers, string trimmers, aerators, wildlife, tree debris, gardening) near the boundary wire? You will also want to consider seasonal high and low temperatures that also contribute to wire breaks. If so, we recommend upgrading the 20 gauge wire (that comes bundled with the system) to a stronger gauge wire (e.g., 16 gauge, 14 gauge).

Carl January 3, 2015 at 10:13 am

I was told by your sales person over the phone that I could use the fence on a lake by sinking grounding rods at the lake on both terminating sides and that the lake moisture would continue the loop and that I could read about this installation on website but I don’t see anything like that type of installation,

In other words the loop would be broken with wire ends connected to grounding metal rods that were 6 feet in the ground at lakes edge with the rest of the loop normal, Please point to installation video or instructions. Thanks

ADMIN – Hi Carl. Here is the link to our layout page Lakefront Option One is to simply submerge extra boundary wire out into the lake at your desired distance. Do you want your dog to just be able to walk into the lake a few feet so she can get a drink or lay down in the water to cool off? Or do you want to sink the wire over 10 feet so that she can go for a deeper swim or freely jump into the boat when the family goes out? You’re goal will determine how much wire you plan to sink. Lakefront Option Two can be used if you have enough yard space, you can use a double back approach to create a three-sided boundary. Simply set an extra length into the lake when doubling back so that your dog will not be able to easily run around the dog fence.

Judy Larson December 10, 2014 at 9:01 pm

if I afix the wire to a fence instead of in the ground, do I still have to go through the training? There is an existing barrier. Our dogs tend to escape under the fence after digging.

ADMIN – Hi Judy. Is the fence metal? We recommend running the Boundary Wire across wood fences to avoid signal interference. If the fence contains metal, we recommend running the Boundary Wire 10 feet in front, or 10 feet behind the metal fence. Yes. The 2-week dog training is 90% of a successful dog fence installation. The dog training will teach your dog how to stay inside of the new pet boundary area.

dave September 7, 2014 at 8:48 am

I have 2 barns that I want the dogs to go in but not along sides or back. i want to run the line along the front of the barns (both metal) but cancel the signal in front of barn doors. can this be done? thanks

ADMIN – Hi Dave, you can cancel the signal when you run a double loop boundary only. The double loop broadcast the signal and you canceled area is made with twisted wire.

Peg C September 3, 2014 at 6:29 pm

Hello, We have .75 acre yard and plan to do a single buried loop installation for a 6 month old golden lab mix. Part of the yard has exposed tree roots. How do you recommend installation? Do we need to avoid roots all together or can they be navigated?

ADMIN – Hi Peg, as long as you upgrade to a durable gauge wire, the roots will not affect or break the dog fence wire. I would recommend upgrading to the maximum size of wire, the 14 gauge.

Ted Smith June 30, 2014 at 2:46 pm

Can I run my boundary wire thru the walls and ceiling of my garage or is there an electrical code disallowing that?

ADMIN – Hi Ted, there is not a problem running the wire through the garage walls and ceiling. It is not mentioned because it is typically a more difficult way to install for most customers, but there’s nothing wrong with this installation method.

SammyG May 14, 2014 at 12:28 pm

Hi, my girlfriend and I are soon to be moving into a house with a sizeably large piece of property (3 deeds in one), where there is also a large city park and a lake adjacent to the furthest most rear property line. We have 3 large 80 lb dogs, 2 of which are “explorers” who have escaped our current chain linked fence in our yard multiple times until we got a radio collar. All 3 are “mighty” squirrel and rabbit hunters, so being that this new house with the park, lake, trails, is located behind it is far more rural and teeming with wildlife, we HAVE TO KEEP THEM in check and on our property. They’re friendly dogs but still quite intimidating to anyone who didn’t know them, and way too much liability at stake.

So that said, we are DEFINITELY going to invest into an in-ground wire fence system, and as I am a pretty competent DIY’er, I’m very likely installing one of yours over paying to have one installed, so my question is, can we make it a “dual-zoned” perimeter? I looked over all the samples you have listed, and i think it “may be” possible, but I’m not for certain as there isn’t anything specific to what I’m picturing, like a smaller dog yard perimeter located inside a much larger all purpose yard but still with a perimeter, and having a gate within the smaller perimeter line to allow access back and forth from the smaller into the larger? The way i picture it, imagine a ranch house centered on a fairly large property; there would be one “doggy” specific zone, roughly a 60’x60′ patch behind just one side of the house, a zone that the dogs can access via a doggy door regularly, all day, come and go as they please. That area will be “THEIR” yard, bordered with landscaping to give them and us natural visual aids to where it is; but then also, surrounding that “doggy yard” AND the rest of the property, would be a second perimeter, and a “gate” within the smaller doggy yard which an actual gate that we could open and close, would allow access to the entire yard, front and back, if we wanted to let them run freely and/or just hang out with the people while we’re enjoying a fire pit, or a cook out, whatever, but still know that they’re contained within the confines of the property. Also, “their yard” would have access via a doggy door in the back of the house, but if they would happen to get out the front door or garage door, or “other” back door left open, they still couldn’t just run off, they’d only get so far. So yeah, i want a large perimeter around our house and property, but also a smaller perimeter within’ that larger perimeter, if you can see my vision, now my question, is it possible?


I actually just spent a couple hours on Google maps, doing some trial and error runs with different ideas in how to get a working, full complete circuit layout, on the actual property providing me what I’m looking for. Twisted wire can equal up to 50% of the single perimeter wire, my layout is less just under 10% twisted, and provided the “double back” method is effective as long as the wires are at least 6 feet apart, I actually came up with a working layout that includes a doubled back yard area, approximately 55′x55′, that includes twisted wire access through both the intended backdoor as well as the main bedroom’s back door access, so we can let the dogs out at night if need be, right from the bedroom, and that double backed area is done with the same wire, inside a full property single wire perimeter with the end of the double backed portion actually makes it’s “double-back” curve, it’s just off the house outside the back door, so that would be the are where i put in an actual gate for access in and out of the doggy only area to the bigger perimeter area.

So now my question is, with a double backed wire layout, what happens if a dog crosses the first wire, setting off the “correction”, but then crosses the second wire also, would that disarm the correction? By crossing a second wire would it trick the device into thinking it returned to the area? Just something I thought about.

ADMIN – Hi Sammy, you can combine the double loop with the single loop with twisted wire. The application is in a chain: transmitter to twisted wire to double loop to twisted wire to single loop. To answer your question, the signal will be solid across the double loop so the collar will begin correcting and will correct all the way across both wires.

Michelle Fernandez May 11, 2014 at 9:02 pm

Is it possible to cancel out a portion of the main loop. For example, in a perimeter loop, is there any way to cancel out just a portion of one side? I was thinking I could splice it at one point, add twisted wire for the length of the side I want to cancel out, and lay that twisted wire in same trench as boundary wire.

ADMIN – Hi Michelle, yes, you can cancel a portion of a main loop if you are running a double looped layout. In order to cancel, it requires two loops, one inside the the other by a minimum distance of 4 feet. When you bring the parallel wires close together and twist them, the signal will cancel. You however, cannot cancel a signal by splicing twisted wire in to a single boundary wire loop. The system will treat the twisted wire as a single wire in that scenario and as a result the twisted wire would simply broadcast the signal. You also cannot run the wire back and forth multiple times to cancel the signal.

greg April 11, 2014 at 4:52 pm

I will soon be purchasing a petsafe yard max from your company. One question is how does a metal roof affect the signal? Can I go over the roof? Can I go next to the house? Thanks for your help!

ADMIN – Hi Greg, we appreciate your business! The metal roof will not be an issue unless you are running the wire in the gutters to create a back yard loop. Even then, it may or may not ACTUALLY create a problem. It’s only a possibility. If you are running a perimeter loop around the home, you can use YardMax mode and absolutely run the wire beside the home.

Ralph April 7, 2014 at 8:10 pm

Hello, I need to do a single side layout along our road frontage, about 400feet. I need to cross one driveway.
1. There is a plastic culvert that I can run both wires thru, but they would not be separated. Do I just loose the effective barrier where the culvert is? 2. Will this have an effect on the rest of the loop which I understand that I need to keep separated by 3 to 6 feet? 3. What is optimum spacing between the wires? Thanks, your site is very informative. Ralph

ADMIN – Hi Ralph, 1: yes the signal will be diminished around the culvert area due to the wires lying close to each other. 2: No, the rest of the loop signal will not be affected. 3: Optimal is minimum of 4 feet.

Wes March 31, 2014 at 5:53 pm

I can’t figure out how to layout my system. I have a large home (about 6000 square feet, single story) and I have one exit I wish the dog to use. I want to establish a perimeter immediately around the house, except for the garage, to keep the dog (which loved to dig away from the flower beds) and another perimeter around the larger property, about 7 acres. I can’t be the first one to take this approach but I don’t see any sample diagrams that would work for me. Any advice would be appreciated.

