Are Aluminum Fences Safe for Your Puppy?

If you have a dog, you’ll have to think about more than just looks when it comes to your yard and the fence around your home. That’s because without a great fence, your pup won’t have an area to play and run in. Unless you have the time to take them for a walk around the neighborhood every day, you’ll need a strong fence to keep your puppy safe while they’re relaxing or playing in the yard. 

But what works as a great people fence isn’t quite what works for keeping a small dog or puppy safe and inside the property line. Instead of a generic wood fence that needs to be maintained and looked after lest your pup exposes a weakness where they can escape, an aluminum puppy fence is just what you need for that rambunctious little pup. It’s strong enough to keep your dog in the front or back yard even when you’re not around, and the best part is that it requires essentially no maintenance to keep that fence performing its best year after year.

Why an Aluminum Dog Fence?

Compared to other fencing materials, aluminum is the ideal dog-owner’s fence. It’s durable, doesn’t stain or wear, and is much stronger against high winds and other extreme weather. It won’t rust or rot like iron or wood, and it doesn’t chip or bend, meaning that your dog won’t be able to climb under it or chew their way through it no matter how hard they try. At the end of the day, an aluminum puppy fence just ticks all the boxes.

Especially if you live in a busy neighborhood with lots of traffic, an aluminum dog fence is one of the best fences to secure your property from the public while providing a place to play for your pup. An aluminum fence is much stronger than other types of fencing, and commercial options are available that are even more robust and able to withstand just about anything you or the world can throw at it.

An aluminum fence is also perfect for larger breeds that may present a jumping risk with a smaller fence. Aluminum fences are available in varying heights from 36″ all the way up to 72″ for a six-foot barrier between your canine and the rest of the world. Since even the largest breeds are unable to jump a six-foot fence, it’s virtually impossible for any dog to scale it.

For smaller breeds and puppies, however, the concern is more one of sliding through those fence pickets. An aluminum puppy fence panel makes short work of that by doubling up on the pickets in the bottom third or throughout the entire height of the panel so that your small dog can’t ever squeeze their way through. Sometimes called dog panels or puppy pickets, these narrow pickets will prevent your puppy from even thinking about trying to get through the fence, and there’s also the added benefit of keeping other small animals and rodents out, too.

Aluminum Dog Fence vs. Iron

As the inspiration for most aluminum fences today, wrought iron has long been used as a fencing material dating back to the 12th century where blacksmiths created intricate fencing for castles, palaces and churches all over medieval Europe. Hand-crafted wrought iron was a staple of fencing for centuries and even followed colonialists from Europe to the Americas, finding its way into fencing around the White House in the late 1800s. 

Today, wrought iron holds a clear influence over modern aluminum fencing, down to the black paint, finials and ornamentation that commonly adorn aluminum fences. But whereas old wrought iron was difficult to maintain — they require periodic painting and other protective measures to keep moisture and rust at bay — today’s aluminum analogues need nothing of the sort. Rain, precipitation and dew won’t affect aluminum because it literally can’t rust. Even if surface rust appears, it can be easily scrubbed away with a steel brush or other measures, making aluminum far superior to wrought iron fences that need tons of attention and work to look and function their best.

Iron fencing is also much heavier than aluminum fencing, and that makes for a much more complicated installation process, especially for DIY jobs. While one can reasonably install an aluminum puppy fence without much fuss and the help of a friend, an iron fence is twice as heavy as aluminum, making installation and working with it more difficult.

Compared to iron, an aluminum puppy fence is basically maintenance free, easier to install and transport, and won’t rust or get damaged in use or installation. Years down the line your aluminum dog fence will essentially look the same while a wrought iron fence would demand constant attention and maintenance to prevent rust and other degradation under normal wear and tear.

The Different Aluminum Fence Styles

One of the great things about aluminum fencing is the sheer number of styles that are available. There’s aluminum puppy fencing with the doubled-up and narrow pickets to prevent unwanted entry and exit, typically denoted by the XP. There’s also the Sierra XP, Appalachian XP and the Carolina XP, as well as various puppy panels such as the Sierra Puppy Panel, Carolina Puppy Panel, standard Appalachian Puppy Panel and puppy press Appalachian Puppy Panel.

Other types of aluminum fencing panel designs includes the Floridian, Sierra, Outback, Carolina, Appalachian, Manhattan, Castle, Commercial, Elegant Arch and Cathedral. Most designs are based around a few standard styles, with the main differences being the number of horizontal rails and vertical pickets, in addition to ornamentation such as finial spikes, arches and other decorative elements.

Most dog owners would do best to order a specific puppy/XP style to prevent their small breed or puppy from escaping through the pickets, though those with larger breeds can go for another fencing style if they’d like. An aluminum puppy fence can be as short as 36″ and as tall as 72″, so it’s easy to match the perfect height with your exact need. 

Aluminum Fence Post Types

In addition to the fencing styles at your disposal, there are also different fence post types and other customization options to perfectly fit that new fence to your property. There are line posts, which are used between fencing panels when the fence is running on a straight line; end posts, which form the end of a fencing line; corner posts, which are used to turn the fence 90 degrees; gate end posts, which are perfect for handling the weight of heavy gates; and blank posts, which enable standalone gates that don’t hook into existing fencing.

Minimum Height for an Aluminum Puppy Fence

Since aluminum fencing is made in heights from three feet to six feet high, it’s easy to get the exact fence for your needs without being stuck with a fence that’s too big or imposing for your tastes. For the most part, the aluminum fence you’ll need for small dogs and puppies is different from the one you’ll need for a large breed or a pup that likes to jump, so the final height requirement is more about your specific canine than anything else.

As a rule of thumb, we recommend taking the height of your dog at the front shoulder when standing, doubling it and then adding another foot. Since most dogs can jump up to twice their height — and sometimes a bit more — you’ll want an aluminum dog fence that’s more than double the height of your dog to prevent any issues.

That said, if you have a dog that can easily clear a three or four foot fence, even if it’s more than double their height, you’ll probably want to shoot a little higher with your fencing. Going with a six-foot fence would preclude just about any breed or pup with an outsized jumping ability from being able to clear the fence. 

Other things to keep in mind is if there are any steps, rocks or other furniture that sits near the fence — your dog could always jump off of something higher than the ground, and that can make the surrounding landscaping and furniture an issue if any of it is close enough to your fencing.

Installing an Aluminum Puppy Fence

The great thing is that an aluminum puppy fence installs easily — just like other aluminum fence designs. Check your county or city codes before building, and also get a schematic of things buried in your yard such as sprinklers, piping and electrical wiring so that you don’t inadvertently do some damage when installing your new puppy fence.

Most aluminum fencing systems come with comprehensive installation instructions, so take some time to read them completely before starting. You may need some extra tools or help from a friend to get the job done, and the more you prep up front, the easier installation will be when the big day comes.

After marking the locations of the fence posts and using a chalk line to keep your fence straight, it’s time to install your first end post. Post spacing can be a challenge if you’re not paying attention, but as long as you measure and space everything out properly you should have no problems assembling and installing your aluminum puppy fence. Work your way slowly around, and you’ll be done before you know it.

For more on all your aluminum fencing options, look to the experts at Aluminum Fences Direct. From puppy fencing to more aluminum fencing options than you can shake a stick at, we’ve got it all here at Aluminum Fences Direct.