Let’s start simple; puppies are adorable. Everybody loves them and their great conversation starters for people out in public. However, these cute little animals require an immense amount of effort and time on the part of their owners.
Thanks to this, puppy owners are continually searching for shortcuts in training them. To quicken the training process, owners will look into purchasing a shock collar. In this article, we will discuss if this shortcut is genuinely a good option for puppy owners.
Can You Use a Shock Collar on a Puppy?
The answer to the question, can you use a shock collar a puppy, is yes; however, I recommend you don’t. In fact, you should exhaust all options before resorting to using a shock collar with a puppy. See, if your abuse the shock collar, your puppy could grow up stressed and anxious.
Let’s face it; there are better options available for training a puppy. After all, positive reinforcement can’t traumatize a puppy, but a shock collar can. In light of this, it’s essential to find another type of training that works best with your new puppy. Dog owners should reserve shock collars for dogs with remote for extreme situations with adult dogs.
What Age Can You Start Using a Shock Collar?
Around 8-10 weeks is the time the use of a shock collar becomes an option. Mainly, the shock collars available useable at this age are the anti-bark variety. These collars deliver a little shock when your puppy begins to bark. Their purpose is to stop your dog from barking.
Of course, a shock collar will effectively stop your puppy from barking. But, as mentioned above, the consequences of using a shock collar aren’t worth a bark-free home.
You don’t want a new puppy in constant fear of doing something that comes naturally to them. If you need to lessen your puppy's barking tendencies, there are safer and less detrimentally ways of curving this behavior.
A continually barking puppy is an annoying nuisance to have inside your home. These four options will make sure you don’t have to use a shock collar to stop your puppy’s barking:
Don’t Pay Attention to Their Barking
Puppies thrive on your attention. Barking is a way to grab their owner’s attention. If you ignore them, you don’t provide them with the reward: the reward being you noticing them.
Therefore, to stop them from barking, refuse to acknowledge their presence until they settle down. Don’t pet, talk, or even look at your puppy until the barking stops. Then, give them a treat. This positive reinforcement will convey to them that barking isn’t a praiseworthy behavior.
Now, this method is going to test your patience. After all, constant barking is an incredibly annoying behavior. Frustration is going to boil up inside you. This frustration will make you think to yell at them is a good idea: It isn’t.
It’s imperative you wait till their barking stops to give them your attention. If you don’t, their barking will continue in the future because at some point they know you will acknowledge them.
Teach them the “Hush” Command
You don’t want the barking to stop altogether. In actuality, a barking dog is a handy thing to have in your home. However, there are times when it gets very excessive and unneeded.
In these situations, it’s very beneficial to have your puppy know the “hush” command. With this in your arsenal, your puppy will be able to act as a guard dog without their barking becoming excessive.
To teach your puppy “hush”, follow these steps:
- Put a treat into your hand, walk up to them and put your hand in front them so they can smell the treat.
- The smell of the treat should stop their barking. Once your puppy stops and starts sniffing the treat say, “hush”. Then, give them the treat.
- Repeat these steps until you can use this command without needing your puppy to smell the treat.
- After a while, your puppy should come over to you immediately after you say, “hush” to receive their delicious treat.
Keep Your Puppy Tired
Honestly, your puppy’s barking is probably a product of them being bored. Getting them more exercise will make sure they don’t bark because they don’t have anything else to keep them from boredom.
Given it’s a puppy we are dealing with, this means several long walks a day. If you don’t have the time for this, invest in a dog walker to help you out. There are a variety of apps like Rover or Wag that can provide this service.
Along with getting a dog walker, try finding a toy your puppy likes and play fetch with them. You’ll be surprised how much energy a 10-minute game of fetch takes out of a puppy.
Block Their Sight
Blocking their sight isn't just the most straightforward technique on this list, but maybe the most effective. Puppies are less likely to bark at things they can’t see. So, put blinds and curtains up in front of every window your puppy can see through. By doing this, you will reduce both your puppy’s barking and your headaches immensely.
If your puppy has a problem with barking in the yard, it’s a good idea to invest in a privacy fence. It will make more difficult for them to see something they deem worthy of their barking.
As you can tell, using a shock collar on a puppy isn’t something worth doing. There are many other training techniques available that can remove unwanted behaviors more humanely. Don’t be the person who uses a shock collar because it’s easy. Be a responsible owner and take the time need to train your puppy in a safe/healthy way.