Bark collar questions

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by CaliTerp07, Apr 3, 2012.

  1. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    Mmm, I love the smell of citronella. Of course, I also thoroughly enjoy the smell of sunscreen and gasoline too :)
     
  2. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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  3. Aleron

    Aleron New Member

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    First, I have to say that you're probably going to regret not having tried this sooner ;) One of my GSD was very much a recreational barker, came to me that way at 15 months old. I tried to manage it, tried to modify it and finally resorted to a bark collar. I researched both spray and electronic collars and in every way, the electronic ones seemed better - more reliable, more durable and more effective. So that's what I got but then of course, felt very bad about using. I had always heard horror stories about e-collars and how wrong i was to use them for any purpose. But...well, if my dog was going to be able to enjoy time outside while keeping the neighbors happy I needed to do something. So I put the collar on her and sent her outside. And wouldn't you know it, after about three barks she was quiet! No bad effects, the sky did not fall and she was the same sweet, goofy dog she was before. And I thought that it was too bad I didn't get one of these years ago because it was such a simple solution.

    Not only that but it actually had a positive effect on how she acted towards "strangers" coming in the house. Prior to using a bark collar, she was rather guard-y towards people she didn't know walking into the house. It was not a huge problem, as she could just be put away until they got in then she was fine afterwards. However, with the bark collar on because she didn't bark. And because she didn't bark, she didn't act one bit guard-y towards people coming in the door. She greeted them politely and that was that.

    I don't use bark collars on all of my dogs but have used them on multiple dogs over the years. Never had any issues with the use of them. The dogs are quiet when wearing their "Barkies" and not when they are not.

    And now to comment on some comments LOL

    Bark collars are unlikely to truly extinguish the behavior. Most dogs are smart enough to know when they have the collar on and when they don't and they become trained to the collar. This means when you want your dog to be quiet, you put the collar on and they will be quiet. But with the collar off, they are still likely to bark at stuff. Once they are trained to the collar though, most dogs rarely test it. Some people have had luck with using "dummy collars" once their dog is trained but I suspect that only works for some dogs. Some dogs will figure out that there's no longer a correction at a point.

    Having used "self adjusting" bark collars (we call them Barkies at my house ;)) for years, I can say that starting low and going up does lead to tolerance in some dogs. Some of my old dogs have/had learned to totally ignore the stim, even at the highest setting. It took years for that to happen though. What I would probably do in the future with dogs of mine who "need" bark collars would be to get a better collar with more options (the Dogtra is a good one), start with the low setting for training purposes then set it in the more moderate range for maintenance. That way the dog understands what the stim means and how to avoid it before being exposed to a higher level but won't develop tolerance with long term use.

    It's a shame the people you got her from used an e-collar on her without following the instructions not to leave it on for an extended period of time. I have not had the experience of bark collars inhibiting drive but I don't use them when I want my dog to be excited (and possibly bark-y). I use them when the dogs are just hanging out in the yard and I'd like them to quietly hang out.
     
  4. Panzerotti

    Panzerotti New Member

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    Great post Aleron, thank you.
     
  5. HayleyMarie

    HayleyMarie Like a bat outa' hell

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    Im going to keep watching this thread, right now Teagans barking does not bother me nor the neighbours since we live on a farm, but when we move into Sparwood her barking might become an issue since we have neighbours and there is more intersting things to bark at like people, cars and other dogs.
     
  6. ihartgonzo

    ihartgonzo and Fozzie B!

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    After seeing the affects that shock collars have on dogs, I'd rather debark my dog. I wouldn't do either but if I had to choose, I'd rather put a dog through surgery than put my dog through that fear & confusion & possibly cause redirected aggression. :( Just imo.
     
  7. smeagle

    smeagle New Member

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    Well I am sure the OP finds that post helpful :confused:

    I've never seen any ill effects from bark collars or e-collars when they've been used properly and we sell a lot of them.
     
  8. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    I'm sure your intentions are good, but this post does nothing but flood me with guilt. I asked to avoid these types of comments...I know a lot of people don't agree with bark collars. I don't like them either, but I'm out of options.

    Thanks so much to everyone who's offered suggestions. I put it on her this evening once my husband got home, at level 2 (because I'm terrified of hurting her), but she hasn't barked since he got home so I guess I'll just have to try it tomorrow.
     
  9. Kat09Tails

    Kat09Tails *Now with Snark*

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    I use a tritronics bark limiter with Willow who has a habit of barking for attention at weird hours of the night and sometimes when we're doing yard work while she's in her kennel. It's super easy to use and adjust. The battery lasts forever and it also lets you know how many times it has sent a stim to the dog.

    I only set her up for success using it in situations where I just simply want her to be quiet and settle, if she starts getting amped up I move her back to her crate where it's quiet with less interesting things to look at. It goes on before bed and comes off in the morning. We're all happier for it. lol IMO stim bark collars are some of the most effective devices on the market and far fairer and consistent to the dog than I could ever hope to be.
     
  10. OutlineACDs

    OutlineACDs Crazy Dog!

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    When I do work at kennels we have used them in the past.

    My experience:
    It seems like you need to know your dog before you attempt a bark collar. The ones I have experience iwth are the shock collars that amplify the stim the more the dog barks. When I say know your dog, think about it. Is this the type of dog that will take a correction and keep on moving or get corrected and think about what happened and how they can change to keep it from happeneing again. Also, does the dog have a high pain threeshhold? Does the dog get sheer joy out of barking?

    The few kennel lungers that we had, the collars didn't do much to them. They got more joy out of lunging at the kennels than they cared about the shock they were getting. It worked at first, but never extinguished the problem completely. Dogs that barked a few times throughout the day just because, the collars usually solved that problem.

    I always check the collar to make sure its on right and tight enough. I remove it often to make sure the neck has a chance to breathe. The prongs have to be on there pretty tight to keep it in the right place, so I only leave them on as long as necessary. In your case, probably while you're at work, then remove it when you get home.

    The other posters have given you lots of good info and tips. Don't let the horror stories scare you. Buy a trusted brand (spending more now is better than going cheap and regretting it later), and be diligent in checking the collar and battery and allowing the dogs neck time to rest. I think if you're careful the risk of injury is pretty low.

    My personal preference would probably be just to debark the dog. Where I live it costs about $120 and you're done, its quick and easy, and you can still continue to work with the dog on controlling the barking problem without worrying all day if the neighbors are bothered. I haven't had to debark a dog yet, but let me tell you, my worst barker lost his voice for a few days once after he decided to serenade the kennel all day, and both my husband and I were like "oh, that's nice." Heh, if he was truly a problem I'd have no issue going and getting him debarked.
     

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