Outdoor dog fences are a great way to give your dog some outdoor off-leash time while still keeping them safely contained.
They’re also a great way to allow a dog who doesn’t get along with strange dogs or people some time to safely roam.
That said, the wrong dog fence can you to leave with a number of issues including:
- A difficult structure to put up and maintain
- A fence that doesn’t actually contain your dog, allowing it to escape
- A fence that can injure your dog, or may not be sufficient in terms of space and will cause the dog to feel trapped and isolated
To help you choose the right outdoor dog fence for your dog and for your outdoor space, our vet advisor Dr. Jennifer Coates reviewed all of the major outdoor dog fences on the market.
Dr. Coates’s top pick is the FXW Outdoor Dog Playpen because it includes great features at an excellent price. This fence is very customizable, is corrosion resistant, and comes with stakes so it can be easily secured to the ground.
While this is Dr. Coates’ top pick, in this article she also outlines her top tips for evaluating and choosing an outdoor fence, what dog owners may want to avoid outdoor fence, and offers her top choices for a number of specific use cases.
The 5 Best Outdoor Dog Fences
- Best Overall – FXW Outdoor Dog Playpen
- Best Budget – Amazon Basics Foldable Metal Exercise Pet Play Pen for Dogs
- Best for Large Dogs – Giantex 48-inch Dog Fence with Door
- Best with a Gate – Yaheetech Dog Playpen
- Best Fence Panels – Zippity Outdoor Products No Dig Baskenridge
Outdoor Dog Fences Compared
Here are the top picks from our veterinarian. Compare the ratings and features of different models.
|Editor’s Picks||Brand||Rating||Expandable||Rust resistant||Height|
|Best Overall||FXW Outdoor Dog Playpen||24, 32, 40, or 50 inches|
|Best Budget Buy||Amazon Basics Foldable Metal Exercise Pet Play Pen for Dogs||42 inches|
|Best Outdoor Dog Fence for Large Dogs||Giantex 48 inch Dog Fence with Door||40 or 48 inches|
|Best Outdoor Dog Fence with Gate||Yaheetech Dog Playpen||24, 32, or 40 inches|
|Best Outdoor Dog Fence Panels||Zippity Outdoor Products No Dig Baskenridge||36 inches|
*Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5 and based on reviews, feedback, and opinions of actual customers
In This Article
Who Should Buy an Outdoor Dog Fence
- Dog owners who want a convenient way to give their dog off-leash time – Bringing your dog outside off-leash is generally not a good idea without a fence, but if you don’t have a dog park nearby, you may not have a great option to give your dog outdoor time off-leash. An outdoor dog fence gives you the convenience of a dog park in your own yard.
- Owners of dogs that are wary of strangers – Even if you live close to a dog park, your dog may not be a great candidate for one. Some dogs are uncomfortable around dogs or people they don’t know, making a dog park less than ideal. Some dogs are even great in one on one situations, but get nervous in a crowded dog park. Whatever the guess, an outdoor dog fence is a great way to give your pup off-leash time without worrying about
- Dogs that ignore electric fences – Have you tried an electric dog fence only for your dog to completely ignore whatever warnings it gets from the collar? In that case, you’ll need a physical barrier to keep your dog in your yard.
Who Should Not Buy an Outdoor Dog Fence
- People who want to leave their dogs outside for long periods – Even if your dog loves to be outside, leaving them unattended outdoors for hours isn’t a good idea. Dogs need interaction with humans in their lives and being outdoors without supervision can also be very dangerous.
- Owners of dogs that aren’t very active – Not all dogs like to run and play a lot. If that’s your dog, you may not need an outdoor dog fence to give them the exercise that they want and need.
Buying Guide: Research Tips from a Veterinarian
- Consider permanence – Outdoor dog fences are a quick and relatively inexpensive way of keeping dogs safe when they are outside. They can be used permanently or semi-permanently around your home (ideal for renters) or temporarily when traveling.
- Security is important – Make sure the fence is tall enough to prevent your dog from jumping over. Outdoor dog fences need to be sturdy and securely affixed to the ground so that dogs can’t simply push them over or breakthrough. Doors make getting dogs in and out easier. Doors with 2 latches may be more secure than those with only one.
- Size matters – Larger enclosures will allow dogs to get some exercise and to relieve themselves in one part of the “yard” and rest or play in another. Remember that many fences can be expanded by adding additional panels, so if a fence seems too small, check to see if you can make it larger.
How Much Do They Cost?
Outdoor dog fences can come in a wide variety of prices and most fall between about $60 and $500. Where exactly an outdoor dog fence falls in that range depends on a few different factors. Size is one of the biggest. For a taller, longer fence, you should expect to spend more money. Materials are the other main factor in determining price. A lot of outdoor dog fences are made from metal-coated wire, which is perfectly well-suited for most dogs but may be insufficient for large dogs or dogs that can be rough on their belongings. In those cases, heavy-duty steel fences are a better option.
