How to Install an Underground Electric Fence for Your Garden

Installing an underground electric fence around your garden can be a great way to keep rabbits, deer, and other animals from damaging your plants without unsightly above ground fencing. With proper planning and preparation, installing an underground fence can be a straightforward do-it-yourself project. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to install an underground electric fence for your garden.

Choosing an Underground Fence System

The first step is selecting the right underground fence system for your needs. There are a few main considerations when choosing a system:

I went with the Extreme Dog Fence Maxsys Elite system since it could enclose up to 5 acres and came with lightning protection and an extra collar. This provided flexibility for my 1 acre garden and for walking my dogs on the rest of my property.

Planning the Layout

Once you've selected your underground fence system, the next step is planning where you will place the wire. Consider the following when designing your layout:

I sketched out a rounded rectangular layout keeping the wire 5 feet from my garden beds and leaving a 10 foot opening for my gate. Measuring the layout showed I would need 500 feet of wire, well within my system's capacity.

Gathering Supplies

Before installation, make sure you have all the required supplies on hand:

Make sure you have all these supplies ready to go before starting the installation.

Installing the Wire

With your layout planned and supplies gathered, you're ready to start installing the fence wire:

Step 1: Stake Down the Wire

Step 2. Dig the Trench

Step 3. Place the Wire in the Trench

Step 4. Splice and Reconnect the Loop

Step 5. Check Continuity

Step 6. Bury the Wire

Installing the Transmitter

After the boundary wire is successfully installed underground, the next step is setting up the system transmitter:

Proper transmitter setup and testing ensures your dogs will receive a clear signal when they reach the underground boundary.

Training Your Dog on the Underground Fence

The final key step is training your dog to understand and respect the fence boundary:

Take 1-2 weeks to thoroughly train your pet. Their comfort and obedience around the underground fence will ensure effective protection for your garden.

Troubleshooting an Underground Fence

Despite best installation efforts, issues can arise with underground fence systems. Here are some common troubleshooting tips:

With regular maintenance and testing, an underground fence system should provide years of reliable service in keeping garden destroyers out of your planting beds!


Installing your own underground electric fence can be a very fulfilling DIY project that pays dividends in the form of a completely protected garden. By planning carefully, gathering the right supplies, trenching and burying the wire properly, setting up the transmitter, and training your dogs, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing your flowers and vegetables are safe from critters. Remember to regularly maintain and test your underground fence to keep it functioning optimally year after year. Your garden will thrive and your pets will have full run of the yard thanks to the freedom an underground electric fence provides.