Wireless Dog and Cat – Invisible Fence Without the Wire

My brother bought an invisible fence which required that he bury a wire around the perimeter of his property. He even had to cut a groove in his driveway. Worse than the installation, he bought a mid-range product and ended up having to upgrade to something stronger. Fortunately, Home Depot was very accommodating and allowed him to trade in everything but the wire he buried.

BEST CHOICE for Invisible Fence, Wireless, Rechargeable that is NOT by manufacturer: PetSafe*

*Why not Petsafe? Because they use a proprietary battery which is very expensive over time.

The Wireless Invisible Fence unit I list below is:

  1. Half the price of the Petsafe units,
  2. Better reviewed, (more five-stars) and
  3. It’s waterproof,
  4. It’s rechargeable.
  5. The Petsafe units use a proprietary battery as I mentioned above.

Back to my story:

After my brother buries wire all around his yard, they come out with the following ‘fence’ which simply has a ‘perimeter’ that is monitored by the center unit. Basically a ‘radar’ or ‘field’ that emanates from the central unit and creates a 360 degree ‘circular range’ and as long as the dog stays within that range, it’s comfortable.

Wireless Invisible Fence
OKPET collar unit is rechargeable, and you can add a backup collar to the $110 kit for an additional $35

When the dog starts to go out of range, the collar beeps, then finally begins a series of corrective pops. And continues to pop the dog until he returns to the radius. They’re simple to install and they’ve been around for a few years. Most of the bugs have been worked out.

Best part about them is, according to my clients, is that they can take them to the beach and set the central unit up, adjust the range to 90 feet, and it keeps the dog in a circular area on the beach. (The radius is adjustable.)

OKPET Wireless Dog Fence Electric Pet Containment System, 100% Safe & Easy to Install Pet Fence, Beep/Shock Dog Fence, Adjustable Control Range, Rechargeable & Waterproof Collar

  • ★WIRELESS DOG FENCE SYSTEM:Wireless electric dog fence will customize a cordless radial shaped boundary with adjustable levels from 10 to 1000 feet in radius, forming an invisible circular fenceless perimeter to limit your dog. Beep and electric static shock dog training mode will automatically start when the dog exceed the set activity range.
  • ★SIGNAL STABILITY & ACCURATENESS:The dog collar receiver is safe & effective and easy to use,stable signal,fast synchronization. It is anti-over shocking design which is harmless to your dog. No need to worry about the dog suddenly get shocked if the transmitter shutdown or power cut.
  • ★COLLAR WATER RESISTANT IPX7:Our water resistant collar receiver is rated IPX7, which means that your dog can get wet in the grass, mess with the sprinkler or play in the rain.
  • ★RECHARGEABLE & DURABLE BATTERY:The advanced collar receiver with high capacity built-in battery is rechargeable,package included 2 universal power adapter.Durable battery,low power consumption,and low battery alert.
  • ★PRACTICAL & UNMATCHED PERFORMANCE:Dogs can be added indefinitely to the system as long as they wear the collar receiver of this product. Works on all types of dogs – small, medium, large, and even extra large dogs-recommended for dogs over 10 lbs.

Notes from Doc Johnson

For the above unit: I highly recommend you spend the extra $30 and get the “two collar” option so that you have another collar available in the event of a collar-failure on unit #1.

Looking at the Wireless Invisible Fence reviews, I see three common themes.

German Shepherds keep showing up 25-40% of product ‘fail’ reviews, as too dumb, or too terrified to benefit from this system. Since GSD are easily terrified*, sometimes when they get a correction they run back to the house and  cower. That’s no good, because then they don’t wander around in the perimeter, they just cringe on the porch.

