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Last updated: 22 Jul 2019

The Best Dog Shock Collars (Review) in 2019

best choice shock collar for dogs

DOG CARE Dog Shock Collar

premium pick shock dog collar

Educator E-Collar Dog Training Collar

affordable shock dog collar

demeao Rechargeable Dog Bark Collar

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Nicole Ellis
Published 12:33 pm

Shock collars are useful tools in dog training as well as in correcting undesirable behavior in canines. However, owing to its very nature of delivering some form of electricity to the body of our pets, it is a very controversial gadget. In the hands of a skilled and dedicated canine trainer or handler, an electric dog collar can be an invaluable tool. Unfortunately, this strength somehow diminishes if one doesn’t fully understand the true implications of such a device especially in terms of the correct circumstances where its use can be considered to be the last resort. This is why we’ve talked with experts on the matter to share with you their views on this controversial device and how you, too, can find the confidence to use it judiciously. And we’ll start off with a presentation of the 10 best shock collars we’ve reviewed and tested for your pooch this 2019.

Related Post: Best Dog Gadgets

The Best Dog Shock Collar

1

When training your dog, reinforcing positive behavior is necessary and you also need to nip bad habits in the bud very early on. That’s when the use os the Rechargeable Dog Shock Collar comes in. Despite the slightly scary name, these dog collars pose no harm to your pets and are actually very instrumental in proper training.

This rechargeable shock collar offers different features to ensure your dog’s safety throughout the training period. For one, the collar offers an in-built security keypad that drastically reduces the chances of accidental shocks which have remained one of the main problems with dog collars in the past.

What’s more interesting is that with this ingenious product has an impressive remote range of 330 yards and if that’s not reason enough, a single remote can control up to 9 different collars – this way, you can train multiple dogs and puppies at the same time.

This Rechargeable Dog Shock Collar also comes with three different safe modes (Beep, Vibration and Shock) to help teach your dog basic command and obedience. These modes are such that you can easily choose which works both for you and feline friend. However, this feature is not to your fancy, you can always set it at Vibration or Beep. At the end of the day, the Rechargeable Dog Shock Collar seeks to find a middle ground that works for all pet owners. This consideration sets it apart from many dog collars have offered, hence why it earns its place on our list of the best dog shock collars on the market.

Up To 330 Yards Remote Range

Long Battery Time

Security Keypad

3 Training Modes

Adjustable

Multi-Channel Single Remote Control

Specification:
  • Brand: DOG CARE
  • Model: TC01
  • Weight: 7 ounces
Pros

The keypad lock prevents accidental shock

Adjustable settings work smoothly

The three settings make a viable training tool

Cons

Some users reported that may not be as effective for smaller dogs

Tricky for dogs with thicker fur

2

educator e collar for dogs
Educator E-Collar Dog Training Collar

The Educator E-Collar Remote Dog Training Collar is easily considered one the best training collars for dogs but beyond that, it is also one of the best selling products in its niche. There are multiple reasons why this dog collar thrives in the pet care industry; one of which includes the fact that it is relatively comfortable when placed on. It delivers a tap sensation, very similar to a vibration; as opposed to a jolt or a shock. This makes it a suitable option for when discretion is necessary.

What’s more, the intensity of the vibration makes it quite an effective product, however, if you prefer a stronger or weaker option, you can always increase or decrease the stimulation to more favorable levels in order to get the appropriate result from your pup. The good news is that the Educator E-Collar Remote Dog Training Collar also provides a clean stimulation without the common neck jerking motion that other training collars are known for. In addition, both its receiver and remote control are waterproof which helps keep the discomfort of excess moisture at bay. This moisture-wicking feature is also seen as a testament to its durability and many pet parents appreciate that it’s a long lasting device.

Overall, this is a top notch product to make use of. As well as being a dog training collar, it’s also animal-friendly and is in no way designed to harm your puppy. However, it’s best to keep in mind that it should only be used for behavior modification purposes.

