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fishroger

tips for e-collar

16 posts in this topic

Just purchased a dogtra 1500 for my lab. Probably should get a video. What are some good starting tips for introducing the dog to the collar? Dont want to mess him up. He is 8 months old and is halfway thru obedience school, so he knows some commands, but likes to take off sometimes.

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Basically if he knows some commands but has to "be reminded" you can introduce the collar. Lets say that the come or here is the situation and you give the vocal command and there is no response. On my collar I gave the "beep" first and then the stimulation. Keep turning it up until you get a response. Chances it will get their attention and they won't know what to do. Give the vocal command to them and hopefully they respond. Over time they will learn to listen to the vocal or reply to just the beep or buzz (if your unit is equiped).

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Wave Wacker did a good job with explaining this. If I could add. Be careful not to over due. And especially at 8 months. You still have a pup so give him some slack. Basically only use the collar as a reinforcement if nessasary and nothing more. Don't expect your pup to do anything with the collar that he won't without. Too many people will ruin the dog by overusing especially in the fragile puppy age. When I introduced the collar with the help of my trainer. We started with a very light tick when doing the basic Heal and sit on leash. When you are healing you say sit and give a small leash correction. At the time of the e-collar start very light and use the collar instead of the leash correction when neccesary. However do this on leash. In a hunting situation off leash you are going to trade the leash for the e-collar. All commands should be obeyed because the Master said so not because he has the control to my e-collar. Once trained propery you will find you very seldom if at all will need to actually give an electronic correction. Your dog will learn very quickly that it is nice to sit,come and fetch without the electric in the neck.

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Forgot to mention good choice of collar. IMHO Dogtra makes the best collars on the market period!

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If you have never used an e-collar before you should get a program to follow before you turn the power "on" on the collar (IMO).

Put the collar on the dog now during all training sessions and let him wear it for 2-3 weeks before you begin to actually introduce it.

Please do a google search for "Tritronics Free Booklet" and go to the first site found and read it completely. This will give you a good idea of how to start and what you can do for the basic commands.

There are a couple good training programs out there that could be used also.

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Took the dog out to the field to introduce him to the collar. We actually had a good training session. Been using a check cord on the dog for retrieving. Only used a 6 foot leash this time. Threw dummy, dog looked at and took off running across field. Gave him 3-4 nicks and said COME , that got his attention and he started to come back to me. He was good until some people came by with there setter for a walk. Made dog sit and stay, it was tough for him, he wanted to take off after the other dog. Other dog was out of sight, threw retrieving dummy, my dog sprinted past the dummy after the other dog. Nicked him 3-4 times with no affect, then gave him a shot of constant, got his attention and he started to come back when commanded too. He is progressing good, dont want him running off after deer, cows, or other dogs. I think the collar is doing its job. Going to No. Dak in about a week, hopefully he will get some bird experience. Training a dog is almost like raising a kid, you pray they turn out good.

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Was this all his first time out with the e-collar?

Have you had the collar on him for any amount of time before today?

Quote:

my dog sprinted past the dummy after the other dog. Nicked him 3-4 times with no affect, then gave him a shot of constant


shocked.gif

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I used a Mike Lardy video and it worked well. You should finish obedience before you start with the collar. It won't work well if you zap a dog that doesn't know a command.

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After thinking about it more this bothers me a bit. Assuming this was the first time out with the dog and the e-collar I don't think your giving the dog a fair intro. I would recommend putting the remote down and reading any collar conditioning instructions/program. I don't mean to sound harsh but the dog needs a proper intro before just burning it because it doesn't obey (the the conditioning part of it).

One example of what could be going on in your dogs head after your training episode described above: Ok...dad just threw out that white thing for me to go retrieve which I love to do. I did as I usually do and run out and get it for him and I got a very uncomfortable sensation when I picked it up. I don't want to do that again and instead would rather chase the dog that just went by.

Probably not what happened here and he was most likely distracted, but an example of what could happen if you collar condition when throwing a pumper. It just sometime helps to try to understand what the dog could possibly be thinking. In this case the dog "could" learn a negative association with bumpers....which will not work in your favor for any future training.

BTW...Mike Lardy, Even Graham (Smartworks), Julie Knutson (The Pointing Labrador), and others all have good training programs that will walk you through this process and more. And some have videos to aid with the material on the books.

