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Kingstonist’s Wizard of Paws: Reader question on electric fencing

Dogs certainly love to have the run of their yard, but what happens when you move to a community that doesn’t allow fencing in backyards? Electric fencing might be the solution, even if your dog is a senior. Photo by Matthias Zomer.

In his latest column, Kingstonist’s Wizard of Paws, Dr. Ryan Lleara, answers another reader-submitted question, this time about introducing older dogs to electric fencing.

Question: I recently moved from a residence with a secure, fenced yard to a residence where we are not allowed to fence our yard. We are considering electric fencing, but are worried our 8-year-old Westie won’t be able to successfully train to it. Do you have any advice on using electric fencing with an adult dog? — Rose

Hi Rose, and thank you for your question!

Fenced yards are great for dogs and an underground electric fence is one option. I don’t have any personal experience with an electric fence for dogs, but here’s what I know:

The product is not a harmful shock and should not create fear or anxiety in your dog. Looking around at a few companies, they all seem to offer training and guidance after they’ve installed their fence. I would recommend screening a few local companies and asking them about their training methods looking for positive conditioning methods.

Another aspect to consider is if they will provide continued support should problems arise later or if you add a new furry family member in the future.

I hope that helps and wish you luck in finding a solution!


If there’s something you’ve often wondered or questions you have about regarding pets, let us know by email at [email protected].

*Please note that specific medical questions about your pet cannot be addressed and you should speak with your personal veterinarian.


Dr. Ryan Llera is a small animal veterinarian at the Kingston Veterinary Clinic. Though originally from Florida, he married a Canadian (who is also a vet!) and they share their home with two cats, two dogs, two horses, and a rabbit. Dr. Llera also contributes writing to various other animal and veterinary related blogs. You can find more of his writing at www.DRRYANLLERA.com, or see what else he is up to on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter.

Disclaimer: All columns are personally written and my opinion, and may not necessarily reflect those of current or former employers.

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