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Dog Escaping

 

How to stop your dog escaping

Why do dogs escape?

dogs escaping

Dogs escape for much the same reason that they start jumping and climbing fences. They can be:

 

Dogs are pack animals and want to be with their owners whom they view as their ‘pack’. They will escape if they know you will come running to get them. Others escape when they are bored, or because you have left the property.

Some dogs escape so they can run around or find other people and receive attention. After escaping, they remember how much fun it was and will keep repeating it.

Some types of dogs, particularly large or working dogs, escape so they can run around and burn off energy. These are obviously not getting enough exercise and the owner will need to take them for sufficiently long walks regularly.

What can you do to stop your dog escaping?

An electronic dog fence is recommended to stop your dog's escaping. Electronic dog fences are a popular and reliable means of containing your dog. Most brands claim a 98-99% success rate & offer money back guarantees if you are not happy with the results. An electric dog fence should be your first consideration to stop your dog escaping. The electronic fence will deliver a correction to your dog whenever it tries to escape. Your dog will think twice before attempting to escape.

There are two types of electronic dog containment systems:

dog training collar

The wireless or radio collar dog fence, sometimes called an underground fence, hidden fence or invisible fence. This containment system uses a special electronic collar. At a preselected distance from a boundary wire, the collar will audibly warn your dog that this area is "off limits". This warning sound is your dog’s cue to back off. If your dog ignores the warning then a correction is given which feels like strong static electricity. Most dogs quickly learn to back off from the boundary before the correction happens.

dog electric fence wires

A second type of system, which does not use collars, has a wire that can be either attached to your existing fence or placed in front of it. This kind of electronic containment is claimed to be close to 100% effective at stopping your dog climbing. It works on the same principle as a farm electric fence. However, make sure you buy a system specifically designed for dogs. Farm electric fences are designed for large animals & can deliver far too much power for a dog & are unsuitable for domestic situations. Choose a reputable brand where the product has obviously been specifically designed & packaged for the dog containment market. eg. Pingg-String String electric dog fence.

Tether your dog

Tethering your dog should be a last resort if nothing else works. Options are:

  • A chain or rope anchored to a central swivel point.
  • An overhead cable with lead attached to the cable. This allows the dog to move up and down the garden but they are still restricted to the cable length.

If you've tried electronic containment and it doesn't work well enough for you, then this is your only viable option. Make sure you give your dog access to shelter from the sun & rain. Your dog must not be able to get the chain or rope caught on anything. Ensure your dog's water bowl can't be knocked and emptied. This solution may keep your pet in but could result in behavioural changes in your dog. Tethering can cause excessive barking and might result in an aggressive dog. Use this method only if absolutely necessary.

Extend your fence height

Often thought of as a solution, extending your fence may not solve your problem. Extending the height of the fence does not address your dog's motivation for leaving, or present to your dog a good deterrent to stay. Extending your fence simply makes it more difficult to escape. Some dogs can climb what may appear to be an impossibly high fence. It is not uncommon for dogs to clear a 2.5m (8ft) fence! You'll find plenty of examples on U-Tube! Corners are a particular weak spot because your dog can more easily get a grip on the fence. If you decide to place an extension to your fence the important feature is that it tilt inwards at about 45 degrees. Also make sure there aren’t any other objects near the fence that the dog could use to jump over the fence.

Keep your dog stimulated

As well as taking measures to contain your dog, keeping them occupied will lessen your dog's reason to escape. Some simple ways to keep your dog stimulated are:

  • Provide toys for your dog to play with and rotate them so they always seem new and interesting to your dog.
  • Regularly walk your dog to burn up excess energy. Find out what exercise is recommended for your breed of dog.
  • Spend time regularly with your dog. If your dog is looking forward to your return at the end of the day then your dog is more likely to be there for you.
  • Regularly provide large bones for your dog to chew on. It will keep your dog occupied & happy.