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Golden Retriever running along boundary marked with containment fences

Containment Fences Explained

What are electronic Containment Fences and how do they work?

Containment fences hit the news earlier this year when the Government declared that they intended to ban e-collars for training dogs.

Sadly, the media jumped in with both feet first and declared that containment fences were also to be banned. At DogFence we were horrified having Professionally installed containment fences for over 17 years we had no idea why! For our customers that already used a containment fence there was outrage. How could the Government even consider banning a fence that had saved their pets life and given them back their freedom?  For those that had not heard about containment fences there was intrigue. What is a containment fence and why do they want to ban them?basset hound enjoying freedom with containment fences

Even the MP that called for the ban didn’t know if the containment fence was to be included within any ban and the officials at DEFRA did not know how containment fences worked! As experts in the field for containment fencing DogFence were invited to meet with officials from DEFRA and demonstrate the fence.

The comments from the DEFRA team were as we suspected “it’s not that bad” and “it’s not what I imagined”.

So what is a containment fence?

It’s actually an invisible fence or virtual fence which is created by a radio signal. Originally invented to keep dogs safe at home in the USA where gardens are traditionally unfenced their popularity has grown in recent years.

A containment fence is actually a very simple and unobtrusive system which can be installed on virtually any property at a fraction of the cost of traditional fencing. It also offers for safety than conventional fencing as the pet can’t dig under or jump over the fence and it protects open areas such as driveways.

A boundary wire is placed around the property boundary which transmits a coded radio signal to a collar worn by the pet. When the pet approaches the boundary wire a high pitched warning beep alerts the pet to go back. If the pet continues forward, an electrical impulse is given through the collar (this is often referred to as a correction or static shock) and the pet retreats back into the safe area.

How does the pet know where to go?

Every pet undergoes a training programme which usually takes 2 – 5 days. When training to a containment fence it is important that the boundary is flagged to give a good visual of where the virtual fence starts. The flags stay in the ground as a visual marker for approx. 2 – 3 weeks. Containment fences can be used for dogs over the age of 12 weeks and cats 16 weeks or over.

The trainer will take the dog outside and set the collar to “beep only” mode. Using some voice commands, he will introduce the dog to the containment fence training flags and later he will allow the dog to enter the “no go area” of his own accord. By re-focusing the dog back into the safe area with the assistance of the warning beep and vocal commands the pet will quickly learn where he can or can’t go. Following the beep only session the training moves onto to assess the correct level of impulse (correction) required for the pet.  If the owner has more than one pet the likelihood is that they will each have a different training level.

containment fences are marked with training flags

Visible boundary for the pet with flags.

 

With cats the training is carried out internally following the Dog Fence Cat protocol. This training protocol was used as part of the Lincoln Cat Containment Fence study.

 

Will the containment fence hurt my pet?

Of course the thought of giving any impulse or shock to your pet can be abhorrent. It is important to note though that the impulse is very low and is usually only felt during the training phase. The sad scenario is that the pain felt from a car is almost unimaginable and the discomfort of containment fence is no worse than an annual vaccination. Also for dog owners there is always the threat of a shot gun as dog attacks on sheep are rising annually.

What areas of the garden will the containment fence cover?

Interestingly, containment fences can cover the entire garden including the driveway. The largest installation that we have installed at Dog Fence is 450 acres. Usually the fence wire is dug directly into the ground (approx. 3 – 5” below the surface) but it can be attached to existing physical boundaries. It is not uncommon for the fence wire to be attached to post and rail fences, stone walls, run through hedges, ditches or streams and even the odd moat! When it comes to the driveway any surface can be crossed except Resin bonded drives which require special attention.

Containment Fence Collars

The original containment fences from the early 80’s used heavy bulky collars but as with the mobile phone technology everything has been scaled down in recent years. Not only have the collars become smaller and lighter but the battery life has also increased.

At Dog Fence we can boast the smallest and lightest collars worldwide. Our mini containment fence collar only weighs 30g but still features an incredible 6-month battery life. Incredibly our standard collar has a 2-year battery life and weighs in at only 48g which is still the 3rd lightest collar available worldwide!

How much do containment fences cost?

