Archive March 29, 2019

How invisible dog fence works

What is an invisible dog fence?

Well, an invisible dog fence is a dog fence that is invisible. That sounds pretty self-explanatory, but to be specific, there is more than that. An invisible dog fence is a pet containment system powered by electricity. In order to prevent dogs from escaping the designated areas, dog owners utilize this system to train their dogs.


Why choose an invisible dog fence?

Of course at first sight invisible dog fence does sound to be a complicated system. The idea of building physical fences is obviously straight forward and seems to be a great solution for dog owners who want to contain their dogs in their yards. However, as an increasing number of people are now living in complex residential areas, there are strict regulations on fences. Building a physical fence takes time, and sometimes it is not worth taking the risk of breaking the law. Hence, the invisible dog fence was created to solve this problem. It is not only convenient, but is also simple to install.

Transmitter and receiver

An invisible fence system includes a transmitter and a receiver. The transmitter is powered by electricity, with the ability to track the dog’s location. If the dog comes close to the border line set up by the dog owners, this transmitter will send signals to a receiver. In these cases, a receiver is usually a dog training collar. Once the receiver gets the signals from the transmitter, it will release a mild shock to interrupt the dog’s crossing the border. Sometimes the training collar also goes with sound as well. To be more specific, let’s check out two following systems below.


Wired and Wireless system

Now let’s talk about the transmitter for invisible dog fence systems. There are two types of transmitters: wired and wireless. With wired system, a wire antenna is buried underground shaping the underground border line. Thus, it is invisible on the ground as we cannot see this antenna. The wired system is a great option for outdoor use because it is flexible, and it can be used to create various border shapes and lines. The antenna is then connected to the collar, and works as a transmitter. Whenever the dog comes close to the border or is about to cross the line, the transmitter is able to detect the range through the connection with the collar. Correspondingly, the transmitter will release signals to the collar, igniting the alarms for the dog. With proper training in advance, when the alarms go off, the dog would be able to understand the signals and stop his current undesired behavior.


While functioning similarly, the wireless system, in fact, slightly differs from the wired system. With a hint from its name, it is conspicuous that there is no wire antenna being used in the wireless system. The transmitter in a wireless system creates a circular field, covering the area. If the collar goes out of the field, the alarms will go off.


Generally, wired and wireless systems work in the same way. So how can we know which one works best for us? Although the wire antenna takes time to install, and it is somewhat complicated, this system works for all types of yards. Regardless of your yard’s shape and size, the wired system is flexible enough to create a border that fits your yard. As mentioned above, this is the reason why it is more preferable for outdoor use. On the other hand, the wireless system is more convenient because it does not require any wire set-ups or complex installations. The transmitter basically works as a hub, just like wifi routers that has a certain range. The transmitter has a circular field that can be manually adjusted or customized by users. The only downside of the wireless system is that due to the circular field, it may not be able to cover all the area. For example, if you have an unusually shaped yard, the wireless system cannot cover the area as fully as the wired system does. Therefore, the wireless system works better indoor.


Depending on the needs and preference of dog owners, they can choose either wired or wireless system that works best for them. Although there are also other criteria for us to look into when making purchase decisions, the most essential thing to keep in mind is the purpose of use. If you are planning to use the system outdoor, a wired system is highly recommended, whereas for indoor purposes, a wireless system is more convenient.

Dog training for the system

Now we have understood how the system works. However, the system does not work right away with your dog. It takes training and lots of time for your dog to get used to the system. Remember that this is a fairly high-tech device, so training your dog properly is crucial. As the alarms go off, if the dog is unprepared, he may experience shock or anxiety, and these are totally preventable. Hence, it is highly recommended that you train your dog before utilizing the system.


You can start with some simple commands such as sit, stand, roll over, and so on. These are the most basic commands to train dogs. This is a helpful step because you want your dog to also get used to being trained first if your dog has never been trained before. After those simple commands, you can move on to the collar and invisible dog fence system.


