Best Fence Alternative for Dogs - An Incredible Solution for Dogs with No Fence (UPDATED December 2021)
Got Dogs and No Fence?
What is the solution for dog owners that just don't have a fenced in area for their dogs to play?
"In my experience you have three options. The first is to walk your dog and run them daily...But, running is just not a thing that everyone does... not even I like to run! (laughs) So, the next thing that people do is look into an electric fence. Although this works for some, it does not work for all dogs and can be costly and a pain to install. People also don't think about all the collars, batteries and charging that comes along with an electric fence.
So, now what are we left to do? The classic 'put the dog out on the chain' solution. Right?
Well, a dog tie out can be quite difficult to get set up the right way so that it won't tangle. Many people can only tie out one dog at a time and, many times, by the time they go back outside to get the dog, the cable is all tangled around the base and sometime the dog itself. In addition to that, you have to be sure the tie out will, actually, hold your dog in one secure location. How many times has a dog just pulled the tie out stake right out of the ground and ran off? I have heard this horror story so many times. And, I have experienced it myself!
Now, add in the fact that you have two dogs or more and no fence...now what? Well, of course, in our humble opinion, your best solution for keeping your dogs secure and safe when you don't have a fence is our Double Dog Run System. It's secure, heavy-duty and made for all weather use. Also, we recently increased it's pull force to 1200 lbs and it's made with the highest-quality materials and craftsmanship. The best part is that it can be used with one or two dogs at a time and it won't tangle around the base at all and it won't pull out of the ground."
How did you come up with the Double Dog Run, what sparked it?
"When I first got dogs I had a huge dilemma to face. I was renting a house where there was no fence for my dogs. So, I did as anyone would do and tied them out on ground based tie out stakes for outdoor time and potty breaks. I went through many different types of set ups. I tried everything from zip-lines to ground based systems that only resulted in tangled cables and ALL of them pulled out of the ground - Not just some of them... ALL of them. I was at my wits end. I had to do something."
So, the idea for the two dog tie out came from a real life struggle of having multiple dogs and no fence?
"Yes, I wanted my dogs to be safe and secure, but still be able to play together. The morning and nightly untangling routine needed to be solved - immediately or someone was gonna go crazy! (laughs)
I was starting my mornings off letting the dogs out and then untangling their cables and replacing them every other month... Until one day, I had that "ah-hah" moment!"
Would you say that the issue of not having a fence and two rambunctious dogs pushed you to invent this particular dog tie out system?
"Yes, it bothered me everyday and I didn't like that my dogs needed to be separate to play together. So, yes, essentially as a result of the constant struggle (that was very real); in addition to untangling myself from the cables daily... I first did what all good people do and ask the Google machine if something for two dogs actually exists. I quickly found out there was nothing to solve my problem. So, I sat down, thought it out in my mind - adding and removing parts and playing out scenarios of how dogs play together in my head.
You visualized this all in your head?
"Yes, kind of like a technical drawing of an invention you would see... what's another example.... OH, almost like how the history channel or one of those shows can zoom in and out of a computer generated visual of how something works.. they add and remove parts and change perspective; it is kinda like that, but only in your head."
Ok, so you figure this all out in your head, then did you draw it out?
"Very quickly and roughly. Most of it was in my head though."
Once you got the concept for the tangle-free aspect of the dog tie out, how did you figure out how to hold two dogs at a time on one ground anchor? Let's face it, we all know those spiral anchors never hold anything, especially a dog.. and definitely not two.
"Yes, you are right all of the typical dog tie out stakes I have tested can be pulled out of the ground after working it around in the dirt. Believe it or not, I simply based my design of the Double Dog Run on real and personal experiences I had throughout life with leverage and physics. It sounds strange, but I did not pay attention in school to learn about physics. I actually learned about the power of leverage from working as a kid at my family's moving company and combined it with my experience in martial arts where I learned techniques in physical balance and stability.
