SportDOG vs Petsafe Dog Fence: Comparison, & Which Is Better?

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When is comes to pet containment systems, some brands are more popular and higher quality than others.

Two of the more popular brands are SportDOG and PetSafe, so it made sense to do a SportDOG vs PetSafe Dog Fence Comparison guide.

In this guide we outlines the main dog fence models from each brand, so you can get a clear idea of which one might be best for your dog and property.

Let’s check them out!

 

(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)

 

SportDOG vs Petsafe Dog Fence: Comparison, & Which Is Better?

The type of dog fence that is best for your really depends on what features you want from the fence like correction/training options available, whether you want an in ground or wireless fence, and how much area you need the fence to cover.

 

We prefer in ground fences overall when considering performance, features, effectiveness and reliability

Some of the more popular models from SportDOG and PetSafe are:

The SDF-100C also has a rechargeable battery and a few extra features over the SDF-100A:

 

But, if you want to take a look at some of the PetSafe models directly as well, you can do so here:

In ground

Wireless

 

Even though we prefer in ground fences because they tend to be more effective and reliable, some people want a wireless dog fence. These are some of the top rated wireless dog fences on the market right now:

 

Below we’ve summarised the key features of each brand and model of fence addressing the above criteria and more:

 

SportDOG Dog Fences

SportDOG In Ground Fence System SDF-100A

  • An In-ground/Invisible dog fence system with 1,000 feet of wire, 100 flags, 1 Transmitter, and 1 Collar Receiver
  • It’s designed to keep your dog contained in a yard up to 1 1/3 acres
  • The collar receiver offers 4 different levels of static stimulation to match any dogs’ temperament from softer to harder or more stubborn temperament dogs
  • System also offers a tone and a vibration option
  • You can add an unlimited number of dogs with the purchase of additional Add-A-Dog® Collar Receivers (SDF-R)
  • Fence Transmitter is powerful enough to cover up to 100 acres of land with the purchase of additional Wire & Flag Kits (SDF-WF)
  • System has a Wire-break Transmitter alarm that alerts you to possible problems with the Boundary Wire
  • There’s an Anti-Linger Feature that prevents dog from running down Collar Receiver battery in warning zone
  • For dogs over 10lbs
  • There’s now a 14 gauge (thickest wire) wire model available

SportDOG In Ground Fence System SDF-100A Review

 

SportDOG Contain and Train System: In Ground Fence + Remote Trainer System

  • A 2 in 1 In Ground Pet Fence System, and remote dog trainer
  • Gives you all the current containment capabilities of the In-Ground Fence™ (SDF-100A) – you can read the SDF-100A Review here
  • You also get the remote training capabilities of the SportDOG FieldTrainer® 425 (SD-425) – you can read a review of the FieldTrainer 425 here.
  • Designed for both training your dog to stay within boundaries on your property with the fence system, or to train them in the open field with the remote trainer
  • The Collar Receiver for the Contain + Train works by receiving radio signal from both the Fence Transmitter and the Remote Transmitter.

SportDOG Contain and Train System: In Ground Fence + Remote Trainer System Review

 

PetSafe Dog Fences

PetSafe on the other hand sell a wide range of both in ground/invisible AND wireless dog fences.

In Ground Dog Fences:

PetSafe Basic In Ground Dog Fence System

  • A basic and cheaper type in ground electric dog fence system for keeping your pet contained in your yard
  • The standard system comes with enough wire to cover 1/3 of an acre, but it is expandable up to 5 acres with the purchase of additional wires and flags (sold separately)
  • The collar is designed for dogs over 8 lb. with neck sizes from 6 to 26 inches
  • The collar features 4 levels of static correction plus a tone-only mode for training

PetSafe Basic In Ground Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe Stubborn Dog In Ground Dog Fence System

  • An in ground dog fence system designed specifically for persistent, hard to train dogs who might not respond to lower levels of static stimulation
  • This system has 4 higher levels of static intensity than the other PetSafe in ground systems
  • System also comes with a vibration only training mode
  • System also has a tone only training mode
  • The collar receiver is for dogs 8 pounds and up fits neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • System covers up to 1/3 acre with included boundary wire
  • System is expandable up to 25 acres with additional wire (not included)

PetSafe Stubborn Dog In Ground Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe In-Ground Fence (PIG00-13661)

  • Comes with an updated black transmitter compared to the older bigger white transmitter on some other PetSafe models
  • The collar receiver for this systems is the Ultralight Collar Receiver, and is waterproof
  • The system fits dogs 8 pounds and up and the collar fits neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • There’s a static training mode with 4 different levels of varying intensity static
  • There’s a special feature called Run Through Prevention where the correction/static stimulation intensity increases if your dog tries to run through the boundary zone
  • There’s also a tone only mode
  • The system covers up to 1/3 acre with included boundary wire, although it’s expandable up to 25 acres with additional boundary wire
  • You can add more dogs to the system with additional collars

