Electric dog fence
June 29, 2008 9:12 AM   Subscribe

Electric dog fence: My parents have a large farm property next to a busy road and want to keep the dog from crossing into the road, but otherwise unrestricted on the rest of the property. Most electric dog fences I have seen form a large circle, with the dog inside the circle. However the property is too big for that, is it possible to have a wire just along the road, activated only when the dog crosses the line?

The dog could go around the ends but on this property that would not be a problem because of the layout of land and the nature of the dog.
posted by stbalbach to Pets & Animals (9 answers total)
The few transmitters I've seen connect to the wire at both ends. However the technology would still work if you laid the loop in the trench instead of a single wire.

Also the fences work by first giving an auditory warning as the dog approaches and then a shock if the dog gets closer. The shock should be delivered several feet from the buried wire rather than directly over it, something to keep in mind if the yard is shallow.
posted by Mitheral at 9:30 AM on June 29, 2008

Be aware that the dog will be very aware of where the ends of the invisible fence are- that's what you're conditioning them for, after all. This means that if the dog wants to get out, it will simply go to the corner where the fence stops and get out there. Are the sides of the property fenced in? Otherwise, you've just made the dog run a little further, which (for most pups and most properties) isn't much of an obstacle.
posted by jenkinsEar at 10:48 AM on June 29, 2008

This is do-able with the base model underground fence. There are schematics in the installation directions to set up the fence in a multitude of ways. You can even fence off gardens, pools, etc.

And, like jenkinsEar just pointed out, there will need to be fencing along the other three sides of the yard.
posted by wg at 10:52 AM on June 29, 2008

As others have said, this will work fine. One thing to consider -- depending on the dog, their speed, and their motivation, some dogs will blow right through the momentary pain of the shock (either deliberately or in the heat of the chase) and cross the electric fence. Of course, now they are "trapped" on the far side of the fence, and many will not cross back over willingly. You've got to really consider the personality of the dog involved before you go with an electric fence.
posted by Rock Steady at 11:22 AM on June 29, 2008

@ Rock Steady,

My dog did that at first, but after about 2 months, now he does not. I think he finally realized that it just wasn't worth it.

But to answer the original question, as others have said, you can do exactly what you are looking to do. If you twist the wires together, it cancels the signal. then spread them out where you don't want the dog to cross.
posted by Dorri732 at 12:02 PM on June 29, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks everyone, good to know it can be done right out of the box. I thought maybe it works with some sort of polarity and can detect inside vs outside loop but sounds like it is simply how close to the wire the receiver is.
posted by stbalbach at 1:13 PM on June 29, 2008

How big is their property? We have 50 acres and just had the invisible fence people come and tell us that to wire 22 acres of it was fine.

The limiting factor is the gauge of wire you use (which affects the overall resistance of the loop) so you can probably expand the loop by using a heavier wire.
posted by unSane at 4:45 PM on June 29, 2008

...do you mean like the electric fences they use for horse paddocks??
posted by mu~ha~ha~ha~har at 9:34 PM on June 29, 2008

The OP is probably asking about so-called invisible fences. These use a buried or ground-level wire to transmit a radio-frequency signal which is picked up by a receiver attached to the dog's collar. As the dog approaches the wire, the receiver emits a warning sound. If the dog continues, it administers a 'correction' which is painful for the dog.
posted by unSane at 7:32 PM on June 30, 2008

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