Introduction

According to Matt Davies Harmony Communities, shock collars are controversial topics. Some owners swear by their efficacy while others believe they are the worst piece of tech you can buy for your dog. Let’s dive deeper and explore the validity of using a pet shock collar.

The Discussion

1. Shock collars hurt your dog

Most dog collar manufacturers claim that their product is “safe” and stress that their products don’t hurt your pet. However, it truly hurts. Just try keeping your thumb on the electrodes of the shock collar and turn it on. If you can feel pain, so can your dog. While some breeds may suffer less with thicker coats and tougher skin, they all feel the pain. Just because it doesn’t leave a scar or mark doesn’t mean it’s not painful. 

2. Working mechanism of a shock collar

Shock collar manufacturers would tell you that their collars deliver a ‘static shock’ to the dog. However, the reality is very different. Instead, the electrodes on the collar deliver alternating current through the skin. Dogs have different skin types, and coat types and some can tolerate pain better than others. The intensity of the shock also changes depending on the humidity level in the air. 

While everyone knows shock collars hurt, it’s very difficult to figure out how seriously a dog feels the shock. These shock collars were popular in the 1960s for hunting dogs. They slowly grew out of favor since they increased negative behaviors like excessive barking and food aggression. 

3. Burns and scars

While you can control the intensity of the shock and modern shock collars even come with IP certification for being waterproof, accidents may occur. When they do occur and the collar malfunctions or has a circuit failure, it may cause intense shock and leave burns or scars on your dog along with permanent trauma. You don’t want your dog to be part of that statistic. 

4. They are ineffective

Certified trainers and dog behavior experts will tell you that shock collars are ineffective and unnecessary. They have negative consequences and harmful impacts. While shock collars may prevent your dog from running out of the property temporarily or make it stop barking at the moment, it doesn’t bring any long-term behavioral changes. Instead, the short-term solution comes at a severe cost. 

It leaves physical and mental trauma and stresses out your dog. That’s why shock collars are completely unregulated in the US and companies that make them have very questionable patents. Due to shock collars’ negative effects, they are even banned in many countries including Norway, Denmark, Scotland, Switzerland, Australia, Germany, and more. Instead of using shock collars, it’s better to opt for more positive alternatives like audio-based and geo-fencing GPS collars that can track your dog.     

Conclusion

Matt Davies Harmony Communities suggests that you opt for more humane and positive alternatives to shock collars. Similar to how “hurt people hurt people”, pain and fear breed aggressive and traumatized dogs. There are much better training and disciplining tools that are more humane and effective.

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