Dog training shock collars can help you train your dog for hunting or good manners, but you need to make sure that you know how to use this tool appropriately.
Unfortunately the remote training dog collar got a bad rap in its early days (1960s) when it was used primarily to shock dogs as punishment.
Introduced in the early to mid 1980s, the electric dog training collar with variable intensity features gave owners and trainers options that now allow for positive feedback rather than punishment.
In this article we’ll discuss:
- The History of the Remote Dog Training Collar
- How a Dog Shock Collar Works
- How to Use Dog Training Shock Collars
- Best Dog Training Collars
History of the E-Collar
The electronic dog training collar was originally designed as a shock collar with no other options.
When your dog did something that you wanted to correct, you gave him a good jolt or shock. Tri-Tronics Inc. of Tucson, AZ started making the first really reliable shock collars in 1969.
These early e-collars had just one level and it was a pretty hefty shock.
Skip ahead, and many generations later, dog training shock collars now have a number of levels, with some that are only a slight vibration or a sound.
Dog owners now have the ability to use an electric dog training collar with dogs of all temperaments, not just the toughest or alpha dogs. The variable intensity of shock collars for dogs makes it possible to use the collar like an invisible long lead, gently reminding your dog to obey, even when they are no longer close to you.
How a Dog Shock Collar Works
An e-collar is made of two parts. The collar that goes on the dog’s neck has a receiver and the transmitter that sends signals to the dog is held in the trainer’s hand.
The beauty of this system is that you can give your dog instant feedback, good or bad, so that you can reinforce or correct your dog’s behavior right away.
Depending on the model that you choose, you can vary the intensity of the signal to your dog, either on the dog’s collar or on the transmitter. The lowest levels can be compared to a tingling effect, similar to the static electricity that you might experience when you walk across a carpet in the winter.
Because most dogs do respond to low levels of stimulation, you can save the high levels for extreme behavior or danger. Examples would be when your dog is running toward a busy highway or chasing a deer and won’t respond to your commands.
Law enforcement departments often use this type of signal to call in their dogs when they don’t want others to know where they are located. Using a dog shock collar makes it possible to give your dog a Recall command without yelling or using a whistle.
How to Use a Dog Training Shock Collar
The most important thing to remember about e-collars is that they do not train dogs. In other words, if you can’t train a dog without the collar, then you should not try to train the dog with a collar. Shock collars are meant to reinforce training, not provide training.
The best way to use an electronic collar is to teach your dog a set of commands and then to reinforce his obeying those commands. You can actually use this method for everything from good manners (not jumping up on people) to gun dog behaviors in the field.
This video shows you how to start getting your puppy used to his new e-collar. Notice that the puppy doesn’t need to be shocked.
Here’s an example of using the collar in the field. Your dog is chasing a rabbit and moving toward a busy highway. He refuses to stop the chase. You then repeat “no” and stimulate his e-collar.
Another approach that some owners use is to have continuous low level stimulation until a command is successfully obeyed. When the dog does something right, the stimulation stops.
Because the collar allows instant feedback for your dog, you can quickly get results.
Finally, always use the e-collar fairly with your dog. Never use it to hurt or punish your dog severely.
Best Dog Training Shock Collars
Educator E-Collar Dog Training Collar
This e-collar system can be used with 1 or 2 dogs. It will transmit signals up to a mile.
The Educator has a waterproof and floating transmitter and it was designed for dogs who are more than 20 lb.
This unit doesn’t actually shock a dog. It has a tapping sensation instead and a Pavlovian tone. The tone is used just before you start the tapping. Eventually the dog responds only to the tone.
You can tailor the amount of stimulation on a scale of 1-100, and in emergencies, when your dog is in danger, you have the option of using a stronger level of stimulation.
SportDOG SD-425 Family Remote Trainer
The SportDOG Field Trainer 425 has a range of 500 yards and uses 7 levels of static stimulation in the low to medium range.
You can choose to use quick short stimulation or just train your dog using tones or beeps.
Both the collar and the transmitter are waterproof and submersible, up to 25 feet.
Rechargable lithium batteries give you a remarkable 50-70 hours of use before recharge.
The unit comes with an operating guide, a training DVD and offers customer support 6 days/week.
Pet Resolve Dog Training Collar
The Pet Resolve Dog Training Collar uses variable shock and vibration levels and you can use a continuous or quick shock or vibration. Or just use a beep or tone.
This is the only system on the market that has a removable shock mechanism, if you prefer to do that.
The collar is waterproof and submersible, while the transmitter is water resistant.
For your convenience, the unit has a memory, saving previous settings.
With a range of 3/4 mile, you can use this unit with up to 3 dogs with additional collars, purchased separately.
Easy to use, the system also includes a free training e-book.