Dog Fence Flags – Using Flags to Train Your Dog (GUIDE)

If you’re looking into pet fencing options, you may come across some that come with dog fence flags.

If you don’t know much about different dog fences or dog training, then you might not know what dog fence flags are used for, or if they’re even needed. 

Dog fence flags are a visual representation used for training purposes when introducing a new type of containment area and are used to establish boundaries.

In this post, we are going to explain how to use dog flags properly, what they are, and how to benefit from them.

What Are Dog Fence Flags?

What Are Dog Fence Flags
Dog fence flags create a visual boundary to let your dog know where the invisible fence is placed.

If you have never worked with a dog fence that needed flags then you will probably have no idea what a dog fence flag is.

Dog fence flags are an essential part of an invisible fence setup and they typically come with all of the dog fence kits.

Types of fences that typically use dog fence flags:

Dog fence flags are small ground flags that are used to help train your pet on where the boundaries are set up for an invisible fence.

Since the dog cannot see an invisible fence, these flags help them to visualize their boundary.

How to Use Dog Fence Flags

How To Use Dog Fence Flags
Dog fence flags should be placed exactly where the invisible fence is and spaced an equal distance apart.

If you have recently bought an invisible fence kit then you might have noticed some small flags that have come with it.

These flags are used to help train your pet on the new fencing system.

Let’s look at some steps to take when setting up your dog fence flags: 

  • Determine your boundary line using your invisible fence 
  • Put flags in the same area that your boundary line is, making a clear distinction of where the dog’s boundaries are 
  • Place them an equal distance apart and then you can start training with your dog 

These steps can help with setting up your dog fence flags, just be sure to be as accurate as possible to your boundary line when setting up the flags.

How to Train Your Dog Using Dog Fence Flags

How To Train Your Dog Using Dog Fence Flags
Depending on your dog’s personality, training can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Be sure to train in short, manageable sessions.

Setting up the flags should be your step number one.

The flags should be an equal distance apart and spread around the boundary line to indicate visually to the dog where their containment area ends. 

Once you have completely set up your flags then it’s time to train your pet.

Starting small and introducing the boundary first is key.

Here are a few steps to take and tips to keep in mind when training your pet using dog fence flags:

  • Start your training with the dog fence powered off and simply walk your dog around the boundary line.
  • Introduce your dog to the boundary line and flags. 
    • This is the biggest part of the training, work on establishing through positive training to come back to you when they reach the flags.
    • The goal is to associate the flag with coming back home to you (and not leaving!)
  • Turn on the fence and walk the dog slowly to the boundary line, allowing the beep or vibration correction to happen in order to shy your dog away from the boundary line.
    • Start with the sound first and see how the dog learns to associate that. Only progress to the increased correction levels if absolutely needed.
  • Try associating the boundary line with flags until your dog shows signs that they are able to revert away themselves. 
  • Once the dog can recognize where the boundary line is, and knows to turn away from it, then the fence flags can be removed

These steps can help when it comes to training your pet.

The key is to have patience and allow the dog to explore. Naturally, the dog will learn the boundary area.

For now, though, the flags give a visual reminder and boundary for them until they get an idea of where their limits are.

How Many Flags Do I Need for My Invisible Fence?

Typically, most invisible fence kits come with about 50 flags, but more can be purchased separately. 

Here are a few factors that will affect how many flags you may need:

  • How close together do you want them (typically we suggest doing them 6 to 10 feet apart)? The goal is for your pet to see and recognize the boundary easily.
  • How large the boundary is (on average 100 flags can cover about 1,000 feet if spaced 10ft apart or ~165 flags at 6ft apart)
  • Any extra areas that need to be blocked off such as pools, gardens, etc.

Putting as many flags down as your dog needs to start off is completely okay.

These flags will do their job of being a visual representation of their boundary and as time goes on, the flags can be removed. 

Typically within about 2 weeks of solid and consistent association training, a dog will understand their boundaries and the flags can begin to be removed.

You can remove them all at once, or you can do it gradually by removing them little by little and spacing them out more as the training evolves. 

Regardless, starting with the ones available in your invisible fence kit can give you an idea of how many you may need for your space.