Dual Charger

Lithium-Polymer Rechargeable Batteries

User-Selectable Stimulation Levels

Mini Ergonomic Stopwatch Transmitter

Two sets of contact point

½ Mile Range

Specification:
  • Brand: Educator
  • Model: ET-300
  • Weight: 7.7 ounces
Pros

Very comfortable on the neck for all dog breeds

Delivers a light tap sensation as opposed to a jolt

Option to increase or decrease the stimulation

Cons

Might be tricky to figure out at the start

Shock level adjustment needs time to  figure out

3

petrainer waterproof dog shock collar
Petrainer Waterproof Dog Shock Collar

What’s the difference between the Petrainer PET998DBB and the PET998DRB except for the higher price of the former? Well, the DBB dog obedience collar comes in a more durable and colorful (if you choose the 2-collar system which includes an orange collar) design made of thermoplastic polyurethane or TPU. The DRB remote shock collar, on the other hand, is made of nylon material. It is basically in this difference that you get a substantial bump in the price of the PET998DBB. It still comes with amazing waterproofing, though. And the training modes are still available in 3 types complete with customization options up to 100 levels in either the static or the vibration mode. The transmitter is equally protected from overheating and other electrical issues, keeping you and your pooch completely safe while the electric dog collar is in use. So, should you get the 998DBB or the 998DRB instead? Personally, it’s all a matter of personal preference as to the type of material you want for the collar.

100 levels of stimulation customization: tone, vibration, and static

With auto-protect mode

IP67 waterproof rating

Maximum effective range: 330 yards

Recommended for dogs weighing at least 15 pounds

Specification:
  • Brand: Petrainer
  • Model: PETDBB-2
  • Weight: 1.1 pounds
Pros

Can be used to easily train your dog outdoors

Works great to help correct barking

Option to increase or decrease the stimulation

Cons

Some users reported a regular default to sleep mode

Connection errors reported

4

For highly effective results with particularly stubborn pets, the TBI Pro All-New 2019 Dog Shock Training Collar with Remote is all you need. This dog collar stands out in the market for all the services it provides while remaining one of the most affordable and versatile options when placed aside against other dog shock collars. Not only does it come ready to use with a battery that can last up to 15-20 days after a 2-3 hour charge, but it is also waterproof, which makes it the optimum choice to consider if your doggie enjoys playing by the pool or going out in the rain.

As though not enough, this dog shock training collar covers a much longer distance than what most dog shock collars typically offer. And what’s more, it comes with multiple levels of intensity, ensuring that it caters for dogs of all sizes and breeds. If at the end of the day, you’re not satisfied with this product, (although the chances are slim), you can return it for a full replacement or refund within a year of purchase. Thankfully, being one of the best dog shock collars, it will probably never come to that point.

With all the TBI Pro All-New 2019 Dog Shock Training Collar with Remote offers, it is a little difficult to believe that it is so affordable; but that is absolutely the case. Excitingly, because of the aforementioned offers, the collar produces desirable results faster than most collars on the market today.

Long Distance Range

Long Lasting Battery

Affordable

One Year Replacement Guarantee

Multi-Level Intensity

Waterproof

Specification:
  • Brand: TBI Pro
  • Model: TJ-1
  • Weight: 5 ounces
Pros

Assure control in longer distances

Versatile with three training modes

Dogs can wear when swimming

Cons

Stimuli levels were to low for some users

User instructions not as clear

5

sport dog shock collar
SportDOG Brand Rechargeable Dog Training Collar

Priced at over $150, the SportDOG Brand FieldTrainer SD-425 Remote Trainer electric dog collar is definitely the most expensive in this lot. A closer evaluation of the SD-425 reveals that it basically comes with almost the same features like most of the products in this list, with the exception of a 500-yard range which it shares with the ALTMAN. It is fully submersible up to 25 feet, though, making it an exceptional dog obedience collar for those pooches that have outdoor adventurers as human masters. Unlike other systems that only allow for the simultaneous training of up to 2 dogs, the SD-425 transmitter allows for 3 dogs; you’d have to purchase the additional collars, though. Also, you can provide continuous or momentary stimulation to your pooch, a feature that you don’t see anywhere else. Unfortunately, it may have a rechargeable battery, but this only lasts 50 to 70 hours, a far cry from the 20 days of Casfuy or even the 10 days of Casfuy. Technically, it’s a great buy, except that there are other better products at significantly lower price. 

