question about invisible fence?


i was wondering if anyone had a pitbull and do you know if an electrical fence would hold him and her. he is 75 lb. she is 45 lb. also, is this a cruel way to keep them contained in the yard?

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    11 Responses to “question about invisible fence?”

    1. Marla says:

      I have the Invisible Fence brand and I love it for my 2 Saint Bernards (around 150lbs each). I feel it is very reliable and I don’t think it’s cruel in any way. What would be cruel is if one of my dogs got out and got hit by a car… or injured (or killed) by someone that was afraid of such a big dog coming toward them. I can’t say anything about any other brand because I don’t have experience with it and I’m not going to answer based on hearsay.

      With the Invisible Fence brand… a wire is installed underground where you want it. It is attached to a power unit that plugs in (it also has a batter back up). Flags are placed along the fence for training. The dog wears a collar that emits a beep sound when it gets within a few feet of the perimeter. The collar takes batteries that need replaced every few months or so. The company comes out and helps you train your dog. They give you instructions on how to continue the training yourself. You do have to train them and this company helps with that a lot… they want it to be successful for you. You cant just slap the collar on them and think it will work.

      My male Saint took to the training right away and has NEVER crossed the line. My female took a few months before I trusted the fence. Now, after the training period has ended, neither of my Saints have ever crossed the line. They are tempted on a daily basis. We live on a busy neighboorhood road. People walk by all the time, people walking their dogs. We have a next door neighbor with 2 dogs of his own. We have squirrels and many other woodsy animals. Funny story: My dogs bark constantly at the mailman, they just want him to play (I hope). He started bringing them treats and he tossed one to my male, just shy of making it into the fence area. So there he was, sitting there, with a tasty treat and the mailman right in front of him. He wouldnt go get the treat (or the mailman), I had to get it for him.

      I know a physical fence wouldn’t keep my female in our yard. She is very persistant when it comes to something she wants to do. I know my female would jump a physical fence, no doubt. An Invisible Fence is my best option to protect my dogs from the unknowns outside my yard. I also thought there was too much human error involved with a physical fence. I have 3 children that could accidentaly leave a gate open. A lot of people say that they don’t work because if a dog really wants out, it will get out. Well, as long as they get the proper training, I 100% disagree… my dogs are very boisterous and lively, they are tempted daily by people, dogs, other animals, etc… and they will NOT cross that fence line.

      There is so much hearsay on this subject… "I know someone…" or "My friend’s mom…" Talk to people that actually have them for their dogs before you make your decision. I highly recommend the Invisible Fence as long as you can commit to the proper training. Its well worth it. I feel its the best thing I ever bought for my dogs. Good Luck.

    2. Alambre says:

      the problem is…. if your dog is not properly contained..and some communities do not consider the invisible fence proper can get in trouble if your dog attacks someone or something..even if it happens in your own front yard… do reduce your risks you really should have proper fencing!

    3. Rosalie says:

      I personally would not trust an invisible fence for a pit bull, mainly because other dogs can come in – and the liablity you face is huge. In addition to that, there are always times when someone has accidentally cut the wire with gardening equipment, or a lightning strike can blow out the transformer – they aren’t completely realiable, and you often don’t know until there has been a bad incident. I have also seen large dogs run through them, if the enticement on the other side was tempting enough – but then not be able to return home, because of the fenceline.

      Radio fences are not cruel as long as they are ‘fair’ – if they are always in the same place so your dog understands the territory, that should be fine.

      However, it is far better practice to install a good strong wooden fence and attach the electric fencing on the inside. That way, you know your dog will not take down the wooden fence, but there is also a barrier to protect them from intruders, which can include tormenting kids as well as other animals. Once your dog realizes he gets a ‘buzz’ near the physical fence, he will definitely respect it, and you won’t need to worry about anyone digging their way out or breaking fenceboards.

      Safety has as much to do with what you are keeping out, as it does with what you are keeping in.

    4. Daisy says:

      This is a bad idea.

      The first thing you need to ask yourself is – are you okay with using electric shock as a form of punishment? You also need to consider the following:

      * Electronic fences do not prevent other animals from entering your yard. If another dog comes into your yard and attacks one of your dogs, they may be too fearful to try and get away.

      *Pits typically have a very strong prey drive. Your dogs may break the barrier to get at a squirrel or rabbit, but I guarantee you they will not repeat that to get back in the yard.

      *You will run the risk of your dogs developing anxiety, punishment aggression and other behavioral issues linked to shock collars.

