I attended and E-collar demonstration by a professional trainer a few days ago and came away from it a little bit troubled. The troubling part was not the electrical stimulation the dog received because afterwards when I pressed my hand up against the collar to see how much shock the dog had received, I could barely feel anything. No, the troubling part was how tightly the collar was fitted. Initially the collar was so tight that the dog had a difficult time swallowing a treat.

Because my dog was being used, I (much to the dismay of the trainer) loosened the collar one hole. Even then, when the dog barked, the sound was not normal. The bark was very raspy sounding. I believe the collar was still too tight if the dog would have been expected to wear it for more than a few minutes.
With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress? I feel the need to use an E-collar because my one year old, very high drive dog exhibits a behavior that is very damaging and potentially very dangerous to herself when she is out in the open countryside, away from me. However, if the collar must be fitted so tightly, it seems that the E-collar needs to be refined before it can be of any real use. (I understand that the collar must be fitted more tightly than a regular collar.) scott
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With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress? I feel ... be of any real use. (I understand that the collar must be fitted more tightly than a regular collar.) scott

If it's not tight enough, the zap won't hit the dog. So you're confusing things more, because you're only randomly punishing the dog (when it happens to hit right) when you're TRYING to punish much more often.

Your dog shouldn't be wearing an electric collar constantly, it should be a training-use-only issue, so it shouldn't cause long-term damage.

Emily Carroll
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I understand what you are saying.
E-collars are used with hunting dogs, aren't they? (My dog is not a hunting dog.) If they are it would seem to me that hunting dogs must be able to function freely without having trouble barking, drinking, etc., and for more than just a few minutes. So back to my original question: With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress?
back to my original question: With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress?

Yes, although aside from treat rewards there's no reason a dog should be eating with the collar on. The collar needs to be snug, as Emily says, to keep both contacts against the dog's neck, but it shouldn't be constricting the dog's neck to the point you're describing.
Does your dog have a long and/or thick coat?
I attended and E-collar demonstration by a professional trainer a few days ago and came away from it a little ... few minutes. With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress?

Absolutely! What breed of dog do you have? The e-collar should fit snugly, but should not in any way restrict the dog's breathing. Did you talk to the instructor about it?
A better time to have asked these questions was when you had the manufacturer's rep/pro trainer standing right there in front of you, don't you think? Emotion: smile
The e-collar needs to be snug, yes, but the dog should always be able to drink, eat and even bark with no difficulty whatsoever.

If he is/was in fact having difficulty doing those things, then the collar was too tight and needed further adjustment.

When you're properly fitting an e-collar to a dog, you should pull apart the dog's hair a little, to make sure the contact points get through to the dog's skin, and then just snug the collar up a little, so that it doesn't slide around. Yes, sometimes it takes a little trial and error to get it just right (just like it does with most types of collars), and you should have had the instructor show you precisely how to do it.
The reason that seminars are even held, Scott, is to give new trainers all the time they need to get all of their questions answered, and to show them exactly how to do things, etc. and you should have taken better advantage of your time with the pro, IMO.

However, if it was just a demonstration, and not a full seminar, maybe time was a factor?
Rest assured, Scott, that you have no reason to be troubled, and if you decide to attend a full seminar(and I hope that you will), don't let the instructor get away without showing* you how to properly fit the collar to *your dog.
Btw, if you haven't made up your mind yet, Tri-Tronics makes the very best collars. And you should always get the very best e-collar you can afford. Your dog will thank you for it! Emotion: smile

Handsome Jack Morrison
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Btw, if you haven't made up your mind yet, Tri-Tronics makes the very best collars.

Unless you have a small dog, dammit.
I attended and E-collar demonstration by a professional trainer a ... be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress?

Absolutely! What breed of dog do you have? The e-collar should fit snugly, but should not in any way restrict the dog's breathing. Did you talk to the instructor about it?

German shepherd rather short haired. I spoke to the instructor about the collar being too tight and his remark was that I spoiled the dog. I left it at that until l loosened the collar a minute later.
A better time to have asked these questions was when you had the manufacturer's rep/pro trainer standing right there in front of you, don't you think? Emotion: smile

Yes, and I did.
The e-collar needs to be snug, yes, but the dog should always be able to drink, eat and even bark ... does with most types of collars), and you should have had the instructor show you precisely how to do it.

The trainer was the one that tightened the collar, after I put the collar on and the dog failed to feel the stimulation.
The reason that seminars are even held, Scott, is to give new trainers all the time they need to get ... how to do things, etc. and you should have taken better advantage of your time with the pro, IMO.

It wasn't a seminar. I was just being shown how they work by a pro trainer because I had asked about the collar and he had one available. My question to the NG was simply to draw on other's experiences. I currently do not own an E-collar and certainly would not buy one based on my first experience.
I've been very happy with the Dogtra 1200NCP collar.
Kristen and
Kali CDX, CGC, TDIA, TT
www.kristenandkali.com
I understand what you are saying. E-collars are used with hunting dogs, aren't they? (My dog is not a hunting ... my original question: With an E-collar fitted properly, shouldn't a dog be able to swallow, bark, eat, and drink without distress?

Yes. You want it very snug but not so tight that a dog can't swallow.

Kristen and
Kali CDX, CGC, TDIA, TT
www.kristenandkali.com
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