Thursday, December 7, 2006

Don't Fence Me In

Two weeks ago I had Invisible Fence install their system around my property. The product works via a radio signal transmitted by a buried wire surrounding the property. Belle wears a special collar with a receiver that, if the dog doesn’t leave the signal field immediately, warns first with a high pitched beep, then corrects (read zaps) if the dog still doesn't leave the field.

Grete Krause, our trainer extraordinaire, has worked with Belle and I for three of our five training sessions. Belle can now wander the yard with supervision and a very long rope attached to her collar that I can step on in the event some wonderful distraction proves too much for her. So far, she’s only tested the system once – the day Grete was working with her. The wonderful distraction? The rotting carcass of a bird (perhaps one of Ole the Cat’s long forgotten toys) left to decay under our cedar tree. Mmm, mmmm!

Grete calmly extracted the remains from Belle’s mouth and tossed it over the “fence”. She then released Belle who made a bee-line for the bird, pausing just for a second when her collar beeped a warning. Big mistake. Unhappy, but much wiser dog.

Now why can’t they adapt this technology to “correct” those crazy drivers out there?

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