The Shocking (haha) Reality Behind E-Collar Conditioning



The above sounds horrible right? Who in their right mind would want to use one of!!these on their pet? Other trainers (Who have never used or learned about remote collars) are scared to talk about them because they do not understand them. They say "If you have to use electricity to train your dog then your not a true dog trainer!" WELL……..that's not an accurate statement at all… Lets break it apart and talk about it!

Just because a trainer uses remote collars does not mean that that trainers skips all of the leash work and standard basic fundamentals of training. What most people think is that you buy a new electronic collar and strap it on the dog and then you just zap him for things he does wrong and that’s how it works…..NOT REALLY, But Kinda……. So lets talk about communicating with electronic stimulation

There are three ways to communicate through electronic collars…..The Vibrate, The Tone and The Stimulation.

There are two ways that dogs understand electronic training and that is through Conditioning (where you have already trained a dog to perform a skill to turn on the electronic que (tone, vibrate or stim) and then there is Avoidance(Where you use stimulation only in med to high settings to create a mental note in that dogs head to never do that again because it is not pleasant (jumping, running into the street, snake training, counter surfing- all of these are avoidance drills)

FOOD (no pun intended) FOR THOUGH - What happens when a dog will not accept a treat or luring, what happens when a dog is deaf or blind? Will conventional clicker methods and treats be the only answer? NOPE!

Before an E-Collar is placed on the dog, it is imperative that the dog learn and understand the difference in positive and negative reinforcement. In doing so we teach the dog proper placement of heel, sit, place and stay. The dog will learn through treat and clicker training as well as manual body blocking and leash techniques, teaching the dog when its good to relax and when its good to be concerned that they are not doing something right. They learn differences in verbal tones as well as words like NO and GOOD. The dog needs to have a positive attitude about performing these skills for reward of some type prior to E-Collar training. It is then that you are ready to condition your dog to the devise.

Initially you will place the collar around the dog and begin with the collar in Vibrate…We will ask the dog to perform a task it already knows such as Place and then as we say the command we sill start a continuous vibrations until we can coax the dog onto the place board. Once this has been achieved the collar goes off and the dog learns through repetition that every time he gets on the place board the collar goes off. It is then when we will move the dog into light stimulation and repeat the process while the dog learns the game of "The Floor is Lava" On the cue of "PLACE" the collar comes on creating lava floor and the place board is safe zone. It becomes a game to the dog of how fast can you beat the clock! This repeats itself through all commands such as Heel, Sit and Stay until the dog knows that behind every command CAN come stimulation. Once a dog is performing flawless then we can use our remote devise intermittently just so that they are aware its still present but not that we will need it every time.

One thing to remember about dogs and E-Collars is that every dog is different. Just because your dog is 50lbs doesn’t mean he can stand a stimulation level of 50 and just because your dog is 9lbs doesn’t mean you will be at a collar stim level of 9. Its always best to start low an climb into there thresholds at every session.

We at Altamaha Canine Consulting believe in the E-Collar Technologies brand of collars. We have used and sold many of these to our clients without fail. Why do we like them so much….. Simple to operate, Quick ramp feature, Boost is one button away for those avoidance moments and the lithium-ion battery allows full use until its dead. So many people try to skip out on money when purchasing a remote trainer when in reality it’s the most important piece of equipment you'll ever purchase for your dog. Check out the E-Collar Mini-Educator if your looking for a great collar.

I truly hope this has given you an insight of how we here at ACC collar condition our clients dogs as well as our own!

The following are true statements from our clients:

"They are almost begging you to shock them, why are they so happy" - Atlanta GA (doodle litter-mates @ 5 months old)

"This remote training has allowed my husband and I to have our lives back and enjoy our three dogs" - St. Simons Island GA (3 Adult Labs that had been through training programs before)

"After having a lot of farm dogs and now having a trained dog, I'll never have JUST a pet again" - Jesup, GA (lab gundog/family dog)


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