One thing you must not forget is to give rewards to your dogs. Giving him his favorite treat is a nice way to encourage him to do the desired action next time. Dogs love treats and being appraised. If you give him his favorite treat during the training, he is more likely to listen to your commands and instructions. Remember, the invisible dog fence system, especially the collar, is not a form of punishment. Its only intended use is to help owners control their pets better. It takes lots of time to successfully train your dog as there are various techniques involves, so please be patient with your four-legged friends.

Dog fence training for your dog

If you are a dog owner, you probably have heard of the term “dog fence”. Dog fence system has become more popular in recent years, yet it is still unfamiliar to some dog owners. So let’s find out more about this new system and which benefits it can bring to us.

What is a dog fence actually?


Unlike the ordinary fence we have always seen before, dog fence is, in fact, an invisible electronic wireless fence system used to keep dogs or other animals within a certain boundary without using any physical restraint. An electric collar is put on the dog’s neck to receive signals from the system. Generally, if the dog goes beyond the designed boundary, first the collar will sound. If the sound is ignored, a mild electric shock will be delivered through the collar. After few times, the dog will get used to the signals and will learn to stay within the boundary.


So where should we start?


Getting used to a new system can be confusing and intimidating, especially when the system requires some skills in technology to successfully install it such as the wireless dog fence.


For the installation, it should not be too difficult. You can follow the steps in the manual, and take some time to read the instructions before starting. If you cannot figure it out, it is always a good idea to contact a professional or a representative that you bought the system from. In general, setting up the system appropriately is definitely a must before you can use it, but it is not an extremely challenging task. The most crucial task, in fact, is how you can train your dog to get used to it.


Remember that dogs are sensitive to any external environment factors? Before you introduce and train them well on how to use this system, they are likely to negatively react to the fence signals once you turn the system on. Training your dog requires some certain techniques, and sometimes you may also need a professional for assistance. However, it is totally doable by yourself with some following tips.


Start with the basics such as “Sit” and “Stay”, and more…


Before going further into the basics, we want to remind you a little bit of the reason why invisible dog fence was first created. Dogs are active and energetic, and they tend to run and wander all over the places. Occasionally we, dog owners, have no idea where they run to, and whether they are disturbing our neighbors. Although the ordinary fence that we usually see does work in preventing dogs from uncontrollably running around the neighborhood, in these modern days it is not always an aesthetic option. Hence, the new system, wireless dog fence system, was created to provide a more aesthetic barrier.


Since it is invisible, it is difficult for your dog to see and understand the boundary. That is why we need training. However, in order for this training to be successful, your dog must at least knows to listen and obey your commands. You do not need a perfectly trained dog before introducing him to the wireless dog fence system, but being able to understand basic commands such as “Sit” or “Stay” is highly recommended. As you are about to introduce new commands for your dog, previously-trained dogs will be able to adapt faster to new commands.


Make it “visible” at first.


We know that this system is designed to be invisible, so why do we need to make it visible? The answer is that your dog cannot understand how it works if he is unable to see it. Marking the boundaries is the first step in training your dogs. You can use flags or cones, or anything conspicuous so that your dog can observe the markings and implicitly understands their limits. This step is to help to reduce confusion for your dog. After he has been accustomed to the system and its boundary, you can remove these markings.


Introduce your dogs to the markings and the beeping sounds.

Once you have done marking the boundary, walk your dog close to the boundary so that he can see the visual marks. After a few times, your dog will start to memorize these markings. One thing you need to remember is to use a leash at this point so that your dog will not run out of the yard.


Next, it is time for him to get used to the sounds. Every time your dog goes closer to the designed boundary, the collar will buzz, and this sound can be annoying for your dog the first time. You can train him by letting him get closer to the boundary and leave the buzzing sound on. Then verbally you can redirect them so that they will not go past it. It is helpful to change your tone while you are redirecting your dog, so that over time he will be able to associate the redirection with the collar’s beeping sound.


Don’t forget the rewards!