7-level static stimulation with additional burst or continuous modes

With shock, tone, and vibration stimulation

Fully waterproof up to 25 feet

Battery lasts 50-70 hours after 2-hour charging

Maximum effective range: 500 yards

Recommended for dogs weighing at least 8 pounds

Specification:
  • Brand: SportDOG Brand
  • Model: SD-425X
  • Weight: 1.76 ounces
Pros

Range of transmission is exceptionally wide, allowing for better control of dog’s freedom of movement

Fully customizable settings and levels of stimulation for better fine tuning

Provides either momentary or continuous stimulation

DryTek technology allows it to be fully submersible up to 25 feet

Allows for simultaneous training of 3 dogs

Comes complete with training DVD

Cons

Batteries don’t last as long as other brands

Comes with only 7 levels of correction; many times less than competing brands

Very expensive compared to other brands

6

petrainer rechargeable remote dog training collar
Petrainer Rechargeable Dog Shock Collar

It’s inexpensive and provides you exceptional control over your pooch’s obedience and behavior training needs. The Petrainer PET998DRB Dog Training Collar is a remarkable piece of equipment that allows you to fine tune the various modes and levels of stimulation that you can deliver to your pet dog. While it comes with a light mode, this has nothing to do with training purposes but rather for increasing the visibility of your hound especially in low light conditions.

In various online commerce platforms, the PET998DRB is favored by many dog owners and trainers alike because of its excellent combination of affordable pricing, remote controllability, weather- and water- proofing, and ultra-lightweight design. It also comes with a 5-year warranty so it should really be a great deal, although having a lifetime guarantee would have been a lot better. Perhaps that would be asking too much considering it is already priced considerably lower than competition despite the various customization features and power saving technologies that it comes with. 

100 fully customizable training stimulation modes

Available in tone or beep, vibration, and static modes

Power saving feature: memory function, auto protect, and auto standby

With low-light mode

Maximum effective range: 330 yards

Recommended for dogs weighing at least 15 pounds

5 years warranty: full refund or unit replacement

Specification:
  • Brand: Petrainer
  • Model: PET998DRU
  • Weight: 9.6 ounces
Pros

Provides exceptional value for its great combination of affordability and functionality

Substantially wide transmitter range

Very popular among canine trainers

Excellent stimulation customization options for greater fine-tuning

Superior weather proofing

Cons

Comes only with 5 year warranty

Doesn’t come with visual stimulation or correction

May not fit dogs with neck circumference greater than 22 inches

7

iPets entry into our list of the best shock collars for dogs is considered as one of the best-selling when it comes to entry-level units. Unfortunately, we find the price to be somewhat higher than the Petrainer considering they both have the same technical features. The only difference perhaps is the more unique styling of both the collar and the remote controller of the iPets PET619S. It is programmed with the same customizable stimulation options so you get to determine just the right or correct amounts or levels of correction for your dog’s needs. It even comes with the same 5 year guarantee that allows you to obtain a full refund if you’re not completely satisfied with your purchase or something’s amiss with the electric dog collar that you want it replaced. It doesn’t come with a light mode, however, which is quite a shame since its heftier price tag should mean it has a much better offering. Perhaps it is in the lower weight limit of 10 pounds that it finds its appeal especially among folks with smaller dog breeds.

3 training modes with 100 levels of customization

Static shock, beep, and vibration modes

Maximum effective range: 900 feet

Recommended for dogs weighing 10 to 100 pounds

5 year warranty: full refund or unit replacement

Specification:
  • Brand: Ipets
  • Model: PET619S-1
  • Weight: 13.1 ounces
Pros

Dedicated buttons for different stimulus to prevent accidental application of unnecessary stimulus

Fully customizable settings and levels of stimulation

Simultaneous fast-charging of transmitter and collar for improved efficiency

Complete with power-saving features to extend battery life

Excellent transmitter range of up to 900 feet

Cons

Comes only with limited 5 year warranty

No light form of stimulation

8

The Petronics dog shock collar with remote is one of two products in this list that is priced slightly above $25 which is, to many, is a great bargain especially if you’re talking about essentially the same features found in similar products. Surprisingly, Petronics enjoys a best-selling reputation in online commerce platforms in the category of head collars. The remote control unit looks like a standard 2-way radio transceiver but is a lot smaller. What is even more remarkable is that the Petronics comes with 4 different training modes, with the vibration and static electricity modes fully capable of 100 customizations for better fine tuning of corrections. It is ideal for dogs at least 10 pounds in weight and can provide for exceptional control even from 330 yards away. For its price and the addition of a Light mode as a means of training, the Petronics remote shock collar is a viable alternative to more expensive products that don’t even come close to giving what Petronics can offer.

