How Long Do You Need to Leave Invisible Fence FLAGS Up?

Invisible fence system kits include small flags to mark off your pet’s safe zone.

These flags are visual training aids to help your dog learn where the boundary is and where the safe zone is.

Dogs must be trained to understand and stay inside of an invisible fence. This training includes hands-on training and visual cues provided by small flags.

How long do you need to leave invisible pet fence flags up? Do the flags have to stay up forever to keep the dog inside the invisible fence?

Read on to find the answers and more in this guide to training flags!

How Long Do You Need to Leave Invisible Fence Flags Up?

Man training a dog with invisible fence flags
Flags serve as visual cues to help the dog understand and remember where the boundary is during training.

You should leave your Invisible Fence flags up until your dog is fully trained to remember and stay within the boundary without the aid of visual cues.

Most dogs are trained within 2 to 3 weeks, after which time the flags are gradually removed.

Some dogs need visual cues for up to 6 months, though this is usually not the case.

If you are interested in learning helpful information and tips about invisible fence training for dogs, continue reading below.

How Do You Use Flags for Invisible Fence Training?

After you have introduced your dog to the fence and started their training, you should leave all of the fence flags on the ground for a minimum of 2 weeks

If you need assistance with flag placement during setup, here is a detailed article that explains the best way to install fence flags.

After you have gone the two weeks, you can remove a few flags from random spots in the fence boundary, leaving larger gaps.

Repeat this process weekly until all of the flags have been removed.

If your dog has trouble remembering a part of the boundary, replace the flags and do more intense training in that area until the dog will reliably stay in the yard.

Don’t remove all the flags until your dog is confidently staying inside the safe area.

Then always supervise your dog in the yard until you’re positive the dog will stay inside the invisible fence.

Read More: How Do I Train My Dog to Use a Dog Fence? Get training advice in this thought-out guide!

Can You Use an Invisible Fence With a Puppy?

Puppy playing outdoors with a toy
Don’t use any type of invisible fencing with puppies that are less than 12 weeks old. Readiness should always be judged by size plus breed and mental acuity.

Your puppy should also be deemed healthy by a licensed veterinarian before use and needs to be carefully introduced to the product of your choice.

We recommend allowing your puppy time to familiarize itself with the sight, scent, and feel of the collar transmitter before introducing the corrections.

You will want to verify the appropriate correction level for your puppy’s size before introduction. It’s important to learn exactly how to train a puppy.

Carefully read this full guide on invisible fence dog training age to use an electric fence before you begin!

How Do I Start Training With an Invisible Fence?

We recommend creating a daily training schedule with short 10 to 15-minute training sessions spread throughout the day.

Keeping the sessions short and recurrent allows your dog to retain the important information learned without growing bored or frustrated. 

Before you scroll… be sure to check out our related article, How Do I Teach My Dog to Stay in the Yard? for more helpful tricks!

Your dog should have fun during training and needs to be rewarded lavishly when they perform the desired behavior.

For the first few sessions, your dog needs to be connected to a leash that you control. This leash should be attached to a harness or regular nylon collar.

Never attach a leash to the receiver collar. The prongs can cause serious damage to your dog’s skin and trachea if you use them to pull backward.

Use a separate collar for training, then remove it later.

You will begin with simply walking your dog near the boundary flags, and correcting them when they attempt to cross the boundary of their safe zone. 

When your dog seems to understand the basics, you can abandon the leash and walk near your dog, rewarding them when they exhibit the desired behavior and allowing the collar to correct unwanted behavior. 

Training sessions should still be kept short, and your dog should not wear the correction collar for longer than 12 hours at a time to avoid any skin irritation issues or collar malfunctions. 

Here’s a great video that shows you exactly how to train your dog to an invisible fence.

Do All Invisible Fences Include Training Flags?

Yes, all invisible fence kits that we have purchased come with a set of flags included. Most companies include 50 flags, but some may include more or less.

Still, double-check the listing to make sure that flags are included.

You can’t train your dog to stay inside the fence without confusion if you don’t have the flags to serve as visual boundary cues.

If you’re installing your fence on a larger piece of property (over about 1/2 ac) you’ll probably want to buy additional training flags or get bundles of landscaping flags from your local hardware store.

Things to Consider When Shopping for Invisible Fences

positive reinforcement training a dog
Positive reinforcement is the best method to train a dog to stay inside an invisible fence. Dogs respond best to praise and rewards for good behavior.

Before you decide to purchase a specific electric fencing kit there are a few things you should take into consideration.

  • What is your property’s landscape like? If you live in a hilly area you’ll need to get an in-ground wired system because wireless systems don’t provide continuous coverage on hilly terrain.
  • How many dogs need to be synced to the system? If you have a large number of dogs that need to be synced to the fencing system, this could affect the price significantly as you will need to purchase receiver collars separately for each dog. 
  • How much property do you need to cover? Wireless fences cover about 1/2 acre max. If you need to cover more you’ll need to buy extenders. An in-ground fence will cover up to 5 acres with the same transmitter plus extra wire.
  • Does your dog have aggression issues? Invisible pet containment systems are training aids for developing boundaries with your dog, but they do not keep other animals out of your yard and are not effective for training with aggressive or reactive dogs. 

Interested in learning more about Invisible Fence products and their uses?

The company has a great informative website with helpful information, installation tips, product recommendations, and more. 

Final Thoughts

The boundary flags are a necessary part of your fence installation and training plan. If you don’t have enough flags, we recommend buying more.

The flags are the visual cues that your dog needs to remember where the boundary is until it becomes second nature.

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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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