Thinking about installing an invisible fence in your new or existing backyard? While a few benefits make this choice seem like a great idea, there are many other things to consider when deciding on perimeter security.
When making a big purchase we tend to base our decision on “Can I afford this?” Installing an invisible fence starts around $200 with self installation and around $1,000 to have professionally installed. However, just like a traditional fence this also depends on brand, property size and how large of an area you plan on fencing in. Associated costs with the invisible fence also include the batteries required to work the collar (these will require replacing every 3-4 months; costing around $60-$90 per year, unless your dog “tests” the fence line more frequently) and training. While a traditional fence may start closer to $2,000 you are creating a private outdoor living space with no additional costs.
While a traditional fence provides both permanent security and privacy for your property, you are unable to transfer it – whereas the invisible fence is easily transferable for you to enjoy should you move. The invisible fence is only noticeable if properly marked. One thing to consider before installing your new invisible fence is how common power outages are in your area, continuing to install in those areas will essentially be “useless” as the fence does require a power source to work (usually increasing electric bill $10-$20 per month).
The invisible fence promises to keep your animals in while not obstructing your views; however, it does not keep other animals or neighbors out of your yard. The invisible fence allows you to alert your animals a few feet before reaching your perimeter; however, if your animal charges past the fence line it may be too afraid to re-enter at the risk of being shocked again. When training your dog for the invisible fence it requires you to train both along the fence line and when your dog is allowed outside of the fence line over a period of time. You must remove the collar every time that your dog is allowed both inside your home and outside of the fence line. Leaving the collar on can result in rashes, irritation, embedding and in some cases 3rd degree burns. There is a chance that your dog may become frightened by the shock from the collar and fence that it can displace its anger onto a child, car or other animals.
Alternatives to the invisible fence that are much safe are to make some changes to current fencing that you may have. Should you have a privacy fence, you can create a shorter fence within the fence line for your pets to perceive how high the fence actually is. If you find that your pet likes to climb, you can attach an overhang on the top. And last but not least, installing a traditional fence is the most common safe alternative to the invisible fence.