Our Methodology: Why Trust Pet News Daily
As a veterinarian, I frequently talk with pet owners and other vets about fencing options for dogs. The products I chose here are based on that experience as well as the various features of each product. When it comes to outdoor dog fences, be sure to select one that’s safe for your dog, will keep them securely inside, and provides them with as much room as they need. – Dr. Jennifer Coates
The Best Outdoor Dog Fence Reviews
1. Best Overall – FXW Outdoor Dog Playpen
First up, we have our best overall option, the FXW Outdoor Dog Playpen. This portable playpen is extremely customizable and can be purchased in sets of 2, 4, 8, 16, 24, or 32 interlocking panels so you can get exactly what you need, or upgrade as necessary for your dog.
FXW has also kept an eye on safety and has designed the panels with round knobs at the connection points to prevent injury to you or your pup. Lastly, there are floor protectors available for indoor use to avoid damaging hardwood or carpet, and there are easy-push stakes for outdoor usage.
- Extremely customizable
- Automatic gravity-latch door
- Powder-coated for rust and corrosion resistance
- Only one single latch
- Panels of varying heights can’t always be combined
2. Best Budget – Amazon Basics Foldable Metal Exercise Pet Play Pen for Dogs
If you’re looking for something that will keep your dog contained without breaking the bank, we recommend the Amazon Basics Foldable Metal Exercise Pet Play Pen for Dogs. This pen is easy to set up, comes with 8 panels in a choice of five different heights, and requires no tools to put together.
This pen can also be combined or doubled up so you can expand it if you find your dog needs a little more space, or if you have more than one dog. This makes it a fairly flexible option, even though it only comes in sets of 8 panels.
- Can be ordered with or without the door
- Double-locking door
- Available in 24-inch, 30-inch, 36-inch, 42-inch, and 48-inch heights
- Wire finish is not very durable
- A little easier to bend than others, so you need to be careful while transporting
3. Best for Large Dogs – Giantex 48-inch Dog Fence with Door
If you have a particularly large, heavy, or strong dog, we recommend the Giantex 48-inch Dog Fence with Door. This kit comes in sections of 8 panels with one door, or you can get a double set with 16 panels and two doors. This gives even the largest of dogs plenty of room, and you can choose from a 40-inch or 48-inch height.
The panels are all heavy-duty iron and though they weigh a good bit, they are very durable and strong. The kit is completely foldable still, so transport isn’t too much of a bother. The doors also feature double latches for added security.
- Extremely rugged and durable
- Easy to set up and secure
- A strong latch system keeps even the biggest dogs inside
- A little bit on the heavy side
- Only available in two heights
4. Best with a Gate – Yaheetech Dog Playpen
If you’re looking for an outdoor fence for a gate that can really stand up to the elements, then the Yaheetech Dog Playpen is a great option. It comes with a gate and is coated to prevent rust and corrosion even if you leave it set up outside full-time.
It’s also available in 2, 4, 8, 16, 24, or 32-panel kits, each with a gate. You also have 24, 32, and 42-inch height options. The panels on this one are also extra-wide as it’s designed for outdoor use, making this a great one if you have a particularly rambunctious pup that likes to run around a lot outdoors.
- Gate included with every 8 panels
- Extra-wide panels provide more room inside the pen
- Very durable and rust-resistant finish
- Might be too big for many outdoor spaces
- Wider panels are more difficult to store and transport
5. Best Fence Panels – Zippity Outdoor Products No Dig Baskenridge
If you are looking for a more decorative option, the Zippity Outdoor Products No Dig Baskenridge is a great option. You order them in sets of two panels, in 42-inch and 36-inch heights, and order the gates separately as needed. This allows you to only get what you want for the setup, and ignore everything you don’t.
This is a great permanent or semi-permanent option and is made almost entirely of recycled PVC, so it is very environmentally friendly as well.
- Great for semi-permanent installation
- Looks better than a lot of other non-permanent options
- 10-year warranty
- Gate hardware is a weak point
- Plastic isn’t as durable as metal
Frequently Asked Questions
Additional Sources & Resources
Looking for more information about dog fences? We have a library of in-depth information about various aspects of dog fences. Including tips and ideas for keeping your dog from jumping and building your own dog fence:
- 90+ creative and inexpensive dog fence ideas
- DIY dog fence ideas to build your own dog fence
- How to keep a dog from jumping a fence (or climbing a fence)
- How to keep a dog from digging under a fence
- How tall should a dog fence be?
As well as in-depth reviews of each category of dog fence (with recommendations generated by licensed veterinarians):
- The best dog fences (overall)
- The best in-ground dog fences
- The best portable dog fences
- The best GPS dog fences
- The best invisible dog fences
- The best wireless dog fences
- The Best Outdoor Dog Fences
And in-depth product reviews of some of the leading dog fence brands: