PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System
I grew up in the country, and I remember that it seemed as though everybody owned a dog. The streets were not busy, had very little traffic and there was a lot of woods and fields for the dogs and their owners to roam. Walking around town and through the woods would reward you with a chance meeting of a friend also walking with their dog. The dogs were everywhere and often ran free but yet they all knew where to go when feeding time arrived or when the sun went down. I distinctly recall after I started driving finding my own dog almost a mile from our home – I pulled over, got her into the car, and took her back home safely. She was exhausted and I could tell by her panting, tired look that she had been having a lot of fun and probably got into a bit of mischief. I think she appreciated the ride back home.
Those days bring back fond memories but the days of letting your dogs run pretty much free are gone. The streets are busier, your neighbors are more likely to not like them running around and there seems to be plenty of local officials that are too happy to pick your dog up and take it to the pound. People these days seem to be more possessive of their space and letting your dog infringe on that space is a sure way to create conflict. Couple this with mostly legislated requirements to keep pets at home and well contained and we have a very good reason for an effective containment system around your home.
Fencing Options for your pet
A regular fence is the most common you’ll see from neighborhood to neighborhood. Keeping your pet on a leash is also common. Tying pets up in the backyard, these days, is frowned on (and rightfully so) and in fact is not sufficient in many areas due to local requirements to actually contain your pet, not just tie him up. Leaving a pet outside on a tie-down can be seen as inhumane as well as they can often be left outside during bad weather conditions and sometimes with no shelter.
A relatively new method is to use radio frequency, or invisible fencing. The invisible fence will establish a border around your yard and when the pet approaches that border they are given a small shock via the collar. If they don’t turn around, they get another. If they get even closer they get a last, more powerful shock that is enough of a deterrant for even the most determined pet. After awhile, most users of invisible fences will say that their pets no longer even go near the borders and can roam outside even without the collar. A dog will learn it’s boundaries.
There are a number of very positive reasons to choose this approach:
- Fences are not permitted in some areas and some Home Owners Associations as they can get old, need maintenance and eventually bring down the value of the surrounding homes if they are not well maintained. An invisible fence overcomes these problems by no being visible in the first place.
- Even if fences are allowed, dogs have a tendency to dig and many a dog has dug under many a fence and found their way into mischief. The invisible fence cannot be circumvented in this manner.
- Fences have gates and gates are occasionally accidently left open. As with digging, many dogs have taken advantage of an open gate. An invisible fence has no gate to be left open and allows no point of exit a pet can take advantage of.
Given the above reasoning, an invisible fence is an obvious consideration for anybody with pets. But how does it work?
A transmitter is installed inside the house and is connected to a wire that runs around the perimeter of the boundary you choose. This wire acts as an antenna for the transmitter, sending radio frequency through the buried wire and into the air surrounding your yard. When your pet approaches this signal, it’s collar picks up the signal and sends an audio warning first to let the dog know it’s gone too far. As mentioned before, additional “notices” can be configured to get your dog’s attention as some dogs are more difficult to break out of a habit or get the attention of than others. As the dog tests the boundaries and receives warnings, it will eventually learn where it can go and where it shouldn’t go.
…but is it cruel? Isn’t it mean to shock a dog into behaving?
Well, is it cruel or mean to enable your dog to dig under a fence or run through a gate and get into traffic? My stance is that I’d rather spend a bit of time teaching my dog boundaries so they don’t get hurt. Yes, the negative stimulus received by the pet may cause some pain or aggravation. If it didn’t, it wouldn’t work. But many dogs only have to receive this stimulus a couple times to get the message. A more determined dog will receive it more times but then again, a more determined dog is also more determined to dig under a fence, jump over it, or wait for that get to be left open.
Do you need this even if you already have a fence?
That depends. Do you have dogs that jump your fence? Would your dog run out of a gate that was left open? If so, then the invisible fence might still be a worthwhile consideration. Also, think of dogs when stressful situations occur. My dog, Rusty, stays in the yard all the time…until he sees a rabbit or a deer on the other side of the fence. About 50% of the time he sees something, this 75 pound pit bull sails over our 5 foot fence like it wasn’t even there and is off and chasing before anybody has a chance to react. And what about inclement weather. Some dogs, if outside, will run in panic after they see lightning or hear thunder. Another of our dogs – Bruno – is a Boxer mix that is horribly afraid of bad weather and we have to give him what we call “doggy downers” when a storm hits. If he were outside though, he’s run in panic, either through or over a fence. So give consideration of times when not everything is perfect to help you decide. Another consideration is if you have areas of your yard you’d like your pets to not go, such as a swimming pool, work area, garden, play yard, etc. An invisible fence around these areas will serve the same purpose. One of our pets, Jake, is a heavy set pit bull that absolutely loves the pool. The problem is, he swims like a brick and we have actually found him in the pool – unsupervised – clinging to the ladder and unable to get out. If we hadn’t found him, he would have drowned. An invisible fence around the pool would fix that problem.
That’s a bit about the PetSafe Wireless Pet Containment System – there’s a lot more and we will be adding to this site on a regular basis so please check back in.
Thanks for reading!