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You are very fortunate that your dog didn't bolt and just keep going. After all, how would he know what the heck he was going on? He was probably scared to death and panicky. You could have easily accomplished two things: 1) your dog could have just kept running, scared out of his mind because he was being zapped and he had no idea how to make it stop, or 2) your dog would never want to retrieve again because you burned him when he did it. My question to you is this: do you burn him for not retrieving or for disobeying a here command? Put your collar away until you have mastered basic obedience without it. Sit, here, heal. Once you have that down, you can then introduce the collar. Collar conditioning is a process. The dog must know what behavior it must do to turn off the burn. For example - to condition a dog to sit, you start to burn him a split second before you command "sit." As he sits, you release the button, thus letting him know that he can react in order to turn it off. Same holds for other commands. This is not a one or two time training thing. It requires patience and self control.

Once you begin to get advanced, you can also use indirect pressure, but you are not even close to being able to consider it. I am sorry if I sound terse in this post, but there really should be a law that makes the dog owner take a class or read something before they get to use one on a dog. I have seen many bad things with collars. Yes, I use one (and went and learned from a pro), but really only sparingly. You can accomplish just about everything you need to do without it. They are just one tool, not the only tool. Please do not do that again.

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I think you guys are over reacting somewhat. The dog knows his commands, Sit, stay, heel, come. He does the commands well most of time. He still loves to retrieve. When he bolted after the other dog he didnt even look at the retrieving dummy, he went straight after the dog. I want him to know he cant do that. I dont want him running after dogs, cows, deer and disappearing into the sunset and totally ignoring my commands. Im pretty sure I didnt scar him for life. He is still a happy, enthusiastic dog. I have probably received more varied opinions on this than anything topic I have have posted. Yes I have seen the videos, etc. Thanks for your opinions.

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Quote:

I want him to know he cant do that. I dont want him running after dogs, cows, deer and disappearing into the sunset and totally ignoring my commands.


And you do this with proper collar conditioning. I kind of expected to hear a repsonse like this. There are some good posts here offering valuable information and you owe it to your dog to do it properly. If you continue how you are I feel sorry for your dog and you should NOT be using an e-collar.

JDM's post is spot on.

Many of these "opions" are given by pro trainers.....thus the trainer and programs I have listed in the bottom of one of my posts. Spend the money and go by one of these books and read it.

What collar conditioning program (or videos) are you following that describes the methods you posted (nick, nick, nick, nick.....not working..turn up the pressure and buuurrrn)?

I am by no means a pro trainer or anything even close (hell...I am training my first dog). I have put in the time to purchase and read though material, talk with many people regarding how things should be done, and work with trainers that know what they are doing. Internet forums are NOT where you want to get your training information from, but are a good source to help work through some issues if you can sort through the good and bad info.

Following a good training program should be the top priority for new dog owners/trainers if your not working with a pro.

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Like i said , thanks for your opinion. All dogs and people are different. Know people whose dog have done the same thing-chase deer or other dogs and have used the e-collar to stop that and they were successful. They no longer chase deer. The dogs are still excellent retrievers with no ill affects. I will keep you updated after I get back from No. Dak. It will be interesting. Thank you

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Quote:

All dogs and people are different. Know people whose dog have done the same thing-chase deer or other dogs and have used the e-collar to stop that and they were successful. They no longer chase deer.


Thats not the point. The point was that your not being fair to the dog with the way your introducing the e-collar. It's does not matter that all dogs are different in this case. I was merely suggesting to follow a program to do this....not your own program.

You will be successful with your dog not chasing (deer, dogs, whatever) if you follow a proven program.....you might not if you continue down the path your going.

Good luck! frown.gif

Maybe some of the others like Labs and the others can chime in if I'm in the wrong here. I do not like seeing a dog get burned by an e-collar from an trainer that has not studied up first on what they are doing.

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Fishroger, let me add one thing here and I'm trying to just give friendly advise. But using the collar in the way you describe is punishing the dog for chasing deer. A collar is not a tool to punish with. Your buddies may have came outof that O.K., but why gamble on making even bigger problems. Some dogs get away with being introduced to guns at a shooting range too, but I don't recommend that either.

Teach and re-inforce 'here' and 'sitting to the whistle' and work in the conditioning to those commands. If you just burn the dog while on chase, what is he to disipher from that?

Think back to how the dog was taught commands on lead and that is what you will be doing with he collar. It is no different.

Please don't just strap it on and begin using it, without 1st teaching the dog what the IT is!

Good Luck!

Ken

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Think about it this way. He is running, he gets shocked, first instinct is to run as fast and far as he can to get away from the horrible burning on his neck.

I have said it before, whoever said it is a training collar is very far off. IMHO it is a reinforcing collar when the dog is trained. The dog should know and understand ALL commands you are to reinforce with the collar.

There are some trainers who advocate using the collar at low power, giving a command, and stoping the pain when the dog obeys. Very dangerous IMO, and not something I would want to try with my buddy, but I had a heck of a time with force fetching and did a less painful way with my dog.

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