Solutions for Dogs That Climb Fences
- Boredom and frustration often tempt your dog to climb to freedom.dog image by Marcin Wy...?uda from Fotolia.com
Climbing a fence may not seem like a feat that Fido can perform, but you just watched him scale the chain link fence, teeter on the top and jump off to freedom on the other side. It did not seem possible, but you just watched it happen. Dogs can and do climb fences to escape from secure backyards and put themselves in danger. Climbing, in and of itself, is dangerous as your dog might sustain injury or even death in the process. Once out of the fenced yard, your dog is subject to countless hazards.
- Eliminating the need to climb the fence goes a long way to end your dog's perilous habit. Although there are several reasons a dog chooses to escape, boredom and frustration are the main reasons. If your dog is left alone outside and bored, a run to freedom is tempting. Walking or running with your dog on a daily basis is essential. Dogs need the attention and stimulation of a trip with you outside the yard. Exercise is physically and mentally rewarding; not just for the dog, but beneficial to you, too. Another option in many cities is the local dog park which offers a spacious field to run safely and interact with other dogs and people. City dog parks usually have vaccination and breed requirements, so check with the park office beforehand.
- Training your dog is another way to deter escape. It is beneficial for your dog to know its boundaries and training is a way of showing your dog correct action. Training is a preventative method and requires discipline and diligence on your part. Teaching the dog its boundaries and reinforcing them in your own backyard can eliminate the need to escape. According to the Partnership for Animal Welfare (PAW), "Channel the dog's energy into activities that take place away from the fence. Throw a ball or frisbee, and frequently praise the dog for getting the ball and returning to you. If he approaches the fence, regain his attention immediately, and when he looks at or comes to you, praise him right away and resume playtime."
- Most escaping dogs have found something useful to assist them in the jailbreak. A well-placed table or platform, an easy gate latch, broken links or a loose board in the fence are all assisting your dog's escape. Simply moving the table out of the way or fixing the gate could likely end the problem. Fixing a short fence can be accomplished with add-ons, but check with your village or homeowner association for height restriction ordinances. If adding height is forbidden, approach the problem by adding chicken wire or another safe alternative. Affix the chicken wire or other material at a 45 to 90-degree angle, removing the dog's ability to escape. If your dog cannot jump over the fence, it might then try to go under. If that happens, bury chicken wire about 6 inches underground at the base of the fence and secure with rocks.