Your dog’s safety in your yard is of the utmost importance. When it comes to fencing, you have many different options within two categories: traditional fences, like wood, PVC, or chain link; and electronic, or “invisible,” dog fences. How do you know if an invisible dog fence is an option you should explore? Asking yourself the following questions will help you decide if an invisible dog fence is the right choice for your dog and yard.
Can You Commit to Training?
-If Yes: Electronic dog fence training usually takes 15-30 minutes per day for up to two weeks. It’s extremely important for training to be done on a consistent basis in the exact manner described by the fence manufacturer. Training will teach your dog their boundaries and the consequences of disregarding them (warning beeps followed by an uncomfortable, mild static shock). If you will put forth the time and effort required for training your dog, then you can consider an invisible dog fence for your yard.
-If No: Inconsistent or incomplete training will mean your dog won’t fully understand the invisible dog fence. They’ll be unclear on their boundaries, and this will lead to them experiencing the uncomfortable, annoying static shock of their e-collar regularly. Dogs that are properly trained will not experience the static shock after their training period. If you’re unable or unwilling to guarantee your commitment to training your dog, then do not purchase an invisible dog fence.
Is Your Dog an Escape Artist?
-If Yes: Some dogs are so determined to get out of the yard that they’ll find a way no matter what – by either digging, jumping, climbing, or breaking through the fence. If your dog is an escape artist, an electronic dog fence might be the tool you need to keep them contained. An invisible dog fence will not allow your dog to get close to the property line; they’re prevented from crossing over or going under the electronic fence boundaries. For the most cunning escape artists, the combination of a traditional fence and invisible fence will be impenetrable.
-If No: If your dog doesn’t have the drive to get out of your yard, or if they’re unable to find a way past a traditional fence, then an electronic fence may not be necessary. Some dogs are perfectly content to stay on their side of the fence, and they will not challenge the obvious physical barrier. If your dog respects a traditional fence, then an underground dog fence is not needed, although it can still be used if it’s your preference.
Is Your Dog Aggressive?
-If Yes: If your dog is aggressive, it’s equally as important to keep other people and animals out of your yard as it is to keep your dog inside it. Your dog’s aggression can make them a danger or a liability, so it’s not wise to take any risks. The best method of protection is to use both a traditional fence and an invisible fence – but you should never use an invisible fence alone. Also, the e-collar with the strongest available correction level may be needed.
-If No: If your dog is friendly and has never exhibited any signs of aggression, then it’s generally safe to use only one method of containment. It’s up to you whether you use an invisible fence or traditional fence. If you use an invisible fence, however, be sure to have a clearly posted sign notifying people that the system is in use. Even nice dogs can turn mean when they’re startled or if their territory is suddenly encroached upon by unwitting visitors.
Do You Have a Nice View?
-If Yes: Sometimes the view from your property is too stunning to obscure with a solid, traditional fence. If you live on the waterfront, for example, or overlook the mountains, you may not want to mar the scenery with a fence. In this case, an invisible dog fence is the perfect solution for keeping your dog contained and preserving your coveted view of the landscape.
-If No: If you don’t have a view that you want to preserve, then an invisible dog fence isn’t necessary unless you prefer it. On the other hand, if the view from your property is unappealing in any way, you might actually prefer a traditional fence to obscure the unattractive landscape. Ornate or sleek and modern traditional fences can be used to enhance the look of your property.
Do You Have Multiple Acres?
-If Yes: Large yards are more expensive to enclose with traditional fences. In particular, if you have a farm or ranch, and you want your dog to have the run of it, an invisible fence system is a less expensive and more reliable option. Some electronic dog fences can enclose up to 100 acres of property, and the main system will notify you if there is a break in the wire. This is more secure than a traditional fence, which you’d have to regularly inspect its entirety.
-If No: A smaller yard is less expensive to enclose with a traditional fence, so it’s up to you to decide if you prefer a traditional or electronic fence. Yards that are smaller than a couple acres can be reliably secured by a wireless dog fence system, which is easiest of all to setup.
Do You Have a Small Budget?
-If Yes: As mentioned above, large yards are expensive to enclose with traditional fences. Electronic dog fences are less expensive because after you purchase the main system, you only need to buy enough wire to line the perimeter. Wire is less expensive than sections of fence. For a small yard, you may not even need extra wire, and in that case, your DIY electric dog fence system can cost less than $300 total.
-If No: If you aren’t restricted by a budget, then you can choose the type of fence you prefer. You may even decide to install both a traditional fence and an electronic dog fence, for maximum security with two layers of protection. You could also choose a wireless dog fence system, which is easier to install, but slightly more expensive than a wired system.
Published in partnership with www.dogfencediy.com. We encourage you to share your experiences with a variety of dog containment systems in the comments section. Commenters and those who share the post in social media qualify for a drawing of a $25 Amazon gift card!