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How to Install an E-Fence

How to Install an E-Fence

Dogs love to explore. Pet owners, meanwhile, want nothing more than to keep them close and safe. Sometimes, those two things are at odds. This is why electronic dog fences, or e-fences, are game-changers. They let your pets roam your property freely. But, at the same time, it eases your worry because you know they are precisely where they’re supposed to be.

E-fences also have the advantage of being reasonably easy to set up compared to traditional fences. You can likely install one yourself with not much trouble, especially if you’re handy. If you need extra help, we have listed some easy-to-follow instructions for you below.


In-Ground E-Fence Installation Guide

Petsafe PIG00-13661 In-Ground Fence


What You’ll Need:

  • E-fence system, with all the inclusions
  • A square-tipped shovel or a spade for digging
  • Graphing paper (optional)


  1. Take out all the components from the box. It would help to read the manual included in the package. That usually comes with pretty straightforward instructions as well.

  2. (Optional) Using graphing paper, sketch out your property boundaries. This will help you determine where to put the wires and how much you need. 

  3. Lay the wires along the boundary of the area you want to cover. Do not bury it yet.

  4. Fix the transmitter unit to the wall. Any suitable interior location should work, for example, on the garage wall.

  5. Connect the boundary wires to the transmitter unit. Take care that the transmitter is not turned on when you do this.

  6. Plug the transmitter unit into a standard socket and turn it on.

  7. Turn the receiver collar on. Please note that some systems do not have the battery automatically inserted in the collar, so you’ll need to do that first.

  8. Test that the collar. Hold it over the wire and listen for the beep. The beep indicates that the signal is transmitting and the collar is working.

  9. Make a slit on the boundary you previously laid out using a shovel. You don’t need actually to dig. You can simply place the shovel’s tip along your marked perimeter and lean heavily on it to make a slit on the ground. The slit should be around 2 or 3 inches deep.

  10. Bury the wire in the slit. Test the collar again to make sure it’s still transmitting correctly. Then tamp the earth flat.

If your perimeter includes pavement, you’ll need a circular saw to similarly lay the wire in a “trench.”

Your kit should also include small flags that you can use to mark the perimeter. Most pet owners utilize the flags to train their dogs to recognize the boundary. These can be removed later on.

Now all you need to do is fit the e-collar on your dog and start training.


Wireless E-Fence Installation Guide

Petsafe PIF-300 Wireless Pet Containment System

Photo: Petsafe PIF-300 Wireless Pet Containment System


A wireless e-fence operates on GPS. Because it doesn’t have any wires to bury, setting it up should also be much easier. However, there are a few things to take note of before installation.

  1. The outlet you’ll use for the transmitter must be protected from the weather. 

  2. The wireless e-fence transmitter acts as the base point from where the signal is emitted in a circular direction. Because of this, it must be placed in the middle, or nearest the center, of the dog’s roaming area.

  3. The transmitter must be placed on the first floor of the house.

  4. The transmitter must be kept away from large metal areas to not interfere with the signal. That means you should not place it near the refrigerator, the fireplace, or similar sites.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s proceed with the installation.

What You’ll Need:

  • E-fence system, with all the inclusions
  • A mobile phone (optional)
  • Another person to help


  1. Decide where you want to put the transmitter. You can put it on a table or mount it if preferred. However, if you decide to do the latter, make sure that the unit at least 2 feet above the ground. Once done, plug it in and power it on.

  2. Check the controls on the unit. You’ll initially want it on high. If you’re using one of PetSafe’s Wireless systems or something similar, the transmitter unit must be switched to high, and the boundary control knob turned all the way up.

  3. Take out the e-collar that came with the package. Insert the battery as needed and turn the unit on.

  4. The next step is setting the perimeter boundary. This is the tricky part and may require two people. First, one of you must take the collar outside. Hold it at the level of your dog’s neck. Then, walk to where you want the perimeter boundary to be.

  5. Have another person slowly turn the boundary control dial down until the collar beeps. That sets your boundary.  It’s handy to have a mobile phone to communicate with each other (although shouting also works). Can you do this step alone? Yes, of course. Your product manual should also have instructions on how.

  6. Stick one of the included flags in the ground to mark the boundary you just set.

  7. Now walk back to the yard and back to the edge until the beep sounds once more. Stick another flag in. Ideally, you want to do this every 10 feet. Stop when you have created your “flag fence.”

That’s it! The only thing left to do is train your dog with the e-collar and to recognize the signal and what it means.

Regardless of what type of e-fence system you chose, please bear in mind that simply installing it won’t be a deterrent. You’ll also have to spend a bit of time training your dog to get them familiar with where they can and cannot go. It’s also not a license to leave your dog outside and unattended all day long.

With correct e-fence usage, proper training, and careful supervision, your dog should have the freedom they desire, and you will have the peace of mind you deserve.


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