Which Color Flag is Best for Training?

Which Color Flag Is Best For Training
Which Color Flag Is Best For Training?

Dog fence flags can come in many different colors and depending on which invisible fence you purchased, the ones in there may not be the best color to go with.

The colors that dog fence flags typically come in are:

  • Red
  • White
  • Yellow 
  • Blue
  • Black

Ideally, we recommend that you use dog fence flags that are blue or yellow as these colors are best distinguished by dogs.

Plus, they are bright enough colors for pet owners to distinguish where they are easily as well.

When Should I Use Dog Fence Flags?

Whenever you purchase and set up any type of invisible fence then you should use dog fence flags.

These flags are essential and all invisible fence kits should come with them in order to train your dog on the new containment center. 

No matter what type of invisible fence you have, whether it’s an underground fence or a wireless fence, using training flags will be beneficial to both the pet owner and the dog. 

Here are a few reasons that you should use dog fence flags:

  • Training purposes
  • Establishing a boundary line 
  • When using any type of invisible fence

What Are the Benefits of Using Dog Fence Flags?

There are a lot of different benefits to using dog fence flags.

We consider these training flags to be essential when it comes to having an invisible fence, as they’re a huge part of the training process. 

But it’s important to use dog fence flags for a lot of reasons.

If you’re still unsure of whether or not dog fence flags should be used, then here are a few benefits you should consider:

  • It helps to establish a boundary with your pet
  • Flags are used to be a visual boundary line for the pet owner and the dog 
  • The same set of training flags can be used to train multiple dogs 
  • Training flags can be removed, usually after about 2 weeks 
  • They can also be used to block off smaller areas such as a pond if needed

Here’s a quick video explaining how dog fence training flags can help your training process:

What Happens if I Don’t Use Dog Fence Flags With Invisible Fence?

Dog fence training flags are necessary when setting up your invisible fence.

If you decide not to use them and try to continue with the containment without them, you’ll probably face some issues

Here are some common problems that you might encounter if you don’t use dog fence flags:

  • Your dog doesn’t know where the boundary line is and will be confused
  • Excessive static correction due to not having a clear boundary 
  • Longer training period
  • A frustrated and stressed pet and owner
  • Can create fence fear in delicate dogs

Using the dog fence flags will make the training process and invisible fence experience better for both the dog and the pet owner.

We highly recommend using training and dog fence flags to avoid any unnecessary stress for your dog. Training should be a positive experience – not a punishing one.

These flags are meant to help establish a boundary and train your pet to know where the new invisible fence is.

When Can You Remove Dog Fence Training Flags?

These dog fence flags can be left up as long as you need them to.

For reference, most pet owners remove them once their dog minds the boundary by itself without needing a correction of any sort. 

Removing the dog fence flags is something that can be done at your own pace by determining what’s best for the dog.

Here are some signs that might indicate that it’s time to remove the training flags:

  • Your dog recognizes the boundary line without needing a correction
  • The dog reverts away from the boundary line by themselves 
  • Your dog does not receive a static correction often 

Some pet owners like to take the flags away all at once, but others like to do it gradually.

If you think your pet will have a hard time if you remove them all at once, then you can start by removing some at a time to make them more sparse. 

This gives the dog confidence and opens up the yard to them while giving them time to adjust to the truly invisible boundary line now.

You can always put the flags back if you find that your dog needs more training.

The Bottom Line

Overall, dog fence flags are an essential part of owning an invisible fence.

The benefits that come along with using these training flags are great.

Knowing this information about how to use them can make the dog training session even more successful, lending to a happy pet and owner!

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Jesse Hopping, CCDT

Jesse is a natural-born dog-lover certified dog trainer (CCDT), dog foster, and former volunteer at Richmond SPCA and surrounding dog shelters for over 10 years. Her pack includes a Bernedoodle and 3 Boston Terriers. She’s sipping caramel coffee and watching her pack play in the sun when she’s not writing blogs. Jesse has her Certified Dog Trainer designation from CATCH Canine Trainers Academy since 2018 and and majored in English from the University of Virginia.

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