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Discussion Starter #1
I am moving as of December 3rd, and I'm in a bit of a pickle.

Well in advance of my move, as soon as the papers were signed on the new place, I started searching for someone to fence the property to make it safe for my dogs.

Well, the deadline is Monday, and neither of the two companies I asked to come out and give me an estimate have even VISITED the place.

One of them assured me 1) the work COULD be done in the winter, even with snow on the ground and 2) yes, they could give me an estimate and start the work as soon as I took possession. To say I am pissed off is putting it mildly!

Last time I moved, and didn't have a fence, one of my dogs took off after a deer, and was seen dodging holiday weekend traffic out on the highway. I was very lucky she wasn't killed!

She's an escape artist, and has even managed to escape from my current property, which is fenced with a 6 ft. high board fence, as it used to have an above-ground pool.

I do have an invisible fencing system, but don't trust them worth a hoot, as so many things can go wrong with them: batteries fail, dogs run through the fence after another animal and not be able to get back, stray dogs/people still be able to get into your yard, etc. Also, when my escape artist was living on the property where I used this system, I found out the hard way that she liked to chew on copper wire, which is what the system is made of. (There were places on the property where the fence couldn't be buried, and I didn't always put her outside with the collar on, if she were just going out for a quick pee. The yard WAS fully fenced: the purpose of the fence was to keep the dogs from digging up the perennial beds that ran along the edge of the property, and from sticking their heads over the gate and terrorizing my postman!)

So, keeping in mind the ground is already frozen, has anyone got suggestions as to how I can keep my two German Shepherds safe until I can find a fencing company that actually WANTS the job? Is it possible to rent a fence, like the ones they put around construction sites?

The yard is already fenced on the east side, and along half of the back side.
 

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An escape artist would get out of temporary (construction fence) easily. As I see it your options include:

Calling other companies to get a sturdy fence built ASAP. Took me a longish time to find a company to do my backyard but finally decided in desperation to ask the guy who did my driveway retaining wall if he knew someone who could do a fence. To my surprise, he said he could do it. His company had no advertising whatsoever about fence construction. Doesn't hurt to ask! And the job he did was done well and FAST.

You might be able to get a dog run built but you may as well save that kind of money for a real fence. Maybe try a run line and just plan to let the dogs out there for short run breaks.

BTW I really feel ya on this. I have been increasingly surprised and annoyed at the frequency with which businesses don't return calls, don't follow-through on appointments, and just act like they don't WANT my business. Must be nice to have all that money sitting in a vault somewhere, right?
 

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If you can pound in T-stakes and get a roll or two of wire fabric, you should be able to get by until spring. Pounding T-stakes in frozen ground isn't fun, but it's definitely doable. Usually you can find rolls that are 48"high x 100' lengths, so even if you can't circle the entire yard, you can set up a decent run. In the spring, or when the fence installers come, you can coil the wire back up and re-sell it on Craigslist.

https://www.fleetfarm.com/detail/ok-brand-welded-wire-fabric/0000000046652?Ntt=fencing

https://www.fleetfarm.com/detail/chicago-heights-steel-steel-fence-t-post/0000000244642?Ntt=t post

Check Craigslist too before you buy anything new, sometimes you can get a whole pile of used T stakes for a few bucks. It won't matter if they're rusty, just don't buy them if they're crooked. :)

If your part of Canada is like my part of the US, the construction trades are incredibly hard up for labor. There are shortages in all the trades, and good companies around here have at least a few months backlog, some of my subcontractors are already booked halfway through next year. I'm scheduling our crews into June 2019 already. Utter madness. But I digress.

The T stakes plus wire will hold your dogs, as long as they'll respect a 4' solid barrier.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
WI, I'm 65 years old...

Maybe I can hire some local boys who aren't afraid of a little manual labour.

I called in a total of 4 different tradespeople, asking for estimates on various things that needed doing, and have only heard from one of them, a plumber, after I phone him. The bad news is the work I need done is too expensive: $2,500 to fix a toilet that has a pump and macerator. I also want to move the washer and dryer out of the garage, and hook the washer up so it uses the macerator pump to discharge into the septic system. The garage is electrically heated, so it's going to cost a lot of money to keep the washer there.

The T-posts might work. Since 2 sides are already fenced - okay, 1 and 1/2 sides - it wouldn't take a huge amount of work to close in the rest.
 

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Farm & tractor supply type places usually rent out T post pounders / drivers, which totally takes the pain out of it. Or they're around $30 USD to buy one. No swinging, no nothing. Two handles, looks like a tube, you tamp each post down. No crazy railroad sledgehammer moves or Olympic athlete required.

At any rate, congrats on your new home!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
As a former horse person, I'm familiar with those drivers, WIBackpacker, but it's certainly not a one-person job, especially when the ground is already frozen.

Have been looking at ads, and may have found a few possibilities. Now I need the correct dimensions of the property!
 

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Have you considered a cable run? When I was in New England and had honest to goodness TREES we had one up for the boxers. Not ideal, and not for unattended dogs, but maybe to get you thru the winter.

aka aerial cable run
aka trolley exerciser
 

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My neighbor had the same situation, just needing a fence for one and a half sides. What she had done was to use those outdoor kennels - the 6 ft. chain link- but instead of setting them in a rectangle, she just had the panels put up in a row (they attach together) and then just made one corner - the first panel was attached to the house and the last one to the garage. That could be set up in winter. A local handyman could probably do the work for you.
 

