Many pet owners worry that a wireless fence can be harmful to their smaller dogs. The key here is finding the right containment system made for smaller canines. Some of the best wireless dog fence for small dogs are PetSafe Stay & Play Compact, PetSafe Stay & Play ¾-Acre, and PetSafe Wireless Fence Collar. I also swear by My Pet Command and GROOVYPETS Electric Wireless Fences.
Remember that smaller dogs are harder to spot on a busy road. Also, they can be challenging to find once they run away from your yard. So before any of these happens, you must set up a containment system that matches your pet’s size and tolerance level.
Below, I reviewed five of the best containment systems that provide humane boundaries while letting your dog run around the perimeter.
What is the best wireless fence for small dogs?
1. Overall Best Pick: PetSafe Stay & Play Compact Wireless Dogs Fence
The PetSafe Stay & Play Compact Wireless Fence provides up to ¾ acre of coverage for dogs that are at least 5 lbs. in weight. You can also adjust this range from 22 to 105 feet in all directions to suit your property’s size.
Moreover, this PetSafe Wireless Dog Fence For Small Dogs has 5 levels of correction plus a tone-only mode. And true to the PetSafe models, this has a safe re-entry technology that won’t correct your dog if it runs back to safety.
Aside from the compact transmitter, you’ll also receive a rechargeable Stay & Play collar. This fits dogs with neck sizes of 6” to 28”, which is small enough for compact dog breeds. Each charge of this collar will last for 3 weeks, and there’s a low battery indicator that will let you know if it’s about to run out of power.
The package also includes marker flags, a charger, and installation hardware. Just make sure that you install this at least three feet away from metal objects.
Overall, this is a well-designed unit that also works well for stubborn dogs. The only issue I have is that I always have to re-sync the transmitters to the collar whenever a power outage occurs. Still, it’s just a minor niggle I can live with for these PetSafe wireless fence reviews.
2. Premium Choice: PetSafe Stay & Play ¾-Acre Wireless Fence
Another wireless fence from PetSafe that I swear by is the PetSafe Play & Stay. This is similar to the compact version, but the receiver collar isn’t rechargeable.
This fence has a ¾ acre range, which you can adjust to suit the perimeter you want your dog to access. Just note that the transmitter of this fence is made for indoor use. Make sure that you install it on a shed or any spot with a cover.
As with all PetSafe wireless fences, this one has a static-free reentry, so your dog won’t be corrected if it runs back within the safe zone.
This fence’s collar is also waterproof, and it fits dogs that weigh at least 5 lbs. You can adjust the strap from 6” to 28” for the best fit. It has five levels of static correction and a tone-only setting.
The downside I see here is that the collar isn’t rechargeable. Once the battery runs out of power, you’ll have to purchase the RFA-67 replacement. It’s an added expense, and the battery is PetSafe-patented, so you simply can’t use any battery in the market. Nevertheless, each replacement lasts for two months, which is already a reasonable bargain.
Another thing I want to point out is that the prongs on the collar don’t seem to work well on thick-coated canines.
Overall, the package includes 50 training flags, a test light tool, a mounting bracket, and a contact point wrench. This is bundled with a user manual and a one-year warranty.
3. Wireless Fence For Dogs Under 5 lbs.: PetSafe Wireless Fence Collar
If you already have a PetSafe transmitter and planning a second dog on the fence, you should get the PetSafe Wireless Fence Collar. This is also made for canines that weigh at least 5 lbs. with a neck circumference of 6” to 28”.
This collar also has five adjustable correction levels and a tone-only mode. This is compatible with PetSafe containment system models like IF-100, PIF-300, and PIF00-12917. You can also get multiple collars for your transmitter if you have a multi-canine household. This is also a good match with PetSafe stubborn dog fence without wire.
Aside from that, this wireless fence collar comes with two extra free batteries. Once those run out, you have to purchase the replacements separately.
Overall, this collar is lightweight for just 2.5 ounces and measures 2.25” x 1 5/8” x 1”. It’s suitable for small breeds without feeling too bulky. But if your small dog has thick fur, you may need to make it tighter for the prongs to reach the skin.
While this collar is quite pricey, it’s an excellent investment if you want a wireless containment system that works. The only thing I noticed is that the battery tends to fall out sometimes, but it’s just a minor niggle with a very simple solution.
4. Best Wireless Dog Fence For 2 Small Dogs: My Pet Command Wireless Dog Fence Collar
For those who are using the My Pet Command containment system, the additional receiver collar for your second dog provides added value. It’s rechargeable and IPX7 waterproof, so your small dog can jump around on puddles without ruining the collar.
Moreover, the collar will start beeping once your dog approaches the boundary. If it steps out of the safe zone, the My Pet Command collar will produce a static correction and vibration. Take note that this uses an auto sequence setting to prevent over-correcting your small dog.