A containment fence costs a fraction of the cost of installing a traditional fence or driveway gates. Unlike a wooden or stock fence a containment fence becomes more cost effective the larger the area. Naturally the price is dependent on the owner’s location and the number of dog or cats that they have. There is no need to visit a property to give an estimate for the containment fence; this can all be carried out via our online survey tool.

Summary

Thankfully, the Government looked at the evidence, research and responses from containment fence owners and deemed these lifesaving systems safe to use. Indeed, Michael Gove stood up and supported the life-saving fences in Parliament.

If you are interested in receiving a quick free quote contact us today on 01628 476475 or fill in our quote form https://dogfence.co.uk/quote/

three poodle cross breeds wearing electric dog fences collars

Electric dog fences – Weighing up the pros and cons

Electric Dog Fences: Pros and Cons

Electric dog fences are both a safe and affordable solution to keep your dog safe at home whilst allowing them freedom to roam and play within your properties boundary. In recent years due to their flexibility and effectiveness electric dog fencing has become increasing popular for cats as well.

It goes without saying that electric dog fencing is not for everyone. It’s important to fully understand how the fences work and weigh up the pro’s and cons between electric dog fencing and traditional fencing.

How do electric dog fences work?

There are two types of electric dog fences, wired and wireless. The most popular and effective are the wired systems.

Wired Fences

The fence consists of a transmitter box, a boundary wire and a small computer collar which is worn by the dog or cat.

The transmitter box is installed on site and the boundary wire is connected to the transmitter box. The is buried around the perimeter of the property and wire carries the harmless low-level radio signal around the boundary.  The pet wears a computer collar that emits a warning beep followed by a mild stimulation (similar to a carpet shock) when he gets too close to the designated area. The no go area for the electric dog fence is marked with some temporary training flags to assist the pet with a visual. The dog fence Installer trains the pet to understand the avoidance area.

Wireless Fences

With the wireless dog fence there is no boundary wire. The transmitter is located centrally around the area to be fenced. The transmitter sends out a circle of signal from the base station. Unfortunately, wireless dog fences are prone to false activation and are only effective for flat properties with no obstructions for the signal.

When it comes to the electric dog fence there are two types — wireless and in-ground. Even though they work in different ways, both systems consist of some sort of base unit that creates a hidden boundary around whatever area you want to contain your dog in. Read more about wireless dog fences here.

PROS OF ELECTRIC DOG FENCES

  • Price – an electric dog fence is far cheaper than a traditional fence and gate.
  • Dogs and cats can be allowed to roam freely – not kenneled or caged and exhibit natural behaviour.
  • Dog or cat cannot jump over or under and signal is 360 degrees.
  • The driveway is protected so no worries about an open gate or slow electric gates.
  • Can be installed on terrains that are not suitable for traditional fencing. Can be used through streams, along tow paths, woodland, steep slopes and areas with planning restrictions.
  • Quicker to install than a traditional fence. Up to 10 acres installed in 1 day.
  • Electric dog fencing does not restrict views.
  • Can be used to keep pets out of areas – pools, play areas, flower beds.
  • Easier to maintain than a traditional fence.
  • Can be moved from house to house.
  • Electric dog Fence collar also works indoors to keep pets out of rooms or off furniture.

CONS:

  • Does not keep other dogs, cats or wildlife out of your garden.
  • Not recommended for aggressive dogs as with wireless or electric dog fencing there is no physical barrier.
  • Batteries in the dog’s collar must be changed every 3, 6 or 24 months (reputable Companies should offer an automatic renewal programme).
  • If the power goes down the electric dog fence can go down – look for a system with a battery backup.
  • Not suitable for dogs in whelp or very old dogs.
  • Customer must assist with training so can take dogs up to 10 days to fully learn the fence.
  • Must make contractors aware of buried boundary wire if digging or landscaping to avoid damage.

Electric dog fences have been available in one form or another for over 40 years. Recent advances in technology have now brought these fences to another level and items listed in the “cons” list are now easily avoided with the higher specification systems.

The latest electric dog fences

In 2018 DogFence launched their new enabled fence. This new generation of  electrical dog fencing gives the owner real-time information and notifications regarding the status of their system. The fence offer a new 2 way communication between the electric dog fence collar and the base station through an app.

Take a peak at our video which explains all the amazing features in the Smart Fence here.

