Love them or hate them, shock collars are everywhere. Before you strap one on your dog, it’s important to know the risks of shock collars. Did you know the use of these collars is illegal in 4 European countries (Austria, Germany, Finland, Denmark) and it’s restricted in 3 countries (Czech Republic, Italy, Hungary)?
Even if you don’t mind using pain as a motivator in training, there are a variety of training issues that can arise with the use of these collars. Here at BarkBlaster, we want what’s best for dogs and dog owners. That’s why we’re tackling this hot-button issue head on. Being experts in bark training, we’ll be looking specifically at anti-barking collars. We think there are humane and extremely effective bark collar alternatives that will make both people and dogs happier. Here are 8 reasons to ditch the bark shock collar.
1. Negative Associations
Dogs can sometimes associate the painful shock with their environment or objects in the environment (that includes people), rather than the behavior. This can lead to anxiety and negative associations, creating more dog training hurdles than it solves.
2. Aggressive Behavior
Fear can be dangerous in dogs. The negative associations mentioned above can lead to fear and aggressive behavior. This aggression could be toward an object or environment, but it can also be associated with people. Every dog is unique, and there is always the risk that a dog will default to aggression rather than submission.
3. Accidental Shocks
Some collars have a difficult time distinguishing the wearer’s bark from other barking dogs in the area. It’s like when a teacher punished the whole class for one kid’s stupidity in grade school. A quiet collar-wearing dog among barking dogs is in for a horrific experience.
4. Irritation and Inflammation
Keeping any type of shock collar on a dog at all times typically isn’t recommended due to irritation and inflammation. Fasten it on too tight, and the dog has a sore and irritated neck. Tie the collar on loosely, and the shock isn’t administered effectively. It’s a difficult and annoying balance.
5. Elevated Stress
According to research from E. Schalke conducted on 14 laboratory bred beagles, some dogs have great difficulty predicting and determining the cause of shocks. These dogs exhibited very high levels of stress and anxiety.
6. Poor Customization
While some are better than others, many bark collars have poor customization options. What if you want to give a dog the ability to bark once or twice to warn you of danger? Shock intensity is typically adjustable, but finding the right intensity can be a cruel game of guess and check.
7. Inconsistent Accountability
As mentioned earlier, you shouldn’t leave shock collars on 24/7. This leads to big training loop-holes, especially if you leave the dog alone for extended periods of time. Accountability is a challenge for even the most dedicated dog trainers, but the more accountability you can provide, the more effective the training will be.
8. There Are Extremely Effective Alternatives
Yes, we are a little biased in this area, but it’s true. We believe BarkBlaster is the best humane shock collar alternative on the market, utilizing an audible beep and the spray of water to discourage barking. It can be customized to your exact specifications from your smart phone. Check out the BarkBlaster for yourself and you’ll see how this tool effectively stops barking without the risks and annoyances of bark collars.