One of the worst feelings for every cat owner is being unable to let the beloved pet run free and safely, explore nature in a yard as one would wish for. As a great solution to this situation, I want to share my insights about the best invisible fences for cats.
How do invisible fences for cats work?
Basically, invisible fences for cats work in the same way as an invisible dog fence. There are wireless and wired electric fences. Which performs in a combination of two devices – transmitters and collar receivers.
If you choose a wireless fence, then the transmitter is a portable device that can be placed indoors or outdoors. And by sending radio signals it outlines the invisible safe zone for your pet. When your cat crosses a boundary, the transmitter emits a signal to the receiver and your pet receives the alert. The motion sensors are triggered and depending on the system you have, your cat can be warned by vibration, sound alert or electric correction.
In order to set the boundaries with an in-ground/wired fence, you will have to dig up your yard and install the wires. It works in the same way as wireless. But the transmitter now is connected to the wiring. Which sends radio signals throughout the underground wire.
Are invisible fences for cats effective?
Cats are territorial animals and they tend to wander not only your house but also around the neighborhood. Every cat’s owner knows, that they act how they want usually leaving their owners unable to control their behavior. Yet, cats, as well as dogs, can be trained to get used to the new containment system and you should be prepared to pay some time for it.
Besides this, you should also consider your cat’s temperament and health conditions before choosing a fence. Cats are extremely sensitive, and electric stimulation sometimes can cause too much stress. Even it’s only a mild sensation, it can be painful and even harmful for your pet if he has any problems with the heart. So before buying an invisible fence, you should make sure you can choose the level of correction strength or have a possibility to switch it off.
Benefits of invisible fence for cats
When it comes to fences, I suppose the main reason for getting one is to contain your pet safely in your area. Besides, invisible fences are much cheaper than traditional fences. They are flexible and portable (wireless electric fences). They are a good choice when you have certain neighborhood regulations for building up the fence. What doesn’t need much effort and knowledge to set up.
Besides these main advantages, with invisible fences for cats, you can set the invisible barriers and boundaries for specific areas such as flower beds, bird feeders, or even use it for indoors. A smaller version I used in my own house helped me to keep my cat from peeing and scratching my new furniture in a living room. You can also set the boundaries for them to enter certain rooms or keep other pets away (if they don’t go along).
Things to consider when choosing the best invisible fence for a cat
To choose the best invisible fence for your cat you need to pay attention to a couple of things:
- Correction level. most of the pet owners don’t approve of electric correction or chooses it only for training purposes. To make sure you are able to pick this option, always check for a collar to have different levels of correction. Mode to turn the electric alert off or different kinds of warnings such as sound or vibration.
- Collar. One of the most important things to choose the collar that is designed for your cat. Manufacturers most of the time provide information about the size of the recommended size of the cat that can use a collar or offers adjustable collar length. What is more, you should never let your cat wear the collar the whole day.
- Fenced area. Whether you choose the wireless or wired fence for a cat, make sure it covers the exact size area you want to. To add more space, you can buy extra wires or transmitters.
- Installation. Digging a yard and burying wires might take some time. If you want an easy and quick installation, you should pick a wireless fence.
- Transmitter. Be aware that the wire transmits through walls and sometimes the boundaries you set outside might affect your cat’s movement inside.
Best Invisible Fences For Cats
PetSafe is one of the most know brands for pet supplies and I love them for durability and reliability. Talking about this fence specifically, one of the best things here is that it’s designed for cats. You can choose between sound warnings only. Also electric shock and customize the strength of the signal. I always put my cat’s safety first, so this is a huge advantage for me. The fence covers up to ⅓ acre only, but it can be expanded with extra wire up to 25 acres.
- Durable collar battery life – lasts up to 2-3 months. If it’s not being used daily around the clock (not recommended to leave the collar on cat’s neck for more than 12 hours).
- A Low battery indicator installed in a collar receiver reminds you when battery replacement is required.
- The fence comes with adjustable waterproof receiver collar fits cats with neck sizes from 6 to 11 1/2 inch.
- Training flags included with purchase.
- You can adjust the level of the signal intensity and choose the warning type (sound or electric).
- You can expand the boundaries with extra wires (have to buy separately).
- The installation is easy but time-consuming (might take a day).
- Effective for cats over 6 lb and the collar might be too bulky for little ones.
- The collar isn’t heavy but prolongs on the neck seems uncomfortable for a cat to wear.
- On and off options on the collar are very difficult to read and recognize when you choose one of them.
- A little bit pricey.
One more great PetSafe wired fence option – designed for dogs but can be used for cats too. This wired fence covers up to ⅓ acre around your yard and is great for bigger pets that weigh 8 pounds and more. The good thing about this product is that the manufacturer provides a one-year warranty if you feel it doesn’t work for you. This fence provides ⅓ acre wire boundary with the possibility to expand it to 5 acres using additional wires.
