In an ideal world all dogs should be kept in secured gardens but this is not always possible. On some types of ground, it may be difficult to impossible to build a secure boundary. In other cases there may be restrictions which prevent it. Here are some options for keeping a dog in an unfenced garden.
Supervise them at all times
Although this is the most time-consuming option, it may be the most practical solution on a short-term basis. If you’ve simply moved home into a house without an effective fence and intend to build one, then there is little point in spending time, energy and money on a long-term solution to a short-term problem.
As a longer-term option, this requires a high level of commitment and as such is only likely to be suitable for a minority of people.
Create an invisible fence
The idea behind invisible fences is that as animals which are both territorial and pack-orientated, dogs can be trained to recognize the boundaries of their territory and to stay within them unless permitted to leave by their owner, the pack leader.
While this can work for some dogs, it is hugely risky with others, who may be perfectly obedient when they are calm, but forget themselves when they get excited. It is also sad but true to say that some people deliberately provoke dogs and hence a fence is as much to protect your dog from people as it is to keep them safe from traffic and other hazards.
A final point is that while you may be confident that your dog will stay behind the invisible fence, neighbours and local authorities may not be so comfortable with the arrangement.
Use a cable run
These essentially work on a similar basis to ziplines. If you can find two points to which to attach a cable then you can buy a special harness to attach your dog to it. This arrangement gives the dog a very respectable space in which to play safely and as long as it is well within the boundaries of your garden, neighbours and council officials should be fine with it.
The main problem with these arrangements is that they rely on fixings which may or may not be available. They are often installed between poles but if you are unable to install poles for a fence then it’s highly unlikely you can install them for a cable run. Having said that, it may be a good option for renters as it is more affordable that installing a fence for which the landlord will not pay.
Use a chain
While keeping a dog chained up for long periods unattended is cruel, if the dog lives in the family home and is exercised regularly then it’s fine to buy anchor chain or similar and hook them up to it for some semi-supervised time outside.
The dog should always have access to food, water and shade and the owner should stay in the near vicinity in case of problems. Most family dogs are perfectly happy if left this was for short periods.
Kit is a full-time freelance writer and translator who is trying to forget how many times she’s moved home over the years. At current time, she’s trying to renovate her own house and garden. She’s the proud owner of a collie dog and enjoys escaping the chaos by taking him for long walks in the local countryside.