If you have a dog, as an owner you might be wondering how to train them on an invisible fence. You may also be wondering what age is appropriate to train a dog on an invisible fence?
A puppy can be trained on an invisible fence after it reaches the age of 12 weeks, so the training isn’t just for adult puppies. We recommend waiting for 4 more weeks till your puppy turns 16 weeks old as that is the more ideal age to train it on the fence.
There’s a lot of confusion among dog owners on when and how they should train their dogs on the invisible fence, some owners prefer one method and age while others prefer another. This article covers both these aspects; when and how to train your dog on an invisible fence.
Table of Contents
- What age is appropriate to start training your dog on an invisible fence?
- What is an invisible fence and how does it work?
- Factors you need to keep in mind before training your dog
- How do I train my dog on an invisible fence?
- What are the most important aspects of invisible fence training your dog?
What age is appropriate to start training your dog on an invisible fence?
According to Dog Fence UK, 16 weeks is the ideal age to start training your dog however, you can also start training them after they turn 12 weeks old. It’s also advised to not follow the brands who suggest that training your puppy on an invisible fence at the mere age of 8 months is appropriate, since 8 weeks is too young for your puppy to fully grasp the concept.
Your puppy needs to be mature enough to fully grasp and understand the training given to instill the concept of an invisible fence. Since most fences work on the electricity system connected to a collar, if you start training them too early they might just get confused and terrified, leading to them being traumatized enough to not want to get trained on an electric fence ever.
Let your dog learn about the boundaries on their own pace and time, without forcing them to do so. Dogs can sometimes react unpredictably to invisible fences, so have patience and understand your puppy’s development before starting their training.
What is an invisible fence and how does it work?
Invisible fences are used by pet owners to keep their pets inside a boundaries area, without using a physical infrastructure like walls or fencing. Using the combination of science, technology, electronics, and a little bit of training, you can make sure your pets stay safe inside the boundaries of your lawn.
According to Wonderopolis, invisible fencing systems use wires that are buried in the lawn’s ground to create an invisible perimeter of sorts. A transmitter is connected to the wiring, emitting a radio signal that travels throughout the perimeter (wiring).
A receiver is put on your dog in the form of a collar. What this receiver does is detect the radio signals emitted from the wiring. If your dog approaches the perimeter (buried wire), it will first hear a warning sound only privy to its own ears. If it crosses the fence, there will be a static stimulation to interrupt this behavior.
Factors you need to keep in mind before training your dog
To customize the training accordingly so that your dog can learn better according to its capabilities, according to Invisible Fence, you should keep these factors in mind:
- Size and weight
- Behavioral tendencies
- Motivation to learn
- History and experience with static
- Household needs
How do I train my dog on an invisible fence?
Depending on the type of dog you have and their learning capabilities, training it might take you somewhere around 2-3 weeks, 2 weeks being the minimum amount of time. Most pet fence companies recommend a period of 2 weeks training as well.
Next up, choose an invisible fencing system that gives a warning before static correction, so that your dog can learn to correct its mistake before getting statically corrected. Most invisible fencing systems come with flags used to visually indicate the boundary while training the dog, and can be discarded after your dog’s been trained.
Use a longer leash while making your dog familiar with the parameter, allow controlled recall and guidance as your dog approaches the invisibly fenced boundary. Use a non-metallic collar so that it doesn’t interfere with the radio transmission, and also for leading purposes.
We advise using the trial and error system not as a standalone, but in accordance with the reward system as well, as a motivation for your dog to learn faster. Trial and error on its own can cause negative reinforcement, causing your dog to get frightened and become confused.
First teach your dog what the boundaries of the fence are, by demonstrating it yourself. Then focus on making them recognize the warnings and static corrections and why they ensue. Lastly, practice makes perfect, so train them repeatedly to avoid future errors.
There’s an ideal method to training your dog, we’ll explain it all step-by-step.
- Set the invisible fence radio collar to signal only (not static) to familiarize the dog with how the alarm sounds.
- Walk your dog using a long leash and collar, and as soon as they get close to the boundary, correct their behavior by steering them back towards the safe zone. Give dog treats for every time your dog understands the signal.
- After they’re familiar with the signal, turn on the lowest level of static correction.
- Continue walking around the boundary and check if your dog repeats the behavior you taught him or goes outside the boundary and gets statically corrected.
- Give motivations for them to turn to the safe zone and not go outside the boundary.
- If your dog ignores the static correction, turn the dial up a bit, until they respond by staying inside the boundary.
- Practice without the leash using the same methods mentioned above. Repeat for 2-3 weeks to see the results.
What are the most important aspects of invisible fence training your dog?
- Making sure your dog is satisfied with the lead
- Teaching basic verbal commands first
- Making your dog more confident before training
- Following the exact protocol for fence training
By now we hope you’ve found out how and when to train your dog on an invisible fence. After being trained you’ll notice quite a burden getting off your shoulders as your dog will remain safe within the boundary at most times.