ADMIN – Hi Wes, Can you explain further what you mean by immediately around the house? When will your dog have access to the larger property?

Gary March 4, 2014 at 10:40 pm

I read your comments on the difficulty with installing the fence around a duplex. I wonder if there is something you can wrap around sections of the fencing wire to give it a dead spot. Because of the way our yard and fence is laid out I have the need for two sides of the yard to be protected but would like to run the wire through an area I want the dog to have access.

Sharon February 27, 2014 at 2:04 pm

We have a large farm and have Great Pyreneese (GP) dogs. Both dogs were trained to the system since we aren’t fully fenced in and needed to protect them from going out on the road but also need them to have access to the farm to protect the livestock. The younger female is very protective of her space and had to be separated so they wouldn’t kill each other. I re routed a line to create a space for each dog which allows them also to protect both sides of the property. They were retrained to their new zones and respect their own space with the exception of the collars or transmitter going bad and replacing the whole sytem. They can see each other and have common areas that both can come into like the garage, shop and deck. My question is have you ever heard of someone trying to separate their own dogs? Have they had success?

Matt Hanks February 11, 2014 at 9:55 am

Thank you for the unbiased ratings of all these systems, and most importantly, thank you for your professionalism and endless attention to detail in answering all of your customers questions! We rescued a Fox/Harrier Hound and we are preparing to set him free after we close on our new home. Through your evaluations, my wife and I have selected the Petsafe Yard Max PIG00-11115, and there is only one thing I cannot figure out from reading all of the comments (and your excellent responses)…

After mapping and researching your layout plans, I am going to introduce the “U” Shaped loop (keeping them 6′ apart) for my back/side yard. One side of the “U” is going to ride along the house to keep him from entering the flower bed/gardening area.

My question is: Will the signal extend into the house, limiting his movement inside? This only effects 2 rooms in the house, but we are training him so when we put his collar on, he can go outside through the doggie door and explore his new land while we are home.

Thanks again, for everything! We will soon be purchasing the unit, and probably upgrading to 16G wire! Cheers.

Larry McKnight December 26, 2013 at 2:36 pm

Can I run two boundary loops using two different wires only connected at and powered from a single fence transmitter? We have a primary perimeter loop in place now around the property boundary fence. It used about 750 feet of wire. I would like to add an addition loop to create a small indoor exclusion area to keep the dogs from going upstairs to the bedroom level while we are away for the day. It would require a second loop of about 60 feet of wire. Can one petsafe transmitter power two loops? If possible, will it require a setting adjustment to maintain the same warning distance from the existing outdoor wire loop? Thanks for all the info.

Jill December 23, 2013 at 4:44 pm

We are going to put our dog on the single sided boundary to keep him from going near the road – he has 10 acres the OTHER direction to roam and not another road for a while, but do you have any tips on how to make it so he doesn’t simply figure out where the boundary ends and go around the wire? Our property buts up to a farm – ours is grass and when the field is planted, it’s not an issue, but when it’s cut, he does not distinguish our property from theirs. I fear he’ll just start going farther and farther into their property to try to get to the road…

Deawn November 18, 2013 at 11:17 pm

We are going to do a perimeter fence- I NEED to know if we give the neighbor dog a collar- will it stay our of our area? As well?

ADMIN – Hi Deawn, without proper training, what will happen is the neighbor dog will run through the boundary getting corrected each time but will not understand the source of the static shock corrections. The result is a very neurotic neighbor dog with will continue to invade your property.

Linda Wurm November 15, 2013 at 1:46 pm

We are planning to install with access to the lakefront for the dogs to drink and wade. If the lake freezes with a couple feet of ice, will the unit still fi=unction through the ice?

Nick October 29, 2013 at 8:35 pm

I am looking to put in a dog fence that does the u shape, the backyard final option on the diagram above, and I understand the wires need to be 6 feet away from each other at least. However, how would I connect the wires back together to string into the side of my house and not create a dead spot, since the wires become closer together then 6 feet? How would I accomplish this?

ADMIN – Hi Nick, if you can email a sketch of your layout, I will be able to let you know. I’m not sure what you’re trying to accomplish.

Mitzi Guess October 17, 2013 at 2:53 pm

HI, We have a new boxer puppy, and have a fenced in yard that is no problem, she doesn’t get out. But we do have a drive through gate on a cement driveway that we would like to be able to leave open, as our guineas come in and out the gate. What type of device would you recommend. We only want to stop her at the gate. The gate is approx 40′ from the carport where it can be housed. After looking at all the options I am confused about what we need. Is there a laser type of device that will stop her at the gate, or wire only? Thank you, Mitzi. Future purchaser : )

ADMIN – Hi Mitzi, I would recommend the Paws Away Outdoor Rock. You can set the battery powered rock on one side of the gate, string boundary wire across driveway and return the wire back to the rock. This will provide the boundary at just the gate.

Phil B October 16, 2013 at 9:02 pm

We have a fenced in back yard but would like our dogs to spend time with the family when we’re in the front yard also. I would like them to be able to go out the side gate and access the front yard where we will be installing the invisible fence. Looking at the examples, I believe the backyard layout with the wire running up the downspout and across the guttering is my only option (reversing the back yard for front yard in my set up). We have a side loading garage so I have an outlet for the control box, but I cannot figure out how to cancel out the signal so the dogs can come in and out of the fence gate from the back yard. The wire will go from the controller across the driveway and then down the drive way to the street, across the front yard to the side yard, then up the guttering and back to the box. I really would like to cancel the section that crosses the driveway as it leaves the box. Any ideas? Phil B

ADMIN – Hi Phil B, one solution can be that you wrap the wire around the back of the home but have it suspended up at the edge of the roof. At the transmitter, you can run twisted wire out of the transmitter. Run the twisted wire across the driveway then split it off: one wire running down the driveway and the other running up the corner to the roof. This should solve both the gate and driveway issue.

Christopher Sahawneh August 21, 2013 at 2:24 pm

I have my wire fence going around the perimeter of back yard and along the back side of my house. It’s twisted on the side of my house and connected to the transmitter in the garage. My dogs go out of the back door to the yard and since the wire goes under the deck (and the back door) it sets off the collar. The back door/porch are about 2-3 feet off the ground. I have turned down the boundary so it won’t do that but now there is hardly any boundary zone for the yard. Is there a way that I can make the porch and back door a safe area so the collars won’t go off? I saw one of your layouts that showed going up the downspout and around the area but that won’t work for me.

ADMIN – Hi Christopher, there is not a good way to make it a safe area without either using a double boundary or simply wrap the wire around the front of your home like the back yard layouts on our site illustrate.

Amando Menocal August 16, 2013 at 10:38 pm

Is there a way to place sections of fence to protect only short openings for gates and drive way? We have 3 acres enclosed by an excellent, robust fence. There are 4 openings, gaps of between 4’ and 15’ for a drive way and gates that left open for wildlife to cross the property. From my research I don’t see a way to avoid stringing wire along hundreds of feet of good fence solely to cross 4 small gaps.

ADMIN – Hi Amando, yes, if you use the double boundary, you can use twisted wire to cancel the gates and driveway. This cannot be accomplished with any other layout. Please find the gate layout by visiting our Planning/Layouts page located on the Installation drop down menu. A second solution is use the Outdoor Rocks and station them at the 4 gaps. This will solve your problem without having to fence your whole property.

Audrey August 9, 2013 at 9:49 am

We live on a large farm and just want to keep the dogs out of the front yard and front porch where the flower beds are but want them to have free roam of the 26 acres we live on. Is there a way to keep them OUT of a small area as opposed to keeping them IN it?

ADMIN – Hi Audrey, sure thing. You can encircle the area with the dog fence and put the flags on the outside. You will train them from the outside how to retreat from the area.

Noah June 23, 2013 at 10:49 pm

Im not sure if this has been asked before or not. Is there any way to run the fence around the perimeter and cancel it out? We have a lake house and want the dogs to be able to go into the water but do not want to run it into the water because of cleaning out weeds in the lake and fear of catching the wire and ripping it. We also do not want to run it in a U shape because we do not have room for it. Can it be placed in something and then put in with out having to dig down and make a deep trench?

ADMIN – Hi Noah,

There is no way to cancel the wire along one side of the fence. One option for a lakefront is to elevate the wire up high along the waterfront if there are some convenient trees. This allows the dog to pass under without getting the correction.

Going deep down does not work very well. You need to go so far down 3-5 feet, that it is impractical.

Colleen June 21, 2013 at 9:17 pm

I have a difficult situation. One comment here is somewhat similar but doesn’t completely answer my questions. I live on a bed and breakfast that is tucked back in the woods. The area where my apt is somewhat cleared out of woods with a hill. Directly in front of my apt is the driveway with no yard and on the left of the house is a hill with woods surrounding it that I would like to keep the dogs on and maybe have access to the driveway and my door. How do I go about this with the pavement in front of the house and no yard there? Maybe it’s not possible at all.

