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-   -   electric fence - help (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=55896)

LaurenBev August 27th, 2008 05:38 PM

electric fence - help
 
3 Attachment(s)
Hi all,
Just yesterday we installed an electric fence for Leo, our dog. We decided on an electric fence for a couple of reasons:
1) after observing Leo for about 4 weeks now, we don't get the sense he has a strong prey drive, even though he IS a coonhound (which might explain why he was abandoned - might have been a terrible hunting dog)
2) a 'real' fence would have been much more expensive and we wouldn't have been able to afford to fence our entire property - only a small portion of it - our yard is approx 2 acres, and we wanted Leo to have LOTS of room to roam and play
3) Leo can dig fairly well, and we were afraid he might dig himself right out of our expensive 'real' fence, rendering it useless;

So... we went with the electric fence and have put it around our entire property. Now my questions for all you knowledgeable pet owners:

I wasn't home yesterday when they installed it and gave him his first training session (my husband was there) so I didn't really witness what went on, but my husband tells me that they did some training with Leo and he got some "stimulations" (as they call them) and wasn't to happy about it, and now Leo is all nervous outside. The trainer (who's coming back in a few days to do more training) told me that I should just work on taking Leo outside in the yard and sitting with him to help him learn that the yard is a safe place, and that she will take care of training him and showing him the boundaries. So, fine, I will work on that. But, Leo is TOTALLY bummed out. He doesn't want to walk around the yard with me at all, he only will sit on the grass near the house. I hope he'll get used to this - he seems pretty upset about this new development in his life. So, I'm looking for others who've had experience with this type of fence - is there just an adjustment period for the dogs to get accustomed to the fence? How long? I just hate seeing my big baby so stressed out!

I know this may be a controversial topic, and some may not agree with electric fencing, but for us, it was the best option we could think of, to give Leo the freedom to enjoy some open space to run and sniff and play in, while also keeping him safe. I myself put that collar on and tested the boundaries and got a "stimulation" which, while unpleasant and uncomfortable, was not really painful - but it's not something I enjoyed.

Anyway - anyone with any advice or familiarity with this type of situation, I would love to hear from you. I trust the advice on this column very much and rely on you all to help me through the uncertainties of owning my first dog.
Thanks,
Lauren and Leo
p.s. Here are some recent funny pics of our sweet pooch.

hazelrunpack August 27th, 2008 08:53 PM

When the fence was installed, was the perimeter flagged? We've never used an electronic fence, but I do know that flags are usually used to give the dog a visual idea of the area he's allowed in. If he doesn't have that cue, then for all he knows, there is no safe area.

luckypenny August 27th, 2008 09:38 PM

Is there any way you can put in posts and string a bright rope around your property with some sort of flags, as [B]Hazelrunpack[/B] mentioned? Having a visual cue makes a lot of sense.

Is it possible for you to be present when the trainer works with Leo so you can see exactly what she does with him?

Leo's just the most sweetest looking pup :cloud9:.

LaurenBev August 28th, 2008 06:37 AM

Yes, there are bright flags around the whole perimeter. I will be there for the next training session, so I will be able to see what's going on. It's just so distressing to see Leo SO upset about going outside, when the whole point of this fence was to be able to give him the freedom to eventually go outside untied, and have the ability to roam and sniff and enjoy! I guess I'm getting ahead of myself - they say the training can take a few weeks, and it's only been 2 days - its just so hard for ME to see my dog so visibly nervous and skittish. He normally LOVES the outdoors.:sad:

Well, hopefully time and training will help and soon Leo will be a happy hound once again. Poor thing.

I am pretty hopeful that he will get it though - I've already taught him to 'sit', 'lie down' and 'gimmekiss' all with minimal time spent - he's really smart. We're working on 'come here' now.

Purpledomino August 28th, 2008 08:49 AM

I think that he will get used to the perimeter fencing in good time. He probably quite a bit confused right now and got a little scare with the new system, but will figure it out. Just make positive experiences like it sounds you are doing inside the area....and maybe reinforce to him with "bad" vocal cues when you are near the fence.