Light, tone, vibration, and shock training modes

100 levels of customizable stimulation

Maximum effective range: 330 yards

Recommended for dogs weighing 10 to 100 pounds

5 year guarantee: replacement or refund

Specification:
  • Brand: Petronics
  • Model: XMS112
  • Weight: 3.2 ounces
Pros

Easy-to-use controls on the handheld unit

Greater control of stimulation via 4 different modes and in various levels

More classic, more elegant design

Fully adjustable dog collar

330-yard maximum effective range of radio transmitter

Fully rechargeable and weatherproofed components

Less expensive than most brands

Cons

Comes only with limited 5 year warranty

9

Designed specifically for aspiring dog trainers and handlers, the PetTech Remote Controlled Dog Shock Collar comes with an amazing range of 400 yards, although we’ve seen some units that can reach even up to 500 yards. If any, it is its lifetime guarantee that appeals most to a lot of folks. Moreover, it provides exceptional one-on-one expert advice for aspiring dog trainers and newbie pet owners. It is perhaps for these reasons that it costs higher than most of the dog training collars that we have in this list. The PetTech also comes with fully customizable 4 mode training stimulations including 100 different points for either static electricity or vibration modes. PetTech also strongly recommends the use of its static mode only when necessary such as during emergencies. The wireless unit comes with auto power protect to help extend the life of its lithium ion battery. The straps are fully adjustable for more snug fit and the LCD comes in blue backlighting for improved visibility even during the day. If you think the price is rather prohibitive, just think about the lifetime warranty plus the one-on-one support and advice you’ll get to make you a much better dog owner or handler. 

4 training modes: light, tone, vibration, and static

Battery saving auto-power protect feature

Maximum effective range: 1,200 feet

Recommended for dogs weighing 10 to 100 pounds

Lifetime replacement guarantee or full refund

Specification:
  • Brand: PetTech
  • Model: 57
  • Weight: 9.6 ounces
Pros

Exceptionally wide transmitter range for greater freedom of movement of pets

4 different modes with 100-level customization options

Longer lasting and fast charging battery for greater versatility

Comes with lifetime guarantee

Comes with complimentary dog training from the experts

Ingenious power protect mode for improved electrical safety

Cons

Quite expensive

10

A dog is a man’s best friend of man – but only if it follows the rules! With a sock collar, your naughty pup will learn to behave in a friendly and loving way. Thanks to the Nemobub Training Collar, they will understand the do’s and don’ts as well as the consequences of every action. This collar works with a wireless pres and act technology built with different signals (vibration and shock) without harming your pet dog.

It also offers various customization levels if the intensity needs adjusting. This can be done with the remote control that offers three different color options that express the different training modes. For larger or weaker input, you simply need to adjust the stimulation levels for the appropriate result. As your pet must always be comfortable when wearing a shock collar, this ingenious product has been designed to reduce the common neck jerking motion that other training collars are known for. Overall, this is a great collar that can be used to help correct barking, leash training, sitting, walking, aggression, as well as other behavioral obedience.

Available in 3 training modes: tone, vibration, and static

100 different levels of customizations

Maximum effective range: 500 yards

Automatic standby and power saving mode

IPX7 waterproof rating

Recommended for dogs weighing 15 to 100 pounds

Specification:
  • Brand: Nemobub
  • Model: ST048B
  • Weight: 1.76 ounces
Pros

Remote training with wireless technology

Easy to operate

Rubber surface easier for the neck

Cons

Intensity button too tricky to use

User instructions not as clear

11

Shock Collars are designed to correct your dog’s behavior by delivering small and contained electrical pulses which draw your pet’s attention to a matter that requires correction. Though the Patpet Dog Training Collar is great for so many reasons, it really stands out as being an excellent option for the blind to use to train their dogs. This design, which caters to a large number of the population, has proven to be one of the most socially conscious decisions in the pet care industry. Due to the fact that it can literally be operated by the blind, it goes without saying that it is very user- friendly.

The Patpet Dog Training Collar also has a 1000yd range; this means you can train your dog in the yard or other wide spaces, such as the park. It can also control up to two dog collars, so, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth. Just be sure to follow the instructions in the manual closely for maximum effectiveness and you’ll have nothing to worry. For optimum results, avoid leaving Patpet Dog Training Collar on your dog for more than twelve hours in a day. Also be sure to reposition the collar every one or two hours, ensuring your dog’s comfort.

If the Patpet Dog Training Collar is not to your taste then you’d be delighted to know that it offers a 30-day money back satisfaction guarantee and even a one year warranty as well. You are advised to contact the manufacturers if you have any problems with the collar.