ADMIN – Hi Collen,

I am not sure, I completely understand, so please forgive me if I misunderstand your layout .. perhaps you can email us a sketch. Could you run the wire around the hill and house, without going into the front yard? To get the wire around the house, instead of trying to cut across your pavement, you could run the wire along the roofline of the house.

william tubbs June 12, 2013 at 4:01 pm

We have recently rescued a border collie lab mix and have just discovered she is a jumper. She can easily jump our 4ft wire fence. I originally tried to install the old fashioned electric fence across the top, but she clears it without touching it. We have about 3/4 an acre of a back yard and would like to install it in a U shaped pattern. My question is will the signal interfere with my existing fence or the large “green box” that is at the end of our property that contains the phone/cable company stuff.

ADMIN – Hi William,

Yes, those collies can jump!

No the dog fence signal will not interfere with your utilities nor you livestock fence. Although you may want to deactivate the contact-based eletric fence – you won’t need it once you have the dog fence in place. (Not sure whether it is an issue where you live, but they are not permitted in residential areas in many cities … there have been some horrific cases of children having serious accidents on these fences)

Mary Alice June 6, 2013 at 6:22 pm

Can I clip one wire in the middle of a twisted pair coming from the transmitter and:
– connect a single boundary wire to the two free ends created by the clipping?
– connect a second single boundary wire to the end of the twisted pair? I hope this works! Thanks. Mary Alice

ADMIN – Hi Mary Alice,

Not sure I completely understood, but it does not sound like this wiring layout would work. All connection need to be one-to-one. Anytime you have a place there three wires are meeting then you are going to have a problem.

If you sketch out a map of the property and what you are trying to achieve, we would be happy to help sketch out the wiring for you.

Mike Nei June 6, 2013 at 3:10 pm

I am considering the Pet Safe Ultra Smart In-ground Model model with an upgrade to 14 gauge wire for my installation and have the following questions…..

– How old should the dog be to start the training? I have a 13 week old Golden Doodle who weighs about 17 lbs. Reading some of the manufacturer websites it seems that they recommend 6 months for the age of the dog however the Invisible Fence Brand website indicates as early as 12 weeks of age.

-For my fence wire layout I am considering the “Figure 8 / Hourglass” as shown on your website. I have a relatively narrow property (60 feet wide) and want to create two separate zones between the front and backyard that the dog cannot cross between. How close to the house should I sweep the wire loop to create the two zones? I assume that if I sweep the wire too close to the house, I may have a problem with the dog collar activating when the dog is inside the house and near the exterior wall adjacent to the wire.

ADMIN – Hi Mike,

(1) Six months is a good age to start training. At 13 weeks I am sure you have noticed how goofy and short-attention spanned your puppy is. Training them at too young an age is much more difficult for both owner and dog.

If a dog is particularly cognitively advanced (my test is that they can confidently do an off-leash sit/stay/come), I will start training them a bit earlier. But, never before 4 months.

The 12 weeks claim is just the marketing department! Maybe you could get this on a highly bred hunting dog that had already been intensively trained since weaning, if you did a lot of work with the dog on the fence. But, 12 weeks would be a mistake for your typical pet dog.

(2) Yes, you don’t want to be too close to the house, otherwise you can get some signal penetration depending on what kinds of walls you have. The distance depends on how wide you are going to set the dog fence boundary. Make the distance about the same as the boundary width.

Michele June 5, 2013 at 10:18 pm

I want to allow my dogs access to my entire yard which is about 1 acre. I have three large breed dogs – all over 100 lbs. I actually have two Pet Safe boxes – is there a way to use both boxes. I am assuming that using both boxes will give the fence more amps. We used one box previously and one of the dogs ran through the fence.

ADMIN – Hi Michele,

You cannot use two transmitter boxes together. The transmitter box does not control the correction strength, that is controlled solely by the collar.

If your dogs are running through, you want to try and diagnose the problem and see whether they are getting the correction and getting through anyway (in which case you would increase the correction strength, make the boundary wider, and do some remedial training), or if they are not getting the correction (in which case you need to check the equipment, and check that the collar is properly fitted). You can get a clue if you observe the dog going through the fence and see whether they are yelping or flinching, or if they are going through without seeming to feel anything.

Tony ( Proud owner of a Puppy Siberian) June 3, 2013 at 9:34 pm

Hello I am wondering about a few questions here.

Question 1 – At what age can I put the collar on my puppy? He’s going to be 8 weeks old when I get him and I would like to start training him ASAP.

Question 2 – Does the transmitter have to be indoors?

Question 3 – I would like to start my fence in the backyard. So, can I start at receptacle go right all the way down and then left down side of my property and then turn left back side of property and then left again down left side of property and then when I get to corner of my house can I then go up into my drain spout over my back wall and back down to original corner I walked out from and plug into transmitter? Sorry if it sounds confusing, I am new to this.

Basically, I want only to give my dogs access to the back yard and then be able to walk him out the front on a leash and by my side of course. Legend is his name.

ADMIN – Hi Tony,

(1) A good time to start training Legend on the fence is around 26 weeks (six months). Before that, the dog has not developed enough to be receptive to the training. As I am sure you have experiences, at 8 weeks they are all googly eyed and have trouble focusing on anything for more than a few seconds. Waiting to train them makes the process a lot easier for both you and them.

If you desperately need to train the dog earlier, you can as long as the dog can confidently do a sit/stay/come off-leash. In no circumstance would I train a dog under 18 weeks.

(2) The transmitter does not need to be indoors, but cannot be exposed to the elements because it is not waterproof.

(3) Your layout sounds fine. As long as you are forming one continuous loop, starting and ending at the transmitter you are in good shape.

Amanda June 3, 2013 at 5:18 pm

Is it true that I can’t cross over the phone line with the perimeter wire? If so, is there any way I can block the interference between the two (invisible fence and copper phone line) such as creating some kind of buffer between the two?

ADMIN – Hi Amanda,

You can cross over underground phone lines. Where you cross the phone lines, you want to try and do it at right angles.

What you want to avoid is running the dog fence wire parallel and close-by other electric wire. This doesn’t cause interference, but in rare circumstance, the dog fence signal can get induced in the other wire, so everywhere that say the phone line runs acts as if it were dog fence wire. If you have to create close & parallel runs, then you want to check to make sure this has not happened, by taking the dog fence collar around your yard and making sure it is not triggering in the wrong places.

Renee May 27, 2013 at 10:07 pm

We have a 2 year old Lab/Pitt mix, 65 lbs, who we end up chasing around the neighborhood a few times a month … he’s impossible to catch. With the neighbor kids running in and out of our house, he is constantly darting out an open door. We’d like to enclose the entire yard (small 1/4 acre residential lot) similar to your first sample layout … but I’m not sure how to work the driveway into it. How did you run the wire around the driveway in your 1st sample layout. I’m also wondering if I could/should use a second product just to keep him from darting out the front door … maybe just temporarily until he is trained to stay in the house and then in the yard? Thanks!!!

ADMIN – Hi Renee,

To get the wire across the garage, find a convenient expansion joint, flush it out, lay down the wire, then caulk over to hold the wire in place. If there is no convenient join in the driveway, use a circular saw with a masonry blade to cut a shallow slot across the driveway then lay down the wire and caulk it in place.

For the two weeks of the training, you do want to make absolutely sure that the dog is not escaping. I would not however use another electronic project because this will confuse the dog. A baby gate may do the trick.

Kristen May 26, 2013 at 3:32 pm

I have an in-ground fence I’m getting ready to install, the problem I have is that one side of my yard has a physical fence, but the other 3 sides do not. If we do the double loop, it doesn’t leave enough room on the sides of my house for the dogs to get by.. Is there another way to do this?

ADMIN – Hi Kristen,

The easiest way would be to run the wire around all four sides including the fenced side. You can reduce (and eliminate) the boundary on the fenced side by running the wire along the top of the fence rather than running it down at ground level.

Tom Simeur May 24, 2013 at 11:15 am

I want to put an in-ground fence in back yard that backs up to lake. I want one side of the back yard to be open so the dogs can walk down from the patio which is fenced in going to the front of house.

I think I can get this to work if I created two separate wire runs for the right side of back yard and the left side of the back yard (don’t need in water). Can I plug two separate wires into each connector of the transmitter? This will create two separate loops with one transmitter.

ADMIN – Hi Tim,

If you plug in two separate loops, it will work, but they will have different boundary widths, and you will not be able to tell when one develops a wire break. The better way to wire two separate loops it to plug one into the transmitter and connect the first to the second using the twisted wire.

Nick May 22, 2013 at 10:10 am

We have small yards (1/3 acre) in our subdivision. My neighbor already has a Petsafe system installed along our property line. I know if I run my line along his, it will kill the signal all along it. Is it possible to get another system that has a different frequency (or perhaps another brand) so that I may run my new line along his and not cancel each other out? Thank you.