I see you have a big lap doggy there...he is so adorable! :lovestruck:

LaurenBev August 28th, 2008 06:15 PM

Thanks Purple, you're probably right - I think he will get used to it - hundreds of dogs get electric fences each year and I assume most of them get use to it, so Leo will too - it just stinks to see him unhappy.

And, yes, Leo is 75 pounds of unabashed lap dog. It's one of his many endearing qualities!

King August 29th, 2008 05:10 AM

I don't use them but have seen someone who has and there dog seems fine she knows how far to go, it might just be and adjustment....

NamaraPets August 29th, 2008 06:50 AM

Hi,
we use electric fences all over our farm for keeping animals where they are supposed to be.
It doesn't usually take them long to figure out to avoid the wires (unflagged wires).
Before long they are reaching under them to get extra grass without touching them - so they get over their fear pretty quick.
The dogs also learn pretty quick which fences they can squeeze through and which fences are best to wait for the gate!

I am sure if you display confidence in your yard then your dog will follow suite. :dog:

blaster1985 October 19th, 2008 12:24 AM

gsp/fence
 
Wow, your dog looks just like ours! We are considering the electric fence to prevent unwanted charging and barking. These dogs seem to be extremely territorial. I saw a kit today for 175.00! Is this the going rate and does it work?

Longblades October 20th, 2008 10:29 AM

[QUOTE]unwanted charging and barking.[/QUOTE] I wonder if there is some way to try these fencing types out before committing to the expense? Or do they have a return period? Because, new neighbours have moved in across from us and installed invisible fencing. It does keep their two small dogs contained but it sure has not done anything about the charging and barking. Their yard borders a right of way many of us use to access the Trans Canada Trail and some days the charging and barking is nearly constant with those two dogs confronting all who go by, people with dogs and people without dogs. It's been three weeks now and they are still charging and barking.

hazelrunpack October 20th, 2008 10:38 AM

blaster, it may just reinforce the charging and barking since every time the dog charges, it will get shocked. Some dogs associate the shock with the object they're charging, and then that object becomes even more of a threat to them, so the charging actually increases in frequency.

These fences are also not highly recommended for dogs with high prey drive--I know of hunting dogs that got so focused on a squirrel or rabbit outside the electronic fence, that they blow right through it to chase. :shrug:

Also, if I'm remembering right (and my memory being so poor, I'm likely wrong :o) you mentioned in another thread that your dog was showing some aggression toward people in your yard? Remember that an electronic fence will [I]not[/I] keep other dogs and people out of your yard.

So an electronic fence might not be your best bet. Just my :2cents:.

bmxman October 21st, 2008 06:38 PM

I don't understand the large bright flag idea..I have read that dogs are colorblind...so how exactly does bright colored flags help?? or is the coloring more for everyone else?

Longblades October 21st, 2008 06:55 PM

[QUOTE]It depends on how you define colour-blind. The version of that urban myth that I've heard is that they see in black and white, and that's just not true. If you look at a dog's retina, the thing that turns light into neurochemistry or electrical signals, there are structures in the dog's retina called cones. These are identical to structures in the human retina called cones that can see coloured parts of the visual system. So dogs can definitely see colours. But if you analyse those cones, they paint a very different picture of what dogs see of the world than what humans do. The best description is that dogs are the equivalent of human red-green colour blindness. So they have a spectrum of colours that means they are pretty good at seeing greens, violets and blues, but at the red end of the spectrum they're less good. They probably appreciate it as a slightly different colour, such as yellow. But they're certainly not colour blind.[/QUOTE] Above quote is taken from [url]http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/content/questions/question/947/[/url] I found similar information on many other sites. Dogs are also said to have much better night vision than us and notice movement move than we do.

The flags I have seen are white. My neighbours have put the flags in one area where there is no buried line so the dogs cannot get shocked but they still do not go past the white flags.

Smiley14 October 21st, 2008 10:08 PM

Hopefully your experience will be better than mine. I have a Pointer too.