Blind Operation Design

One Size fits all (from 9lbs and above)

1000Yd Remote Range

1 Year Replacement Warranty

Durable

Separate Command Buttons

Specification:
  • Brand: Patpet
  • Weight: 1.1 pounds
Pros

Diverse colorful command buttons prevent confusion

Can be used in water

Adjustable levels

Cons

Quality needs improving

May not work beyond 6 feet

12

Designed specifically to manage excessive barking by dogs, the Casfuy dog bark collar is an inexpensive yet effective gadget that can help minimize unnecessary barking by your pooch. At the core of its design is a unique Smart Barking Detection processor that specifically senses your dog’s unique bark to be triggered. Unfortunately, such a mechanism will mean it will not put an end to the barking of other dogs. On the bright side, you don’t have to worry about false triggers so that you don’t unnecessarily inconvenience your pet canine. The Casfuy also comes with an auto-shutoff feature which effectively turns the device off if 7 triggers were registered in a minute. One minute of inactivity and the Casfuy powers up again. The battery is also remarkable, able to last from 2 to almost 3 weeks on a single charge that lasts 60 minutes. While it is designed as a dog bark collar, we know that it can also be used for other canine training purposes as it comes with 3 training modes, although the fine adjustment levels are limited to just 7. As a whole, nonetheless, the Casfuy is a great buy considering its safety, versatility, and guarantees. 

Provides tone, vibration, and 7-level shock stimulation

With anti-false bark Smart Bark Detection technology

Automatic safety shutoff mechanism

Battery lasts 14-20 days after 1 hour USB charging

Recommended for dogs weighing 6.6 to 120 pounds

100% guarantee: full refund or replacement

Specification:
  • Brand: Casfuy
  • Model: Trainingcollar01
  • Weight: 10.4 ounces
Pros

Smart barking detection chip means the stimulation is triggered only by your dog’s unique bark signature; won’t be set off by other dogs’ bark

Fully adjustable collar to fit any size of dog

Fully adjustable levels of stimulation

Automatic deactivation mode for improved canine safety

Extra-long battery life with super-fast charging properties

Rainproof design

Cons

Doesn’t come with light stimulation

Levels of stimulation are quite limited; from 0 to 7 only

13

If you think the Casfuy is beyond your budget for an anti-bark collar, then you might want to get the Bark Solution Bark Dog Collar Training System. Just a little more than $25, the Bark Solution boasts of the 2nd generation of bark sensors allowing you to fully customize delivery of static electricity that is significantly lower than conventional dog training collars. Do take note that its intended use is for managing your pooch’s incessant barking. This is because it only has about 7 adjustment settings for the delivery of the necessary stimulus.  Another fascinating feature about the Bark Solution is that its electrodes are fully replaceable such that if it gets broken you can easily change it. Of course, if you don’t think the product is for you, then you can request for a full refund. 

2nd-generation of bark sensors

Fully adjustable settings

Lower static discharge from shock mechanism

Fully replaceable electrodes

12-month warrant on service and parts

Satisfaction guarantee: replacement or full refund

Recommended for dogs weighing at least 8 pounds

Specification:
  • Brand: demeao
  • Model: RR-12-26-15
  • Weight: 3.2 ounces
Pros

Customizable levels of stimulation or correction for optimum control

Designed specifically to control or manage barking

Affordable; perfect solution for the budget conscious

Fully replaceable electrodes for quick repairs and continuous use

Lower static stimulation means a lot safer for your dog

Cons

Only comes with 12 months warranty

May be cheap but, since it only delivers sound and shock stimulation, may be pricey

Only 7 correction levels

14

ieGeek Dog Training Collar
ieGeek Dog Training Collar

Looking for a versatile and dog-friendly shock collar? The ieGeek Dog Training Collar can certainly help out. This is one of the few shock collars favored by experts in the dog training profession and there’s a reason for that – it’s one of the most efficient options on the market. Unsurprisingly, the ieGeek Dog Training Collar was an instant hit with dog owners and professionals. It has been commended for its durability and quality when concerning the materials used in its construction. Its durability makes certain that you don’t have to repeatedly spend money on replacement dog collars.

This collar is designed to correct barking, sitting, aggression, leash training, and several other misbehaviors. For this versatility, it has become a favorite among professionals. However, this does not mean you have to be a pro to use it; as long as you’re a dog parent who cares for their pup, then this is dog collar for you. The ieGeek Dog Training Collar also comes with a soft and adjustable sleeve that can be altered for the guaranteed comfort of your pet. As for its battery life, it offers a pretty long stand time – 15 days for the receiver and 60 days for remote control.