ADMIN – Hi Nick,

Yes, if you run your system along the same property line as the neighbor, you will both get no signal along that common boundary. The Perimeter Ultra Dog Fence System avoids that problem by letting you choose between different frequencies so as to avoid any signal interference.

Chris May 18, 2013 at 5:24 pm

Hello I need a fence that is in ground that can let me keep the metal dog cage in it and the metal cloths line poles and the power line to our other garage.

ADMIN – Hi Chris,

I am not sure I am fully understanding your question so please let me know if I am missing the point. You can have a metal dog cage inside the containment are on any of the wired fences. The wireless fences would have trouble with the cage if they are sheet metal, but not if they were just wire mesh.

Both wired and wireless will have no problems with a metal clothes line or a metal power line.

ed May 14, 2013 at 1:55 pm

I prefer to have my entire yard available for my dog but also enjoy taking him for a couple walks throughout the day. I was thinking of wiring the entire yard and running the wire up both sides of the driveway so he would not feel correction if I walk him out the garage and down the driveway. does this make sense and do you think it will work? I’m hoping it also has the added benefit of keeping him off the driveway when hes not going for a walk. Thanks

ADMIN – Hi Ed,

Yes, that arrangement would work, but because the signal goes out several feet from the wire, there would only be a thin safe zone down the center of the driveway (if any).

It is also not strictly necessary. When you take him for a walk, you will be taking his collar off anyway, so it does not matter if the path is blocked by the wire.

Russ Van Sickle May 5, 2013 at 3:21 pm

In the figure 8 hour glass layout ,where the wire runs along the house (left side) could I use twisted wire(approx. 30 ft.) to keep the signal out of the house. Thanks Russ

ADMIN – Hi Russ,

You can’t use twisted wire as part of the figure-eight. It is mainly used to get from the transmitter to the start of the loop (or figure-eight).

If you want the wire to be inactive along the side of the house, then another option might be to elevate that wire in that section, so the wire is high enough above the ground that it does not trigger the collar down at ground level. You can for example run the wire up a drainage spout, then across the gutters along the left side of the house.

Chantelle May 5, 2013 at 12:46 am

I have just done the single sided boundary but then found your site that states my twisted section would be too long. It seems to work fine, what issue will I run in to? Thanks! Great site!

ADMIN – Hi Chantelle,

Sometimes when you run too much twisted wire it makes the entire system inactive, so even if you go to the single-wire section the then fence doesn’t work. But, if you have it up and running and everything is not working, then you are fine and will not run into issues in the future.

Heather May 1, 2013 at 9:30 am

Hi, we are about to install the innotek ultrasmart fencing system. The layout that works best for us seems to be the double loop so our house will act as a natural barrier. When we lay the wires out and place them 6ft apart I feel like that really cuts into our dogs space to run. Is it possible to do a single loop layout and use the twisted wire to run across the base of our house to connect the 2 ends of the boundary wire and complete the loop?


ADMIN – Hi Heather,

Afraid that running a single loop with one side twisted is not going to work, the twisted section will just act like regular wire and will trigger the collars.

Another option would be to do a single loop and elevate the wire along the back of your house. So instead of running the wire at ground level, you would run the wire up a downspout on one side of the house, run the wire through the gutter, then down the downspout on the other side of the house.

Andria April 27, 2013 at 9:41 pm

We have a lab on 25 acres of land. a 1/4 mile away is a county road and we are concerned about the traffic that way. There is a pond on one side and the side we have a horse fence we could go along. Would the single side boundary line work if we went down to the pond and followed the horse fence to stop the dog from going that way? If she runs the other way, there is about 20 acres of wooded area before any other houses.

ADMIN – Hi Andria,

The single-sided boundary will only work if you are confident the dog will not attempt to go around. Many dogs that are veteran wanderers will simply learn that they can just go to the side of the fence (or if they are a water loving lab, that they can swim through the pond). For a more homebody type dog, and where the boundary is very long, this may not become an issue.

Joni April 26, 2013 at 2:46 am

I have very large dogs. I am being sued because my dog killed some chickens down the street. I also live on 11 acres of ground. I want my dogs to have space to run, with no worry. Please help me figure this out so I can keep my dogs. 4 dogs in question.

ADMIN – Hi Joni,

Sorry to hear about your situation. For large dogs on a large property, the SportDog SDF-100A is usually a good choice. Tell us more about the dogs (age, weight, breed, and temperament) and I could give you some more specific recommendations.

Mike April 19, 2013 at 12:10 am

Our backyard backs up to a natural reserve that we use for walks and bird training. I would like to have a “gate” through the loop. Can I bury 15 feet of the back wire in a iron pipe 2 feet in the ground in order to create the opening.

Hi Mike,

Afraid putting the wire in pipe, and burying it 2 feet down won’t help. (It would if you could go 3+ feet down, but that tends to be very impractical).

The most common way to let dogs out for a walk is to create an ‘exit routine’ where you take off their collar, give them permission, and then escort them out.

If you want a permanent opening, you choices are to either elevate the wire (6+ feet) or bury it very deep. Alternatively, you can go around the other three sides or your yard, then double back on yourself to create a large U-shaped loop.

Dawn April 9, 2013 at 7:43 am

Quick question. I have a back yard that is split for two houses. I have a metal fence that divides both. Each yard has a dog. How can I run the wires so that the perimeter goes around the back of the house, yet has to block out access to the fence to protect the dogs from digging thru the fence to get to each other. Thank you.

ADMIN – Hi Dawn,

Am I right in thinking you are trying to use the same transmitter for both houses? If so, the solution would be to run a figure-eight shaped loop that passes twice over the the fence. To avoid the two wires along the fence cancelling each other out, run one along the top of the fence and the other along the bottom of the fence.

Liz Smith March 20, 2013 at 5:48 pm

I live on a dairy farm, so I’d like the dogs to have access to the property and barns out back if possible. I’m thinking of doing the lake front version Option 2 design where the lake would be my barns, but my wire will need to cross a couple of dirt driveways that see heavy machinery crossing them ie tractors, equipment and dump trucks. Any ideas on how to protect the wire? Does the depth of the wire effect the signal too much if its buried too deep? I have driveways (dirt) on three sides of the house, and the only side that doesn’t has the road out front. Or will I just be stuck with some unhappy dogs confined to a designated area. I’m having a hard time keeping them out of the road when people bike or walk by, and a remote trainer doesn’t have the distance or shock value necessary to deter them.

ADMIN – Hi Liz,

The wire usually does fine if buried in a dirt driveway, even if there is heavy equipment driving over, as long as you are a few inches below the surface (and it is not a gravel driveway). If you want to be extra cautious, or have a gravel driveway, you want a bit of extra protection and should bury it in a flexible pipe (like an old hose pipe or irrigation pipe).

You don’t want to bury the wire too deep otherwise the signal doesn’t get through. Six inches is about the maximum depth I would bury it.

Kristi March 20, 2013 at 4:56 pm

I live on a rural farm and am wanting to set up a electric fence for my lab. Ideally, what I would like is to create a fence around the house, driveway and garage to keep her out of that area, but would allow her to go anywhere else. She chews on cars, buildings, etc trying to get to mice. Is there any way to set this up in this manner. The transmitter would be located in the garage, which is adjacent to the house. Thank you for you assistance.

ADMIN – Hi Kristi,

Am I right in thinking that you want to confine her to the yard only, and don’t want to give her any access to the house driveway or garage? If so, I would run two loops. The first outer loop would be around the entire yard. The second inner loop would be around the buildings and driveway. Connect the transmitter to the inner loop with the twisted wire. And connect the inner loop to the outer loop with the twisted wire.

River's Mom March 15, 2013 at 1:02 pm

Hi there! If I have a detached garage, can I locate the transmitter in there and point it towards my house and simply surround the yard adjacent to the house? I want to avoid installing in the driveway and don’t need to keep her out of the garage itself. Also, all of your configurations are very smooth and symmetrical, but I am assuming once can create a less uniform/symmetrical pattern, following the outer perimeter of flower beds, etc as long as corners are not sharp and proper distance is kept. True? Thank you. Great site. Will order as soon as weather permits here in Maine!

ADMIN – Hi River’s Mom

You can indeed locate the transmitter in the detached garage, and run the wire back around the house.

The layout does not need to be symmetrical, that was done just to make our diagrams pretty.

Alena March 7, 2013 at 10:06 am

We would like to install an invisible fence for our 85 lb long-haired German Shephard. Can I use either wireless or in-ground fence safely next to high voltage powerlines that run behind our house?

ADMIN – Hi Alena,

Running either a wireless or an underground wired dog fence system alongside high voltage power lines will be a non-issue. Neither of the systems will be affected.