[url]http://www.pets.ca/forum/showpost.php?p=351025&postcount=8[/url]

Your comments sound painfully familiar to me as well. My Petey was a rescue, abandoned for being gun shy. At first, as you can read about in my post, he just ran right through it. Eventually the trainer's method was to drag him back and forth across the shock line, over and over again. From that point on, he was terrified of the yard. Once I finally got rid of the fence, it took me months working with another trainer to get him over his fear of the yard. The entire experience was a huge disaster for us. But as I said in my other post, I know a lot of other people that have great success with theirs. I just ask that you PLEASE never leave the trainer alone with the dog, not even for a moment. Mine basically abused my baby (I wasn't there, my sister was and they kept reassuring her this was part of their training process and it was fine) with their so called "stimulations" and caused him a lot of emotional damage. This was their solution after he kept running through it despite 7 months of their various training methods. It took months with my regular trainer to get him over it. I know mine is an extreme case, but just be careful and trust your instincts!

Shannon666 November 7th, 2008 08:46 AM

I dont know if your electric fence is similar to the one at my dads, but we got it around when they first came out with a lifetime warranty. The collars will emit a low pitched beep that is hearable by the dog, so when you are guiding him around the area, u pull back when he starts to get to close/collar starts to beep. If he doesnt go back he gets "shocked". We did this with our great dane and cocker spaniel about 3 times a day till they caught on, which took no time at all.

I know after they got use to it our dane would not leave the yard if her life depended on it, even if u took the collar off, and if she somehow got over it like if she couldnt stop in time or rlly uberly wanted to follow us we basically had to carry her back over. But other then that i find it is a rlly good product, and have no problem leaving the property in vehicles.

Oh and we didnt have any trainers come out, they basically showed us how to teach them after the installation and that was it. Good luck with yur pooch and hope he gets use to it soon, he's so adorable >.<!

Love4himies November 7th, 2008 08:51 AM

My neighbours have a dog and they have installed an electric fence, not sure how they trained their dog, but I do know when there is a fox in the area, the electric fence does not keep their dog in so they do have to be outside at all times watching their dog.

Good luck.

LaurenBev November 14th, 2008 08:39 AM

update on Leo's invisible fence
 
1 Attachment(s)
Hi all,
Since this post seems to have been revived over the past few weeks, I though I should post an update on Leo's progress with his invisible fence. Many say that Bluetick Coonhounds don't do well with the invisible fence because their prey drive is just too much for them - which may be the case with many of them, but not for us. Leo adjusted to it within about 2 weeks and now spends a lot of time out in the yard unaccompanied and unsupervised (but never home alone)! He hasn't had a shock in months. I would think, though, that every Hound is different, so I can't say I'd recommend an invisible fence for all of them - prey drive would be a good indicator - Leo's prey drive seems to have declined significantly over the past few months that we've had him. He used to go absolutely nuts at the mere sight of a squirrel, but now he seems to "get" that he's not a hunting dog anymore, and that he's just our house pet now.

We definately took a gamble on the invisible fence, knowing that it might not work on a hound, but it turns out we made the right choice - other options were either a dog run or a 'real fence' around a smaller area of our yard.

Blaster, to your questions, Leo is a most un-territorial dog, so I don't know if this type of fence would be beneficial to you in helping calm your bluetick of her barking and charging. Also, I think pricing depends on the size of the area you want to enclose. Our yard is pretty big (2 acres), and it cost us around $2K (USD) to enclose the whole thing. I would stress, though, that this fence is only a "psychological barrier" and so training is the KEY to making it work. If you don't train your dog to it properly, it will not keep her in. With our purchase, 4 training sessions were included. We started out with the shock at a very low level, lured Leo into the shock zone and then pulled him back into the 'safe' zone and gave him a treat, thereby teaching him that if he gets into the shock zone, the way to stop it is to come back into the yard. This is they key - to teach your dog that to end the shock, they must come back. Leo got progressively better at this and by the last training session, the trainer brought a live chicken to our house, let it run around and Leo would NOT chase it past the border. Now that is impressive for a hound - I'm sure you know! That's when we determined that he was 'trained' to the fence.

Hope this update is helpful to anyone considering an invisible fence. We are very happy with how it worked out for us, but I must stress again that it is not a magic solution - proper training is the key.