The ieGeek Dog Training Collar comes with two collars; as a result, you can train two dogs at the same time. It also has three training modes from the ‘Beep’, to ‘Vibration’ and ‘Electric Shock’; so, be sure to choose the proper level or your training with your dog will be affected. All in all, this dog training collar was an instant hit with fans who consistently rave about it online. Knowing other dog parents have purchased this collar and are getting positive results is a great reason to make a purchase pretty soon.

Waterproof

Rapid Charger

Comes With Two Collars

Adjustable Levels

1960ft Control Range

90 days Money Back Guarantee, with a 3-year Warranty

Specification:
  • Brand: ieGeek
  • Weight: 1.58 pounds
Pros

The transmitter is water resistant

Comes with an easy to operate remote control

0-16 level adjustment

Cons

Quality needs a little improvement

Power could be better

Best Dog Shock Collar Buying Guide & FAQ

Buying a dog shock collar can be quite a headache. There are a lot of things to ask yourself first even before you start picking the best one for your pooch. For many newbies an understanding of what dog shock collars are for is crucial to making a buying decision. Equally important is an understanding of how these gadgets work as well as the different types of electric shock collars available in the market. Only then can you start mulling about the various considerations for buying such a device for you and your pooch.

dog training collar

What are Shock Collars Used For?

Despite repeated warnings from animal experts as well as animal rights groups against the use of electric dog collars, a lot of people still do actively search for such devices. According to the Humane Society of the United States, shock collars are doggie contraptions that are pretty much similar to a standard collar worn around the neck of a dog and are typically used in dog obedience training and behavior modification therapy for problematic canines such as those with nuisance barking.

But why would you want a dog shock collar? Here are some of the more common uses of shock collars.

  • Pet containment 

If you don’t want your pet dog to be wandering beyond your property line, a shock collar can be quite useful especially when used together with an invisible or electronic fence system. These gadgets deliver a stimulus to dogs as they get near a pre-designated off-limits zone. You no longer need a physical fence to keep your pet well within your property.

  • Anti-barking 

There are some devices that deliver a correction every time a dog barks. These are typically embedded with a sensor that allows it to identify the bark of the dog wearing the collar and not any other dog that may be near. If the dog continues to bark, the device delivers more forceful, longer, and even more frequent corrections until the dog stops barking or until a preset time has been reached.

  • Dog training and behavior modification 

As we have already said above, the main use of these devices is in the training and the modification of behavior of dogs through the process of aversive training. It is typically used in off-leash dog training where the pooch is let off the leash to roam around and pay attention to verbal cues or commands issued by its master. It is also used by pet owners in correcting behavioral issues in dogs like aggression towards other dogs and even food aggression. What it does is that it delivers the correction at the right moment to put a halt to the aggressive behavior of the dog. Understand however, that this does not address the reason behind such problem behaviors. It only stops the current behavior at that instant.

Related Post: Best Dog Leash

  • Training about canine safety 

Many hunters as well as outdoor adventurers use shock collars to train their dogs to avoid dangerous objects and animals. For example, they are taught to avoid rattlesnakes by conditioning them to the sound of a rattlesnake. A caged rattlesnake is often used in such trainings and the dog is shocked quite hard once it gets near the caged rattlesnake. It then associates the shock with the sound of the rattlesnake so that when it is outdoors and it hears a rattle, it will not go to that area where the sound emanates. 

How Does a Shock Collar Work?

We’ve been talking about shock or electric collars for dogs. But how do they work exactly?

As the name implies, shock collars are devices that deliver an electric stimulus to the body of dogs to startle them and stop them from whatever it is they’re doing. Depending on the type of collar, these devices always have an electronic unit that delivers various kinds of stimulation such as visual, auditory, vibration, and static electricity. When a preset threshold is met, the device is activated. For example, if it is an anti-bark collar, then it delivers the stimulus only when the correct trigger – your dog’s bark – is registered in the device’s sensor.

Dog training collars typically combine an electric unit on the collar and a remote control transmitter held and operated by the person. If a given command is not followed by the dog or if it gets distracted from its training by other objects or circumstances, the pet trainer can activate the device using the remote control unit. The device then delivers a preset stimulus to either correct the pooch or to have it refocus on the task at hand.