  • Sends out an email alert for a wire break

    a new generation of electric dog fencing - smart fence uses 2 communication via wifi. Consists of a collar, portable and transmitter.

    The new Smart Fence

  • Sends out an email alert of a challenge to the fence by the pet
  • Send out an email alert regarding the battery level.
  • Activity tracker for each pet through the app.

These email alerts are also sent out to the DogFence office so we can contact the customer to book a service visit or arrange a replacement battery.

If you would like to know more about our Smart Fence or our other fences please contact us on 01628 476475 or email info@dogfence.co.uk.

electric dog fences work for all breeds of dogs large or small

Electric dog fences cruel or kind?

Are electric dog fences cruel or kind?

You’ve heard about electric dog fences and are either intrigued, appalled or desperate to know more!  Surely an electric dog fence cannot be humane? Why does anyone need electricity to keep a dog in? Electric dog fences, wireless dog fences, containment fences why do I need one?

Dogs are playful, energetic animals with boundless curiosity. Naturally they require plenty of exercise and are often given the freedom by their owners to roam the garden in the fresh air. However, some dogs choose to push the boundaries of their freedom by attempting to escape. It maybe that they are after visiting another dog down the street, a farm, livestock or even next door’s rabbit!  All different scenarios necessitating the installation of a good and effective fence to keep the dog safe and at home.

Electric dog fence transmitter and receiver

The boundary wire starts and finishes at the transmitter box.

 So What are electric dog fences?

Firstly, the name is a red herring. An electric dog fence is not an electric fence. An electric dog fence is actually an electronic fence but are referred to as electric fences. It’s a System that uses a central transmitter which is linked the boundary cable and computer collar worn by the pet.

Electric dog fences generally come in two forms: wired or wireless dog fences. A wired fence is pretty much exactly what it sounds like – a physical perimeter created around your garden by a wire, the route of which is determined by you or the company who install it.

Types of electric dog fence

Wired dog fences

A wired electric dog fence is relatively quick to install, and involves installing a boundary wire around the boundary. Ideally the wire should be buried a few inches below the ground to avoid damage. The main criteria is that the cable must start and finish at the main base station to complete a circuit.

Wireless dog fences

Wireless dog fences dog not have the flexibility of the wired systems as they are really only suitable for very flat open properties. Wired fences send out a signal from a central base station and create a circular zone around the property. They require a clean line of sight so are not suitable for properties with buildings or trees that will shield the signal. Similarly, properties on steps or slopes are not suitable for wireless dog fences.

Wired electric dog fences are often seen as a more practical than their wireless counterparts as they can extend right to the perimeter of your property, whereas wireless systems have limited reach. You can also dictate the exact shape of the wired electric fence and create ‘out of bounds’ zones for your dog, which is a major bonus.

How does an electric dog fence work to keep the dog in?

The boundary wire acts as an antenna and carries a radio signal around the boundary. The dog or cat wears a small computer receiver collar. A “no go zone” is set around the boundary. As the pet enters the zone the collar wakes up and alerts the pet with a warning beep. If the pet continues further the collar gives out a static impulse. The impulse is harmless and is set by the trainer according to the dog or cats personality, age and breed. It is not a one size fits all but bespoke for each pet.

The question is, however, are these fences humane for your dog?

Are electric dog fences cruel?

Many dog owners make use of electric dog fences on a daily basis and sing their praises from the roof tops! Most owners will “feel” the impulse and agree that the word “electric” is far from the reality. A tingle or static shock would be more akin to the sensation delivered by the dog fence collar. Given the choice of a tingle or being run over or shot owners will attest that a small tingle is the better option. Also research exists to support the understanding that electric pet fences are humane.

Research into electric dog fences

Animal welfare researchers at the University of Lincoln “found no evidence of long-term welfare problems in cats living with these fences, compared to control cats able to roam freely in and out of their owners’ gardens.” Indeed, researches commented that this was the best option for cats, as indoor cats can be prone to obesity and health issues are more prevalent for cats housed solely indoors. Of course the statics for cat deaths and injuries speak for themselves.

cat in bird bath wearing electric dog fence collar, these fences can be wired or wireless dog fences

Lazing on a sunny afternoon

Electric dog fences are also proven to genuinely train dogs to stay within the boundaries of their property. Dogs are intelligent animals and very quickly (Pavlov theory). They hear the beep and know to avoid the area due to the training. The effect produced by an electric dog fence is similar to a static shock you might receive from a carpet – it’s just enough to distract you, and not enough to cause pain.