John February 16, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Thanks for the informative website. We recently adopted an eight year old neglected golden retriever that weighs 85 pounds and plan to install an invisible fence. Which system would you recommend. There are other invisible fences in the backyards behind our lot. What is you opinion on the best system. I have also heard of appliances triggering the collar, is this a problem. Most of the time we would take the collar off in the house.

ADMIN – Hi John,

If there are other systems nearby, the Perimeter Technologies Ultra is a good choice, because it lets you change frequencies and avoid any interference issues with neighboring systems. It would well suit a golden retriever. The only thing I don’t love about the system is that it uses an obnoxious proprietary battery that is going to end up costing you around $30 per year. But, if the neighbors have fences, interference is likely to be an issue and this is going to be your best choice.

Appliances interfering with the system does not happen on any of the modern system. It was an issue in very old systems. Fortunately, technology has moved on, and manufacturers have realized that a garage door opener activating your dog fence is a bad thing!

Heather January 30, 2013 at 3:17 am

Hi there! I live in Canada (Yukon Territory) and have a second Leonberger pup arriving this spring. I also have a very old Springer. 1st) do you ship to Canada? 2nd) If you do, I’m rural and want to fence in about 1.5 acres. 3rd) Suggested system? I’d need two collars and an idea of cost for everything! Cheers, Heather

ADMIN – Hi Heather, we do not ship to Canada. For your dogs, I’d recommend the Dogtek EF-6000. It has plenty of range and has rechargeable collars with independent correction so you can set separate correction levels for each of your dogs.

Bret Glutting January 29, 2013 at 11:40 am

I am looking at the back yard sample layouts. The one that goes along your roof line. How do you get the wire from the roof line, gutter, etc. into the garage area where the box is located without having to drill a hole or something? And how would you get the other wire feeding from the box out your garage door and under your sidewalk to make the loop around the yard you want fenced without having to lay the wire across your sidewalk (which would look bad and trip hazard) or having to bust up your sidewalk and bury the line and re-pour concrete? Any ideas?

ADMIN – Hi Bret, you can come off the boundary at any point with twisted wire that runs underneath the garage door to where you have the control unit installed. These illustrations are generic, so where you install the wall transmitter will require you to customize the layout a bit. We tuck the wire into a groove in the concrete and caulk over it with concrete sealant. You may have to deepen the groove with a circular saw with a masonry blade though. We never dig under or bust up the concrete.

Thankful dog owner January 5, 2013 at 5:36 pm

Thank you so… much for this forum. I have been struggling for a month with fence installation for my great dane that jumps. The facts about twisted wire, and the statement that it cannot be used in the loop have diagnosed my problem. If I cannot keep her in I must re-home her. My dog thanks you. Ruff

ADMIN – Hi Ruff, We appreciate the feedback! so happy to hear you make progress towards safe, pet containment.

Kristine December 18, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Hi! I have 3 dogs that need to be contained on a property that is surrounded by woods. The area to contain them is around the house and the plateau/hill it sits on. The woods surround the plateau and I would ideally like them to be able to go into the woods some so I need to figure out the best fence for this property. Overall there are about 5 acres I want to cover. More or less is fine too. What do you recommend? Thanks! Kristine

ADMIN – Hi Kristine, It depends on their breed, size, and temperament. For a varied size of dogs, go with with the PetSafe Deluxe and bundle the different size collars in the order. For dogs under 12 pounds, go with the PetSafe Little Dog collar, for average temperament dogs 12 pounds and up go with the PetSafe Deluxe, and for large breed dogs over 100 pounds and sporting dogs, go with the PetSafe Stubborn collar. To cover up to 5 acres, you’ll need an extra 1,500 feet of wire. We recommend you upgrade your order to 14 gauge for maximum strength wire.

megan December 15, 2012 at 10:11 pm

Thank you for this website. I have learn so much. I just finished installing the innotek 2000. The wire circles the perimeter then comes together and twists to the house. After testing it seems that I can walk the collar down the twisted wire and out of the yard with barely a beep. How far apart should the boundary wires get to each other before turning to the house and how far should it travel until it can be twisted? I brought them about 3 part, turned for 2 feet and then twisted. I suspect they are too close.

ADMIN – Hi Megan, I recommend curving the fence wire in about a foot, then run twisted wire all the way back to the control transmitter unit.

Robert October 22, 2012 at 10:42 pm

You mention running the wire over the roof of the house to create the closed loop in a backyard only installation. Could a coax cable be used for the section over (or under, in the basement) the house to assure the signal is shielded?

ADMIN – Hi Robert, we have specifically tested this method with coax, but the control unit did not recognize a loop. Great idea though.

Jeff October 21, 2012 at 1:28 pm

Hi, We live in Alaska on a lake. How well dose the wire work under snow. We get drifts that can be very deep. Also if we run the wire into the lake will it work under the ice. Thanks for your time. Jeff

ADMIN – Hi Jeff, the signal can be set to a maximum of around 9 to 10 feet if your layout and yard can allow. As the snow builds, you’ll want to increase the signal. However, if the snow gets too deep, it will cover the signal. The signal is resilient and is only blocked by the deepest of snow. The signal should also work through ice. The key is how deep the wire is under the ice and how wide the signal is.

Chris September 16, 2012 at 11:00 am

I would like to do the backyard only and run the wire up the corner across and down, i have a steel roof, does that matter?

ADMIN – Hi Chris, if you keep a tight signal radius, it should not be an issue. However, it could magnify the signal as well. Hard to tell exactly what it will do without testing.

Lisa August 6, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Hi. Would you please tell me if this plan will work: We have a road dividing our property and I would like the dog to access both sides of the property but not the road. I think a figure eight plan where one loop encloses one part of the yard and the other loop encloses across the street and the two loops are connected by twisted wire will work ( kind of like eyeglasses with the twisted wire being the nose piece) I do know that for the dog to get from one loop to the other I would have to be there to remove collar and walk dog across road then put collar back on, but essentially it is one giant loop so I just need one transmitter to be plugged in, right?

ADMIN – Hi Lisa, yes, your layout will work. The only hesitation I have in the training and long-term application for your dog. It may be difficult for your dog to understand the difference between both loops. This probably a setup we would not recommend.

Big Ron August 2, 2012 at 7:40 pm

I intended to put the box in our garage giving us best access to the side of the yard to start the wire run. I was going to mount the box next to the electrical panel for the house. Will this give me problems with the signal?

ADMIN – Hi Big Ron, You’ll want to install the transmitter at least 10 feet away from electrical panels to avoid interference.

Lisa July 25, 2012 at 8:59 pm

Hi … For a lake installation are you saying that if the wire is over ten feet deep the dog can safely swim over it without feeling correction? Thanks. Lisa

Admin- Hi Lisa,

In most causes yes, you will set the boundary distance on the transmitter. The minimum distance is 1-2 feet and the maximum is 10-12 feet. If you indeed lay the wire 10 feet deep in the water and want your dog to swim over. First test the collar over the boundary wire in the water, than adjust the signal strength accordingly.

brian July 17, 2012 at 12:05 pm

Can I run the wire through a metal culvert under the driveway? Would this kill the signal?

Admin- Hi Brian,

Yes, you can run the wire through a culvert. You will be able to set the boundary distance coming off of the boundary wire. The minimum boundary distance is 1-2 feet and the maximum is 10-12 feet. We recommend putting the wire in either a PVC pipe or a water hose for added protection inside of the culvert. Once installed, test the collar and adjust the signal strength accordingly.

Dave July 6, 2012 at 9:12 pm

I have recently purchased a home with an “Invisable Fensce” system installed, but the previous owner did not have the collar. I’ve had the wire located and it tested good. I’m wondering if I can purchase a different system and use the existing wire? and what system would work best for a 20# Cairn Terrier on an acre lot using a perimeter loop?

Admin- Hi Dave,

Yes, you can use the existing boundary loop and simply purchase your own dog fence system. For a 20-pound Cairn Terrier, I’d recommend the PetSafe PIG0013619. The system offers a slim fitting rechargeable collar that will fit comfortably around your dogs neck.

Brian July 3, 2012 at 8:47 pm

One side of our property has an electric fence for the cows on the other side. That fence will interfere with my wire, right?

Admin- Hi Brain,
The electric fence(cattle fence) will not cause any interference with the dog fence system as long as the two wires are not touching one another. However, you can still apply the dog fence boundary wire to the existence fence post at the upper or lower part for a quicker install. The wires can be install close to each other but just not touch.

Lynn June 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm

There is a Radio Fence Pet Containment system installed around our yard by previous owners (around 10 years ago). Will any collar work? Or do we have to try and find a Radio Fence brand collar?
Also if the unit itself no longer works, can we hook up the existing wire into a new unit? Or do the wires have to be compatible with each brand?

