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How to start training your dog to understand a dog fence

(Read my introduction to fence training if you haven't done so, yet.)

When you first introduce your dog to his new dog fence, your goal is simply to show him how to respond when he goes too far past his invisible boundary. The goal IS NOT to frighten your dog. In fact, you should focus on keeping the training process as low-stress and fun as possible.

So, grab a small bag of treats that you know your dog likes, and get ready to start your first training session.


1) Set your dog's fence receiver to the LOWEST possible correction level (preferably tone only). For the first couple of training sessions, you will focus on helping your dog understand that when he enters the correction zone and hears the warning tone from his collar, he can turn the sound off by walking back into the yard. You should give him a chance to make this association WITHOUT a correction. In later sessions, after your dog understands how to respond, you'll begin adding a correction.

2) Put a regular leash and collar on your dog, along with the fence collar. You must start your dog fence training with your dog on a leash, but DO NOT clip the leash to your dog's fence collar. Instead, at this point your dog should be wearing two collars: one regular collar with a leash attached to it and one collar that holds the fence receiver.

3) Help your dog interact with his new fence. While holding the end of your dog's leash, let him wander just past the flags and into the correction zone. Then, use the leash and your voice to lead your dog back into your yard. When he returns to you, praise him and give him a treat.

4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 around your entire yard for about 5 minutes. Make sure to train all around your property, so your dog learns the entirety of his new boundary. Also, keep your training session short — 5 minutes is plenty long enough.


For most dogs, it's sufficient to spend just a couple of sessions introducing the dog fence using the steps outlined above. If your dog has a particularly sensitive personality, you may consider increasing that to three or four sessions.

You can train your dog as many as three to five times a day, but remember to keep your training sessions short and fun. Also, remember that at this point your dog should be on-leash every single time he goes outside, so you can help him interact appropriately with his new fence. If you allow your dog outside without a leash and dog fence collar, he will quickly become confused. That'll mean more work and stress for you down the road.

Did this article answer your question? If not, Google the keyword phrase "invisible fence training " to learn more:

Next: Moving forward with on-leash training (week 1) >>

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