Owners Testimonials

Owners point to the positive aspects of electric dog fences, such as their flexibility, effectiveness, and affordable price. The majority of owners who choose to  install an electric pet fence are those for whom a physical fence has previously failed. It may be that installing a traditional fence would pose a problem due to planning restrictions or simply cost.

“Some years ago we lost a spaniel hit by a vehicle while chasing a pheasant out of the garden and across the road. The incident caused us and the motorist distress. Had the DogFence been in place we do not believe the incident would have occurred. Furthermore the DogFence allows us and our dogs to enjoy our home and garden without unsightly, costly and less effective forms of boundary control.”

Our experience is that owners want to keep their pet safe but also give them freedom. Keeping pets indoors, tied up or in a run is far less humane than allowing a pet to roam and display natural behaviour.

How does the pet learn to use the fence?

As part of the installation process, the pet receives professional training. Using some visual markers in conjunction with the warming beep and impulse he quickly learns not to go too close to the boundary. The majority of customer’s report that their pet rarely received so much as a warning beep after their initial training.

Conclusion

If installed and handled correctly, a wired electric dog fence can work wonders in containing your dog. Your pet is kept safe and is able to enjoy plenty of freedom, making it an affordable and humane option. It also provides great peace-of-mind to you, the loving owner. You can rest assured that your pet is safe – no more worrying about them running off, or getting onto the road. With a DogFence system, you get all the benefits of leaving them to roam without the associated worry.

We have solutions for areas of all types and sizes, from small gardens right up to 350-acre estates. There are very few places where we can’t install an electric Dog fence – we can go under pathways and patios, or even over rivers and through woods! It is for this reason that here at DogFence Ltd we only offer installation for wired dog fences as the wireless fences do not offer the safety, reliability or flexibility of the wired versions.

Get in touch today to find out more. 03450 623623 or www.dogfence.co.uk

Ref: University of Lincoln Cat Study:

http://www.lincoln.ac.uk/news/2016/09/1265.asp

 

 

dog wearing an old invisible dog fence collar

Freedom fence, Invisible Fence, What are they?

What is a freedom fence or  Invisible fence?

So what is a freedom dog fence? it’s actually is a generic name for an electronic dog fence. Very similar to a “hoover”, a freedom fence, invisible fence or DogFence are often used to describe the containment fences. These dog fences were first produced in the USA over 40 years ago.

The History of Invisible Fences

Electronic pet containment systems originated in the year 1973. The overall concept began due to humanitarian emotion from American Richard Peck. Peck was a salesman in Pennsylvania selling his company’s metal cutting and welding services.

Richard Peck original inventor of the freedom dog fence

Richard Peck with his original Patents

“I traveled the United States and everywhere I went, I literally saw hundreds of dogs that had been slaughtered by cars. They were all over the roadway,” Peck said years later. “I loved dogs and knew there had to be a way to stop this.”

The development of dog fences

In 1973, Peck partnered with an electronic engineer and patented the first electronic dog fence system. The collar was placed on a pet and received radio waves from a wire buried beneath the ground. The radio waves were transmitted through the wire from a transmitter protected inside the house. When the radio waves are received by the collar, it sends a brief uncomfortable static shock under the pet’s skin. The “shock” deters the pet from traveling farther into a designated zone. In todays’ world date the word “shock” should be replaced by stimulation as the impulse produced is incredibly low and incapable of inducing a state of shock.

Always concerned for dog safety, Peck worked with the University Of Pennsylvania School Of Veterinary Medicine. Together they conducted extensive research on the short-and long-term effects the new system would have on animals. The study proved it was extremely effective for influencing behavior of animals and keeping them contained in a specified area. Furthermore, the study proved that pets that were contained by a freedom dog fence had no long-term ill effects from the stimulation.

No boundary gardens

The late 1970s in the USA there was a rise in the popularity of housing estates forbidding traditional fencing. This made it almost impossible to have a large dog. Naturally with the new “invisible fence systems”  quickly became popular. Peck initially sold the systems through catalogs and direct mail. The growth of the company was very slow. There were only 50 systems sold the first year. The fences were promoted by two nationally distributed dog magazines, Dogs and Dog Fancy.