PetSafe In-Ground Fence Review (PIG00-13661)

 

PetSafe YardMax Rechargeable In Ground Dog Fence System

  • One of the most advanced PetSafe In Ground Fences that covers 1/3 of an acre with the standard equipment you get in the fence kit
  • Has two modes you can choose from – Traditional mode, and YardMax mode
  • Traditional mode allows you a small warning zone on the inside of the fence where your dog receives a beep warning, and once your dog crosses the fence line, they receive a stimulation, but nothing after that
  • YardMax mode gets rid of the internal warning zone, and provides an infinite correction zone on the other side of the fence line. Your dog will receive corrections until he/she returns inside the boundary fence line, unless the safety feature activates
  • YardMax mode gives your pet/s up to 30% more play space inside the boundary fence line
  • The YardMax system is also compatible with the Pawz Away Indoor, Outdoor, Mini & Threshold pet barriers – barriers which can be used within the range of the YardMax transmitter to protect small areas such as flower beds, hazard zones etc.
  • Overall the YardMax system can cover up to a maximum of 10 acres with the purchase of additional boundary line wire
  • The static training option has 5 adjustable levels of static correction
  • There’s an automatic shut off safety feature – where correction stops after 15 seconds of continuous stimulation
  • There’s also a tone only training option
  • The YardMax collar receivers are for dogs 5 pounds and up, and fits neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • The YardMax collar receivers have the ReadyTest® and PerfectFit™ startups tests that ensure the receiver collar is ready and working when you want to use it
  • You can add an unlimited number of dogs to the YardMax system with the YardMax collar receivers
  • The collar receiver has a rechargeable battery (built-in; non-replaceable)

PetSafe YardMax Rechargeable In Ground Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe Rechargeable In Ground Fence System

  • In ground electric dog fence system, with a rechargeable collar
  • Each charge can last up to 2 months depending on usage
  • For dogs 5 pounds and up, and for neck sizes 6-26 inches
  • The standard kit covers up to 1/3 of an acre
  • You can cover up to 25 acres with additional wire
  • The collar has 4 levels of static stimulation for the static training option. Your dog will hear a beep in the warning zone, and if they continue to the correction zone they will get a static stimulation
  • There’s also a Run Through Prevention feature where the correction increases if your dog tries to run through the boundary zone
  • There’s also a tone only training option, if you want to train with sound only
  • You can buy add on collars to add more dogs to the system
  • This system has an automatic safety shut-off feature whereby the correction stops after 15 seconds if your dog doesn’t go back to the warning zone or the boundary zone

PetSafe Rechargeable In Ground Fence System Review

 

PetSafe Little Dog In Ground Fence System

  • In ground electric dog fence system specifically for small dogs
  • The collar receiver is small and lightweight – it’s for dogs 5 pounds and up with neck sizes 6-16 inches
  • The collar receiver has 4 adjustable levels of static correction when using static as a training mode
  • There’s also a tone only training mode if you want to use beeps to train your dog
  • The system as standard covers 1/3 acre with included boundary wire
  • If you want to expand the system with additional boundary wire, you can do so up to 25 acres
  • You can add any number of dogs to the system when you purchase additional collars
  • The system has Run Through Prevention where the correction increases if your dog tries to run through the boundary zone

PetSafe Little Dog In Ground Fence System Review

 

Wireless Dog Fences

PetSafe Free To Roam Wireless Dog Fence System

  • Wireless pet containment system
  • Wireless means a quick setup, and there’s no trenches to dig or backfill for fence wires
  • Wireless also means the system is portable if you want to take it away camping for example, or take it when you move houses
  • The system covers a circular area up to 1/2 an acre, or 180 feet in diameter
  • You can increase the range of the system with additional transmitters
  • You can add dogs to the system with additional Free To Roam collar receivers
  • The collar receivers have 5 levels of static for static training mode
  • There’s also a tone only training mode
  • The collar uses replaceable RFA-67D-11 Batteries, and the batteries last about 1-2 months
  • The collar receiver is for dogs 5 pounds and up, and fits neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • Transmitter Power Loss Alarm- built in power loss alarm sounds an intermittent tone alarm if power is removed from the transmitter. If power is removed from the transmitter, your pet is no longer contained.
  • The system works with the original Wireless Pet Containment System (PIF-300) and Receiver Collar (PIF-275)

PetSafe Free To Roam Wireless Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe Stay and Play Wireless Dog Fence System

