E-Collar Training is an Amazing Training Method
We understand that most people are a little hesitant to start training their dog with an e-collar. This can be for a variety of reasons: misconception of how it works, lack of understanding of proper use, using poor quality collars that have caused damage, and the idea that they harm your fur baby. This is why many trainers advocate for a reward-only based training method which can work 99% of the time. But what about that 1% of the time when a reward is inappropriate? You don’t want to reward bad behavior.
E-collar training is about using a balanced training method to teach your dog what behavior you do want and the behaviors you don’t want. Yes, this means punishing your dog for bad decisions, but only after you’ve taken the time to train the behavior you do want and he is deliberately making a decision to disobey.
So what does this mean? Think of this as raising a child. You can’t raise a child through rewards only. Yes, they are important. Yes, you get great results when you encourage and reward them for accomplishments. And you should absolutely do these things with your dog (and kid!). Using cues, like “YES”, “GOOD” and a clicker are great! But you also have to punish for deliberate disobedience after the proper behavior has been taught. You punish your kid for lying after you’ve taught him the importance of telling the truth, right? Why not correct your dog for counter surfing after you’ve taught him that is unacceptable?
Using an e-collar allows for a balanced training approach that uses both rewards and corrections. We are not advocating for abuse or hurting you dog. We are advocating for a balanced training method in which we are able to get life-changing results.
So why do we love the e-collar so much? We love the e-collar because it allows the dog to learn its boundaries. Within the defined structure, freedom is given. This means, that rather then walking on a leash, feeling your tension and then trying to take it out on the dog across the street, you pup can calmly walk beside you. He has freedom to walk at his pace within your bubble. Because he knows his rule of walking next to you at all times, you are able to take him to more places than the average pooch. You are confident in taking him on hikes or to a busy downtown area with lots of distractions. At home, he knows his place is in his kennel or on “place” and there he needs to remain calm and relaxed. Because of this, you are able to have friends and family over and he gets to play with those who want to interact. He is no longer something that you must plan for – where will you put Fido when Mom comes over because he jumps? Eliminate the jumping by teaching your preferred behavior “place” and Mom can visit now.
Using an e-collar gives your dog more freedom, but also gives you more freedom. Places where you may not have considered taking your pup before are now open to you because you are confident that you have full control over your pooch. The e-collar significantly increases your communication with your pup.
E-Collar Training In Action
Check out our featured dog for this week. He’s never used an e-collar before and is doing great. We start our morning off with practicing “place” and then head out to tackle the world! Rather, teach and reinforce the “heel” command. But – same thing! He’s doing well and will be in a better place for when he goes back home.
Your dog can do the same thing, but it takes time, practice, and patience. We get amazing results because we have never worked with your dog before and we set rules from the beginning of our relationship. Since your pup already has a relationship with you where misbehavior happens, you will have to work extra hard to establish a training routine that clearly defines your pup’s role in your house.
This means crate training and using it at night. This means regular structured walks where you are practicing and reinforcing proper heel. This means that when you are at home, you have your pup on place. This means that you reinforce a calm behavior at all times. This doesn’t mean you can’t play, but you have to be able to get your dog to calm down on command.
Our training program is perfect to teach your dog the beginning of what you will expect from him, but it will be up to you to reinforce it. If you are having problems getting your training started, we’d love to help!