Taking care of a dog requires a lot of commitment. You need to train your dog to correct unwanted behavior, especially when taking it out in public or if your dog is around young kids.
This is where training collars come into use, as they provide an easy way to correct unwanted behavior along with positive reinforcement training.
However, you need to use the training collar appropriately in order to make dog training a success. Inappropriate use of training collars could cause harm to your dog instead.
This guide will help you be better equipped in using a training collar to train your dog.
Table of Contents
- Are Training Collars The Same As Shock Collars?
- Reasons To Use A Training Collar
- How To Train A Dog With A Training Collar
- Use Positive Reinforcement Training
- Teach The Basic Dog Commands And Stop Unwanted Behaviors
- How Long Can A Dog Wear A Training Collar?
- When Should You Start Using A Training Collar On A Dog?
Are Training Collars The Same As Shock Collars?
When speaking of dog collars, it is common to hear various terms like training collars, shock collars etc. These words are often used interchangeably but don’t always mean the same thing.
A shock collar is a remote training collar that uses electrical stimulation of varying intensity levels to warn your dog when it displays unwanted behavior. Not all training collars are shock collars.
There are many training collars like martingale collars, slip collars, choke collars, etc.
Reasons To Use A Training Collar
The main reason to use a training collar is to correct unwanted behavior in your dog. It sends a warning in the form of static stimulation, tone, vibration etc.
Here are the positives of using a training collar on your dog.
- It allows for better communication with your dog.
- It allows your dog the freedom to stay off-leash.
- It is proven to be a successful method of correcting unwanted behavior in dogs.
How To Train A Dog With A Training Collar
Training a dog using a collar should be done gradually. You cannot expect your pet to immediately grasp the concept of using a collar. Instead, it might be fidgety because wearing a collar requires getting used to it.
First of all you need to learn how to use a dog training collar before starting training sessions with your dog. Once you learn how to use it you can move on to gradually introduce a training collar to your dog and conduct training sessions with it.
Fit The Training Collar Properly
The most important thing to consider when training with a collar is to fit the collar properly around your dog’s neck.
If the collar is too tight, it might be uncomfortable for your dog and can even lead to choking.
If the collar is too loosely fitted, your dog might not feel it and won’t get the signals on time.
Put the training collar around your dog’s neck and insert two fingers between the collar and your skin. Following this procedure ensures that the collar perfectly fits your dog’s neck.
Leave The Collar On The Dog’s Neck For Some Time
By perfectly fitting a training collar around the neck, you cannot expect your dog to get along with it from day one. Instead, your dog will show some discomfort and be fidgety when wearing the collar.
You need to give your dog a few days or even weeks to get used to wearing a collar.
The best way to do this is to start putting the collar around your dog’s neck for a couple of hours until it gets used to it.
After that, you can begin training to correct unwanted behavior.
Introduce Tone And Stimulation Appropriately
Training collars have different modes like tone, vibration, static stimulation etc.
Starting with tone or vibration is always recommended.
Thereafter, switch to static stimulation mode and use the lowest stimulation level at the initial stages.
Once your dog gets used to the mode, you can gradually increase the level used on it. However, it is advisable not to use too high static stimulation or vibration on your dog.
Once your dog corrects a particular behavior, don’t just leave it aside and move on to the next behavior.
Always reinforce old training routines before starting new ones.
It ensures that your dog remembers what has been taught and takes it to the next level.
Use Positive Reinforcement Training
No dog training is complete without positive reinforcement training. Positive reinforcement training uses rewards in treats, toys, praises, etc., making it more likely that the dog will repeat the particular behavior.
Pat your dog on the back and praise it when it manages to complete a particular training module. Keep a treat in hand to give your pet when it listens to your command for it to come to you.
Teach The Basic Dog Commands And Stop Unwanted Behaviors
There are many things that you want to train your dog on. However, a few basic commands are all you need to take your dog out in public without any fear.
Dog training usually covers basic commands like ‘sit’, ‘come’, and ‘stay’ to ensure your dog is on the right track.
Another important aspect is to stop your dog from showing unwanted behavior like excessive barking, jumping on people, digging up garden beds etc.
Let’s look at how you can enforce each of these basic commands in your dog.
Teaching The “Sit” Command With A Training Collar
The ‘sit’ command is simple to teach your dog. First, you have to guide your dog to a sitting position with the collar on and give the ‘sit’ command while holding the stimulation button. Release the button once your dog sits down.
Praise your dog and repeat the process a few times.
Teaching The “Come” Command With A Training Collar
When teaching the ‘come’ command to your dog, keep the remote controller of the collar in your hand and let your dog walk away from you, wearing the collar around its neck. Then, press the remote button and immediately give the ‘come’ command.
After that, use the leash to guide your dog towards you slowly. Release the remote button once your dog gets to you, and remember to praise it and reward it with treats.
Teaching The “Stay” Command With A Training Collar
The ‘stay’ command is useful when you want your dog to remain in one spot when visitors come to your house. To teach this command to your dog, you need to put your dog in a specific place, with the collar around its neck, and stay about 3 feet away from it.
Press the remote button if it tries to leave and give the ‘stay’ command. After your dog returns to the designated spot, release the button.
Praise your dog or give it treats to remember this command.
Training Your Dog To Stop Jumping On People
Dogs love to jump on strangers they meet, whether at home on their walk or basically anywhere else they go. To train your dog to correct this behavior, you need to choose a stimulation level one step higher than its recognition level.
Press the remote button once your dog starts to jump on someone while wearing the collar. Give the ‘sit’ command and release the button once your dog settles and sits down. Praise your dog and repeat the process to enforce the correct behavior.
Train To Stop Excessive Barking With A Training Collar
Excessive barking can be a nuisance to a lot of people. Train your dog to control barking by using a stimulation level one step higher than its usual recognition level.
Give the ‘quiet’ command when your dog barks excessively with the collar around its neck. If your dog settles down its barking, praise and reward it. If it doesn’t do so, you need to increase the stimulation one level higher.
Train Your Dog To Stop Digging Up Gardens
No one wants to see their garden beds dug up after weeks and months of hard work making them the way they are. But, unfortunately, dogs have the habit of digging up gardens, so you should train them not to do so.
Put the collar around your dog’s neck and choose a stimulation level one step higher than its usual recognition level. Next, let your dog out to the garden and stay where it cannot see you. Once it starts digging in the garden, press the stimulation button.
If your dog stops digging, then release the button. Wait a few minutes to see if it starts digging another spot. If it doesn’t do so, praise and reward it. If your dog doesn’t respond to the stimulation, increase it one level higher.
How Long Can A Dog Wear A Training Collar?
A dog can usually wear a collar for about 8-10 hours a day without any issue. However, you need to relocate the receiver after every few hours to avoid any skin rashes from developing on the skin.
When Should You Start Using A Training Collar On A Dog?
Ideally, you should start using a training collar on your dog once it turns 6 months old. If your pup is too young, wearing a collar can have adverse effects.
Training your dog with a dog training collar is not that hard. However, unless required, keep the stimulation level at a low setting so that your dog feels comfortable during training sessions.
Combining dog training sessions with positive reinforcement sessions has been proved to be very successful. Remember to praise and reward your dog with treats when it shows correct behavior.
Following these great tips will allow you to have a well-trained dog beside you.