Here is a pic of Leo enjoying a frolic in his yard.

marriahnoelle May 2nd, 2011 09:58 AM

Flags
 
With my dog, Critter, the flags definitely helped him to know where the barrier was. Even living so far out in the country we had to get him a fence because he had started "herding" our neighbors cattle. He would run them in circles for hours. He's a mutt that we adopted from our local animal shelter. I'm guessing he has some type of herding breed in him. LOL. Unfortunately we had to go to a [URL="http://www.redhillgeneralstore.com/pets/petfence.htm"]pet electric fence[/URL] with the wire instead of the collar because he figured out if he ran hard enough the little shock from the collar would send him over the barrier line. And he was off to chasing cattle. It is sometimes hard to put our pets in a situation that is nerve wracking for them, but with Critter and a neighbor threatening to shoot him we decided that his safety was much more important. Good luck and I hope everything goes well with the fence!

RRichmo January 28th, 2013 09:41 AM

LaurenBev,

Can you (or anyone else) give an update on your bluetick's response to underground fences? I'm "on the fence", so to speak, debating installation for one to contain my two young blueticks. We live in a wooded, rural area on three acres and adopted one (now 5 months old) this past October and the other (approximately a year old) in December. They love to run the woods, but I'm concerned about something happening to them or their getting in trouble with neighbors. I'm also reading a lot of "doesn't work with blueticks" postings and wonder if I'm going to be wasting my time and money installing the Petsafe Stubborn Dog system.

edit: immediately after posting the above, Tally and Kelly spotted a deer and took off after it. I think this is their first "close encounter" with a deer and I'm wondering even more so if I'll be wasting my efforts installing a fence. Does anyone have similar experience? How's Leo doing and do you have deer or "critters" near your house?

hazelrunpack January 28th, 2013 12:08 PM

Honestly, RRichmo, I think a solid fence would be better. I know of people with hunting dogs who use a solid fence, and only back it up with an invisible fence if they need to prevent digging. But most of the people I know who've tried just an invisible fence say that they're dog sees some prey or catches a scent and they blow right past the fence. And unfortunately, once the heat of the chase wears off and they try to get back home, the invisible fence keeps them out of their yard if they've got the collars on.

Barkingdog January 28th, 2013 02:39 PM

[QUOTE=hazelrunpack;677431]blaster, it may just reinforce the charging and barking since every time the dog charges, it will get shocked. Some dogs associate the shock with the object they're charging, and then that object becomes even more of a threat to them, so the charging actually increases in frequency.

These fences are also not highly recommended for dogs with high prey drive--I know of hunting dogs that got so focused on a squirrel or rabbit outside the electronic fence, that they blow right through it to chase. :shrug:

Also, if I'm remembering right (and my memory being so poor, I'm likely wrong :o) you mentioned in another thread that your dog was showing some aggression toward people in your yard? Remember that an electronic fence will [I]not[/I] keep other dogs and people out of your yard.

So an electronic fence might not be your best bet. Just my :2cents:.[/QUOTE]
So if the electronic fence won't keep other dogs and people out of the yard it would not be safe to leave a dog outside alone for very long as a coyote could get in that yard and kill or harm the dog.

RRichmo January 28th, 2013 05:13 PM

A solid fence would be great, but is simply not in the budget at present. Chain-link is about $10/linear ft, installed. Wire mesh fencing runs about half that, but is still more than I can afford right now, assuming I give the dogs sufficient fenced area to run a bit. I'm going to try the invisible fencing and see if we can make it work. The dogs wouldn't be left out when we were not close by. I'm thinking if they run through it, I can shut it off. If it looks like it simply won't work at all, we'll look into alternative fencing.

Barkingdog January 28th, 2013 06:27 PM

[QUOTE=RRichmo;1052983]A solid fence would be great, but is simply not in the budget at present. Chain-link is about $10/linear ft, installed. Wire mesh fencing runs about half that, but is still more than I can afford right now, assuming I give the dogs sufficient fenced area to run a bit. I'm going to try the invisible fencing and see if we can make it work. The dogs wouldn't be left out when we were not close by. I'm thinking if they run through it, I can shut it off. If it looks like it simply won't work at all, we'll look into alternative fencing.[/QUOTE]

I am really concerned about coyotes after one came right up my dog and started sniffing his butt and I was standing right next to my dog. I had my back turned and did not see the coyote right away and being HOH I was not able to hear it sneaking up on us.


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