The My Pet Command wireless dog fence collar can be used through remote control or a buried underground wire. It’s a versatile option if you’re still testing the waters and planning to scale up the containment system later on.
Overall, this collar will serve as a training collar and a containment system in one. For this price range, you simply can’t beat that. It also comes in a set of wireless dog fence for 2 dogs.
I also have to commend the customer service of this brand. They are prompt to answer queries and more than willing to send replacements if the collar you received has manufacturing issues.
If you’re on a budget and need to add a second small dog to your fence system, you should consider the My Pet Command Wireless Fence.
5. Best Wireless Dog Fence For Chihuahua: GROOVYPETS Electric Wireless Dog Containment Fence
If you’re looking for a portable wireless fence, you should get this set from GROOVYPETS. This comes with two collars and a fence base transmitter. Everything will be running in just an hour without the need to install underground wires.
The dog collar of this fence has a 350-yard range. It’s also rechargeable and fully waterproof for added convenience. Whether your small dog is out in the rain, wading in the flood, or on the lake, this dog collar will work. It’s also portable so that you can take it on your outdoor trips with your dog.
Meanwhile, its base unit has a digital display where you can control its five radius options. You can set the range in 30, 60, 90, 150, and 300 meters.
Aside from that, the transmitter has separate buttons for sound, vibration, and shock corrections. You can select these individual modes to suit the personality of your dog. Knowing how sneaky Chihuahuas can be, this dog fence is surely an excellent choice.
Take note that this is available in 1 to 3 dog set options. To sync multiple collars, the dogs will be numbered 001, 002, and 003, respectively.
How to choose a wireless dog fence for small dogs
You have to be very careful when choosing a wireless dog fence for your small canine. Unlike larger dogs, smaller ones can’t tolerate high levels of correction. The key here is considering the following points before making the purchase.
Collar size and adjustability
When it comes to a wireless electric dog fence for small dogs, the first thing you should check is the collar size of the receiver. The best option is one with a strap that’s adjustable to at least 6” of neck girth. This ensures that the collar is tight enough for the contact points to reach the skin on the neck.
Also, you should check the size of the collar. Many wireless pet fences use bulky casings for large canines. For smaller dogs, you’d want the most compact option without compromising accuracy and reliability.
Another important consideration is the range of the wireless dog fence. This will dictate the area where your dog can freely roam.
The good thing is that small dogs don’t need a massive space to play and move. A ¾-acre wireless fence is more than enough to keep your dog happy outdoors.
You can also adjust this to make the perimeter smaller. Just remember that wireless dog fences use a dome-shaped signal, so always mind where you place the base unit or transmitter.
Correction modes and levels
A wireless dog fence usually has these three methods of correction:
- Tone-only. A tone-only mode is necessary to train your dog. The goal here is for your small dog to recognize the beep so that it won’t receive a static correction. Make sure that the wireless fence you’re buying has a tone mode that’s loud enough to startle your dog.
- Static. A static charge is the highest mode of correction on a wireless fence. It uses an electrostatic charge that will irritate your dog. While it may cause slight pain, it won’t injure or harm your pet.
- Vibration. Not all wireless fence systems have a vibration mode. Next to tone mode, a vibration correction is the second warning for your small dog to come back to safety. If the vibration mode is ignored, the static charge will often come next.
The receiver collar of the wireless fence is always battery-powered. However, it comes in rechargeable and replaceable types. Rechargeable collars are the most popular option since it’s convenient and you no longer have to purchase replacements.
Meanwhile, brands like PetSafe have their patented battery, which they use on some of their wireless fence systems. The good thing here is that replaceable batteries often pack more power that can last for 2 to 3 months. This is in comparison to rechargeable collars that need to be plugged in after a few days.
It’s very important that the receiver collar is waterproof. You’ll never know where your small dog may go. It can be the puddle right after the rain or right into the sprinklers. A waterproof receiver collar can endure all of these while preventing dust and dirt from getting into the circuit.
Wireless dog fences come in different shapes, sizes, and installation requirements. You usually have an option to get either a portable or mountable base unit.
Portable wireless fences are convenient since you can take them on your trips. This lets you set up a virtual fence for your small dog wherever you go. However, it often has a shorter range than mountable transmitters.
Mountable transmitters, on the other hand, must be installed in an indoor setting. It can be your shed, garage, and any covered area. Just make sure that you place it at least 3 feet away from metal objects.
Lastly, look for extra items on the package. One of the most important things is marker flags. This lets you map out the perimeter you set and train your dog to recognize it. A test tool, contact point replacements, and mounting hardware also add value to your purchase.
How to train a small dog for a wireless fence
I always say this, and I’m going to state it again: a wireless or GPS wireless dog fence for small dogs will only work if paired with training. You simply can’t expect your dog to know how the system works.