As we have explained in the preceding section, a shock collar doesn’t only deliver static electricity. It can also provide other forms of stimulus such as light, tone, and vibration. The mechanism is still the same, though. The dog performs an undesirable action, the device senses it or you notice it, and a stimulus is applied to correct the behavior or stop your dog from whatever it is doing. The static training mode of these devices should only be used when all other modes have been proven ineffective or are no longer working. 

collars for dogs

Types of Dog Shock Collars

There are three fundamental types of shock collars currently available in the market. These are often related to their primary use.

  • Training collars 

As the name implies, these types of shock collars are primarily used in the training and sometimes behavior modification of dogs. These deliver static stimulation to dogs to either correct their actions or to modify their behavior.

One of the most crucial aspects of training that training shock collars address is time. Many pet owners understand the need for canine training. Unfortunately, conventional training methods whereby you use a blend of stimulus-response-positive reinforcement looping often take time. Even the most seasoned dog handler can find training a pooch to be especially challenging and will require several weeks up to several months to get the dog to do what it is being trained to do. However, a dog trainer is a professional who devotes most of his time in the training of pooches. Ordinary pet owners simply don’t have the luxury of time. It would already be great if they can spend an hour or so walking or even playing with their dogs. Now, if you include training, then you’re looking at additional time that they have to get from time they should spend for themselves and their families.

A dog shock collar can substantially decrease the time needed to see results from pets. And it is these faster results that really appeal to dog owners as well as aspiring handlers.

Training shock collars are used in off-leash training and as such have to provide ample coverage for optimum control. Generally, the range is about 1000 feet to 500 yards, although it’s not unusual to see some products further extending the coverage. What this simply means is that you can deliver corrections even from afar as long as it is within the range of the product.

  • Anti-bark collars 

As we have already described above, these are dog collars that are often used to control barking. It is natural for canines to bark as it is their way of communicating something. But if you’re already tucked in bed and your pooch suddenly feels the urge to bark, would you rather go out and check what it is your pet is barking at? For most pet owners, shouting at their dogs to shut up is a lot easier than getting up and checking what’s wrong. Unfortunately, we all know that this is not the correct way to address canine barking. As such, when you’re simply glued to your bed, you’d be glad that an anti-bark collar is working to stop your pooch from barking.

Related Post: Best Dog Silencer

  • Invisible fence collars 

These types of shock collars can actually be considered as a training collar except that the trigger is an invisible fence that constantly sends signals over a pre-determined area. When your pooch goes near this area, the signal sends a message to the receiver on your pet’s collar which effectively triggers the application of the correction. It can be in the form of a beep. If your hound ignores this, then the device vibrates. If your pet still ignores this and decides to keep on going towards the invisible fence, then a static stimulus will be delivered.

The thing about these types of systems is that they’re more expensive than other types of electric collars as you are also talking about wires to be placed under the ground. Good thing there are other models that you can choose that don’t require any digging. However, they will still cost you somewhat higher than other systems. 

Things to Consider When Buying a Dog Shock Collar

Looking at the market for dog shock collars today it is quite easy to get lost from the multitude of models and variants. There will always be products that stand out. One way you can determine the best one for you and your pet is by considering the following things before you even begin narrowing down your options.

  • Multiple signaling modes 

In addition to the shock mechanism, many products also include 2 to 3 more signaling modes. These can include light, tone, and vibration. The ideal progression is to always start with training modes that are less threatening to your dog. In such cases, you can start with light or tone modes before you apply vibration stimulation. Like shock stimulation, tone and vibration stimulation can be fine-tuned to different levels, further extending the usefulness of the device in training your dog or even in correcting its behavior. It is thus, important to look for products that can provide you with the most number of different types of stimulus so you will not have to instantly resort to the application of static electricity.

  • Levels of Stimulation 

One of the most important advances in today’s electric collar technology is the integration of processors and sensors that allow the user to dial in or customize the level of intensity of the shock that is delivered. For example, a device can have 100 different levels of increasing intensity using static electricity alone. This can actually go a long way towards training your pooch. Let us say that your dog can typically acclimatize itself to a particular setting every training session that you have. Then this essentially means you have about 100 training sessions before you are going to use the maximum level of static electricity. And if you happen to train 3 times a week, then you’re essentially looking at about 33 weeks of use before you have to apply level 100. Of course, this is just hypothetical. The point is to get a device that allows you to fine-tune the intensity of the stimulus being delivered.

