Best Tie-Out Dog Stakes

Updated June 2021
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

30 Models Considered
12 Hours Researched
2 Experts Interviewed
60 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for Best tie-out dog stakes

There are any number of curiosities, distractions, and dangers in the outside world for our four-legged friends. While we might want our beloved dogs to embrace nature, not every dog will stay put on command. A tie-out dog stake lets your dog be outside safely, with set boundaries and limitations in place while still allowing it to explore and relax.

Durable tie-out dog stakes are designed to stick firmly in the ground so a dog can’t pull it out. They’re typically corkscrew-shaped and long in order to hold the dog securely. A long tether affixed to the top of the stake gives your dog room to roam.

Good-quality tie-out stakes let your dog safely enjoy time outside and give you peace of mind. They vary in size and strength, and they must be properly installed to be effective. 

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The first few times you tether your dog, help it get familiar with its limitations. Over time, it should get comfortable with the setup.

Key considerations

Uses

Tie-out dog stakes are ideal for anyone who has an outdoor space but no fence or enclosure for their dog. One is also helpful if you want to keep your dog out of a particular part of your yard, such as a garden or sandbox. You can also use a dog stake if you take your pet camping or on vacation. A dog tie-out stake is also useful if you can’t safely or frequently walk your dog.

Construction

There are three important factors that work in conjunction to create an effective tie-out dog stake: length, shape, and material.

Length: Tie-out dog stakes range from 14 to 28 inches long. The deeper the stake goes into the ground, the more likely it is to stay securely in place. When a dog pulls on the stake, it’s yanking it horizontally, and it’s much harder to pull a long stake out of the ground from such an angle.

Shape: How the stake is shaped also influences how easy it is to pull out. Stakes that go straight into the ground aren’t as secure as corkscrew-shaped stakes, which require twisting and turning to plant into the ground as well as remove.

Material: If the stake isn’t made of quality material, it can break, rust, or wear out over time. Most tie-out dog stakes are made of metal. Thick, heavy-duty stakes are stronger and more durable.

Your dog

Behavior: All dogs are different, and each one has its own specific insecurities, tendencies, and attitudes. Some dogs are comfortable being leashed or tethered because it makes them feel secure. Others feel restricted and even threatened when tied up. An active dog that runs and lunges to the limits of the tether could get hurt. Some dogs can get tangled in the tether, too. It’s important to assess your dog’s behavior and consider how it will react when on a stake.

Weight: Most stakes indicate the maximum weight they can handle. Some are designed to withstand the strength of large dogs, while others are designed for smaller pups. But take that limit as an estimate. A larger dog can exert more force on the stake, especially with a long tether. What’s more, moving the stake even slightly loosens it and makes it less secure.

Your yard

You also want to assess your outdoor space to decide if it’s suitable for a tie-out stake. You don’t want the tether to get caught around trees, bushes, or objects in your yard because your dog could get trapped or even strangled. The soil needs to be dense as well. A stake in loose soil will not hold your dog securely.

Caution1
Caution
A determined dog might be able to pull out a tie-out stake. Properly train your dog, and help it be as comfortable as possible when it’s tied outdoors.
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Features

Components

Swivel ring: The ideal tie-out dog stake has a swivel ring for attaching the tether. The swivel ring moves 360° with your dog and keeps it from getting tangled in the tether. Without one, your dog could run in circles and wrap the tether around the stake.

Tether: Some dog stakes come with a rope, cable, or leash. This is convenient because you don’t have to buy one separately, and you can be assured that the two items work together.

Rust resistance

Some metal stakes have a rust-resistant coating, which is critical if the stake is going to be outside in all kinds of weather year-round.

Color

Some tie-out stakes are brightly colored to make them easier to see, which is helpful for people walking in the yard. Some stakes have a reflective coating to increase visibility at night, too.

Don’t leave your dog outdoors in extreme cold or heat. Make sure it has shade from the sun and shelter from bad weather.

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Accessories

Outdoor dog bed: Pet Craft Supply Super Snoozer Indoor/Outdoor Dog Bed
Your dog will appreciate the comfort of a bed to lie on outside. This padded one from Pet Craft Supply is fade resistant, water resistant, chew resistant, and machine washable.

Dog chain: Four Paws Super Tie-Out Cable
If your tie-out stake doesn’t come with a tether, you’ll need to buy one separately. We suggest this durable, rustproof 20-foot cable from Four Paws. It’s designed for big dogs that weigh over 50 pounds.

Dog house: Petmate Igloo Dog House
Offer your pet some shelter and security with a dog house. This large igloo from Petmate is comfortable, antimicrobial, and durable, and it includes vents for air circulation.

Dog bowl: AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Dog Bowl
Provide your dog with fresh, clean food and water indoors and out. This stainless steel bowl from AmazonBasics is tip-proof, rustproof, and inexpensive.

Tie-out dog stake prices

Inexpensive: You can find tie-out dog stakes that cost less than $15 that are suitable for small dogs.

Mid-range: Most tie-out dog stakes cost between $15 and $25. You’ll find a variety of lengths and designs at this price.

Expensive: The most durable tie-out dog stakes cost $25 and more. These are designed for large, active dogs.

Caution2
Caution
A tie-out dog stake is good for one dog, but don’t set up two close together for two dogs. The possibility of tangles and aggression increases substantially.
Staff
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Tips

  • Measure the area where you want to tether your dog. The stake is the center of the circle in which your dog can roam. Measure the area first to see what your dog does and does not have access to and if there are obstructions like trees or poles in the radius of that circle.
  • Check the stake regularly. Over time, the stake will slowly loosen in the soil. Periodically check that it’s secure, especially after a rainstorm.
  • Make sure your dog has access to water. Your dog should always have clean, fresh water within reach, inside or out. Keep your pet’s water bowl filled when it’s outdoors.
  • Don’t use the tie-out stake as a pet sitter. Don’t leave your dog unattended or unsupervised outside for long periods. Weather, animals, loud noises, or entanglement hazards can frighten or endanger your pet.
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A tie-out dog stake is a useful tool for training your dog outdoors, particularly when helping your pet focus, come, and heel. It can also help a nervous dog get used to walking on a leash in unfamiliar surroundings.

FAQ

Q. How do I securely plant the stake in the ground?

A. Most tie-out stakes are easy to plant in the ground by hand, particularly spiral stakes. If you have a straight stake, you can use a mallet to push it in. Avoid jostling or wiggling the stake when you’re inserting it. The more space around the stake, the more it can move and loosen.

Q. How safe are tie-out dog stakes?

A. Dog stakes are designed to provide a convenient and safe way for your dog to enjoy the outdoors, but they don’t take the place of training or supervision. Dogs can get hurt on a long cable if they’re running quickly and get jerked back. Dogs can get caught around trees or bushes as well. Make sure the area is clear of obstructions and give your dog time to get comfortable with being tethered.

Q. How should I attach the tether to my dog?

A. While a collar is a common place to attach a tether, it could choke your dog if the tether gets tangled. Collars can also be easy for some dogs to get out of. It’s recommended that if you use a collar, opt for a martingale collar that gets tighter when your dog pulls and looser when it stops pulling. A harness is a better choice for tethering as well as walking. A leash or tether hooks to a harness between the dog’s shoulders or on the back, which is safer and more comfortable than around the neck if the dog pulls.

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