Does your pup like to wander? Do you have council regulations that prevent you from installing a fence on your property but you’re worried about Lassie getting loose? Or have you got areas in your yard where you don’t want your dog to dig, like the children’s sandbox?
If you don’t want any nasty surprises and you need something inconspicuous but effective, a wireless dog fence might be the solution. We’re going to walk you through what they are, if they’re safe and help you decide if a wireless dog fence is the right move for you and your canine companion.
How does it work?
What sets these fencing systems apart from others, as the name suggests, is the fact that there are no wires of any kind to be placed in or around your property. The ‘fence’ is actually a radio signal radius created by a transmitter that you switch on from inside your home. This radius only takes a few minutes to set up and can range from a few feet to a few hundred feet depending on which wireless dog fence system you purchase.
Your dog wears a comfortable and lightweight collar that receives the radio signals. When your dog is inside the radius you have selected around your property there is no change. However, when your dog comes close to the boundary of the wireless fence a warning beep is sounded from the collar to let him know he should turn back now. If your dog continues towards the boundary, a customizable static pulse of energy is emitted through the collar onto your dog’s skin.
This pulse is completely harmless but ultimately enough to shock your pup so he understands that he shouldn’t be going anywhere near the place where he receives it. All models of wireless fences will allow you to modify the pulse strength to suit your dog’s size. So, if you have a larger dog that’s not responding to the pulse, you can increase it until he does respond and you can also decrease it for any smaller dogs.
Is a wireless dog fence right for my dog?
When considering a wireless dog fence, or any kind of containment system, it’s always a good idea to analyse your situation to figure out what will work best for you.
The main drawback of wireless fences are that the area of containment has to be a radius. This means it cannot be changed to suit odd or irregular boundaries, such as avoiding a pool or certain parts of your garden that you’d like your pup to be able to roam around but not go into.
And if you have any large trees or shrubs, they could interrupt the signal being transmitted meaning the boundary line could develop gaps. A flat, clear line of sight from all aspects of the transmitter to the boundary line is best for the most effective wireless fence.
On the other hand, wireless dog fences take mere minutes to set up, can be reset and modified when needed at the touch of a few buttons and only take a few days for your dog to become completely used to it and aware of their new boundaries.
They’re an easy option that needs minimal maintenance and are great if you have kids and don’t want them tripping over wires (underground/wire dog fences) or generally just dislike the idea of a fence being put up around your property.
For active families who love to travel and take their dog with them, a battery powered wireless dog fence can offer a portable containment system that gives you peace of mind. You get to enjoy your camping trip or beach visit without the hassle of worrying your dog will leave your site.
Are there different kinds of wireless dog fences?
The short answer is yes! There are so many different kinds of wireless dog fences on the market right now. But we know you’re here for the long answer.
Depending on your budget and needs, there are wireless dog fences to suit every situation. Some brands have several levels of electric pulses so you can find the most effective, others come with an app where you can control the radius on your phone and others have a built in bark collar to train your dog to stop waking the neighbours at all hours of the night.
The most important things to consider when purchasing a wireless dog fence are:
- Size of your dog (get a pulse strength relative to their size)
- Size of the area you want to set
- Battery powered or plugged into a wall (portable or not)
- Any extra features you’d like (e.g. app controlled, bark collar, tracker, etc.)
Are wireless dog fences safe?
This is the big question on every dog owner’s lips. Are wireless dog fences humane and safe for your furry friend? The last thing you want is to be putting your family pet through any kind of pain.
Wireless dog fences specifically have different levels of pulse intensities so that you can match it to your dog’s weight and temperament. Regardless of how high you set the pulse, it will always be no more than a startling shock, it should never be painful for your dog.
The sensation has been described by wireless dog fence companies as similar to what humans feel when we get a static shock after walking on fuzzy carpet. Not painful, but definitely attention-grabbing.
Similar to humans though, dogs have varying levels of pain and fear thresholds. So if you notice your pup is having adverse reactions to a newly introduced wireless dog fence, such as developing new behavioural issues, it’s best to lower the pulse intensity a few notches or stop using the fence altogether and consult a qualified vet for the best way on moving forward.
Ultimately, wireless dog fences are safe and very effective but it’s not a “one size fits all”. Pay close attention to your dog in the first few weeks of setting it up. If they react strangely, change things up a little until you find what works best. And don’t forget to reward them with mountains of treats when they avoid the boundary line on their own – good doggo!