  • Maximum effective range 

As much as possible you would want a device that allows you control of your pet over greater distances. This should give you the chance to try out your pooch’s mastery of the recall. As we have pointed out in the previous section, many dog shock collars typically come with a range of about 1000 feet although there are those that extend this to 500 yards or even further. Technically, it all depends on the location where you’re going to train or ‘control’ your dog. If you’re looking at a hilly terrain, then maybe you’ll even need a device with a mile range. Otherwise, if you are only going to use it in your neighborhood, the usual 330 yards should suffice.

  • Waterproofing

You might want to get a shock collar that is fully weatherproofed. This is especially handy if you have a pooch that simply loves the water or even playing in puddles. But, if you’ve got a pet that doesn’t really want to get its feet wet, then you can skip this one altogether.

  • Cost 

There is a buzz in the canine world saying that really expensive devices can guarantee safer ‘shocks’ for your pooch. Unfortunately, there really is no way we can gauge just how ‘safe’ the shock is since no manufacturer has ever published the actual voltage ratings of their products. That being said, it really doesn’t matter if you get a cheap $25 device or a really expensive $200 unit as long as you can be sure that it allows you the ability to fine-tune the stimulation being applied and possess a greater number of varying stimulation.

Will the Electric Stimulation from a Shock Collar Hurt My Dog?

Here’s the thing: there really is no way to gauge whether the electricity delivered by such devices will hurt our dogs. Unfortunately, there is also no objective evidence that shows it will not. Perhaps ‘hurt’ is not the proper term.

Electricity, no matter how miniscule, can lead to tissue inflammation and injury. That is why one of the most common concerns, and one that is duly acknowledged by dog shock collar manufacturers, is the occurrence of electrical burn injuries especially in areas where the electrodes come in contact with the dog’s skin. This typically occurs if the shock collar has been used more frequently than necessary or that it is worn by the dog for an extended period of time. Unlike chemical or thermal burns, electrical burn injuries are quite difficult to diagnose since the tissue injury happens very fast and over a diffuse area. Also, the affected tissues are located much, much deeper. What this means is that your dog may not have any burn marks on the area where the electrodes touch its skin, but the damage may already be forming deeper in the skin and underlying tissues.

It is for this reason that many do not actually recommend the use of shock collars. And if you have read a majority of manufacturers’ recommendations, they strongly advise the use of static correction only as a means of last resort. Even companies are saying that other signaling modes be used first before the delivery of shock. While they don’t openly admit it, what these manufacturers are saying is that using the static shock mechanism alone can result to tissue injuries secondary to electrical burns. That is why they strongly recommend using the tone and vibration functions first. And if they do recommend the static correction, it will always be at the lowest setting.

Will the electric stimulation from a shock collar hurt your pet canine? Of course! The only problem is that we really cannot gauge just how much ‘hurt’ your pet is getting for every level of static correction it is receiving. Just because it is not whining or crying doesn’t mean that it doesn’t feel anything.

Related Post: Best Dog Whistles

training collars

Are Shock Collars Safe?

As an extension to the above section on whether the electrical stimulation from a shock collar will hurt your dog or not, the obvious answer to the question whether shock collars are safe or not is ‘no’.

Shock-only dog collars are never safe for the simple fact that they still deliver electric current to your dog. Also, don’t fall for such words as “humanely” because there really is nothing humane in passing electricity down the body of a dog.

However, if you use the tone and / or vibration correction modes of the device, we’d say it is perfectly safe as your dog only gets startled. There are no tissue injuries that occur with vibration and tone modes.

The use of dog shock collars for training and canine behavior modification purposes is a deeply emotional one. Even manufacturers indirectly admit that shock correction is not the best way to train dogs; otherwise they would have made their products as shock-only devices. This doesn’t mean that it is not useful, however. There will always be problematic dogs that will never be responsive to traditional training and behavior modification strategies. In such cases, the aversive nature of dog shock collars can very well be the only answer.

You May Also Like: Tips To Make Your Dog More Obedient

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Nicole Ellis
Nicole Ellis
Nicole’s demeanour and positive-reinforcement based training helps drive great results for her celebrity pet clients. As a member of the Association of Professional Dog Trainers, Nicole is consistent using, testing and evaluating new dog products on the market. Nicole follows the latest trends in pet healthcare and is certified by both the Canine Good Citizen evaluator and the American Kennel Club.
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