Using a shock collar for dog problems may seem like a good training plan because they put control in the hands of the dog’s owner, but there is great controversy over their use today. If you choose to use this training tool, you will have the power to give your dog a light shock every time they start to urinate in the house, go too far from home or other otherwise break the rules of your home.
If you don’t have the ability to chase after a dog on the loose or are not fast enough to startle a dog trying to urinate in the house, a shock collar gives you the ability to react to these situations quickly. This can be especially helpful for any of you seniors who cannot move as quickly as your dog.
With time, your dog should learn to behave appropriately in order to avoid receiving the shock. The downside is that you have to deliver a shock that has potential to hurt your dog physically in order to gain that immediate control over their behavior.
One of the biggest risks of using a training collar is crossing the line between using a shock collar for dog problems and abuse. The size and age of your dog may determine whether they are physically able to handle the shock delivered, and some shock collars have high settings that smaller or older dogs may not tolerate well. Dogs who are already anxious may even experience emotional reactions to the use of the collar, leading them to develop behavior problems or live in fear.
This doesn’t mean that shock collars are bad in all situations. It simply means that you have to understand how to use the collar correctly and match the shock delivered to the size, age and temperament of your dog. Of course, using the shock only when it is absolutely necessary is a given.
Some shock collars have settings that deliver beeps or vibrations instead of shocks. These settings have some corrective power, and the shock settings are always available if necessary. Not all shock collars will offer these settings, so look around and see what you can find if you want to reserve shocks as a last resort option.
There have been instances of shock collars malfunctioning and causing excessive pain or injury to dogs. This is rare, but you cannot rule it out as a potential downside to using this type of collar.
Another risk is causing too much pain for your dog unknowingly. The amount of shock that one dog can comfortably take doesn’t translate into a safe amount of shock for another dog. You have to determine what is safe and reasonably comfortable for your dog because pain tolerances do vary. Less shock for smaller dogs is a general rule, but each dog is still an individual and will react differently to each shock.
If you use a shock collar correctly, you should be able to take your dog outside of the home without fear of losing control over them. You won’t have to worry about being able to chase them down if they get loose or stopping them from jumping on other people enjoying their time outdoors.
This can be a peace of mind for many seniors who want to keep their dogs safe, but have a hard time keeping them behaved or in their yard.
Before you decide, think about your dog’s temperament, age and ability to tolerate a small amount of pain when a shock is necessary. Then if you do decide to use a shock collar, be prepared to use it in combination with a consistent training routine.