The upgrades are finally done, Jim is feeling better, and things are starting to have some semblance of normality. Well, as normal as it gets around our house anyway.
Saturday I finished the electric fence and we powered it up from the solar charger. The meter we bought said it was hitting the 1kv light. Not enough to injure, but just enough to give the pups a deterrent from digging out.
We were finally able to let Samantha run the yard off-lead again. All was fine until a deer ran across the back, then they were all at the fence trying to get out by the rockpile that covered their last escape hole. One by one, they probed the rocks until they contacted the wire, yipped, jumped back, some running for cover in the house, some hiding behind me as I watched from the porch.
Samantha and Freya thought something was attacking their puppies and ran up and down the fence with their fur straight up looking for whatever had made them yelp. After I reassured the puppies, Samantha saw a squirrel and decided it was her turn to find a way out. She trotted up to the rock pile, and began sniffing next to it, contacted the wire, yelped and jumped back ten feet with every hair on her body on end. She circled around menacingly, then ran into the house. Poor Samantha. I hate to do this, but I'd much rather have them learn to stay clear of the fence than to have to pick up their dead bodies from someone's farm.
The dogs have learned very well over the last couple of days that the wire by the fence is not something to take lightly. It won't shock them if they casually brush by it, but if they put a foot or a nose on it they will get a slight shock. Samantha is happy to be off-lead in the yard and in the house while the gate is open again, though she still thinks there is some invisible monster lurking by the back fence. We can rest somewhat easier knowing that our dogs are safe and not in danger of being shot.