  • Wireless pet containment system
  • Portable – you can plug and unplug the transmitter as your need to and move the system around. This means you can use it for RV camping and vacation homes for example
  • Wireless means no wires and no digging wire trenches – installation is easier and quicker than an in ground pet fence – approx. 1-2 hours
  • Both the transmitter and collar on this system are  smaller and more compact than the other PetSafe systems. The transmitter is 67% smaller than other transmitters
  • The standard kit will allow you to cover a circular area of 3/4 of an acre (210 feet in diameter), and a minimum of 44 feet in diameter or 22 feet in radius
  • You can expand the area with additional transmitters
  • The collar is for dogs 5 pounds and up, and fits neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • There’s 5 adjustable levels of static correction on the collar
  • There’s also a tone-only mode on the collar that alerts your pet with a beep
  • The collar also features an automatic safety shut-off feature where correction stops after 15 seconds of stimulation
  • Collar is rechargeable – uses a built in battery that is not replaceable. Lasts approx. 3 weeks per charge
  • Collars should last roughly 3-5 years all up
  • You can expand the system and add more dogs with additional collar receivers
  • System also works with the original Wireless Pet Containment System (PIF-300) and Receiver Collar (PIF-275)

PetSafe Stay and Play Wireless Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe PIF-300 Wireless Dog Fence System

  • Wireless pet containment system for dogs 8 lbs and over, and with neck sizes 6-28 inches
  • Installation usually only takes 1-2 hours
  • The system is portable – you plug in and unplug the signal transmitter as required
  • It covers an adjustable circular area up to 1/2 acre (180 feet in diameter) – this is how far the signal reaches to the collar receiver. Also has a minimum of 10 feet in diameter or 5 feet in radius
  • Has either a static stimulation training option, or a tone only training option
  • Static mode has 5 different levels of varying intensity of static to choose from
  • Tone only mode uses a beep to train your dog
  • Has a built in safety feature – safety shut-off stops correction after 30 seconds
  • The collar uses a PetSafe RFA-67 battery (included)
  • You can expand the signal range with additional transmitters
  • You can add more dogs to the system with add on collars
  • System works with Stay+Play Wireless Fence® and Stay + Play Wireless Fence receiver collar

PetSafe PIF-300 Wireless Dog Fence System Review

 

PetSafe Free To Roam vs Free To Roam

We wrote a comparison guide of these two dog fence systems here:

PetSafe Free To Roam vs Free To Roam Dog Fence Comparison Guide

 

Electric Dog Fence FAQ Questions For Buyers and Owners

You can read an FAQ Guide here about commonly asked questions by potential buyers and owners of electric dog fences. We outline things such as:

  • Types of electric dog fences
  • All factors to consider in choosing an electric dog fence
  • Most important factors to consider in choosing an electric dog fence
  • How much an electric dog fence costs
  • How to install and set up an electric dog fence
  • How an electric dog fence works
  • How to train a dog to use an electric dog fence, and how long it takes
  • Type of wire used for an electric dog fence
  • How much wire is required for an electric dog fence
  • Which electric dog fence wire is best
  • How to bury the wire for an electric dog fence system
  • How deep to bury the wire
  • Are dog fences safe, and are they effective

 

Some Safety Considerations For Using An Electric Dog Fence

Safety is extremely important with an dog fence.

Always always get your vet’s advice or the advice of an animal health and/or training expert – nothing is a substitute for professional advice.

Some general safety guidelines for using a dog fence humanely might be:

  • Buy from a reputable company who put proper use of the dog fence and the safety of the dog as a priority 
  • Read and follow the operating guide, instruction/safety manual and training guide that comes with the dog fence system from the manufacturer for operation and safety instructions and guidelines
  • Pay attention to any warnings issued by the manufacturer
  • Monitor your dog’s response both mentally and physically to using a dog fence. Take the collar off immediately and discontinue use of the system if you notice any negative implications or reactions

A good dog fence that uses static stimulation should simply stimulate the muscle (to the point of reflex) to get the dog’s attention, but should not cause pain (it might be slightly annoying for the dog to act as a small deterrent – but shouldn’t cause pain or harm). It certainly shouldn’t cause a ‘sharp pain’ to the muscle or body. 

To get a safe stimulation level – you can always start from the lowest stimulation level, and work your way up to a level that gets the dog’s attention (such as changing body language when a stimulation, vibration or tone is administered) without any visible sign of pain or harm (such as yelping, or showing signs of stress).

A good dog fence company should give you all the necessary safety, use and training instructions, and should have a dedicated customer service line to help when you being using the fence system.

The static function does not need to be used either – tone and vibrate training modes can be used instead.

Some owners like to use their dog fence system as a temporary training tool i.e. once their dog/s have learnt the boundaries and are properly training to stay in the yard, they turn the fence off or remove it.

If the dog starts going outside the boundaries again, they use the fence again to re-train their dog.

As a safety precaution for humans as well – make sure to get a qualified company to do an underground utility search and get these utilities marked before doing any digging.

Read more about the safety of electric dog fences in this guide.

 

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