Electric dog fences are excellent for protecting your beloved pets on your farm or homestead. They can be used to confine your dogs to one area, or they can be used to keep your dogs out of specific areas. For example, you can stop a dog with a digging habit from destroying your garden. You could also protect your chickens or other livestock from dogs with a prey drive. If you have a pond, machinery, or other dangerous areas on your property, you can use an invisible fence to ensure your dogs keep a safe distance.
Traditional fences aren’t always practical, because dogs can dig underneath or jump over them; harsh weather can damage them, leaving your dogs vulnerable to escape; and they can obstruct your own movements over your land. DIY electric fences are excellent alternative to traditional fences, but how much does something so reliable and versatile really cost? Let’s take a closer look at the costs associated with electronic dog fences.
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Cost of the System
The biggest cost associated with an invisible fence is the initial investment in the system itself. The main power unit, underground wire, and e-collars for your dogs generally come as a bundle, and the total cost can be around $300 and sometimes even less. For an average sized yard, the most recommended fence is the PetSafe YardMax, which costs about $299 and can enclose up to 10 acres of land at a time. You’ll need to do thorough research to determine what system is right for your yard. For example, the Innotek dog fence review will tell you it’s a $339 system that has a 25 acre capacity.
An electronic dog fence typically comes with 500 feet of wire, and you’ll need to purchase additional wire for larger perimeters. Depending on the type of wire, it will cost $22 to $150 for every extra 500 feet. Most systems also come with one e-collar. Each of your dogs will need its own, and extra e-collars usually cost around $100 to $200 depending on type.
There are also wireless electric dog fences. Usually wireless systems are easier and quicker to install, but they have smaller capacities. A system with one-half of an acre to three acres of protection will cost about $300. The more expensive wireless system that can cover up to 25 acres is the Havahart Wireless Custom, and it costs $799. Of course, extra boundary wire would not be needed. Also, some wireless systems only work with up to two e-collars at a time.
You can save a lot of money on just about anything when you do-it-yourself rather than hire a professional, and it’s especially true for a DIY invisible fence. After you’ve purchased the system, there usually aren’t any additional installation costs. The installation can generally be completed as a weekend project. Wireless systems take very little time to install, because laying the boundary wire for an underground dog fence is the most time consuming part of the process. Clearly larger perimeters will take longer to dig. If you want to rent a trencher to make the digging easier, it will cost about $50 per day and can usually be completed in one day.
Powering the Fence
When considering the cost of an electric dog fence, most people are concerned about the cost of powering the fence. Surprisingly, it does not require a lot of electricity to power an electronic dog fence. On average, invisible fence users can expect their electricity bill to rise by only $1 to $2 per month. If you don’t have an electrical outlet nearby, or if you’d prefer not to use any electricity, you can purchase a solar panel to power your invisible fence instead. Most electric dog fences will require only one solar panel, and it will cost about $100 to purchase it.
Maintenance to Consider
With any major purchase for your homestead or farm, maintenance costs should always be considered. Fortunately, DIY electric dog fences don’t have many maintenance costs associated with them. Because underground dog fences are protected from the elements, they rarely break or get damaged. The most common issue experienced with invisible fences, which is still rare, is a break in the wire, and you can fix it yourself for no additional cost. Your electronic dog fence system will notify you if there are any breaks in the wire so your dogs will not be at an unknown risk of escaping if this does occur.
Most e-collars have rechargeable batteries. Those that don’t, however, will need a replacement battery every two to three months on average. Replacement batteries cost around $10 each. For two dogs, replacement batteries would cost about about $80 per year. This is usually the only ongoing maintenance cost associated with an electric dog fence system.
How Much Can You Save?
Overall, installing a DIY electric dog fence instead of a traditional fence can save you a great deal of money. A traditional fence for an average size yard can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars to purchase and get professionally installed. Weather or environmental damage to an above-ground fence can also be expensive to repair. Setting up your own invisible fence can also save you around $1200 compared to hiring a professional invisible fence installer. Professional electric fence companies will also charge at least $100 to fix wire breaks and at least $70 to replace an e-collar battery. On average, the DIY invisible fence cost is about 80 percent less.
If you need to enclose your yard or contain your dogs, a DIY underground dog fence is a great option that won’t break the bank. There are many advantages to an electric dog fence, but of course there are cons to consider as well, such as the fact that the system alone cannot keep other animals out of your yard. It will also take about 15 minutes per day for two weeks to train your dogs to understand their new boundaries. Most dogs respond very well to e-collar training, however. It is nice to know that no matter what your budget is, all the animals on your property can be kept safe or your vegetables out of harms way.
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