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We have to pound t-posts year round for excavation work and it is doable. For the longer posts a picket pounder works well and if the ground is frozen I’ll sometimes “prep” the hole using a Hilti first (hammer drill). You may not be up to the work, but might find someone who can knock it out in short order.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Oh, believe me, the ground IS frozen! We had temps around -2 F a week ago, plus 8 inches of snow! Nearly all of the snow is gone now, fortunately.
 

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Could you manage on-leash-pottying for a while? We've had to do that during backyard fence construction...with three dogs. It's not fun, but it's doable, esp. with adult dogs who are on a predictable potty schedule.
 

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I live in the country so i donno if this will work for you or not but i dont have a fence at all. I brought up my dogs to know boundaries. You will never see them past the limits we have set for them and they both have excellent recall.



I walked them around the property off leash and showed them where they can go. i started by taking them to go potty and let them go further and further, recalling as needed. we have 10 acres. they are allowed on 5. Maybe you can try this until you get the fence? good luck!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I live in the country so i donno if this will work for you or not but i dont have a fence at all. I brought up my dogs to know boundaries. You will never see them past the limits we have set for them and they both have excellent recall.



I walked them around the property off leash and showed them where they can go. i started by taking them to go potty and let them go further and further, recalling as needed. we have 10 acres. they are allowed on 5. Maybe you can try this until you get the fence? good luck!!!
Atreu, you didn't read my first post, did you?
Nope, nope, nope...

I'm not in the country, and I don't want a dead dog, or to have to pick my dog up from Animal Control again, which has already happened once with the escape artist! :rolleyes2:
 

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When I lived in Florida the house I rented didn’t have a fence and was in a residential area. I had the dogs on cables (supervised) and walked them, they were never off leash. It was doable but was not ideal for any of us.

Now I live in the country on 25 acres, I often let them run free if I am out with them. Sometimes they will chase after things up the mountain but give up quickly and come back. I also have a fenced in area off the porch for them for shorter outside time, mostly potty breaks.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I've found a solution. I am getting 2 rolls of temporary fencing, and some posts to go with it, for $40. Then I am going to do what I did on my previous property: run the Invisible Fence wire along the top of the fence. My escape artist is already trained to the fence, though she will likely need a refresher course, because it's been so long. We'll have to see how the younger one does. I'll keep a very close eye on her, and if she looks like she's going to break through the fence, I'll train her as well.

The two times Star escaped from my current yard, the younger dog stayed home, so I'm not too worried about her. My neighbours may not be too happy, though: the fencing is the bright orange stuff, not the green stuff, which would blend in better with the landscaping!

Hope I don't get a visit from the Civic Betterment Committee... (j/k !) :D
 

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If for some reason your construction fence doesn't work (I wouldn't trust my dogs out alone with it), consider a kennel. When I moved here, despite my property being fenced, I put up a kennel just in case. Got a 10 x 6 or so one for about 300. Actually it was larger than that (6 10 ft panels) and I attached one side of it to a shed. Never did use it although I added two more panels to it..... Well, that's not exactly true, I used it for the horse a couple of times and I have planted raspberries in it figuring it is relatively deer proof.


And down here in the states, I'm in an area that is booming. Getting a contractor to show up, even getting them to return calls right now, is pretty amazing. They're more responsive to small jobs when they are hungry.


And yes, fencing is expensive. Here field fence 5 years ago was 1k USD for about 6 - 700 feet. In Arkansas 15 years ago, a combo of chain link & privacy fence for about 240 ft on each side and a bit connecting to the house ---- that was at least 2k.US. And Arkansas labor was pretty cheap.


Until I could get the fence put up in Arkansas, my dogs were on a cable run. Not ideal but safe and me sane.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
The Fencing Saga Part II

Okay, I got a terrific deal on some snow fencing and 6 post on Kijiji: $40 for 2 rolls of fence and 6 posts. I bought a couple of additional posts and some zip ties from Home Hardware, and went to work.

I knew the collars for the fence were in my china cabinet. I also knew the wire and the control box were in a box in the garage. Over the last couple of days, I went looking for them. Collars and spare batteries: check. Fence wire: check. Splicers for the wire: check!

Control box?? Most important part of the system? Uh-oh. Finally, I found the AC adapter for it in one of the boxes, along with some Innotek flags, but the control box was MIA. As I searched for it, I began to make an educated guess as to what might have happened to it. I took pity on some members of our Schutzhund club who had been burned out of their house by a fire just before Christmas, and told them they could come and live with me.

It was a very bad mistake. The wife had the temperament of a volcano, and a mouth to match. And when they finally left, a lot of dog-related stuff disappeared. A lot of non-dog related stuff, too! I remembered her asking about the invisible fence, and whether she could use it. I think she filched the control box, and was too dumb to realize it was useless without the AC adapter!

I made some phone calls, and things were not looking good. The cheapest system our local Pet Valu had was $300 Canadian! Eventually, I got connected to Innotek, now Radio Fence, in the U.S.A. I was very angry over what had happened, and explained the situation to the rep. I spoke to. I also told her money was tight, as I will be carrying TWO houses until I sell my old house.

As I am a repeat customer, this wonderful woman (wish I could remember her name!) is sending me their basic unit and two collars for half price. She also gave me a break on what they normally charge for shipping! She told me my old unit is obsolete, and the collars will not work with their newer systems. (HAH! Take THAT, Kelly, you thieving [bad word]!!)

The one drawback is shipping is going to take 10 days, possibly longer, as it's Christmas, and everyone is mailing cards and presents. Also, Canada Post has been on strike, and though the government ordered them back to work, I'm not sure service has returned to normal.

But as of yesterday, the fence is up, and I will just have to be really careful the dogs don't challenge it until I can get the collars!

THANK YOU, Radio Fence!
 
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