This month we are going to discuss the basics of proper introduction to the electronic training collar (e-collar). Next month we will discuss its proper use. When used properly, the e-collar is one of the most effective dog training tools ever invented. Note: I said, “When used properly, etc.”
The e-collar is a re-enforcing tool for a learned command, not a tool to be used for introducing your dog to a new command! If you learn anything from this tip remember the previous sentence.
· Your dog should be well socialized. At least 6 months of age.
· Understand the operating features of the unit before use. Read the instruction manual and watch the accompanying DVD (if provided) twice, before placing the unit on the dog.
· The dog must understand the command(s) before electronic correction is applied. Remember this is a re-enforcing of a command tool. All commands will be initially taught to your dog using conventional devices such as leads, check cords or training chains.
· The unit consists of a hand-held transmitter and a collar receiver. The collar receiver should be placed snugly around the dog’s neck. Snug not tight. You should be able to place your finger between the collar receiver and your dog’s neck with little effort.
· DO NOT TURN THE COLLAR ON. The first few times you put the collar receiver on your dog take it out and do something he/she likes, ie a ride in the car, chasing a ball or training dummy or even a simple walk. You want your dog to associate fun with wearing the collar receiver.
· Vary the length of time and time of day your dog wears the collar receiver. Two to three hours max. Remember the collar receiver in not turned on!
· Do this every day for two weeks before you turn the collar on.
Next month we will discuss the proper use of the collar. In the meantime, enjoy the off season but do not forget your dog’s (and your) need for adequate exercise.
See you next month!
C J, Shawnee & Duchess