Even though the above collar is tough, and has a metal buckle, I’d recommend backing yourself up with a rubber band to make sure the collar doesn’t fall off. “My dogs actually stayed in the yard! Unfortunately, within the first week, one of the collars went missing while they were outside. I was confused on how that could happen. Then within another week, another collar came up missing while they were outside. Again, i was confused, until i took the 3rd collar off my dog and realized that the clasp was broke.” (This review was for a PetSafe brand collar)

And finally, the remaining fails are legitimate tech failures like sender and receiver failure which are reported for almost all invisible fences. And my advice on that is to note the last possible return date / replacement date / warranty date and then if ANYTHING is subpar for you, RETURN IT instead of putting up with inferior performance. Folks seemed to tough it out with spotty performance til it was months past the return date.

SOME APPLICATIONS don’t lend themselves to certain yards with lots of trees, a huge house on a hill, and other terrain that causes a review about ‘spotty range’ see “Flat Yards” discussion below*

Select Wireless Invisible Fence Reviews That Are Helpful

From the manufacturer: “The way this Wireless Invisible Fence system works is that the collar unit is always receiving a signal from the transmitter and it knows to activate when the dog gets to the edge of the boundary because there is no signal there. “

If anything happens to the signal from the hub, the collar activates. Many homes (but still less than 20%) have interference with the signals, including steel propane tanks, cars in the driveway, slopes and hills, even other electronic devices. Test the unit a LOT at first so that you can trust it.

Also, if you’re on a busy road where you can’t afford a single escape, I’d recommend an actual fence. And while people are banging on the wireless electronic fence so hard for a 15-20% failure rate, the underground wire kind are ALSO dependent on the collar to work – and their failure rate is a “thing” because of collar malfunction (they get wet, chewed on, dead battery, concussive force, age) and the wire breaks a lot.

Wireless Invisible Fence not for German Shepherds or other fearful, German-vigilance (guard) breeds*.

“Today was the last straw. I was outside with our German Shepherd when someone walked by with his dog. The other dog was safely ou…..”

“Went through the process to train my GSD with the containment system. When I walked outside the boundaries to talk to some people walking near my property my dog couldn’t resist and attempted to leave the yard. When she stayed too far from the boundary the shock kicked in and my dog started crying in pain trying to escape the shocking. Afterwards, I couldn’t get her to leave the porch”

“He got so scared that he wouldn’t even come to me. He ran to the porch and sat there. I have a Rottie so it must have scared him pretty good. I read the dire….”

Send Wireless Invisible Fence back at the first sign of trouble. Don’t Wait Three Months.

“I ordered this for my parents to keep there dogs in the yard. And they didn’t open the box til it was past return date! So the worse part we can’t even get our money back.”

“Decided to finally call it quits after 2 separate attempts of setting it up and return it, turns out it’s too late. Worst 270$ I’ve thrown away.”

“DON’T waste your money and now that its past 30 days they won’t give me my money back. BAD customer service……”

“VERY unhappy to discover that this cannot be replaced or returned after less than 3 months!!”

“…we hung in there trying different locations and settings and alas, it is past the return date.”

“Finally i gave up on it but of course by the time you come to this conclusion the return time has expired already, then you are stuck with a product that cost more then $200 dollars and doesn’t work properly .”

*Flat Yards For Wireless Invisible Fence

“This is a good idea but the controlled field is a circle with a 180 foot diameter. As the unit has to be mounted inside and our house is quite large and on a hill. There was not a suitable location anywhere on the property to allow our dogs to exit the house and roam the year. This item was returned without being used.”

“Doesn’t work for sloped yard. My front yard is flat; back yard has a very slight slope. System works great in the front yard, but in the back it beeps in totally random places. From reading other comments, I think this product just doesn’t work well for yards that aren’t flat. Returning it.”

“I unfortunately had to send this back. I have used this system before with my stubborn lab girl, but our new yard is oddly shaped and no matter how I adjusted it, it did not contain her. Either I cut off most of the back yard from her use, or the adjustment would give her the freedom to run in the street in the front yard. This is a great solution if you don’t have an odd shaped lot.”

Dr Erik Johnson is a Marietta, Georgia Veterinarian with a practice in small animal medicine. He graduated from University of Georgia with his Doctorate in 1991. Dr Johnson is the author of several texts on Koi and Pond Fish Health and Disease as well as numerous articles on dog and cat health topics.