Are Bark Collars a Good Anti-Barking Solution?

Bark collars were invented to resolve a rather exasperating problem of dogs that bark all the time. If you have the bad luck of living in a neighborhood where there are many such dogs, your life can turn into a nightmare.

Originally, there was one style of bark collar, the static or ‘shock’ collar. Back then, its mechanism wasn’t so advanced and it led to several complications. They often reacted to the barking of another dog, and could not differentiate between the types of barks, so would correct the dog when it was responding as any dog would; and did not necessarily have a safety cut-off in case the dog was hurt or panicked. Some owners did not supervise their dogs during the first few days of wearing the device and their animals displayed various kinds of trauma.

In the time since they were first introduced, no bark collars have improved dramatically.

These collars are not dangerous and they merely annoy the dog and make it bark less often. (This also works with other behaviors, so many collars have a manual remote that will allow you to help train the dog to stay off the furniture or not dig in the garden).

Nowadays, bark collars come in three versions - static, sonic and with spray. bark collar with citronella spread a strong citrus scent whenever the dog barks for longer that a certain amount of time. Static collars use high-frequency sounds that only dogs hear. Both these options are great for dogs that are sensitive to physical stimuli (the collar using citrus smell shouldn’t be used on scent hounds, because they sense of smell is extremely well developed).

People seem to like static collars best, due to their constant innovation. When the collar detects barking of a certain range of frequencies and volume (both audibly and vibrationally) for a preset number of times, it will then be triggered. Requiring that both systems be activated prevents the collar from reacting to another dog barking. It features volume and frequency settings that can be adjusted so that the collar does not react to manifestations of fear or stress, These devices have adjustable steps and automatically shut down if the dog barks for a period longer than the one preset. This collar can also reset to a lower level if no barking occurs for a certain amount of time. This reduction reinforces the idea that being quiet has benefits.

Collars are most efficient only when combined with dog training. The collar should reinforce the training when the owner is not around; not BE the training. A reward system must be set in motion, so that the dog understands the proper behavior faster.

Anti-bark collars are the most practical and humane methods of teaching the dog it shouldn’t bark all the time. Most definitely they are preferable to other alternatives, such as the invasive debarking surgery or alienating the dog.

Even though the first versions of bark collar weren’t perfect, they have been improved in time. Most types of dog collars can be adjusted manually or digitally. If you want to find out more about different types of bark collar, click here.

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