Here are some E Collar tips for beginners to help you train your dog! Some people call these remote collars or shock collars but we generally use the phrase E Collar. Either way, they refer to the same thing.
What E Collar Should I buy?
Suburban K9 enthusiastically recommends and sells the Dogtra brand of E Collars! In this video, we highlight the Dogtra Arc, which is the one we employ most often. If you have a small dog, we may recommend the Dogtra 280c, and with large dogs, the Dogtra 1900s. We believe that the Dogtra brand of E Collars offer our clients the best combination of cost, quality, and features out of the options available on the market today.
How do I use the Dogtra Arc remote?
There are three main functions to the Dogtra Arc; a Pager or vibration and two shock modes: Nic and Constant. Nic is just a brief shock, while constantly keeps applying current while you hold down the button, with a built-in cut-off time in case of accidentally pushing down the button. Both of these are controlled by the same grey button on the side of the remote, with a toggle on the front of the remote changing what mode you are in.
There is another grey button on the front of the remote, and that is your pager, or vibration function. There is a dial on the top of the remote next to the antenna for changing the intensity of the shock, and a LCD screen at the bottom of the front of the remote to let you know where it is currently set. If you have two orange buttons on the remote that means your model has the option to buy a second collar for another dog and want to control both with the same remote.
How do I fit an E Collar on my dog?
These collars are meant to fit very snug. If both of the metal contact points are not touching the dogs skin the collar will not function. When you put it on and tighten it, you should only be able to get a couple fingers between the collar and your dogs neck. Always check to make sure they are breathing easily and that you didn't tighten it too much.
We also recommend that you adjust the collar so that it settles higher on the neck, and the metal contact points are off-set to one side or the other and not right over the throat. If you are going to have the collar on for a multiple hours, it's a good idea to move the collar back on forth from one side of the neck to the other hourly, otherwise the contact points can start to irritate the skin. If you're concerned about your dogs neck, try the Winged Ultra Comfort Pad. You can check out our review of it here!
What do you use an E Collar for?
Originally E Collars were developed for use with hunting dogs. Over the years we have adapted their use for basic obedience as well as working on behavioral problems like leash reactivity. They still really shine in off leash situations like working on the come command and heel while trying to move away from using a leash.
How do you use an E Collar for off leash Come?
The first thing we want to do is when calling the dog to you, we also press the pager button and give the dog a vibration. This will help teach and reinforce to the dog that the vibration means to come back to the owner. This is very important for if your dog ever gets into a situation where it cannot hear you.
How do you use an E Collar for off leash Heel?
The first step of off leash Heel should be no surprise, it's on leash Heel! We don't recommend working on off leash Heel until you feel like your dog has mastered heeling on leash; if your dog cannot listen to you on a leash, they are certainly not going too without one. Once you have done this, practice in an enclosed space until your dog has earned your trust that it won't run off even if there are distractions. Give your normal Heel command and begin walking, while talking to your dog. Initially we talk constantly to make sure we keep their focus, but slowly lesson up.
If your dog strays too far away you give a nic correction and repeat the heel command. It's important to note, that we only want to use a high enough setting that can get your dogs attention, and not be causing them to yelp and get scared.
Should I buy an E Collar
We don't recommend E Collars to all of our clients. Some more fearful dogs do not do well with the stimulation and shock so not every dog is right for an E Collar. If a tool is causing a dog to become more afraid, we typically don't use it. After that, the question is do you need one? If you have no plans to spend much time off leash outside of a fenced in area, it may not be worth your time and money. For me, the answer was and is a resounding yes.
The first time I took my dog camping a Dogtra E Collar saved me from jumping into a lake on a fifty degree day to try and save my Golden Retriever puppy when she wanted to make friends with a group of Canada Geese that were swimming towards her. I was screaming the come command at her but because the geese were honking, she couldn't hear me. I was running toward the waters edge before I remembered the remote in my pocket. One quick page and my dog was swimming back towards me to and safety. I have been a fan of them ever since.
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