Our dog, Brewster, has started wandering. He’s not a very bright dog, just curious as he can be. We have a pond (ironically called a lake) about 100 yards from our property. On occasion, it becomes the temporary home for ducks and geese. Of course, those creatures are not the quietest of birds, so they are easy for Brewster to hear. He just wants to go visit, I suppose. That means that we have to keep an eye on him at all times – and becomes more of a challenge as he gets older and his attitude becomes bolder. The joys of owning a male dog, I presume. Seeing as we simply adore him, we needed to find a way to keep him both in our yard and safe.

We had toyed with getting an invisible-style fence for a while, but not thinking it would actually keep a Golden Retriever in our yard. However, Sue did her research and we decided to go for it. Yesterday, the installation technician came out and installed the wire that surrounds our yard (including through the driveway), and the control panel in the garage. Other than the obvious mistake that he made by connecting it to the circuit that turns off with our garage lights (doh!), he did an excellent job.

We now have the month-long task of working with Brew to make him aware of the perimeter that has been established for him. The collar that he wears has a beeper (first warning) and a mild shock mechanism if he walks through the initial warning. Right now, the collar has a rubberized cover over the connections, so that he will just have the audible clues. In another week or two, we will remove that protection so that he can get the shock if he gets too close. There are flags that are inside of the wire now, also providing a visual cue as to where the safe zone is located. In about 3 weeks, we remove every other flag, then a week later, remove the flags altogether.

My biggest concern is that Brew gets it, and doesn’t freak out the first time he gets shocked. He has established some routines very well in the past (like walking beside someone on the stairs, not pushing past them), so I have hope of this working.

There you have it, puppy. Be safe and enjoy the yard!

Today we took our dog Brewster to a dog park. This park is less than a mile from our new home in South Windsor, CT. Brew was a bit hesitant to explore, sniffing at all of the fences, fire hydrants, and trees. He finally let loose and ran a bit. This was about as much excitement as the boy could stand as his little brain tried to take it all in. Hopefully, we will be able to take advantage of this free park many times while living in CT.