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HOME SECURITY

2019
HOME SECURITY - CREATE DOG-PROOF FENCES & MORE

START WITH A LITTLE SHALLOW TRENCH
CREATE METAL HOOKS BY BENDING SOME WIRE
FASTEN THE HOOKS TO THE BOTTOM OF THE FENCE
ADD CONCRETE OR CEMENT
ADD BRICKS OR CONCRETE BLOCKS
CONCRETE BLOCKS
 
Jan. 19, 2019

SECURE YOUR WIRE MESH OR CHAIN LINK FENCE

No matter how hard you try to build a good fence the dogs seem to know how to undermine them and dig right under the fences and get into your yard.  Well, there's one pretty surefire method to keep dogs out and the good part is it doesn't cost an arm and a leg, especially if you already have a mesh wire fence.  With just a small roll of wire that costs $1.96 plus tax at your local hardware store and some cheap or used
bricks or blocks and a little, shallow trench of concrete or cement you can install a dog-proof fence that most determined dogs will not get through.  By the way, this method will keep out skunks and large rats and various other vermin too, even robots so that is a plus, for sure.

If a dog is so determined to dig under and get through this dog-proof fence perhaps a stern but friendly warning to the dog's owner would be in line.  If there is no owner animal control can be called. If your fence is cut or broken it may be vandalism which is illegal and you would probably want to call authorities.

START WITH A LITTLE SHALLOW TRENCH

You can start by digging a little shallow trench along the inside of your fenceline.  It doesn't have to be but a few inches deep, say 2-4 inches, depending on how much energy you have.  It doesn't even have to be straight as long as it's inside your property line.  You should make the trench a little wider than the pavers or bricks you use.  Bricks range from about 3" for narrow ones to 3 & 3/4" for larger ones.  Probably just 4" to 4 & 1/2" will be wide enough.

CREATE METAL HOOKS BY BENDING SOME WIRE

While you're sitting around the table or fireside some evening you can create some hooks from wire that is preferably stainless steel or galvanized wire.  Number 12 wire is good, but 16 gauge is narrower and will also work and is very easy to bend. 
Using a pair of number 8 or 9 sidecutter pliers cut the wire in lengths of about 7"-8" to make the hooks.  Using a pair of number 8 or 9 sidecutter pliers or needle nose pliers bend each end into an open loop ready to install on the bottom of the wire mesh fence that is already there at ground level.

galvanized steel wireYou can't tell much about this product because they have printed the 16 GAUGE Galvanized Steel Wire in white letters.  This is not the same as stainless steel wire but will do for exterior use since it's galvanized.  This costs $1.96 at Home Depot.  OOK 14 gauge is stronger and costs about $6.29 for 100 feet.  Anyway, the galvanized wire you want is a bit light in color or shiny as compared to black tie wire which would eventually rust.

Number 12 wire is stronger and provides lasting service.  'The Hillman Group' 100 ft. of 12 gauge galvanized wire is about $10.98.


FASTEN THE HOOKS TO THE BOTTOM OF THE FENCE

When you fasten the hooks with one of the loops you created to the bottom of the fence by twisting and clamping drop the other loop into the open trench ready to be poured with concrete or cement.  This will keep the bottom of the fence secure against dogs and other animals prying under the existing wire mesh and hold the fence down against the concrete.  Space the wires about 4" or 5" apart to ensure most pet sized animals cannot get between it. You may opt for spacing of 6" to 8" for instance and the spacing depends on how big an animal you want to keep out.  If you really want to secure the wire extra fast you can put a rod of 3/8" rebar into the trench and tie the bottom loops of wire hooks around it to guarantee a firm hold.  Fix the rebar rod at least an inch and a half from the top and off the bottom of the trench before pouring concrete.  If not using the rod of rebar you might want to twist the bottom loop around a nail before putting in the trench for placing concrete on top of.  This will guarantee a firm grip on the loop of wire.

ADD CONCRETE OR CEMENT

Concrete is cement that has rock or aggregate added to it. Cement is sand and Portland cement together.  Concrete is much stronger than cement but you don't necessarily need this much strength, so since concrete is cheap you can use it or either.  If you cannot handle the 80 lb. bags of concrete it is also sold in 60 lb. bags.  If you cannot handle the 60 lb. bags you may need to get some assistance.

Mix the concrete according to directions with water and pour the concrete or cement into the trench over the wires to about ground level and smooth it out a bit with a trowel or finishing trowel to where it's fairly neat and level.  You can use a board to screed it off if you don't have a trowel, just so the concrete or cement is fairly even on top.

ADD BRICKS OR CONCRETE BLOCKS

While the concrete or cement is still wet put the bricks in the wet cement or concrete and make sure to push them down a bit, say a half inch or so into the wet cement.  This will provide some hold for the bricks.  If you want to allow the concrete or cement to dry first and then use mortar to fasten the bricks you can just use type N mortar as there is no load bearing here and type N doesn't get stiff and unusable so fast as type S mortar.  Type N is plenty good for this purpose and pleasing to work with, stays nice and creamy longer.

If you want to space the bricks with a 1/4" mortar joint you can add the mortar at any time and make a real good looking job or leave them together for a solid border look.

CONCRETE BLOCKS

Alternatively you can use concrete masonry units, cmu's, better known as concrete blocks, instead of bricks.  For example, a 4" wide x 8" high x 16" in length concrete block is actually 3 & 5/8" wide x 7 & 5/8" high x 15 & 5/8" in length to allow for a 3/8" mortar joint top or bottom and one side. These smaller concrete blocks cost only about $1.40 each at Home Depot and cover a lot of area for the money they cost and they stand up tall against the wire mesh to prevent pets and pests from getting through the fence.  Make the footing a little wider than for bricks, say about 6" since only laying one course of blocks.
The weight of the blocks will aid in keeping the wire hooks down to prevent the fence bottom edge from raising up.

Do not put any stress or disturbance on the bricks or blocks for at least 24-48 hours.  You should have a fairly dog-proof fence and it's so simple.  Just trench it and add the hooks, cement, and bricks or blocks.

I hope to add photos soon which will aid you in understanding this method of securing your wire mesh fence.  Happy yardwork.


Infoeditor

NOTE:  I would buy the Sakrete Brand Type-S mortar mix, but do not trust just any pre-mixed storebought mortar mix.  Instead you can make your own with professional mortar cement and 2 to 2&1/2 parts sand or sand according to instructions, and lime.  I have had bad Quikrete Type S mortar ('Mason Mix') mix from Home Depot.  It was way too sandy and did not have enough Portland cement in it.  If you buy it you'd better add some Portland to it or it might be crumbly when it sets.  If you have crumbly mortar after it sets the joints would then be no good.  Then you'd really have a mess.

The Sakrete brand Type-S mortar mix I use has a nice rich grey color and is very fine grained, but the Quikrete brand mortar mix had a coarse grained reddish sandy color, way too much sand for the Portland content.  All of the Quikrete concrete and Sakrete concrete mixes were okay.

Sakrete brand Type-S mortar mix at McCoy'sMcCoy's has a wonderful mortar mix.

CONCRETE MASONRY UNITS OR CONCRETE BLOCKS
concrete structure
j-bolts  4" concrete blocks








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