Invisible fences for pet containment : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread

Has anyone had experience with so-called "freedom fences" a.k.a. the "radio fence".

I understand that the principle is to condition and train intelligent animals, humanely, with a warning sound when they approach the border of the property (which has been marked with flags).

You walk the boundary with your pet 2X/day for a few weeks, showing them where they must stop.

The collar they wear will give them a little buzz shock (attention-getting, but not harmful) to further deter them if they cross over the warning area toward the boundary.

Well, how does it work in REAL LIFE?

-- Sara Nealy (, October 31, 1999


Hi again Sara!

We used a radio fence with only marginal effectiveness with our pack.

We did all the training recommended, etc... Our results were: The oldest dog never crossed it (she's also the smartest), the puppy crossed accidently a couple of times while playing (i.e. not paying attention) and couldn't get back in, the stupidest dog never learned and crossed at will--crying while crossing! And the big boy (the Malamute mix discussed on your last thread) learned that if he ran fast that it would only hurt for a moment. He would then cross only for the "important stuff", like chasing deer, etc.

Other things we learned about the fence--it doesn't work in power outages. And we have enough of them for the dogs to learn when the power was out. Also any break in the line will stop the fence from working--this happened to us almost weekly by deer stepping or tripping over the line. And squirrels would bite through the line (those darn squirrels again!).

Long winded answer to your question--the bottom line is we now have a traditional perimeter fence to keep the dogs in and safe!

Good luck!

-- Cath (, October 31, 1999.

Altho my son said the fence worked great for his dog, my vet's receptionist told me that the fences aren't totally effective.....that some dogs, if they see a rabbit or squirrel, disregard the fence, flying after the intruders. I decided against the fence.

-- Jo Ann (, October 31, 1999.

Depends entirely on the dog. We have had good luck in the past. I'd guess it works for about 75% of the dogs out there.

Didn't work on me, though. Woof.

-- BigDog (, October 31, 1999.

we've had great success with ours. We have a 16month old German Shephard and she's only run through it 2 or three times and our backyard abuts a wildlife area full of bunnies dear, pheasant ducks etc. That's less then we would have seen with a traditional gate and fence. Can't recommend them enough.

-- kozak (kozak@formerusaf.guv), October 31, 1999.

Kozak reminds me that it works better with respect to training them to accept it, not surprisingly, when dogs are young-ish. Not small pupppies (too intimidating) but say, between six and twelve months.

-- BigDog (, November 01, 1999.

So with 8-week-old puppies, what do you suggest?

-- Sara Nealy (, November 01, 1999.


Not an expert but think 8 week old pups too toung. would call a couple of companies and ask. Ours came several times and trained the dog, Would come back for free if needed reinforcement. One thing about the fence, if the dog does go through it they DON'T want to come back, they know another "correction" is comming so you have drag them back over the barrier. By the way we have the system installed inside our house also. keeps the dog out of the upstairs and formal living dining room area, having some dog free areas in the house has been nice.

-- kozak (kozak@formerusaf.guv), November 01, 1999.

Our fence was only marginally successful with our male beagle. After the first day of the five-day training period he figured it out and would not be "trained" further.

Like Cath's experience, he learned that a whole afternoon of cavorting about the countryside in chase of lots of greats smells was worth the moment of discomfort. He would yelp when he crossed the boundary, but just keep right on going. But, he WOULD NOT come back across.

-- Vic (, November 01, 1999.

8-weeks is WAY too young. IMO, anything younger than five months is too traumatic. You are "electrocuting" them, after all.

-- BigDog (, November 01, 1999.

I think the whole idea is to use the Pavlovian training to condition them so that the "buzz" not really needed.

We spoke with a trainer today who concurs that 5 mos. is the earliesy to do it, but in the meantime, walk the pups around the boundary saying "NO!" when you point to the flagged boundary line.

We'll probably create a smaller fenced-in area until then, and do plenty of "walkies" too, as Barbara Wodehouse used to say.

Has it occured to anyone else that the alarm that sounds when the perimeter is broken (passed) can work as an alert to intruders, too?

-- Sara Nealy (, November 01, 1999.

I though about getting one of those type of fences for my dog. But one problem is that they don't do a very good job of keeping animals (ie other dogs, cats, etc) OUT. Isn't this part of what a fence is supposed to do?

-- drew (, November 02, 1999.

I'm in the burbs & nearly ALL the dogs are invisible-fenced.

Is anyone thinking about power outages in January? ... when all the dogs realize they're free to wander, form packs, hunt, do as nature dictates?

This thought has me buying more ammo. Sorry guys. 58 days left til all those invisible fences may be a disaster waiting to happen.

-- has anyone heard (ofthe@year2000.problem), November 03, 1999.

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