One of the most controversial issues among the dog training community is electronic dog training, typically through the use of electric collars. These collars can be used in a variety of ways, but the “shock” aspect is the primary source of irritation to the people who are against it. Shock collars are either extremely popular or widely hated depending on who you ask, but electronic dog training can be done in other, more humane ways.
Electronic Dog Training
Electronic dog training can refer to shock collars or to collars that emit vibrations or beeps to act as markers or interrupts. Many of the more popular dog collars that are used in electronic training utilize all three of these modes and you can move between them. For those that don’t like the shock part of the electronic collar (affiliate) you can keep the collar in one of the two other modes for training.
Vibration modes are essentially markers to get your dog’s attention. If you use the vibration mode to work as a marker, they will eventually begin to realize that something good or bad will soon follow and act accordingly. For example, if you are using it to mark good (affiliate) dog training behavior, you would vibrate the collar each time your dog does something good. If you are doing it as a mark for bad behavior, you would deliver the vibration to stop your dog from what they are doing. The important thing is to do the same thing all the time and not switch it up.
The beep versions work the same way but you would deliver a small beeping sound to alert your dog. These collars work in much the same way as a dog clicker.
Another key to electronic dog training is to only use it on occasion. If you constantly set off the beeper, for example, you will condition the dog to it and they will begin to ignore it. They need to know it is only for certain behaviors.
Electronic dog training using the shock collars are not considered to be a humane way to treat dogs by many. The pain the collar causes the dog is truly unnecessary and can be accomplished in a ton of other ways. Why cause the dog pain when other options that are not painful are available?
Electronic dog training can be an effective tool when it is done properly. The key is to be consistent and to show your dog the regularity and routine they need to learn properly.