Admin- Hi Lynn,

Sadly, we are not sure if any collar on the market will be compatible with the old Radio Fence. The current in ground wire will be compatible with any system if the wire is indeed intact; otherwise, it would be a nightmare to find five to ten years worth of breaks. I recommend testing the old transmitter with the wire, if either the wire or transmitter is truly broke. You could look towards a new system. A good starting point will be the PetSafe OIG00-13619. This is our best system with a slim rechargeable collar. Additionally if you have to rerun new wire, do not worry about the old wire. It will not harm any new boundary wire.

Louis May 5, 2012 at 9:37 pm

I’m planning on installing a loop in the backyard with it running tight around the front of the house to complete the loop. My question is, can I install some type of toggle switch (basically breaking the loop) on the far corner of the backyard to shut the system off without going all the way to the front of the house (where the control box is). The backyard is next to a field we walk the dogs in, and I want to be able to cross the boundary without taking off their collars.

Admin- Hi Louis,

Unfortunately you will not be able to install a toggle switch. You will need to simply turn off the system or remove the collar before crossing. The key to crossing will be in the training. You will want to setup a routine, so that your dog always crosses in the same place (or same couple of places) each time. We prefer to walk the dogs over the boundary line on a leash.

Daria Gantert May 4, 2012 at 12:59 pm

I just purchased the electric fence and we will be installing it just for the back yard. We are planning on running the wire up the gutters and on the roof line to make the continuous loop. Any suggestions on how to adhere the wire to the gutter and roof? How about on a wooden fence?

Many thanks!

Admin- Hi Daria,

You can simply staple the wire to the trim of the house or the wood fence. There are some new wire staples at the local hardware stores that are perfect for the task – the staple has a little circular indent on the top that leaves space for the wire.

Joe April 29, 2012 at 9:41 pm

Can you pave 1″ topcoat over 14 gauge solid wire? We’re putting a new wire down and widening the driveway. Any other options? We want the dogs to be able to cut across the top of the driveway that separates the front and back yard.

Admin- Hi Joe,

You could install the wire first than pave over if you wish; however, we recommend finishing the drive first, than install the boundary wire. This way if any issues arise, the boundary wire is not several inches below the asphalt. The best method for asphalt is to equip a masonry blade to a circular saw. You will cut a small slit across the asphalt then caulk over with asphalt sealant.

Mike April 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm

The phone and electrical service coming into my house are both buried. I also have a satellite system and yard security light wires that are buried. Where I plan to run the dog fence I would cross all those wires, at a sharp angle, but would run parallel to the phone and electrical service for several feet. Any problem?

ADMIN – Hi Mike, There could be a problem running too close to the wires when running parallel. You’ll want to keep about a six foot distance when running parallel. If you receive interference you can move the wire further away, decrease the boundary loop radius, or both to solve the issue.

Mark McGinley April 16, 2012 at 4:24 pm

i currently have the traditional loop coming with the twisted pair out of one side of the house and enclosing the front and back yard. i would like to make this a backyard loop only and i have seen some of the schemes that are shown for this including going over the roof or around the front wall of the house. Would i be able to use a shielded coax cable and run it close to back wall of the house and pick up the unshielded wire on the opposite side of the house without shocking the dog as he passes over it?

Admin- Hi Mark,

Unfortunately you will not be able to create a dead zone across the back with twisted wire/Coax cable making the 2-1 connections. The twisted wire can only be used to get you the wire from the transmitter to the start of the boundary loop or to create an exclusion zone. You’re only option for the set-up you wish to have would be one of the backyard only layouts.

Mark April 12, 2012 at 11:24 am

I currently have an invisible fence set up in our back yard only. I would like to run a second fence in the front yard to cut off the area around our front door. Is it possible to use the same box for the front yard fence that we use currently or would I need to install a second box in order to run the new fence?

Great website! Thanks for all your help!

Admin- Hi Mark,

Absolutely, you will simply splice twisted wire into the closest boundary wire that you have access to. You will run the twisted wire to the front of the house than create the loop around the front. The set-up would be like out exclusion zones diagram except the additional loop would be in the font yard.

jim pace April 5, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Is there a distance restriction for using the twisted wire? In looking at the different diagrams for using the fencing for lakes, there wasn’t one listed for using twisted wire along the lake front instead of taking it out into the lake or making a loop. Our lake property is about 400 ft wondering if this would be too far for the twisted wire. thanks, JP

ADMIN – Hi Jim,

You can use as much twisted wire as you need. There is no maximum length.

Note the twisted wire can only we used in certain way, essentially it can only go from the transmitter to a point on the loop, it cannot be part of the loop itself. I am not sure what you are planning, but usually if you are running the twisted wire along the lakefront, you are going to be using it in a way that will not work. A good way to self-diagnose, is to make sure all you connections are 1-to-1, if you have any other type of connection, or a wire that is not connected to anything then it is not going to work. If you want me to take a look, just email me a diagram.

Ron March 30, 2012 at 11:29 am

Hello…thank you for an incredibly informative website! I have purchased an PetSafe Ultrasmart 4100 and will be installing it shortly. I’m very comfortable with how the system works and how to install it, but I would like some advice on wire location. I have a large rectangular yard (about 1 acre) that is bordered on three sides by thin woods and light brush, with the fourth side bordered by the road. I plan to only bury the wire on the roadside section, and will leave the wire on top of the ground in the woods. The demarcation where the lawn ends and the brush/woods start is very clear. My question is should I locate the correction zone so that it is begins just inside of my yard, or right at the edge? Locating it just inside would put the flags actually in my yard, and not on the brush line. I could put the wire about 2.5 feet into the woods and set the zone size so it is about 6 feet, meaning the correction zone should start about six inches into my yard. Or, I could put the wire 3 feet into the woods and set the zone size so that the correction zone begins at the brush line. In your experience, which would be the most effective and the easiest for my dog to understand? I have rescued a 2 yr old golden retriever who can be a little bit stubborn at times. One other question regarding the road-side of the yard. Should I bury the wire so the entire correction zone is in the yard and doesn’t extend into the road, or should there be a gap between the road and where the correction zone ends? Thanks in advance!

ADMIN – Hi Ron,

(1) Either configuration would work. The dog should learn either line with ease. A nice visual demarcation is helpful, but for me the bigger priority is pushing the boundary out as far as possible, because this will give your dog more room to play in the back yard.

(2) Again, either configuration would work. But, in this case I would try and keep as much of the correction zone in your yard (and off the road) as possible. This give you a bigger safety buffer between your dog and the road. Of course, the tradeoff here is that you are taking away some of your dog’s space.

Merlin March 20, 2012 at 10:10 pm

What an awesome site! Getting excited to install something this spring but have one question.

Any restrictions on wire size. My father works for an electrical company and says he can get huge spools of wire for 25% the cost anywhere else. He thinks the smallest gauge may be 10 though. I am building a cable plow for my tractor so maybe something a little thicker would decrease installation problems anyway? Probably going to have 2000 – 3000 feet of wire total (5 acres rectangular).

ADMIN – Hi Merlin,

There are minimum thickness requirements, but no maximum thickness. The thicker the better from a transmission perspective (it is like a wider highway). It is particularly useful where you are using something like a cable plow that can be tough on the wire. The big spools of wire are great because they mean less splices.

There are a couple of things worth noting for thicker wire. First, it is a harder to work with because it is stiffer. Second, thicker wire won’t fit in the transmitter plugs, so you need a short bridging section of thinner wire. Third, make sure your father gets wire that is direct burial wire – regular housing wire can rot in the ground, particularly in acidic or reactive soils.

Kim March 17, 2012 at 1:14 am

Once again, thanks, for all the info. I have to do this and quick. My wonderful 8 year old Pit/Mastiff keeps jumping the fence. I’m looking at purchasing the 4100, but I have one major issue. I live in the mountains of New Mexico. The ground is hard. Brick doesn’t start to describe it, so burying anything is out of the question. The closest fence line is 50ft from the house. I, also, have 2 younger dogs, that most likely will chew or break any wire that is staked through the yard. Can the system be converted to solar? Or is there a reasonable solar system available on the market?

ADMIN – Hi Kim,

(1) If you need to protect the wire from other dogs (that aren’t on the system – dogs that are on the system will of course not be able to get near the wire), you can use a protective conduit like hose pipe or pvc piping. You could also spray the wire with something like bitter apple for the first few days. That should help break the dogs of the habit of chewing on the wire.

(2) Afraid there aren’t any solar fence on the market, that is something we would like to see. To get the system working on solar power, you need to get a transformer that steps the power down to 12 volts (DC) and outputs 200 milli-amps.

Aaron C March 16, 2012 at 9:15 pm

I’m wanting to do a backyard only, but I don’t want to double up the wire around the yard. Our yard is not that big. I don’t want to lose the yard space. I could do the gutter route, but our house is a 2 story walk out. I’m a little nervous that high in the air. So here’s my idea for up against the house:

Since our yard is not too big, I was wondering if I could run the wire along the back of the house, overlap it along the back of the house, and then overlap it a third time. Then twist the three wires together so that the dog could go in and out. Any chance that would work?

