People often ask my thoughts about electronic fences, so I thought I would share them here. One really good thing about electronic fences of course is the convenience. They are the quickest and most effective way to boundary train your dog. And they are considerably less expensive than most conventional fences.
That said, electronic fences are not the panacea that some people think, so here are some important things to consider before making your purchase. First (and this is true of conventional fences as well) a fence gives your dog lots of freedom and you very little control. For example, if your dog is digging up your garden and you go out to reprimand him, he may turn it in to a lovely game of “chase me,” which is of course, a perennial canine favorite. Or if your dog is barking at something at 10:00 pm and you want to get him in so that he doesn’t disturb the neighbors, he may not come and there may not be a whole lot you can do about it. If you decide to include your driveway in the fenced area, there’s a chance your dog will bedevil delivery people and jump on guests and/or their cars. For these reasons I always recommend that clients do some or even all of the basic obedience training before installing the fence. People enjoy the benefits of an electronic fence much more with a well-trained dog.
Electronic fences also require thorough, well-conceived training to be effective. The consequences of not doing this properly can be either a dog who breaks through the fence when a really good temptation comes along, or a “porch sitter” who is terrified to even go into the yard. Another drawback is that although electronic fences keep your dog in, they don’t keep other critters out. This is a real concern with smaller dogs as they can become prey for coyotes or bobcats. I’ve also seen situations where a dog decides that the fenced yard is his turf and actually challenges the owner by jumping and mouthing when he or she ventures out.
Although exercise is important for dogs just as it is for people, I believe that recently there has been an over-emphasis on it. Many people have been wrongly led to believe that if their dog gets enough exercise, he or she will be well behaved. This thinking often results in a really badly behaved dog in fantastic physical condition—not a great combo! Finally, fences are so convenient that many people rely almost completely on them for their dog’s exercise and rarely take their dog for a good old-fashioned walk. Walks are important both for the training opportunities they provide and because dogs tend to experience traveling together as an important form of bonding.
Here are some companies that sell, install and offer training for electronic fences: http://dogwatchct.com/ and http://www.invisiblefence.com/
You can also buy electronic dog fences directly from the manufacturer such as:
or at your favorite retailer like Amazon, Cabela’s, Petco, PetSmart, and Walmart.
Teacher’s Pet is always happy to advise and help you with this and all your training needs.