Similar to any kind of training, giving rewards is essential. After each training, it is important that you verbally praise your little friend and give him his favorite treats, so that he understands that his action is right, and he is encouraged to do it again next time. Sometimes your rewards can also be a nice toy or a walk to his favorite places.


The training may take sometimes from a few days to a few weeks, depending on how fast your dog picks up the lesson. However, no matter how long it may take, the most crucial factor you will need is patience. Your dog cannot know the system just after one training session. It takes time, determination, and patience to guide and train your dog. Do not worry about the time, because once your dog is used to the wireless dog fence system, the result is rewarding. You do not have to care much about your dog disturbing your neighbor or getting lost somehow without your attention.


How to choose an invisible dog fence

But first, what is an invisible dog fence?

The term “invisible dog fence” has no longer been an unfamiliar term to a majority of dog owners. An invisible dog fence works just like any other type of dog fences, with the purpose of containing the dog within a designated area. However, the invisible dog fence has more advanced technology in a way that no physical fence is needed or even present. This is why the system is called “invisible”.


In some areas, there are strict regulations on the materials and sizes of physical fences if you want to build one. Thus, it is sometimes difficult to build a physical fence, while bearing the risk of breaking the law. With the invisible dog fence, dog owners never have to worry about such regulations. While there are various ways to set up and customize the system, the basic principle is that there is one transmitter device, and one receiver device. The receiver is usually a training collar worn by the dog. The transmitter is installed at the border, so that whenever the dog comes close to the line, the transmitter will start to release signals to the collar, and then the collar will release another kind of signal to the dog. The collar will buzz a sound or transmit a mild shock enough to surprise the dog and prevent it from crossing the border.


Wired versus Wireless

With a wired system, a wire antenna will be used to mark the borders. It will be buried underground in your yard. This is not only for convenience purposes but also for aesthetic purposes. A transmitter will be linked to this antenna, so whenever the dog comes close to the border and is about to cross it, the transmitter will do its job in releasing the signals to the collar.


On the other hand, a wireless system does not need any wired antenna. In fact, the transmitter creates a circular field and works as a hub. Once the dog goes out of the boundary, he would receive a stimulation triggered by the collar.


So now we have known the differences between wired and wireless system, how should we pick? Each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages. For the wired system, it is more flexible. The shape and the size of your yard do not matter at all. The wired system allows you to create your own borderline in whichever way you want, and there is no limitation in that. Thus, it is a great choice for those who have huge yard areas. The only disadvantage of the wired system is that it is more difficult to set up. As you may have figured that out, burying a wire antenna around your yard takes time to complete, let alone the set-up process. On the contrary, a wireless system is easier to install. Since the transmitter creates a circular field on its own, dog owners only need to install the transmitter by choose the most beneficial location to place it. The installation procedure for wireless systems are simple and pretty fool-proof. However, the circular field makes it less adaptable to your yard. For example, you may want to reduce the circle to avoid the front street, but doing so also means reducing the area that your dog can go in the backyard. Thus, while it sounds convenient and simple, it is not the ultimate option for uncommonly shaped yard.


In short, wired systems work best for outdoor yards, while wireless systems are ideal for indoor uses. Both systems function similarly, so it really depends on your purpose and preference to make a decision.


Other features

You can look at the following supporting features as a criterion when considering your options: lightning protection and battery back-up.

Because these systems are run by electricity, and they are most likely to be placed outdoor, lightning protection is crucial. In case of heavy rain and lightning, lightning protection will help to protect the dog and your system.

A back-up battery is also a great option to consider. In case the power for your system has problems, a back-up battery is an alternative to provide power and prevent your system from falling apart.

In summary, choose an invisible dog fence is not difficult at all. Most of the systems function similarly and are competitive in price. The most important thing that you should keep in mind is how you want to set up the system. For example, do you want to have the system installed outdoor or indoor, or how much time you have to set up and maintain the system, and so on. If you understand and know your needs well, it would be extreme straight forward to pick a system for your house.

Are Electric Dog Fences Safe ?