      Lastly, being a responsible Pit guardian means that you never leave your dogs together unattended. We know that our dogs were bred to fight other dogs – and it’s not fair to ask them to be something they are not. These are not Labs – they are Pits. Respect their history.


      You can build a nice size kennel for about $500.
      Use a treadmill to give your dogs exercise.
      Get a Chase-It toy to blow off steam.

    5. Shibas are stubborn sunshine says:

      I wouldn’t say it’s cruel, but honestly, I wouldn’t use just an electric fence as their only deterrent. Bigger dogs especially seem to figure out that they get shocked at first, but if they keep running that it will stop. And then they seem really reluctant to come back because they’ll get shocked again.

      I have been looking into alternatives to my fence jumping dog. An electric fence about 2 feet inside the chain link was one option, but I’m realizing that if I want to spend that kind of money on a good quality one, I may as well just buy an enclosed run for her. You know, the ones with the tops over them that they can run up and down in? Also looking into an "aerial trolley" which is basically a lead attached between two trees with another lead dangling down and attaching to the collar so she has a bit more freedom.

      I would look into other options if I was able to spend that kind of cash on an electric fence. They just don’t seem all that effective…maybe for smaller dogs, I don’t know. I’ve just watched larger dogs tears right through them.

    6. Jazzie says:

      It’s not particularly a "cruel" form of containment, it’s just different. It’s huge drawback is that it doesn’t keep the outside world from coming IN to the yard…, loose dogs, cats, strangers, etc.

      Electronic fencing isn’t rated on the size of the animal contained. The charger can typically be set to deliver a different level of electronic shock to the creature in the collar (receiver). A lower setting delivers a less intense shock to the dog, probably appropriate for smaller dogs as well.

      Training is involved with electronic fencing to teach the animal where the boundary is and what happens when he gets near it… and how to react (run back in….not out!).

      Dogs with strong prey drive may be more difficult to train to stay within the boundary, especially if there are lures in your neighborhood that would entice him to chase.

      There’s also the issue of the buried wire. We live in the woods, so we didn’t need to bury it except at the driveway. Convenient, but non-boundary aware folk succeeded in destroying the wire. So, burial all the way around is a pain, but recommended.

    7. Pam says:

      Determined dogs will figure out that they can blast right through them. As long as they get far enough away from it once they get out… no beep or charge.

      Besides, they do not keep out strays!

    8. luckynumber7 says:

      electric fences are mean….get a real one for cheap

    9. Faun M says:

      I don’t know where you live but in my area they won’t let you use an invisible fence with a pitt bull. They require an actual fence for certain dogs. I’d call your village and ask about the requirements. My neighbor had one and got two tickets for having her dogs off their leash on her own property without an actual fence. Good luck.

    10. Full Pawtential Dog Training says:

      They should be effective for any breed/size. Just be sure to read the box and be sure it says the correct size of collar. It is not cruel if the dog would be running in traffic if you didn’t get it.

      Watch for signs of aggression. Any strong correction can cause a negative association and cause aggression.
      So, if the dog jumps your fence or runs off after another dog but get shocked, she might become dog aggressive.

    11. Phil W says:

      I have had the "invisible" type of fence for over 10 years now.

      The "invisible" type of fence is not cruel like some people on this site will tell you. The shock that it gives is mild (and yes, I have been shocked by it). The shock value is immeasurable. The better type of fence systems collars also give a warn beep when the dog gets near the perimeter well before delivering a shock. With proper training the dog will learn quickly where it can and cannot go. Hence it won’t get a shock. Most of the people who will tell you that they don’t work are ignorant about the fences in the first place or they bought one (maybe a junk one like PetSafe and many others), slapped the collar on the dog and then booted him out the door without training him.

      Sometimes a conventional fence is not an option. Either due to the cost of fencing a large piece of property or because some housing developments have restrictions on fences.

      Sometimes a conventional fence will not contain your dog at all. He can go over it or under it.

      If you are looking for an Invisible Fence brand fence you will have to contact a local dealer for a price to install it though I can almost guarantee it will be over $1000.00. If you wish to install it yourself (and it’s pretty easy to do in 2 – 3 hours depending on the size of your property) it is available online (but not I/F brand).

