maybedog, I'm in an area where most of us have at least a 5-10 acres and still a lot of open farm land as well. I am single, live alone and ride alone, and the fact that I can see about 4 neighbor's homes is kinda why I bought the house where I did and then proceeded to build a barn, an indoor and outdoor ring and fenced the entire property, except the leach field of course. My front yard is pasture for the horses.:) I figured if something happened to me, there was a good chance my neighbor's would see something amiss and call. I've told all of them to not hesitate to call if they saw anything out of the ordinary and if no answer, then call 911. I've had a few of them call so I know they are keeping an eye on the place. :)
Oh my goodness msj! you sound like a carbon copy of me!! My neighbors look out for me and my other dog is the one who lets everyone know when something is amiss. If they hear her barking "that" bark they know something is up. I'm hoping she will train this puppy.
I have hunting dogs (HIGH prey drive) and the invisible fence works great IF you consider a few tips:
-You need enough acreage so you can set a WIDE 'shock zone'. A dog can run through a 15 yard shock zone in less than a second. This is why it's not a good choice for regular unfenced yards that are only big enough for a very narrow shock zone.
-You need some kind of barrier to slow the dog down at the shock zone. A hedge, a horse fence, anything will work that keeps the dog from doing Mach 10 through the shock zone while chasing a rabbit, squirrel, etc.
-You may need a shock collar with more juice. Mine is the Petsafe 'stubborn dog' model. It has an adjustable shock level (with pre-shock warning tone) and takes a standard 9-volt battery.
-As others have stated, an invisible fence won't keep other critters out. Put your dogs in a kennel or in the house when you aren't outside supervising them.
I really like mine and have found it ideal for a small farm environment where dog-proof fencing the entire place is cost prohibitive. Also, unlike more expensive options, dogs can't dig under or climb over an invisible fence!
RackNRoll, all very good points. :) I've been out 'shaking' flags for several days and today took out the collar and held it and when she got close enough to the flags to hear the collar, I'd pull her back and say BAD. She got the gist of steering pretty clear of the flags in no time. I'll do this for a couple more days and then put the collar on her. I have a feeling it's not going to take more than one shock for her to realize the flag locations are off limits.
My neighbor has the shock collar for her shepards as they sometimes run through the fence after bunnies or deer, and she has found it really does work well.