Electric dog fences are no longer unfamiliar to a majority of dog owners. This system is notorious for its wireless features and high convenience for dog owners as they can remotely control their dogs, and prevent them from disturbing the neighbors.

However, despite of its benefits for dog owners, a common has been raised by the dog owners’ community is: Are electric dog fences safe?

In order to answer this question, let’s go through together why this question was raised initially.

How electric dog fences work…

An electric dog fence basically is a wired fence installed underground that works as a virtual fence, instead of a physical fence, in order to keep dogs within desired boundaries. The transmitter will be installed underground to line out the boundary, and the receiver is the dog’s collar. As the dog gets closer to the boundary line, the system transmits signals to the receiver, triggering the sound and eventually a mild electric shock to stop the dog from passing the lines.


This is where the concern started: as the receiver, the collar, releases an electric shock to the dog, would it be harmful for him? How strong is this shock? Is there any side effects on the dog’s behaviours? These are totally understandable questions, and the short answer is “No, it is not harmful for your dog”. To explain further, we need to look at a deeper analysis of this system’s operation.


Electric dog fences will not hurt your dog or discomfort your dog.

Keep in mind that the ultimate goal is to give him a big-enough surprise your pet at that moment so as to stop him from moving further out of the boundary lines, not to harm him or hurt him in anyway. Therefore, the electric current from the collar is very mild.


Firstly, you have total control over its power. In other words, you can adjust the power of the electric shock to your preference. Every breed is different in size and weight, so it would be unreasonable to have just one power applied to all breeds. Every system comes with an instructions on how to choose the best force for your dog based on the weights and sizes. You can also test various modes to see which one works best on your dog. If you are worried, you can also try holding the collar in your hand and turn on the shock with the lowest force, then go higher to see how each level feels like. If there is a level that irritates you, but does not hurt you, then it can be an appropriate level.


Additionally, the irritating feeling does not linger for a long time. Instead, it goes away right after. Again, the point is to create an conditional habit loop, not to hurt the dog. Therefore, through time, your dog will associate this irritating feeling with going past the boundary lines, and that he eventually understands that this action is discouraged. As a result, your dog will learn to stay within the boundary whenever he receives the signal.


In short, since you totally have the option to adjust the electric force, and the electric signals are already mild, it is unlikely that this system will hurt your dog.


If you are worried about your dog being afraid of going outside, this is not true.


Although it sounds reasonable that such system will make your dog afraid of going anywhere outside and such fear does appear in dogs, it totally depends on your way of training. Before using this system, you must train your dog to get used to it first, and your training method does matter. If you use an appropriate method, your dog will be happy playing within the boundary.

In order to choose the right way to train your dog, it is recommended that you consult a professional or veterinarian to have a better insight.


Once your dog is used to the system, it is apparent that dog fences are doing more good than harm. Think about the days your dogs wander around the neighborhood without your knowing. It is not only a dangerous situation for both your dog and other strangers. Therefore, proper training is needed for your dog to get used to this system, and after that, it is no longer a concern for you as a dog owner.


In summary

Although the word “electric” does not sound like a safe term for anyone, regardless it is a pet or a human, the electric dog fence system is not harmful for dogs. The electric shock is mild and is only enough to alarm your pet, and unable to hurt him. When considering purchasing such system, keep in mind that you have total control over the system in the way that you can always change and adjust the settings to make it best suitable for your dog. Always consult a professional for using instruction and proper training methods. During training sessions, it is essential that you give rewards to praise and encourage your dogs. This helps your dog associate his action with a positive attitude so that next time you train him, he is more well-behaved and picks up your commands faster.


In short, whenever you introduce a new system, or just anything new, to your dog, it is always important to let him get used to it. If your dog is unfamiliarized with it, any system can be harmful to your dog, let alone the electric dog fence. Thus, we hope that this article somehow gives you a better insight into how dog fences work, and whether they are harmful for your dog. Now it is your call to make a decision if such electric dog fence works for your case.