ADMIN – Hi Aaron,

Afraid that running a third wire will result in an active signal. If you don’t want to double back, you choices are either running the wire up and over the back door (it doesn’t have to be the full 2 stories high, just 10+ feet over the ground so the signal does not reach the dog when they enter the back door) or run the wire around the front of the house.

Yvonne March 16, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Hi, I’m hear reading about the IUC 4100 to see if it is a good solution for a med size labradoodle and my property. Can you tell me how close the dog can be to the wire before it gives her any type of warning or signal to back away? Thanks!

ADMIN – Hi Yvonne,

With the Innotek ultrasmart (and indeed all the wired dog fences), there is a dial that controls how far the correction zone extends from the wire allowing you to custom set this distance. For a medium sized labradoodle, a good minimum would be 5 feet (less than 3 feet and training will be difficult). The warning zone (beep but no correction) is generally 10-20% of the size of the correction zone (so if you set the correction zone at 5 feet, the warning zone would be 0.5-1 feet).

Jonathan March 16, 2012 at 12:49 pm

I’ve looked through all your sample layout designs. I want to use something like your backyard layout, but for various reasons it would be difficult to wire around the front of the house, and looping back the same way is problematic because the distance between the wires would cut into walks and such. So I want the loop to be around my backyard and then hug the back of the house on the way back. Of course this creates an issue with the back door, deck and patio.

Here is my question. Would it be possible to get some similar gauge but shielded wire to use near the house where I can complete the circuit but the signal itself would be contained within the wire in the area where I use it? I didn’t see anything on your site about this but I am assuming if shielded wire stops interference from coming into a wire, it will also stop it from flowing out. Any ideas on this?

ADMIN – Hi Jonathan,

Unfortunately shielding the wire does not consistently cut down the signal enough to avoid triggering the fence. Have you considered elevating the wire along the back of the house, so that the height of the wire avoids the signal triggering the collars down on ground level. We usually just run the wire up a water-spout, run it across the gutter, then down the water-spout on the other side of the house.

Bob March 4, 2012 at 11:54 pm

I was wondering if I could combine the twisted pair leaving the unit inside the home with a 240volt circuit that feeds through the exterior wall? It would be in the same conduit for 8″. Would I have any problems with a “Bleed-over” affect from the AC circuit?
Also, I have a Miniature Pinscher that weighs 14 pounds. The area that we want to use is approximately 80’X80′. What system would you recommend?
Thank You.

ADMIN – Hi Bob,

What do you mean when you say combine? Are simply wanting to run the twisted pair beside the 240volt wire? If that’s the case then yes, it will be okay.

I’d recommend the Innotek IUC 4100 dog fence. For a 14 lb mini pin the collar is small enough and streamlined enough to fit as long as your mini pin’s neck circumference is at least 7″.

David February 25, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Can you run a boundary wire across a driveway without tearing up the pavement?

Admin- Hi David,

If there is an expansion join in the driveway, you just put the wire in the joint and caulk over. Otherwise you can run the wire through a culvert or cut a shallow slot with a circular saw, lay the wire, then caulk over.

Matt February 18, 2012 at 1:43 am

Thank you for this informative website, I found it while researching wireless dog fences. I’ve now decided that they are not the best option for our house. We live in a duplex, with a yard that is almost twice the length from front to back, compared to the front( or rear) property line. A wired one will allow more area for the dog, but I’m not sure how to handle the property line that we share with our connected neighbor. What would you suggest?

ADMIN – Hi Matt,

Running the wire in a duplex is tricky, because of the connected unit. Usually the yard is not big enough to do a double loop (go around the three sides of the yard, then double back six feet away. One way we have seen it done is to run the wire around the three sides of the yard, then up and over the home along the common boundary with your neighbor. You can either go straight over, or go through the gutter system so you circle around the edge of the home.

Kerry February 12, 2012 at 1:05 am

I already have an existing fence for the backyard but our dog is escaping under the fence even though we have tacked it down with stakes. The fence is 4 feet high and a combination of a chain link fence along the back property line and decorative aluminum along the sides. We have a pedestrian gate and vehicle gate on each side of the house. I plan on using the double back layout with twisted sections to cancel the signal where the gates are. I read that the untwisted parts of the double back layout need to be 6 feet apart or they will interfere with each other. My fence is only 4 ft high, can I still put one strand on the top and one strand near the bottom, ( this maybe about 3 ft apart on the decorative fence parts). Will the aluminum fence affect the signal? Am I correct about having the twisted wires for the gate openings, probably for the first 30 ft coming off the control box? Thank you in advance.

ADMIN – Hi Kerry,

The amount of separation you need between those wires depends on how wide you set the boundary width. If you set a typical boundary of 3-5 feet on either side of the fence, then you need at least 4 feet of separation, preferably 6 feet of separation. Using the 4 foot fence will be cutting it close, the 3 foot fence is unlikely to work and you will need to run one of the wires along the ground to get the needed separation.

The aluminum fence will have no effect if it is aluminum pickets. It could amplify the signal and make it project out a couple of extra feet if the fence was aluminum sheet metal.

Bringing the two wires together and twisting them along the gated sections would indeed cancel the signal in those local areas.

William February 11, 2012 at 10:56 pm

I’ll get right to the point. Four-sided loop, but one portion of the length that runs from backyard to front will be pretty close to the side of my brick house. That’s OK, I don’t want my dogs traveling up/down that side of the house anyway. Can I run the wire close (3-4 ft) to that side of the home without having the signal bleed through to the inside rooms and bother my dogs (if they happen to have collars on) or with electronic equipment (phones, clocks, stereo). Also, by running it this close, am I effectively “sealing off” that portion of the yard (this would be good because I can much more effectively see them on the other three sides).

ADMIN – Hi William,

The answer as to whether you will get the signal inside the house will depend on how wide you set the boundary width and what the walls are made of. We would get the wire as far away from the side as possible, then test inside the house with the collars to make sure you aren’t getting any signal. If you are getting a signal, you will want to turn down the boundary width dial until you consistently get no signal. 3-4 feet of separation, plus the blocking effect of the wall should be enough.

The dog containment fence will not cause any problems with electronics in the home.

By running the wire close to the side of the house, you will indeed be effectively shutting off this areas of the yard. The dogs will not want to negotiate a long narrow strip.

Marty Bowlds February 8, 2012 at 9:42 am

I have a wooden fence in my back yard and an in ground pool. I want to keep my dogs off of my pool cover, they have already ripped it once. They cut my concrete pad around my pool and would be perfect for putting the wire in and caulking it in there. Can I use an invisible fence around my pool and keep them out instead of containing them inside the wired area?

ADMIN – Hi Marty,

You can indeed use the invisible fence system for keeping dogs out of an area instead of for containment. You will just lay the wire around the area you want to exclude the dogs, and do the training in the same way as you would for containment.

Mike Robinson February 4, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Thank you for all of the great information! I have an outdoor outlet on the back of my house where I want to mount the transmitter. However, the transmitter will not be very sheltered from the elements. Is there a waterproof transmitter system available?(If not, I think I just came up with an idea to make me millions). If not, what happens if the transmitter gets wet? Lastly, do you have any clever ideas for a waterproof housing that could contain the transmitter and be mounted on the outside of the house.

ADMIN – Hi Mike,

The only weatherproof transmitter is on the Humane Contain, but I would avoid that system. We usually just use a regular system and put it in a weather proof box. You can get the boxes in the electrical section of most big-box hardware stores for around $20. You don’t want to put the transmitter unit outside unprotected otherwise after the next heavy rain it will short circuit and stop working.

Let us know how it goes with your million dollar idea. I am guessing it is a way to stop it raining.

Deborah January 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

Thanking you in advance, you have a great website that answered most of my questions, but I need to be sure which fence to buy from you. My pup is only 9 weeks old right now, a lab/and something else cross (maybe golden,GSD and/or Chow) I live in a rural area in VT and am able to lay the wire through the woods on all sides of my house except when it crosses the driveway. There is a culvert running under the driveway and I was wondering if I could put the wire through the culvert or will that be too deep? Some of the wooded area is very thick with bushy vegetation, could other animals (like rabbits) pull the wire up and break it if they were to get near it? I want to fence in about 1.5 acre…..can you suggest the proper fence? Thanks.

ADMIN – Hi Deborah,

Appreciate your kind words. You can run the wire through the culvert. How deep depends on how wide you intend to set your fence boundary width settings. But, in general anything over one foot deep is going to block the signal getting to the surface and will compromise the fence in that area.

Usually with a wooded area we just staple down the wire to avoid some animal snagging themselves on the fence and breaking it. You will get the occasional break with a critter chewing through the wire. You can mitigate this by running the wire through irrigation pipe or sprinkler system pipe to protect it – but in our opinion this is not worth the extra effort and we find it easier to just deal with the occasional break.