- You can add an unlimited number of pets to the system (works for cats and dogs).
- It features a few types of warning signals and has different intensity levels.
- The collar is lightweight, waterproof, and adjusts to fit neck sizes between 6-26 inches.
- It includes electric surge protection.
- The receiver collar has a low battery indicator and a long battery life (up to 2 months).
- It comes with training flags and instructions.
- It’s an affordable option for basic needs.
- Plastic pieces on the collar don’t serve well and might break easily if you have an active pet.
- There might be some problems with the sensor as it’s not accurate enough to react to a pet’s movement.
- Collars are not built to last long enough – you might have to replace them once in a while.
Another PetSafe product and another invisible fence that fits both cats and dogs. The main difference here that it’s wireless. It’s designed for smaller pets and is easy to set up, take it when traveling or changing fenced area boundaries. It fits pets that weigh 5 pounds and more and covers up to ¾ acres.
- Multiple pets can be added to the system with different collars (you can choose to purchase different collars matching your pet’s personality including stubborn ones).
- It comes with a chargeable collar and the charger included in the kit.
- The receiver collar is waterproof and has an adjustable neck size (from 6-28 inches).
- You can adjust the collar as it has short and long contact points for short or long-haired pets.
- There is a battery indicator on the collar to notify when the battery is low.
- There are adjustable 5 levels of static correction on the collar and sound the only mode for training purposes.
- The manufacturer provides a one-year warranty.
- Compatible collars and accessories with different features can be bought separately.
- It only works for small properties and flat landscape (hills and slopes interfere with the signal).
- It features inconsistent signals and conflicts with boundaries.
- The price is not low-budget friendly.
- The transmitter always has to be near the outlet of power.
- The collar battery only serves up to 3 weeks.
This PetSafe in-ground fence is also suitable for cats and dogs, but it stands out of the crowd by having rechargeable batteries for collar and protection from lightning and other weather changes. It covers up to ⅓ acres and you can expand it up to 25 with additional wires that are sold separately. Also, it’s a good pick for cats as it’s designed to fit pets 5 pounds or more.
- You can choose and adjust 4 different levels of static correction plus sound-only mode for training purposes.
- Rechargeable, waterproof and adjustable receiver collar – charges in 2-3 hours, lasts up to 2 months and fits pet’s neck sizes from 6 to 26 inches.
- You are able to add more pets to the system with additional collars.
- It features an additional surge protector that helps to protect the transmitter from heavy weather conditions and power surges.
- You get the manufacturer’s warranty (valid when purchased from an authorized retailer)
- It’s quite an easy installation – basic DIY skills needed.
- The price is lower than any similar product.
- Weak contact points on the collar and the signal are not consistent.
- Even though there is a surge protector, the signal might be affected during cold seasons as the strength changes.
- The nylon collar is not durable – eventually, it starts pulling apart.
- The fence boundaries can affect pets while they are inside.
- The installation can take a couple of days.
This Petsafe wireless fence is perfect for those, who have a smaller property as you can create a secure 1/2 acre circular boundary around your yard for your cat to roam around. However, even though it’s designed to fit both dogs and cats, I would only recommend it for bigger cat breeds such as Siberian or Main Coon.
- It’s simple to handle – you can set up the whole fencing system in 1-2 hours.
- It comes with a one-year warranty (valid when purchased from an authorized retailer).
- Short and long contact points for short or long-haired pets.
- The transmitter is lightweight and easy to carry around.
- It is suitable for unlimited pets numbers (you will have to buy additional collars).
- Waterproof and adjustable collar size (from 6 to 28 inches).
- The collar battery lasts up to 2 months and there is an indicator alert to notify you to replace the battery.
- It features 5 different levels of static correction with an automatic safety shut-off option.
- It’s designed to fit in only weatherproof locations- the transmitter has to be located indoors
- It’s designed to for pets who weigh 8 pounds and up
- Even though it’s wireless and portable, the transmitter requires a dedicated place in your house as it’s not very compact.
- The cost is pretty high.
- It works with flat yards only.
It’s unfair to have a cat in a private house and not let it outside. Yet, cats are so curious and fearless that it’s almost impossible to keep them in a safely contained zone. You can build the highest and the strongest fences around your yard – it won’t keep them away from climbing up if they are eager to run away. This is when invisible fences for cats come in handy. They are a perfect choice if you give a little bit of time and patience for both you and your cat to adjust to the new system.
If I would have to buy a fence right now for my own house (unfortunately I don’t have one yet), I would go ahead and choose PetSafe Stay & Play Dog and Cat Wireless Fence. It’s a good pick for those, who are exploring their options and reliable enough to see be able to see the result. The best thing- it’s wireless meaning it’s compatible and portable. I also like the idea of simple installation. I think their collar is the best one to fit the cat’s neck size and it wouldn’t be too heavy or big for a small house cat.