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We love e-collars because they are a remote training system used to provide valuable, timely feedback that will stop misbehavior.


We love E-collars because they are a subtle training system that provided valuable, timely feedback stop and end misbehavior–often immediately.

E-collars, in good hands, are safe and remarkably effective. E-Collar feedback can interrupt misbehavior events in real time. Consistent feedback will often put an end to misbehavior for good. Eliminating misbehavior is the biggest struggle for most dog owners.

Many people have reasonable concerns regarding the safety of electric stimulation. It is nothing like a taser — there is no visible arcing, sparking, or popping. Modern electric collars use the same technology found at many physical therapy clinics; TENS units, using the same blunt stimulation, are used on humans when rehabilitating a weak or cramped muscle.

The sensation of the e-collar, appropriately set to the dog’s sensitivity, comes through cleanly and distinctly, alleviating the confusion and anxiety that contribute to misbehavior. The stimulation does not, cannot, damage the dog physically. Used properly, it has amazing benefits to the dog psychologically. We never see CODT e-collar trained dogs become more anxious, reactive, or aggressive.

Note: abusing any tool can be damaging, and e-collars are no exception, but correctly using the device IS safe.


While there is an opposing view, we unequivocally maintain that proper e-collar use is entirely humane.

The tool is used with compassion and benevolence to resolve misbehavior. Those misbehaviors left unchecked ultimately limit the dog’s experience and causes major concerns (often safety) for the dog and the humans around them. Proper use also dictates that the lowest, effective level is used, so the intervention is minimally uncomfortable and as brief as possible. It is far more humane to produce happy dogs who experience larger, freer, more included lives than to spare dogs all momentary discomfort. For many dogs, life without corrective feedback, spent on the wrong track, is living as a tyrant to others or living a life of exclusion from others.


During moments of misconduct, dogs respond to timely, well-calibrated feedback, letting them know to course correct to get a positive outcome. When sending stimulation (stim), the handler provides the dog with feedback or valuable information about how to not act to get an acceptable outcome. There’s now an incentive to avoid the misbehavior–which would result in stim–that would get in the way of the dog’s positive outcome. To make a brief comparison, the stim is like a natural obstacle the dog would instinctually avoid as he makes his way towards a desired location

In addition to discouraging misbehavior in similar future situations, the interrupting effect of stim feedback creates a opportunity for the handler (i.e. owner or trainer) to refocus the dog on the instruction. This can be used to cure for a specific behavior (e.g. sit, heel, or come), or simply reinforce the non-engagement with the temptation. The dog will often look up to the handler without additional prompting once given feedback, or when it senses a known temptation, to receive guidance or support from the handler. Feedback from the e-collar results in the dog adjusting its behavior instead of repeating something that doesn’t work.


Low levels are barely perceivable and often are described as a “tickle.” Strong, corrective feedback levels will contract the muscle and feel like a firm pinch with an uncomfortable tingle. Still, the stimulation will not physically damage the dog. More robust levels are used for generally sturdier dogs or when the dog is more determined to misbehave. Lower levels are always preferred because it’s fairer to the dog and avoids confusion resulting from an overwhelming correction. The dog’s experience of the stim sensation varies depending on how mentally determined and physically engaged the dog is at the moment. The more committed and physically engaged, the less they’ll feel the stimulation; therefore, a higher level is required in such high-drive moments. Imagine yourself playing a game of football, breaking tackles, charging for the endzone, a faint tickle of a feather may not even be perceivable in such a moment, but relaxed in your favorite armchair you could easily feel it. Stimulation can be faint or robust depending on the situation, but we always aim for the lowest effective level.


  1. Read and follow all instructions in the e-collar manual to safely use the device.
  2. Allow the dog to wear the e-collar around the house without using stimulation.
  3. Use the correct contact points. Consider length and type. Often Thick Hair versions are needed for dense coated dogs.
  4. Find the perception level (the lowest perceivable level) that works best for your dog. Start at level 4 and work your way up until you notice your dog consistently looking to their shoulder/neck or a muscle contraction around the same spot. Some dogs have different or muted tells, so watch closely for a sign that they feel it. You may not have a subtle response if you use a system with less than 100 levels of stimulation. We advise working with the FOB Educator FE-560 for most dogs.
  5. Once you find your dog’s perception level, slowly use the tool to provide feedback. Gradually increase the stimulation level till the dog gently recoils and/or stops the misbehavior. This is your motivation level, and it’s a moving target depending on the current determination level of the dog, as mentioned above.


The reason e-collars work so well is that dogs, like humans, learn from feedback.

Your dog learns that they control the stimulation with their behavior. When a dog can’t seem to help itself from acting out, a touch from the e-collar can guide them towards a better choice.

E-collars help dogs make better and safer choices, choices that lead them to joys they didn’t know were even on the table! Combine all that with the fact that most systems have a several hundred-yard range, and you’ve got yourself a game-changing training device. We’ve seen “lost causes”, whether stubborn or anxious, come back into the fold with this tool time and time again.

If you were willing to read through this article, you can trust that you’d be a fair and effective e-collar user. For those that need additional assistance introducing an e-collar, contact us with the button below and one of our experienced trainers will help you.

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