Choosing the Best Invisible or Electric Fence for Small Dogs

You might think that an electric fence for small dogs are just another way for the manufacturing companies to rake in profits, but you couldn’t be more wrong. What you should know is that the reason for the existence of the special electric fence for small dogs is that they have special needs that cannot always be addressed by the average invisible or electric dog fence.


Why Use An Invisible or Electric Fence For Small Dogs?

It is often assumed that small dogs are easy to control and contain because they are so small. They are easy to hold, easy to pull back, and easy to keep in more confined spaces. The fact is that small dogs are more aggressive when threatened, and more timid when frightened, because they are not allowed to explore their surroundings.

One thing that damages a small dog’s eagerness to explore his environment: the administration of static correction too high for his size, weight, and temperament. A light, sensitive dog can be traumatized enough he refuses to leave the house. For the best health and safety of your dog, an electric dog fence custom-designed for small dogs is best for you.

This section compares the best wireless fence for small dogs and the best in-ground fence for small dogs: the Havahart Radial Wireless System for Small Dogs, and the PetSafe® Elite Little Dog In-ground Fence.

What Is the Key Feature of These Electric Dog Fences For Small Dogs?

Their levels of static correction are customized for small dogs. Because small dogs are more sensitive, it is difficult to find the right setting for them on a standard receiver collar. They might run right through Level 1 but hide in the house with Level 2.

How Do These Models Compare?

If you travel often, need more flexibility in your fence area and location, and need a more affordable option that can be quickly set up, choose the Havahart Radial Wireless System for Small Dogs. But if you are remaining close to home, need to keep certain parts of your yard from your dog, and have small toy breeds, the Elite LIttle Dog In-ground Fence is the one for you.

Best Invisible or Electric Fence for Small Dogs for 2018

FeaturesDISCONTINUED - Havahart Radial Wireless System for Small DogsPetSafe® Elite Little Dog In-ground Fence
Product Imagewireless-dog-fenceIn-Ground-invisible-dog-fence
Quality ReviewQuality Review for Havahart Radial Wireless System for Small DogsQuality Review for PetSafe® Elite Little Dog In-ground Fence
Quality RankingQDF 4 StarsQDF 4 Stars
Dog Weight Range8 pounds and up5 pounds and up
Dog Neck Size12-17 inches6-16 inches
RangeMaximum 400 feet from the transmitter in all directions, 800 feet in diameter; area up to 11 acres500-5000 feet, area ⅓ to 25 acres
PriceCheck Current Amazon PricingCheck Current Amazon Pricing
Buy Now! 

Weights and Neck Sizes

The Havahart Radial Wireless System for Small Dogs works best with dogs over 8 pounds in weight. The neck sizes of the dogs also need to be between 12 and 17 inches. On the other hand, the Elite Little Dog In-ground Fence works fine with dogs over 5 pounds in weight (i.e. Yorkshire terrier or bichon frise), and with neck sizes from 6 to 16 inches.


Set-up Preparation and Time of an Electric Fence for Small Dogs

For the Havahart wireless dog fence, plan a space in the house for the transmitter, 3 feet away from any metal object and 2-4 feet high. Next, check the environment for trees, tall shrubs, or bumpy surroundings. The transmitter, however, is just plug-and-play: you can begin training in 1-2 hours.

For the Elite dog fence, if you are planning to place the wire underground, you need to map out the pipes and other obstacles you might run into. If you want to staple it above ground instead, then you first need to plot the path. However, it shouldn’t take more than 3 hours to set up if the preparation is thorough.

Space and Area

The Havahart wireless system has a minimum range of 40 feet, which would give your dog around 1/10 an acre to play in. It also has a maximum range of 400 feet, or 11 acres of play space. On the other hand, the Elite in-ground fence begins with 500 feet of boundary wire, or ⅓ acre of space. It can be extended to 5000 feet of boundary wire, or 25 acres of play space.


Consider that the wireless system’s boundaries can be instantly shifted according to your needs by resetting them on the transmitter. This makes transferring your pet to different points on the property much easier.


The Havahart Radial System is fully portable, as long as you have somewhere to plug it in. Simply bring along the transmitter, set the boundaries, and the fence is in place for your puppy to play in. The Elite in-ground fence is not as easy to pick up and lug around, and the wires might become damaged.

Boundary Blur

The Havahart wireless system has the best boundary blur of any wireless fence. The blur is within 1.0 to 1.5 feet only, so it is very stable. The Elite fence is better still at 0.5 and less. Small dogs are trained better and faster with the security that comes with a stable boundary.

Wireless-Dog-Fence-BoundaryWireless Dog Fence Boundary

Correction Features

The Havahart Radial wireless system has 5 static correction levels, all adjusted for small dogs. The Elite fence has 4 levels, also adjusted. Both administer a maximum of 30 seconds static correction when the dog crosses the boundary. Both also include a tone-only mode for training.

The Elite in-ground fence has certain other bonus correction features. First, its static correction levels are progressive, meaning they increase in intensity the farther the dog gets from the boundary. Second, it administers static correction if the dog stays 2 seconds in the warning zone (past the warning beep), so the battery won’t drain.

Batteries and Power Outlets

The Havahart wireless system runs on rechargeable batteries that last from 1-3 days, and need 2-3 hours charging. The Elite in-ground fence uses replaceable batteries that need to be bought from PetSafe®, and last around 2-4 months.

You definitely do not want your small dog to dash out of his boundary because of battery failure. However, which battery kind you need depends on your lifestyle (i.e. will you be able to recharge the batteries regularly, is it easier to trust a single battery at a time).

Making The Choice: In-Ground or Wireless Fence for Small Dogs

When it comes right down to it, the question is not whether to choose the best wireless fence for small dogs or the best in-ground electric fence for small dogs, but what kind of fence will give your small dog the best possible option for safety, health, and happiness. Whatever you choose, pick the most ideal for your dog and your shared lifestyle.


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