Peck retired in the early 1980s and sold his company to private entrepreneurs outside of Philadelphia. These entrepreneurs invested in product improvements and named the product “Invisible Fence.” The engineering staff began refining the technology of the existing product. The company began selling a compact, lighter version of the receiver collar that went from 13 ounces down to 3 ounces. Thus the market was opened so that smaller dogs and cats could utilize the Invisible Fence solution.

New Manufacturers enter the market

In 1990, the overall patent for the technology expired and other companies to began to appear. This led to the rise in other manufacturers, PetSafe, DogWatch, and Innotek. These Companies have produced their own version of the original invisible fence. The early systems were not available for self-installation and Freedom Fence Dealers were part of the PetSafe network that started offering installation across the USA.

The market went worldwide

Dog Fence, Invisible Fence and Freedom Fence dealers started to import the technology into Europe and Australia. These markets were mainly self-installation markets and over time some dealerships started to offer a limited installation service through agents and part-time sub-contractors.

In the UK there were 3 Companies offering Installation for freedom dog fences:

Invisible Fence

The original Invisible Fence UK Dealer has recently retired after selling both Invisible Fence and Innotek systems for over 25 years. Most of the Invisible dog fences were sold for self-installation.

Freedom Fence

This business model is slightly different and is made up of a large number of representatives who work on a sub-contract basis. These individuals will install the PetSafe and PetSafe Professional brand of dog fence. PetSafe fences use the same AM technology that was used to produce the original Invisible Fence systems. As these are part time representatives they do not all offer the same level of service.

DogFence

DogFence  Ltd were the first Company to offer complete onsite Professional Installation & Training for dogs and cats. This Company uses the DogWatch brand of hidden fence which was developed using an FM radio frequency. When it comes to technology the FM signal is far safer and faster than the AM operated fences. DogFence Ltd pioneered bringing the full installation & training service to the UK. Unlike Freedom Fence the installers are all employed by DogFence. This gives consistency in quality of service and equipment standards.

Why is Technology Important?

Arguably most peoples pets are part of their family, they are as important as children or siblings. Naturally one wants to do everything they can to protect them which is why they install a dog fence. As with your car it is important to look at safety features within each product.

The Original Invisible Fence used an AM radio signal. This was mirrored by all manufacturers except DogWatch (DogFence). DogWatch inc were concerned about the high numbers of false activation on the receiver collars with AM. The dog may not be in the zone but the collar was activated because the collar picked up a similar signal. It is for this reason that they decided to explore using an FM signal. After developing and patenting the FM signal it quickly became clear that this was a far superior channel.

Why is the FM signal safer? The reason for the FM signal is to ensure that nothing else can activate the dog or cats computer collar. The Freedom Fence and Invisible Fence brands use OOK (on/off keying).  With OOK the collar is open to picking up other signals when it is in the “down” time. This means that the collar can activate when the pet is not in the “no go zone” as it has “heard” another signal.

With the DogFence system the signal is constant and the collar can only read the programmed signal. In order to reduce case of false activation freedom fence and invisible fence systems use a 2nd signal to reduce confusion. Naturally checking for 2 signals slows down the reaction time on the collar.

Why does speed affect the dog fence?

Put simply if your dog is racing towards the no go zone the collar needs to stop him before he runs into the road. With the DogFence system if he runs at 10mph he will only get 0.125ft into the zone before the collar has given a warning beep and impulse. With a freedom fence he will be at 7ft before the collar has activated. Conversely many people never consider the shut down time on the fence. What happens if the dog retreats? How quickly will the collar stop? Again, speed is crucial the start up and the shut down times are equal. If your dog retreats the FM fences will shut down in less than 1 second. With the PetSafe, Invisible Fence and Freedom Fences AM brands the time is 2 – 5 seconds. Food for thought!

freedom fence and dog fence collar reaction times illustrated with 2 dogs running at 10mph

Collar reaction times for DogFence and Freedom Fence. DogFence is 15 times quicker!

