“Good fences make good neighbors” is a quote often attributed to Robert Frost, an American poet. While he may not have intended it when he wrote this, Frost’s comment also extends to dogs. Maybe you have neighbors that are scared of dogs. Maybe your neighbors are not happy with having dogs that can freely roam the neighborhood. The point is that a good dog owner is able to keep his dog within his own property. Unfortunately, not everyone can afford a traditional chain link fence and this is one reason why wireless dog fences have been making a presence on the market. Provided below is a list of the pros and cons of invisible fencing in regard to canine confinement.
The Positive Features of Invisible Fences
- While you might find discounted traditional fencing, some jurisdictions forbid certain materials in their construction. Other fencing materials are quite expensive and all fence incur labor costs to install. Invisible fences are generally cheaper to purchase and install than most traditional fences.
- A traditional fence is fine if your yard is flat or gently slopes. Invisible fences can work with any variety of terrain and in any configuration you wish.
- Invisible fences cannot be seen, meaning that they neither distract people from the natural beauty of the area nor detract from feelings of being in the outdoors. People are free to move about the yard without bothering with gates. Yes, you will have to set up some bright flags to indicate the fence’s borders but these can be removed after your dog becomes familiar with the territory.
- It takes far less time to trench and lay down wiring than it does to install a traditional fence. In the latter’s case, you have to install fence posts, nailing boards, weld iron, or roll wiring.
- It is not unheard of for dogs to climb over, dig under, or even chew through fencing. None of these actions are possible with an invisible fence.
- Lower Failure Rate. A traditional fence is only as good as its gates. An electric fence is not dependent on people remembering to close a gate before and after they pass through it.
- Trespassers will be less likely to walk onto your property if they can see a dog but not how far out that dog can chase after them.
The Negative Features of Invisible Fences
- Training is needed. You have to teach the dog where the fence’s boundaries are. This training involves walking your dog along the perimeter and pointing out the boundary flags. Fencing companies usually provide protocols for training and can work with you and your dogs.
- No Protection. While an invisible fence is great for keeping your dog in, it does nothing to keep other things out. This may be a problem if stray dogs or dangerous wildlife is a known issue in your area.
- Some dogs can react badly upon seeing how other dogs have free reign of the area while they are confined. These feelings of resentment can only intensify if other dogs pick up on this and tease or play just beyond the fence. Even a friendly, well-mannered dog will become frustrated if it sees other dogs and people come close yet ignore it.
- Most electric fences will issue a warning beep before discharging electricity. This is so that the dog associates the sound with being shocked. So long as the fence has been properly calibrated, the shock only startles rather than harms. The reliance on sound also makes this a bad fit for deaf dogs.
- Interruptions to the power supply or a dead battery in the collar give a chance to escape for dogs that have not been trained about the fence’s boundaries.
- A dog’s motivations or fears may drive it past the fence’s borders, regardless of the risk of shock. Some fences are two-way in their mechanisms while others only shock if a dog tries to leave and do nothing to a dog upon re-entry.