My opinion. To each his own. In my neighborhood almost everyone with a dog has an invisible fence. I say almost everyone because I installed a fence in part of my yard. I prefer a physical fence not because of the shock, because that can be adjusted. For me, it is because I know of at least 2 dogs that have gotten out of their yards with an invisible fence, both accidentally. I also like the idea that noone, man or beast, can get into where Fritz and occassionally Spike are playing easily or without going through the gate.
My aunt has an invisible fence for her jack russell terrier and it works for her.
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I just want to chime in and tell you guys that I find this post fascinating. I live on a ranch, where I call it a "gated community" because I keep my road gate closed pretty much 24/7 because of cattle. We have barbed wire fences and steel fences and electrobraid fences. So here's my question: aren't there any other options for fences? In rural areas I have seen cables running from tree to tree and hedges and chained-link fences. Seriously, there has to be numerous options for all types of people and dogs and conditions! HerdingStdPoodle
Herdingstandardpoodles, I think that fences are much more common in the west in general. In my area most gated communities with Home Owners Associations (HOA) and strict regulations still allow for some type of fencing. The type, style and location is highly regulated, but it is typical for people to have fenced backyard and the communities and HOA restrictions have been build around what sells “here”. But in many areas were fenced yards are less common, these regulations restrict the installation of any type of fencing in front or backyards. So while there are hundreds of options for useful and/or decorative fencing it doesn’t do you any good if you are not permitted to install them on your property.
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I do think it's interesting that dogs charging pedestrians/bikes/etc is assumed to be an invisible/electric fencing issue. I live in an urban area were many people have physical fencing in the front yard, right up to the narrow sidewalk. The vast majority of the dogs do charge the fences, barking and running up and down when someone walks by. "I" would not extend my dogs range to the public street. In the nicer areas of our town, while legally allowed, people do not fence their front yards to the sidewalk. The neighborhoods are much more pleasant and walkable. I would think that the solution with an invisible fence would be the same and that it would be courteous to not extend the range to the public walk. It is bad enough in my actual neighborhood that I will drive to a much nicer area about a mile away and walk there because I'm tired of having a barking dog running up and down (or lunging and snarling), 6" away as I'm on the public walk. A friend of mine actually had a dog reach through the fence and bite his dog on the public sidewalk.
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Thank you so much for your help in understanding about fencing issues. I love HGTV and they have so many beautiful "barrier" [fence] options. Also I have traveled to New Jersey and Tennessee and Kentucky and upstate New York and have witnessed their beautiful equestrian farms. That experience gave me the idea for fencing for my Louie and the many puppies that I had before him! It was so incredibly easy to create beautiful [at least I thought so] fencing with horse panels and make a huge yard for my Louie.
I just really appreciated this post because I have never lived where I had to come up with a creative solution to keep my dog in a yard without a fence. I should have thought about this before, because I watch "Selling New York" on HGTV!
Another option and one we used until the fence was put up. Our fenced in garden is 100 feet from the house (we have deer we chose not to share our garden with). We ran a line from the house to the cemented fence post. We then cantilevered a 30 feet lead onto the line. We would connect Fritz to the lead and off he went. The downside of this option is that you need to pay attention to where the dog is or you may end up tangled in the line and on the ground. Also you need to bear in mind what else is in your yard that the puppy can get tangled in. It was a good short term solution for us.
Edited: I just looked and you weren't looking for other options. Opps. On the other hand, if you are waiting on an invisible fence, this is an option while you wait for it to be installed. :-)
The upside of not having any fence whatsoever is lots and lots of exercise! Think of all of those Holiday pounds shed exercising beautiful Poodles. Years ago when I lived in an apartment, I used to put on the leash and exercise my dog regularly. Most of the time, I really enjoyed it! Before my morning coffee? Not! HerdingStdPoodle
Thanks for all these observations. Obviously, this is a topic feel passionately about! I started another thread about this, not knowing one had already been started (sorry for the clutter!).
It's definitely a case of YMMV. There are lots of invisible fences in my neighborhood (front yards, at least, which is what I can observe) and no dog has ever charged through, and we walk in front of every yard in the 'hood every day. We don't have sidewalks.
I had an IF put in yesterday, so the issue isn't whether to, but looking for training tips/pitfalls. This is the solution that will work for us. I'd definitely never allow my dog to scream in pain, and we're at the "noise-only" stage right now anyway.
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We used an invisible fence with a standard poodle we fostered a couple years back. He was smart enough to figure out that if he crawled very, very slowly (like moving an inch in 10 minutes), he could cross without a shock. I sat and watched him do it because I needed to know if the fence was going to work - he was never left unattended.
After he figured that out, he did it every time. It became a game. Also, he figured out that on rainy days, the fence didn't work very well and would just jump through the perimeter.
I'd say, with monitored usage, the fence is better than nothing but I'd never leave a dog unattended outdoors with one.
__________________ Ella, 2 y/o Standard Poodle
Lexie, 4 y/o Mini Schnauzer Hudson, 4 y/o Mini Schnauzer