Conclusion

Today there are well more than 2 million freedom dog fence systems installed worldwide. Recent studies by Lincoln University and the UK Governments consultation have proved that these fences save the lives of dogs and cats. It maybe that you are skeptical or adverse to the idea of using a Freedom dog fence but those that use them swear by them. A few of the comments from the Government consultation can be read here:-

If you would like to obtain more information on our containment fences call us (01628) 476475 or click here.

 

 

 

 

 

Electric dog fences will give keep dogs free to run

Are electric dog fences legal?

Are electric dog fences legal?

So you’ve read the recent media reports and are confused about whether electric dog fences are legal. If you are concerned about your pet’s safety and want to use an electric dog fence read on …..

 

 

 

 

 

The good news is if you are considering installing an electric dog fence they are completely Legal to use in England. Our dogs and cats can have their freedom and safety!

In March 2018 the Government launched a consultation into the use of all electronic dog and cat collars.  Over a 6 week consultation period 7000+ people responded. Interestingly, the majority of people (64%) were opposed to a ban. The Government looked at the evidence and the  research for both the hand held units (aka remote training collars) and containment fences (aka electric dog fences). In August the Government announced that they would not ban invisible dog fence systems. They went on to state that these fence systems offer safety to pets.

Are there any regulations for installing a electric dog fence?

After considering the evidence the Government noted that in the interests of pet welfare containment fences must be Professionally installed. They . From Autumn 2018 all containment fences will have to be professionally installed with onsite training for the cat or dog.

What do I get with Professional Installation?

So what does Professional Installation give the customer? Firstly extensive knowledge as well as advise and a good standard of product. Companies that offer full installation will have correctly trained their operatives. The operatives will be trained to  know where to place the wire and how to correctly train the pet. These Companies will have also researched the best products in terms of durability and safety. If a product is constantly breaking down due to poor quality of wire or hardware it will leave the pet vulnerable.

When installing an electric dog fence correct placement of the cable is crucial. Ideally the cable will be buried to avoid damage. In situations where burial is not possible the Installer will find a safe position above the ground.  The product sold should have in-built safety features to protect the pet. This will include automatic shutdowns, a low battery warning and a good long battery life.  It is important to consider that if the battery runs out the pet could run out! When installing the cable advice should be given on areas to avoid and where possible the cable should follow natural boundaries.

Once the fence has been installed the Professional should train the cat or the dog for the owner. Ongoing  guidance and support should be part of the service.  A reputable Installation Company should keep records of the pets individual requirements and offer a follow up service for the future.

How do I know if I am getting a Professional Installation?

Companies that offer full installation will have a proven track record  so it will be easy to ask for references and check reviews. They should also offer installation using the trenching equipment and post installation service. Using a one man band or sub-contractor may not meet the Professional Installation regulations require. Due to the high cost of the installation equipment it is unlikely that these individuals will have access to correct installation tools and are most likely not trained. Furthermore a reputable installation Company will usually offer a good guarantee regarding their product and service.

Intrigued and want to learn more? call us on:  03450 623 623 or email us on: info@dogfence.co.uk today.

https://dogfence.co.uk/quote/

 

 

 

stop dogs escaping from garden

Top Tips to Stop your Dog from Escaping Out of The Garden

Top Tips to Stop your Dog from Escaping Out of The Garden

stop dogs escaping from garden

Yipee – let’s go guys!

Boredom, loneliness, territory protection, prey instincts and separation anxiety are reasons that may lead a dog to stray. So how do you stop your dog from escaping? The answer may be more straight forward than you think.  Firstly it is important to assess the reasons why the dog is escaping.  What is it that draws him off, is it food, livestock another dog or boredom? It goes without saying that every dog owner wishes to prevent their dog from escaping and getting into danger. Outside the safety of the garden your dog risks getting into a fight, being hit by a vehicle, being stolen or even eating something poisonous. There is also responsibility; a free roaming dog is a threat to children, livestock and even other dogs on a lead.

Train your dog?

You may have already asked your trainer how to stop your dog from escaping. Many owners report that the dog develops the habit of escaping through the front door as soon as it is opened. They may also get rewarded for escaping. They get to roam the neighbourhood, scour bins and possibly enjoy a game with another dog! Hence, this then becomes a hard to break habit. Teach your dog to wait at the door until you open it for him and to never go out on its own. Always rewards his good behavior. Your dog will stop getting out of the garden to enjoy treats from you.

