Do Electronic Dog Fences Really Work?

electric dog fences work

When you’re considering the type of fencing that you want to use to keep your dog in your yard, there are always going to be pros and cons of each type. One may work for you splendidly, while another may fall flat on its face in terms of features or flexibility.

One of the most popular types of fencing today is invisible fencing. There are a couple of reasons for this: first, it’s more affordable than just about any type of traditional fencing material. Second, it’s easier and faster to install.

Even though those two things are definitely true, this leaves one question unanswered:

Does invisible dog fencing really work?

The truth is…

Well, Yes And No

As with most things like this, the answer is “it depends on what you mean by ‘work'”.

If you’re looking for a cheap, easy to install solution that’s probably going to keep your dog in the yard, then an invisible fence will probably do alright.

If you’re looking for something that’s nearly guaranteed to keep even the most stubborn, Houdini-like dog in the yard, then it’s very possible that the answer is “no”. The best solution for that problem is found here.

Pros of an Electric Dog Fence

The biggest thing about these fences is that they’re affordable. They’re much cheaper than traditional fencing material, so they definitely won’t break the bank in comparison.

The next thing is that they’re not an eyesore (unless you use the boundary flags long term). They won’t interfere with the view of your home or take away from the aesthetics of the property.

Another great benefit of invisible fencing is that some fencing systems can be designed to cover up to 25 acres of land. That’s a ton of roaming area for your pooch!

Now, Let’s Talk About The Cons of Electric Dog Fences

Cheap, easy to install, can be used over an area of many acres… what more could you want, right?

One advantage that a traditional type of fencing has over its invisible cousin is that traditional fencing makes it harder for predators to get into your yard. Your pet is protected somewhat by traditional fencing; invisible fencing may stop them from getting out, but it doesn’t stop other things from getting in. And if your pet somehow manages to get outside the boundary, it will likely be difficult for them to get back inside it without that negative shock/tone/vibration warning.

The other problem with invisible fencing is that it uses a negative form of ‘punishment’. Even though it’s getting close to the boundary that causes the warning shock/tone/vibration, unless you’re very careful, your dog may learn to associate the warning with him going to greet you when you get home or going to greet another dog or even a child. Those negative associations can be dangerous long term as they are repeated for long periods of time.

Invisible fencing also doesn’t guarantee that your dog won’t be able to get out at all. If they’re motivated enough to jump the fence, they can still go beyond it. And his motivation to get back into his yard may not be as high as it was to get out of it, so if he/she gets out, you may have inadvertently locked him out of his own “house”, so to speak.

The last big thing with these fences is that the electric shock needs to be fairly painful for it to work correctly and deter the dog from exiting the enclosure.