For that kind of dog you have many options. The Innotek IUC-4100 is a good choice, it is a smaller collar and is rechargeable. The PetSafe Stubborn is also good, it has a bigger collar and uses a disposable battery, but is a little cheaper. Note if you use the Stubborn, you will want to keep it on the lower settings because anything beyond the medium correction on that system is likely to be counterproductive with your dog.

FYI – I would wait until he is six months old. Training is much easier once the dogs have matured a little bit, when they are just a pup they have a limited attention span. So you might want to wait a few months before making your purchase.

Pat January 25, 2012 at 10:06 pm

We have an 8 month old Malti-Poo that was taught to “run away” by our older dog (who has since been given away)! Our little guy originally would stay right by us when walking outside but now is gone whenever he gets out of the house. This seems to be a game for him and when neighbors find him they give him treats to “catch” him (which seems to be reinforcing the bad behavior). We have coyotes in the neighborhood and I am terrified that our baby will get out and will be an appetizer for the coyotes. Toby Mac is 12-1/2#. Our yard is fenced with a block wall (we live in Arizona) but Toby can get out the front door or garage door through the laundry room. What would you suggest?????

ADMIN – Hi Pat,

If the problem is darting out the garage and the front door, I would run the boundary wire around the entire property perimeter. When you are going around the rear which is already fenced in, I would either bury the wire or staple it to the side of the fence.

A good system for a dog that size would be the Innotek IUC-4100. It has one of the smaller collars, and is rechargeable. The PetSafe Little Dog is also a good choice and is a little cheaper, but there is a significant ongoing expense due to the proprietary PetSafe batteries it forces you to use.

Frank January 23, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Using the exact house/garage/driveway/control box location illustration in your Single-sided Boundary Layout, is there a way to create that single-sided boundary without having the wires cross the driveway twice? One way I’m thinking is to lay the wire from the control box, along the right side (as you’re looking at the house) of the driveway, across the driveway to the opposite property line, back to the left edge of the driveway, up along that left edge of the driveway, through the garage and bypassing the control box, then alongside the right side of the driveway again down to where it turns onto the driveway.

Then, from there, twisting the wire along itself back towards the garage, bypassing the control box, back along the left side of the driveway, then back again towards the garage (still twisting it) until it reaches the control box. In the end, the wires on the right side of the driveway will be twisted twice on itself, and the wires on the left side will be twisted three times on itself. You probably haven’t heard of a layout like this, but I rather not make any more cuts in my asphalt driveway than necessary.

ADMIN – Hi Frank,

Afraid your creative wiring would not have the desired effect. You only get cancellation if two (or four or any other even number) wires are twisted together. When you twist three (or any odd number) wires together, you get a signal.

There is no good alternative to crossing the driveway twice that we have ever found.

Stuart Keen January 9, 2012 at 11:51 am

1. My dog is a Labrador/Golden Retrieve mix, his coat is medium length and weighs 55 lbs. My concerns are a) he is an older dog (14+ years) and is developing bladder problems so he must have access to the unfenced back yard 24/7 (there are dog doors from the house to the lanai to the yard). But twice he wandered away from home, so I need the invisible fence to contain him. How often must I remove the collar and for how long? Basically, if he has access to the outside, he needs to wear the collar all the time, but I can periodically restrict him to the house without the collar for short periods if necessary.

2. Both sides of the back yard are open to my neighbors. The back of the yard has a 11 ft high concrete wall that extends to all properties in this development so this does not have to be “fenced”. However, in the right hand corner there is a 12 ft wide x 25 ft long “dead end” run (corridor) that runs parallel to the wall, behind my neighbor’s wooden fence. The configuration is like a fat upside-down “L”. The dog needs access to this corridor. How can I run the “invisible” wire fence from the house, along the right side of my yard, up to the corridor, then jump the entrance to the corridor over to the wall, along the top of the wall and back along the other side of the yard to the house? The 12 ft width of the corridor presents a problem. If I went up the fence and over to the wall, then the radiation from vertical wire would interfere with the entrance to the corridor. If I went down several feet into the ground, then when I came up the side of the wall, I would again have radiator from the vertical rise there. I understand placing the wire in a metal pipe would not help. Would covering with sheet metal help? Any suggestions for wiring this non-standard configuration?

ADMIN – Hi Stuart,

1. The manufacturers all recommend that the collars are worn only 12 hours a day. In practice, many people leave them on around the clock and this works fine. The important thing if you are going to leave the collar on constantly is to check the dog’s neck every couple of days for the first month, then weekly. If the dog develops a rash or allergic reaction, you want to catch it early.

2. To create a gap in the fence, you can go up high (8+ feet) overhead or deep down (at least 3 feet, maybe more depending on soil type). To avoid the vertical sections where the wire goes up/down, causing an signal that blocks the corridor, you may have to place the vertical sections further back from the opening.

The other option to create a gap is to make a big U-shaped loop that goes around the entire yard (but not the passage to be left open, then doubles back on itself six feet apart to complete the loop.

Shielding with metal pipe or sheet metal is not effective.

kellygf December 16, 2011 at 6:12 pm

We are looking to purchase the Innotek 4100 for our 2+ acre property…for our 3 Australian Shepherds. We have 3 gates that we would like to be “free pass” areas. Is there a way to make the gate areas in the loop not charged? There is no overhead options for these gate areas.

ADMIN – Hi Kelly,

Other than going up high, or going deep down underground, there is no easy way to great 3 separate breaks in the fence. If you want the dogs to go through the gates, you will need to switch the system off or remove the collars every time.

dave December 15, 2011 at 2:37 pm

I would like to do a back yard only setup. If I were to use the twisted wire along the back side of the house then double back one of the wires and twist it with the other two, then create my loop along the outer yard would this work,( the double back /3 wire twist?) The gutter method is an option but our gutters tend to get full of leaves and then freeze, I know I know clean the gutters…. that aside.

ADMIN – Hi Dave,

Three wires twisted together does not cancel out the signal and will trigger the dog fence collar. Afraid, the gutters are your best bet. (PS – my feeling is that if you don’t have anything growing in your gutter, then it doesn’t need cleaning)

Auslander Scofflaw's Dad December 12, 2011 at 5:28 pm

The back door of the house is literally on the NW corner of the house immediately adjacent to the driveway. The far side of the driveway is my property line on the west side I would like to keep Aussie from exiting the property from the driveway. The driveway is 9 ft wide. I understand I could form a narrow loop along the top and bottom of a fence along the driveway and happens to end even with the NW corner of the house. How “hard” is the perimeter? Do I end the loop 3 or 6 ft from the back door? Do I run a loop top and bottom of the fence and adjust the boundary to the edge of the house but not the door? If the later, then there is only 6 inches between the West edge of the house and the left side of the door. Fortunately there is a material difference in the driveway at the NW corner of the house. One side is asphalt the other is cement with a wooden grid embedded so if I had to I could loop on the ground closer to the door from the fence. But how far must the door be separated from the loop to be safe?

ADMIN – Hi James,

(1) By hard, I presume you mean is the boundary consistent. With the wired fences, the boundary will be much more consistent than with a wireless fence but there will still be a bit of vagueness, the boundary moving 1-2 feet from day-to-day.

(2) I would indeed run the loop along the top and bottom of the fence. But, I would adjust the boundary width so that you have 3 foot buffer between the where the boundary triggers and the door.

Danny December 2, 2011 at 9:39 am

I had used to system I bought at walmart underground fence (wired). I noticed at least 2 problems:
(1) I live in a mobile home with no metal roof and no metal siding but with a metal frame (26×52). The correction would hit the dogs as they approached the house.
(2) The fence was slow to react and the dogs would run through. I live on 2.5 acres 200 x 400 feet of full trimmed woods (lower branches removed ) with the home offset to one side.
I was thinking about the wireless system because of the run through what type of system would you recommend ? ,what other info do you need ? Pictures?

ADMIN – Hi Danny,
(1) If the correction is getting inadvertently triggered, it is likely a problem with your layout. Take the collars and figure out where they are getting triggered. Email us a diagram of the layout and where the collars are getting triggered and we could help you figure it out.
(2) The slow reaction time is due to the brand of fence (I am guessing from Walmart that it is the Humane Contain). I would try switching it out for another brand. Since you have 2.5 acres, you set nice wide boundary zones. If you do the training with the dogs, then running through should not be a problem.
I would advise against wireless systems. Generally they are not as good as wired systems and in particular they are not good in wooded areas where there are many obstructions.

John Robinson November 29, 2011 at 6:24 pm

I would like to install a perimeter style around my 1acre property. Is it possible to put gate areas in so I can walk my dog to the neighbors property with out having the dog put on the brakes when she comes to the boundary line?

ADMIN – Hi John,

There are no gates per se. Once you have the dogs fully trained, we can start to teach them that it is ok to go through the fence when you give them permission. (You will of course have to take the collars off the dog before they cross the boundary) For more details on how to do the ‘gate’ training, see the Training –> Walking Your Dog section of the website.

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