Secure your garden

Ensure that your garden area is well secured to stop your dog from escaping. You may be able to use a 6-foot fence to secure the area because most dogs cannot jump over it – you could also consider digging in a chicken wire along the fence line below ground. When a dog is determined to escape, it can do anything to gain access to digging under the 6-foot fence. The chicken wire will be uncomfortable for the dog, and may prevent deter the dog from digging. You can also place concrete or wood blocks at the bottom of your fence to discourage digging. Try to avoid picket fencing as this can cause serious injury to your dog or cat if they impale themselves on the stakes. The issue with a lot of fencing is that wildlife can damage the wire and make holes within the fencing.

Containment fencing

If you have an uneven garden terrain, consider having a smaller dog run that could be confined to one corner. Another alternative for securing the garden is installing underground or invisible fencing. The hidden fence uses a small computer collar that interacts with a signal that surrounds the property. When the dog enters the “no go zone” the dog’s collar reacts to the radio signal and gives the dog a high pitched warning beep to alert the dog that he or she is in the wrong area. If the dog continues the collar gives out a low level static shock (correction). The dog will have been trained to know where the “no go zone” area is located through a training protocol that uses both vocal and visual indicators. The advantage of an invisible dog fence is that they can be installed on nearly any terrain.

Over the years there has been negative press on the use of electronic dog fences, often referred to as electric dog fence but recent studies have dispelled the myths, indeed a study into cat containment reported that there are no negative long term effects with using an electronic fence. (Lincoln 2016) http://www.lincoln.ac.uk/news/2016/09/1265.asp.

The issue of how to stop your dog from escaping is always going to be a difficult subject but below are few tips:-

Driveways and open boundaries

Driveways are always going to be a weak point, as are open areas which cannot be fenced due to planning restrictions. These areas really are ideal for using electric dog fences. Escaping dogs will always use the weakest point on a property and an open gateway or clear area is a golden opportunity for a dog to make a bid for freedom. An underground dog fence will operate invisibly and effectively 24/7 to prevent the dog or cat from escaping through the vulnerable area. Owners often install electric gates to keep dogs and cats off the roads, however, most dogs will quickly learn that when they hear the buzzer they have an open opportunity to not just run out but amble out at a steady pace. An underground dog fence can be fitted in conjunction with electric gates to prevent the pet from escaping when they hear the buzzer.

stop dogs from escaping through driveway

An open driveway is difficult to secure.

Consequences of an escaping dog

If your dog escapes and is caught by a council dog warden you may be issued with a warning, a caution or a fixed penalty fine. If your dog is considered out of control you may even be prosecuted and fined. The penalty is up to 6 months in prison or an unlimited fine!  This is surely a big enough incentive to stop a a dog from escaping! Also further controls can be given to the owner.  In some cases the dog may be transferred to a local kennels whilst the owner is located at a heavy daily cost or even transferred to shelter and possibly re-homed. Recent media reports have also found out that the RSPCA is too quick to euthanise. Sadly owners pets have been permanently separated from their vets within a matter of weeks.

 

Exercise your dog

A dog that only stays and plays in the garden will eventually get bored, stressed, frustrated and unhappy. Dog’s need a change of scenery. Just like people a change is as good as a rest. If your dog is bored it will look for ways to break the tedium.  For you and your dog’s sanity it is advisable to walk your dog every day if possible. This way he can experience a new environment, remain engaged and interact with other dogs. Exercises not only boosts your dog’s socialization skills but also stimulates its mind. Country walks or walks in the park are a great way to stimulate your dog. The sounds, scents and interaction with nature and other dogs will keep him fresh. If you exercise your dog daily or regularly then this should help to stop your dog escaping from the garden.

Conclusion

Just like human beings, dogs like adventure and to discover new things. If you want to stop your dog from escaping you need to break the cycle. It may be that you need to install a containment fence or that you need to train your dog or exercise him more. If the issue is not tackled then the habit will continue. As an owners we must look at the issue from two angles. Primarily we need to be responsible for our dog’s welfare, state of mind and health. However, we also have a responsibility to those people, livestock and property that a wandering dog may come in contact with.  An engaged happy dog will be less likely to wander.