We all know how important training a dog is. More than teaching him cute and funny tricks, training teaches him to distinguish between right and wrong actions. Over time, that helps him develop behaviors that will make him accustomed to domestic living.
However, training can be quite a challenge, especially if you’re a new dog owner. Fortunately, a reliable shock collar can help you throughout the training process.
As the name implies, a shock collar is a device worn around your dog’s neck that relays vibrations or static stimulations to discourage negative behavior. Otherwise known as a training collar, it is often used to reduce excessive barking and training service and hunting dogs.
Of course, you can also use shock collars for training your dog at home. But if you don’t know where to start, then you came to the right place. Read on as we teach you how to properly train a dog with a shock collar.
Initial Preparations and Safety Precautions
Before we lay down the steps to properly train your dog, we want to talk about important reminders that you should consider before everything else.
- One of the most important factors that you should consider before buying a shock collar is to ensure that it fits your dog. Collars with adjustable buckles are ideal, so you can find the perfect fit for your pup. It also helps if you’re planning to use it from puppyhood to adulthood. When a collar fits comfortably, dogs won’t feel stressed out about wearing something foreign around their necks.
- It’s also essential that the collar uses premium and quality materials, especially for the contact points. The contact points help deliver the stimulations to your dog, so making sure that they’re accurately wired will give you peace of mind. As a tip, only consider the training collars from established names in the industry. This way, you know that all of their products went through struck quality control before being sold in the market.
- Aside from the quality of the collar, looking into the safety features is crucial. You want something that’s tested to emit humane levels of vibrations or static stimulations, so your dog won’t be in pain or feel stressed out. Again, looking for reputable brands in the industry will help.
- And finally, look into a collar that will be easy to use. There are two general types of shock collars: remote-controlled and those that are automatic. If you opt for the remote-controlled collar, it’s best to stick to one with a minimalist and simple interface. That is especially true if you’re new to training your dog. When a remote is easy to use, you reduce the risk of pressing the wrong buttons. And that’s crucial to activating stimulations. You don’t want to cause an accidental static release when your pet is not doing anything wrong – that will only lead to confusion.
How to Properly Train a Dog with a Shock Collar
Now that you know the precautionary tips, let’s proceed to the heart of this article.
- The first step is to make sure that the collar fits comfortably. The collar shouldn’t be too tight or too loose to achieve the best results. To make sure that the collar fits, simply try to insert two fingers inside the collar while your dog is wearing it. If you can do so without struggling too much, then the collar is the perfect fit. If not, then make the necessary adjustments until it fits perfectly.
- Allow your dog to adjust to the collar. Now that you know how well the collar fits, you should allow your dog to get used to it. This should probably take around a day or so. During this period, don’t activate any of the stimulations yet. Simply allow your dog to feel at ease while wearing the collar. That will make training a lot easier later on.
- With your dog now well-adjusted to the collar, it’s time to start the training. During this step, you have to be patient enough to teach your dog the behaviors that you want to develop. This largely depends on your goal – it can be obedience training, training a service dog, or preparing a dog for hunting. Also, it’s important to teach just one behavior at a time. Teaching a dog multiple behaviors at the same time will only lead to confusion. And that will only extend the training period.
- Positive reinforcement helps them remember positive behavior. When your dog successfully mimics the action or behavior you are teaching, give them a treat and an encouraging tone to let them know that they did it correctly. They will then start to associate it with something positive – the treat – and that will encourage them to keep repeating that behavior.
- In case you want to discourage them from developing a negative habit, you can start using the training collar. However, we recommend starting with beeps or vibrations first. These correction modes are the least stressful, so you know that it won’t hurt your dog at all. In most instances, such as excessive barking, corrections via the vibration mode are quite effective. As much as possible, only use static stimulations when necessary. A good example is if your dog escapes and runs towards the road. In this situation, the static stimulation will stop him in his tracks – and save him from a much worse accident. But even then, start with the lowest level of static stimulation so as not to cause too much stress on your dog.
- And finally, repeat the following steps in every training session. Repetition is crucial to developing a sense of habit for your dog.
And that’s it – you now know how to properly train a dog with a shock collar.
As a final reminder, keep in mind that you won’t be able to see results instantly. You would have to train for days or weeks to see the results, so you have to be patient with him throughout this activity.
It also helps to shower him with love and pets after each training session. This will make him look forward to the next session, and make him grow more comfortable about it each time.