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When it comes to dog training, one of the hardest things to achieve is to get your dogs barking under control. Since many people adopt dogs when they are just puppies, it is up to the owner to train their dog about the right and wrong time to bark.
One of the most popular methods of training your dog not to bark at inappropriate times is shock collar training.
There is a lot of skepticism surrounding bark collars. When most people hear about bark collars, their mind immediately jumps to harmful shock collars that do more hurt than good.
However, there are many different types of bark collars, most of which, if used properly, will not harm your dog at all.
We caught up with BarxBuddy, creators of an ultrasonic barking device of the same name, to learn about how exactly bark collars work and if they’re the right choice for dog training.
So, tell us, are bark collars even worth trying?
This question doesn’t have as straightforward as an answer as many people would like it to. The reality of it is yes, and no.
Though there are so many different types of bark collars – vibration, static (shock), spray, ultrasonic, and combination – the key to training your dog is in how you use the collar, not what type you get.
Bark collars only work if they are used correctly. We like to remind our customers that bark collars should be used as a training device, not as a quick-fix to excessive barking.
What causes excessive barking?
There are a number of causes for excessive barking. The most common are:
- Injury or illness
Dogs are very reactive, and barking is usually their immediate reaction. Understanding why your dog is barking is key to training it not to bark. We go into the science behind the causes of dog barking on our blog.
How should bark collars be used?
To get the most out of your bark collar, we recommend following the train, treat, repeat method of dog training. This method uses positive reinforcement, and helps eliminate the underlying reason for your dog’s excessive barking.
The bark collar should be used in conjunction with the train, treat, repeat, method, usually at the point where the dog begins to bark. Once they stop barking, you then say a word like “quiet” or “Stop” to teach them that when they hear this word, they shouldn’t be barking.
Are Anti-Bark Collars Safe?
Overall, if used correctly, bark collars are safe. Some, like the BarxBuddy, use ultrasonic sounds (high pitch sounds that humans can’t hear) while other use a jolt of electricity to stop the dog while they are in the middle of barking.
Because these triggers are released in such small doses, they leave no lasting effects on the pets if used correctly.
However, it is not recommended for them to be used while the dog is asleep, playing, or crated. They also shouldn’t be used for more than 12 consecutive hours a day.
Are there other methods to stop your dog form barking?
As we mentioned before, the most effective method of dog training is using the train, treat, repeat method. This method is based on positive reinforcement and yields long term results for dog training.
However, if you need some sort of additional aid in the train, treat, repeat, process, we highly recommend using the BarxBuddy. While this method is similar to a bark collar, it never comes into contact with your dog.
Instead, it is just a small, TV remote sized device with a button that releases the high-pitch sound when you press it. This is a very safe and humane method for dog training.
Related Reading: 4 Reasons All Dog Owners Should Have BarxBuddy Handy