Tips To Prevent Your Dog From Getting Out Of The Yard
Leaving your dog outside unattended, even in a fenced yard, simply isn't safe. Someone may come into your yard and take him, or you may have an escape artist who is gone hours before you are aware he is lost. Here's how to prevent your dog from going under, over, or through your fence, or from sneaking out the gate.
Keep your dog from digging under the fence by creating a "no dig" L-footer system. Bury one or more feet of chicken wire that has been securely attached to the bottom of the fence at a 90 degree angle about 12 inches deep. This will form an "L" shape. If your dog attempts to dig under the fence he'll be stopped when he reaches the chicken wire. If you cut the wire, be sure to angle the sharp edges facing downwards so your dog won't be injured. Use lawn staples to secure into the ground.
Don't want to dig? The chicken wire doesn’t have to be buried to work. Another option is to lay it on the ground and use landscaping staples to hold the footer down securely. Next, cover it with soil and allow grass or garden plants to grow through it until it is incorporated into the landscape.
A permanent and more fool-proof option is to use concrete along the perimeter of the fence line to prevent him from tunneling out.
Install coyote rollers along the top of your fence to make it impossible for your dog to get the footing he needs to climb over. As the name suggests, they roll so it's impossible for him to get the footing needed to get over the fence. When his paws touch the rollers, they roll, causing him to fall backwards. You can purchase a ready-made kit, but they can be pricey. Do-it-yourselfers can save money by searching online for instructions to make coyote rollers from PVC pipe. It's important to follow instructions closely for your pet's safety. Coyote rollers are great because not only do they keep your pets in, they also keep other animals from entering your yard.
Lean-ins are an easy and inexpensive way to prevent your dog from jumping or climbing over the top of a fence. Attach chicken wire or wire fencing to the top of your existing fence at an inward angle as a deterrent.
Dogs that squeeze through small spaces
If you have a tiny dog or a puppy who is squeezing through small slats on a fence, or can wiggle through the bars on a balcony, there are several options. A Puppy Bumper attaches to his collar to make "even the tiniest pups TOO FAT to fit through the fence!" A "bar harness" works on the same principal and can be used on any sized dog. Both of these products should only be for times when your dog is being supervised so that he doesn't get caught on an object or stuck somewhere. As a back-up measure, you can secure mesh wire to your fence or balcony. Many materials are barely noticeable, and even if they are, they're worth your dog's safety and your peace of mind. Be creative, use bamboo mats or other materials to line your fence or balcony.
Door and gate dashers
For dogs who see an opportunity when a gate is left open - even for a split second - and take it, prevention is the key.
Install an airlock or double gate. Create a small extra enclosed area using a few extra lengths of fence and another gate. To come and go you'll have to go through one gate, close it, and then open the second gate. This is perfect for houses with children who may not close the gate securely, and for delivery people and other visitors who aren't used to having to watch for a dog when opening the gate. This idea works well for front door entrances as well. Use a baby gate to create a barrier that will prevent your dog from darting out the door when it opens.
Be sure the latch on your gate closes securely. Use a carabiner, add a lock, or use a hook-and-eye closure to keep your gate from being pushed open by your dog, or from being blown open from a gust of wind.
Remove anything your dog could use to help him jump over the fence such as outdoor furniture, vehicles, lawn equipment, his dog house, etc. Add additional fencing to make the fence taller if needed. Adding a flat barrier overhead, or a lean-in may be necessary to prevent him from getting out.
There are many drawbacks to electric fences. Your dog may decide that what is on the other side is of higher value than being shocked. Chasing the neighbor's cat may be worth a quick jolt, but he may then be hesitant to return to the yard afterwards to avoid being shocked again. An electric fence doesn't prevent other animals from entering your yard. Your dog could be injured by an aggressive loose dog or a predator.
Neutering your dog will decrease his desire to wander.
Limit or block his view to prevent him from seeing what's happening on the other side of the fence.
Provide activities that make being in the yard fun. Be sure your dog gets plenty of exercise, mental stimulation, and attention every day. Remember, a tired dog is a good dog!
If your dog outsmarts you and becomes lost despite your efforts
If your dog does manage to escape, do not punish him when you find him or when he comes back home. This will only make him afraid to come home (or afraid of you). Punishing him won’t eliminate his desire to escape.
A legible ID tag with your name, address, and phone number on it is the easiest way for the person who finds your dog to contact you. Equally important is a microchip that is registered with your current contact information. Collars and tags fall off, or can be removed, but a microchip is a permanent means of identification. Both the tag and the microchip are important. Hopefully, you'll never need to rely on either of these, but if your dog ever goes missing, you'll be very glad you did!
Coyote Rollers: http://www.coyoteroller.com/
Puppy Bumpers: https://puppybumpers.net/
Bar Harness: http://www.dog-gamutt.com/store/
Extend the height of your fence easily: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYcqVBA0WKA
Lost Dogs Florida is an all-volunteer organization dedicated to reuniting lost dogs.
If you've lost or found a dog, visit our website for free flyers and tips: https://www.lostdogsflorida.org/
Lost Dogs Florida is a 501c3 non-profit EIN# 84-3438237