How To Tell If Your Dog Is Ready For An E-Collar

puppy on grass

The E-Collar is one of the best training tools on the market for a dog. It makes use of very subtle reinforcement methods to help you to train your dog at a distance – a must not only for working and hunting dogs, but also for any dog that needs to be trained off a leash. One of the biggest struggles for dog trainers is figuring out when to start using the E-Collar. Different dogs get ready at different times, so it is always smart to sit down and think of at least a few criteria that must be met before you start using the E-Collar.


Your Dog is Past the Puppy Phase

Puppies are naturally curious little animals. They love to run and play, and they’re tiny little destructive forces of nature. They can accomplish quite a bit with the right owner, but it is important that any puppy has time to test his or her own limits before you get into serious training. It doesn’t matter if you use an E-Collar or not in this case – you’ve got to give your puppy at least a little time to develop before you can start working on any type of complex training with your new dog.


It’s important that you spend a little bit of time letting your puppy be a puppy before you move on to any kind of serious training. That’s not to say that you should avoid things like the crate or housebreaking, but rather that you should know your dog’s limits. IF you are willing to give your dog a little bit of time before working on the harder aspects of your master-pet relationship, you should be able to get a lot more out of the E-Collar when you start using it. Simply put, an E-Collar works better on a dog who is in the midst of moving out of the puppy phase.


You’ve Done Some Training

The E-Collar is a training tool, not a miracle device. Does it work incredibly well? Of course! But it still depends on the owner and the dog to work. That’s why it’s usually a bad idea to use the E-Collar as your only training tool, and why it’s also a bad idea to make it your first training tool. Vocal commands and signals should always be the first tool used by the dog’s owner, not only to help to build a relationship but also to help reinforce what the dog will learn.


With that said, using an E-Collar early is a good idea, especially if you are looking to move from the E-Collar to other commands. Your dog needs to have learned the basic idea that he or she should follow commands before its use, though – that’s why they aren’t suitable for puppies, and why you should always try to develop a rapport before use. It’s often a good idea to use the E-Collar after you start basic crate training, for example, or after your dog knows how to follow a few basic commands.


Your Dog Feels Comfortable in Your Home

This is more of an emotional criteria, but it’s still important for you to follow. Never bring a new dog into your home and immediately put on the E-Collar. That’s a great way to make a dog afraid of his or her new surroundings, and a wonderful way to throw away money on what should be a very useful product. You want to make sure that your dog is comfortable with its new surroundings before you ever use the collar – and you may even need to wait for a bit before you ever turn the collar on.


One of the best ways to get a dog used to the collar is to work with it turning crate training. You won’t need to engage the collar or even have it turned on, but get your dog used to wearing it any time he or she is out of his or her crate. This helps the dog to feel safe around you, and not to fear the E-Collar. You can move from there to more significant types of training with the collar, but your first job should always be to make sure that your dog feels safe and comfortable around you.


You Feel Comfortable With the Collar

Perhaps the most important way to figure out if your dog is ready for an E-Collar is if you feel comfortable with the device. As a dog’s owner, you know his or her level of comfort and his or her abilities – and anything that you feel uncomfortable with, he or she will often feel the same way. That’s why it is so important to use your own best judgment before your start using an E-Collar on your dog.


The best thing that you can do for your dog is to do a little research on E-Collars. You’ll find them to be wonderful training tools that can really help your dog to reach his or her potential, and it should put you more at ease during the training process. If you’ve ever trained a dog in the traditional manner, you know that there’s nothing worse than trying to complete a training program to which you are not committed. Once you learn more about these devices, you can feel more comfortable using them to train your dog.


In the end, every dog is different. There is no perfect time to use an E-Collar, so pay attention to your animal and let him or her guide the process. Read up on the collars, make yourself comfortable, and make sure that you are able to ease your dog into training. With a little bit of hard work and the presence of an E-Collar, you can help your dog to learn to be on his or her best behavior and to accomplish everything that he or she is able to accomplish. All that stands between you and the future is your willingness to use the right tools.