For example, my dad taught me that it doesn't matter how small I am or strong, that if I used my leverage to pick up and move things in different ways - I could be as strong as my leverage would allow. And, often my leverage was way stronger than my actual physical strength. As far as the balance and stability, I learned techniques to maintain balance and stability in stances even when being pushed by a much bigger opponent...So, no, I am no rocket scientist! (laughs) Just an average person who had experiences that helped me to develop a super strong and well thought out product that would actually WORK.. AND HOLD not just one, but two dogs at a time. All I did was take my experiences and translated them into the design and current product you see today... and it actually worked!"
Yes, but what makes the dog tie out so strong? This is a beast. I can't get it out of the ground, I have tried.
"Good, I am glad you can't pull it out of the ground - otherwise I would not have a business would I? But, seriously, the Double Dog Run's ultimate 1200 lb pull force limit was only recently increase from 800 to 1200 lbs due to the change in our Topper, which is made of rubber and actually works as a shock absorbing mechanism for the ground anchor. Additionally, the base plate also plays a key factor in stability. So, it is ultimately the base and topper combined that add the extra stability, security and shock absorbing aspects to the dog tie out itself."
Once you had the design down, how long did it take to for you to build the Double Dog Run and perfect it?
"From the time I thought out the design and took it to my brother to help me build it; it was about 30 days. We made a prototype in one day and tested the strength and tangle-free aspects ourselves. I didn't have my dogs with me that day, so we hooked it to ourselves and ran around the yard. (Laughes) But the ultimate test was that evening when I hooked my pitt-mix and beagle-boxer mix to the system."
And, how did the first test run with your dogs go?
"It went beautifully, actually! I'll admit I was nervous that it would not work the way it did when we tested it ourselves... but it did work! However, I was using a Dollar Store bowl flipped upside down as a topper for it. That cracked and broke up after about two play sessions, but it gave us a really good idea on what we could do with some high-quality materials on the final product."
How many years have you been manufacturing and selling the Double Dog Run and how many times did you have to redesign it to get to where it is today?
"We launched the actual first version of the Double Dog Run back in 2011. Through the years we had to change ground anchor designs and toppers (the upside-down bowl-looking part that keeps the dogs from getting tangled) about 3 times before we got it all right. So a total of 4 redesigns before it was finally perfected in 2016 with the right, high quality and durable materials we use to make it today. And, we are still always looking for something new and improved to make it even better."
I have to ask, the show Shark Tank - have you ever thought of it?
"Actually, yes, we applied for Shark Tank back in early 2013. We made it through all the submission levels and we were invited to go further. However, after watching all the shows and understanding that the show was more about making money and taking your products overseas to be manufactured, versus creating jobs in the U.S.; we dropped out of the running."
Wow, that is big opportunity and even marketing opportunity to just drop like that, isn't it?
"Um, yes (laughs), BUT ultimately we don't need to be millionaires if the products we are sending overseas to be made and produced for us turn out to breaks in a matter of days because of cheaper, more cost effective ways to produce the product. Something like that can compromise your reputation, the quality of the product material and the lifetime of your company and brand as whole.
We HAD to take a step back and take a good look in the mirror for a second, I guess. I personally did not want millions of dollars if my genius invention was going to be made with cheaper materials... Basically, breaking and diminishing a brand new product that is truly an awesome, all-American invented, powerhouse of a dog tie out solution!
I am also a home grown American girl, with family who are veterans and small family business owners.. I guess I just really want to keep this invention in-house and honor ourselves, our customers and our country by keeping the product and hopefully one day future employees in the U.S.A"
So at this point, going into 2022 and beyond do you think you can maintain this status of 'the next best thing to a fenced yard' when it comes to the dog a pet industry?
"Yes, we ARE the next best thing to a fence - if not better because you can take the Double Dog Run with you and your dogs! You can't take a fence with you to a camping trip, or to grandma's house can you?"
"But, you CAN bring a Double Dog Run or our K9Compass with you, right? Let me put it this way: we do not 'think' our dog tie outs are the best, we KNOW they are the best. We also know we have the strongest tie out and fastest set up time of 5 minutes or less. So are we the next best thing? If you are a fence fan then yes, we are the 'next' best thing... but if you need an alternative to a fence, we are the best solution you can find. I have no doubt in that fact at all."