      The "invisible" type of fence consists of three things. First is the wire which is buried an inch or two into the ground. This wire defines the outer perimeter of the containment area. You can also block off areas (flowerbeds, pools etc) within the containment area. Some experimentation may be necessary in this. Second is the transmitter which is mounted to the wall indoors and connected to the fence wire, and third is the collar that the dog wears. The transmitter sends out an AM radio band signal that the collar will sense if your pet gets to close to the electronic field. The collar will then deliver a correction. Some of the better ones will give a warning beep prior to delivering a shock. Though it is a strong shock it will not harm the pet in any way. Small marker flags are placed along the inner edge of the field about 5 to 10 feet apart during the training period and removed (every other one) as the pet gets used to the fence.

      Huskies are escape artists. We have 14 of them. The only thing that I have found that they can’t go over or under is invisible type fencing. Some folks say that it doesn’t work on Huskies. They don’t know what they are talking about. You can’t buy the cheap stuff, like what they sell at Lowe’s or Home Depot or PetSmart etc. The best I have found is the Smart Dog 2100 by Innotek. You can find it on line at several sites, discounted for less than $170.00 with 1 collar. Extra collars are about $80.00. The kit has everything needed including 500′ of wire and flags, enough to do a quarter acre. Expansion kits (500′ of wire and flags) are available for $38.00 and will contain a bit more than an acre. The collars are rechargeable (unlike the "Invisible Fence" and most others where you have to buy the proprietary (one place to get it = expensive) batteries every 3 or so months), has battery backup for the transmitter, run through prevention, waterproof, etc. if you are in an area that has a lot of thunderstorms I would consider a lighting protection module ($50.00). Innotek now owns Invisible Fence brand. Be sure to use heat shrink type splices in the wire if needed. They are available at marine supply stores. Do not use the "weatherproof wire nuts" from Lowe’s etc. They will not work for this application. Use an edger to dig the "trench" for the wire. The wire only has to be buried 1 or 2 inches down. The yard will “heal” within a few days normally.

      The key is taking the time to train your pet. I have known of people to pay big money to install a fence, strap the collar on their dog and then complain that the fence is junk when the dog blows right through it. Also, you do not mention the breed of dog. Longhaired breeds require a longer contact probe on the collar (these are included with the system above). Training may take awhile, one of ours took 18 months (she was a bit stubborn) before we trusted her, most were pretty good in a month or so and we have one that it only took 3 days! The amazing thing is that we can take the collar off, put them on a leash and when we head towards the perimeter their brakes come on immediately! You can also block off areas of the yard that you don’t want them in. When hurricane Isabelle came through we had no power for 3 weeks, the terrain was changed with all the fallen trees, and the underground wire for the fence was damaged and NONE of the kids even tried the fence. As I said earlier, the people who say that it doesn’t work don’t know what they are talking about. We have 14 Huskies (15 until we lost one over the summer due to medical reasons), all free to run around, contained in our 6 acre yard. And no I am not a dealer ….. just a satisfied customer with 14 hardheaded Huskies most of them rescued as adults. We can leave them outside unsupervised for hours with no problems. However, we do not leave them outside when we leave the house.

      It will not keep other animals out including the neighbor’s brats. Neither will a 6 foot stockade fence … this I learned when I lived elsewhere and was attacked by a neighbors dog in my backyard. As far as people being scared of dogs, well if a 15 to 20 foot barrier field isn’t enough, neither would a chain link fence be. Besides, if the pet stays on your property who cares if they are unreasonably scared. As far as a dog running through … well yes, that could happen, however, with proper training it is unlikely. Huskies have an extremely high prey drive. Where we live we have a lot of wildlife, large and small. The kids will line up along the edge of the field and watch the rabbits, geese, deer etc. They won’t challenge the fence. The deer and geese have learned where the kids can and cannot go and will stay just outside "Husky country". Sometimes within 5 feet of the kids. As I said it does work. The key is training. That is the most important part of the installation of the fence.

      Some people advocate the “wireless” type of fence. You have little control over the coverage area. The other problem with them is "dead" areas caused by obstructions to the signal by things in your walls, trees and such. Your dog WILL find these areas.

      Others advocate tying a pet out “because “invisible” fences are so cruel!” Or “why do you want to electrocute your dog?”, however, think about what could your pet do if attacked by another animal while tied? Where is he going to go to get away? At least with an “invisible” fence or a conventional fence he has a decent chance of evading an attacker or fighting back.

      Please note though ….. you MUST not leave your dog out 24/7 with the collar on. You MUST bring him in at night and remove the collar. If you do not remove the collar he WILL most likely develop sores were the probes contact the skin which can become infected quickly opening a whole new can of worms.

      25 years of being owned by Siberian Huskies. I currently have 14 Huskies most of whom were rescued by us from people who didn’t know what they were getting into

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