How to Stop a Dog Who Jumps High Fencesby Kent Page McGroarty
If you come home each day to find your dog wandering around your neighborhood after jumping your fence yet again, think about why your dog might want to leave the yard. In addition to determining your dog's motivation for jumping the fence, make fence-jumping as difficult as possible. Such methods are among the best ways to deal with a fence-hopping dog rather than resorting to harmful tactics such as electric fences and collars.
Remove any large objects that aid the dog in jumping the fence, such as children's play houses and patio furniture. If possible, purchase and plant a row of bushes in front of the entire fence perimeter to make it as difficult as possible for the dog to jump the fence. Use evergreen shrubs that bloom all year long for best results.
Provide an optimal environment within the fenced area for the dog to play and rest in. Keep her doghouse clean and full of fluffy old comforters and towels, and remember to replace bedding after a rainstorm or other extreme weather so your pooch isn't sitting in a cold, damp doghouse. Provide toys for the dog to play with in the yard, such as balls of various sizes, Frisbees, chew toys and obstacle courses so the dog will enjoy plenty of stimulation and will not feel the need to escape the yard. Play with your dog in the yard so the dog does not associate the yard with feelings of anxiety or loneliness. Also make sure your children have a good relationship with the dog if applicable and watch for neighborhood children that may taunt the dog, prompting her to jump the fence.
Train your dog to understand the "stay" command and encourage good behavior with treats and lots of attention. If the dog feels happy in the yard and receives awards for staying within the fenced area, she will be less likely to leave the property. At the same time, train your dog to understand that fence-jumping attempts are a form of bad behavior and use the "come" command each time the dog tries to jump the fence. If the dog does not adhere to the commend, spray her with a garden hose to teach her to avoid the fence. Do not set the hose so the spray is so forceful it will hurt the dog, however.
Exercise your dog each day by taking walks or by playing with her in the yard if it is big enough. Dogs that receive regular exercise are better behaved, as exercise provides lots of stimulation and also tires the dog out. A bored dog is much more likely to jump a fence than a dog that is active and exercises regularly.
Items You Will Need
- Hedge shrubs
- Dog toys
- Garden hose
- Refrain from punishing your pooch when you catch her or when she returns home. Dogs have short-term memories and punishment will only confuse and scare her.
- If your dog has not been spayed or neutered, she might jump the fence in an attempt to find a mate.
- If possible, extend the fence height to make it taller.
- Dogs that regularly escape their yards are susceptible to fights with other dogs or wild animals, getting hit by cars or abduction.
- dog image by Peter Toth from Fotolia.com