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Black cat laying on sofa wearing cat fence collar

Cat Fence – how a cat fence saved my cat!

Cat Fence Saved my Cats Life!

I wanted to take a moment to tell you all about how a Cat Fence saved our cat’s (Figaro’s) life. You may have heard them called containment fences or even electric cat fences.

Without our Cat Fence I really fear that Figaro would not be with us anymore and I would not be able to tell you all his tail.

Figaro came to us when he was 6 years old we rescued him from a local cat shelter. The whole family fell in love the second we met him. He was so handsome; his glossy black fur and bright shiny eyes. I couldn’t believe my whiskers when the lady at the cat shelter told us Figaro had been tricky to re home due to the colour of his fur. Would you believe that black cats aren’t as popular because they don’t look as good in ‘selfies’? At this point in time we all felt that our garden was safe and had not even considered a containment fence or cat fencing.

Figaro settled into his new home nicely. We kept him inside for a week or so but he was so inquisitive about the outside world. I couldn’t keep him indoors any longer. Figaro had missed his freedom being in the cat shelter and I couldn’t wait to let him explore the garden.

black cat wearing cat fence collar sat on tool box

Figaro helping with the DIY!

At first he stayed within the garden and loved lazing in the bushes and hunting mice. Over the next few weeks Figaro began to explore further afield. At first it was the neighbour’s garden, then a visit to the tabby cat down the road. His adventures grew longer and longer but he always bought himself home in time for dinner. We never knew quite how far he went but he always returned.

That dreaded moment when the cat did not come home!

Then it came that awful night he didn’t come home for his dinner. It was getting late and he still wasn’t home. I went into the garden and called him…nothing. I tried to tempt him with his favourite – Tuna! But still nothing. I decided to leave his cat flap open and went to bed, he would be home in the morning, I was sure.

Morning came and he wasn’t home. I searched everywhere for him. As the days went on I started to fear the worst. We lived a reasonable distance from a few busy roads and knew two families that had lost their fur babies in road traffic accidents. Trying to remain positive I decided to visit as many neighbouring houses as I could to ask if they had seen him.

There had been no sightings. One of my neighbours (who had previously lost several cats to the road) told me about this amazing device called a

A small lightweight collar that the cat wears and a wire installed around the garden. The cat is trained to know how the collar works and receives a warning beep followed by a small static impulse to stop them from straying outside of the garden. She let me feel the collar as I had visions of my cat leaping out it’s skin for it’s life. I have to admit that I was skeptical as to how it would work because when I felt the sensation it was very small and not at all how I imagined.

My neighbour told me it’s the only way she’s been able to have a cat again after the devastating losses of her other cats. It enables her cat to explore its natural environment but keeps them safe at the same time and gives you piece of mind – How amazing!

I walked home furious with myself that I hadn’t discovered Cat Fence before. If I had just known about it, Figaro would still be at home safe in his garden. I brushed a tear away as I reached my front door. How could I have let this happen? I was probably never going to see my beautiful boy again.

Several days went passed and I resigned myself that he was gone. It was the not knowing that hurt the most, had been injured, killed or had he just found a new family. I hope it was the latter.

The day I decided to research Containment Fences.

One wonderful day after turning the key in front door and letting myself in I heard his little meow.  He came straight over brushing against my leg and purring. Actually he looked fine, a little thinner and obviously relieved to be home. We had had a lucky escape and I vowed not to let it happen again. I went straight around to my neighbour and got the details for the cat fence Company. Within an hour I had booked for our new Cat Fence to be installed.

The installer was excellent and explained all about the cat fence to me. He did some indoor training with myself and Figaro which allows Figaro to learn about the “no go zone” before using it in the garden. After 20 minutes Figaro knew what the beep meant and he was no longer entering the “no go Zone”. We had to keep indoors for a few days to ensure that he really knew how the cat fence worked.

The gentleman explained that cats are very intelligent and pick things up quickly and that I would need to use Flags in my garden for the first few weeks to mark out the “no go zone” but could take them out once he fully understood.

cat fence training for containment fence is carried out inside using indoor unit.

Cat in training.