To make sure that your small canine is all set to be left alone with the fence, here are some steps you need to take:
Step 1. Test the collar first
Before you start training your dog for the wireless fence, you have to ensure that the system works. You should install the transmitter, place the marker flags, and turn the collar on.
For this part, I wore the receiver collar on my wrist and started walking toward the boundary. The collar should beep once you’re a few feet away from the limits. And if you place your hand outside the fence, it should trigger the static correction. Other collars will have a vibration mode before the static charge.
Step 2. Familiarize your dog with the collar
If you have a nervous dog that’s not used to physical restraints, it’s important to get them used to wear the collar. Let your small dog sniff and lick the collar before putting it on. Once your pet is used to wearing the collar for more than an hour, you can proceed to the next steps.
Step 3. Start boundary awareness
Boundary awareness is the first phase of wireless fence training. You start by walking your leashed dog along the perimeter marked by the flags. Praise your dog and call its name as you walk along. Always keep this process happy and positive.
After that, turn the tone-only mode on the receiver collar. Walk your dog along the perimeter again. Take note that the tone mode will be triggered a few feet away from the marker flags. This will become your dog’s new safe zone.
If your dog happens to step outside the safe zone, the collar will beep. When this happens, observe how your dog will behave. If it runs back to safety, give it a treat right away. However, if your small doggo tries to defy it, lead it back and reward if the canine follows suit.
You need to focus on this training phase for days until your small dog has mastered the boundaries.
Step 4. Add distractions
At this point, you need to level up your dog’s recall of the boundary by adding distractions. You can start with your dog’s favorite toy. Place it on the other side of the fence, then start walking your dog along the boundary.
Your dog will surely try to retrieve the toy, and if it does, call its name to bring it back to safety. Again, reward the doggo when it follows the command.
Next, you can ask a person to stand outside the wireless fence. The same with the first drill, walk your dog and observe its reaction toward the person. If the dog tries to get into the person, call its name right away. When the dog comes back to the safe zone, shower it with praises and treats.
Overall, you can perform three sessions a day, but no longer than 10 minutes for each one.
Step 5. Introduce the static correction
The next step is to turn the static correction on. By this time, your dog should be responding to the tone-only mode positively. The static correction will just be a second layer of protection should your small dog tries to run away from the safe zone.
Always start with the lowest static charge and see how your dog will react to it. If your small dog can tolerate the lowest setting, you can crank it up one step up. Just remember that you should never push it to the highest setting as it can potentially hurt a small canine.
Step 6. Initiate unleashed supervision
Once your dog has mastered running back to safety when the warning sets off, you can start unleashed supervision. Let your dog roam freely and see if it will try to get past the barrier. I suggest keeping a close distance to your dog, so you can get it back if it tries to run.
Again, rewarding and praising your dog for coming back will help cement the previous training phases you’ve done.
Step 7. Continue pet monitoring
After two to three weeks, continue monitoring your dog. Over the days, there would be endless distractions that your dog may see on the other side of the fence. You’d want to make sure that your small doggo is fully trained.
Step 8. Start removing the marker flags
Lastly, you can start thinning the marker flags. You can take three flags a day until you’ve weeded it all out. This will let your dog adjust to the absence of the flags without sending a message that the fence is also removed.
If your dog tries to run off the barrier, you can brush up with training a little bit. Also, make sure that the static correction is on just to prevent your little doggo from escaping. Most of all, have some yummy treats handy to lure the sneaky Fido back to the safe zone.
Do wireless dog fences really work for small dogs?
Whether a wireless dog fence works or not depends on your dog’s personality. Some small dog breeds can be more tolerant than others. Also, you need to look for wireless dog fence collars for small dogs that fit them best.
Is a wireless fence harmful to small dogs?
Over time, you can increase the correction level one step at a time. However, just because your dog is tolerating the correction doesn’t mean it’s not getting hurt. Always check its neck for burns and similar injuries. Also, you need to be extra patient as small dogs can be more difficult to train compared to larger canines.
Is it safe to use an electric fence for small dogs?
Instead, you should use a wireless fence. It doesn’t require the installation of an actual fence since it uses radio signals to detect your dog’s movement.
Which is best for small dogs, wireless or underground wired fence?
It all depends on your needs and what you want to achieve with the dog fence. Nevertheless, both require proper training in order to work. read more here wireless fence or wired fence
The best wireless dog fence for small dogs will help keep your pet in the yard without the risk of injuries. But regardless of the doggo’s size, you have to do your part for the containment system to work. Also, always be meticulous in picking the wireless fence you’re going to buy. Prioritize quality, reliability, and safety at all times.
These options from PetSafe, My Pet Command, and GROOVYPETS are all guaranteed to deliver excellent results. Each one has a set of features that will help you contain your dog within your yard. It’s also available in a wide range of price tags to match your budget.