It’s been 4 years now since our Cat Fence has been installed and I am able to relax Knowing that Figaro will always be home for dinner. As I type this I can see him out of the window, happily hunting the mice in the sun and enjoying his freedom whilst being safely contained in his haven.

Thank You Cat Fence!

containment fence lets dog run free in field

Dog fences are NOT banned!

Dog fences & Cat fences are not banned!

After the government bought containment fences to a public consultation, it was decided that Dog fences are NOT banned. This landmark decision also has had a positive impact for all you cat lovers – Cat fences are not banned either! Considering the statics of cats that are injured and killed on the UK’s roads each year this is fantastic decision. Farmers are also relieved that dog fences (aka containment fences) are exempt from the proposed e-collar ban. In the last few years dog attacks on livestock have risen dramatically.

So what is a Dog fence?

A dog fence is an invisible fence that will give your pets freedom in your garden. As pet owners, it gives you peace-of-mind knowing your pet is not escaping, chasing livestock or getting onto the roads. It works silently, invisibly 24/7 covering all boundaries including driveways and open areas. Dog fences have been around for over 40 years. Sadly the modern systems are often maligned without people really understanding how they work.

How do Containment fences work?

dog fence wire layout, cat fence wire layout

Typical boundary wire layout for dog fence

A central control box is connected to a boundary wire that usually runs around the perimeter of the property. The control box sends a coded radio signal through the boundary wire that has been laid around the property. The size of the signal emitted by the control box can be enlarged or reduced according to the customers’ requirements.

The collar that your pet wears, houses a tiny FM receiver.  As the pet moves towards the signal the collar emits an audible signal to indicate to stop. If the pet continues towards the wire the collar gives a small “corrective impulse” set to the pet’s individual requirements. To some this idea is unthinkable but the impulse is akin to a static shock that you might get if you touch a door knob. When considering a cat fences the containment fences are the only option for giving cats complete freedom and safety in one package.

Why is it so important that Containment fences are not Banned?

With Dog’s & Cats accounting for 16% of reported animal deaths on major roads in the UK over the past 24 months, it is more important than ever to keep your pets safe at home. With over 80% of the people surveyed admitting that they would swerve to avoid hitting a Dog, the question would then be – By swerving what others accidents could this cause? Nobody wants to see Dogs killed on our roads and this is why the message of “Dog fences are not banned” is critical.

And its not just the roads which will be a safer place – Farmers around the UK are also celebrating. Dogs form a critical function on the farms, including companionship, protection and the herding of animals. Just as important though – properties that border the farms with livestock generally use these containment fences to stop the dogs entering the fields and attacking the livestock.

Containment fences are NOT banned! Why Not?

The Consultation lasted 6 weeks ending in April’18 and it was clear that banning containment fences would be a mistake. The public spoke and Over 64% of all the responses received were in favour of retaining Containment fences. The study by Lincoln University which was published in 2016 gave cat fences a positive thumbs up.

In a letter from DEFRA dated February’18 (Before the announcement of the consultation) it was stated:

The evidence from the studies was not strong enough to support a ban on the devices under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. The claim that electronic training aids may be no more effective than other training methods is not in itself a reason to introduce a ban or to impose restrictions on their use. Having said that, our advice is that electronic training aids should only be used as a last resort and on the recommendation of a professional such as a vet, a suitably qualified dog behaviourist, or a dog trainer, and should only be used by competent operators.”

If nothing else the consultation into the use of containment fences has proved that they are a valuable and effective system. Thankfully thousands of owners submitted stories of how the dog fence or cat fence had saved their pets life. It goes without saying that these positive stories were instrumental in assisting the Government to exempt dog fences.

Changes to dog fence legislation

The Government has announced that they will implement new regulations into the installation of dog fences. These regulations will be to  ensure that dog fences and cat fences are correctly installed and that the owners are given the correct training for their pets. DEFRA consulted with DogFence Ltd as our Company pioneered the full installation and training service to the UK. Since 2003 DogFence Ltd have been offering full installation with training for their pets to the dog fence or cat fence systems.

dog fence training with trainer and flags

Dog in training

Where can I find out more about Dog fences?

DogFence Ltd are the UK leading installers of containment fences offering full installation and training for your pets. If you would like more information about the system and the costs call us on (01628) 476475 or click here.