When To Start E-Collar Conditioning? Important Points To Consider

When you just purchase a new puppy it is quite easy and fun to manage him for a few weeks as he just eats, sleeps and growls at his toys. But in a few weeks, puppy starts developing his own mind and that’s where things can get messy. So are you wondering at what age you should start with e-collar conditioning or teaching your small canine some manners? What is the correct time, age and manner to do so? We will give you the answers.

So, when do you start e-collar conditioning my dog? As far as training is concerned, you should introduce am e-collar to your puppy or dog from the day one you bring him home. Once the dog is settled, take small steps and take small steps to e-collar train him.

Begin with cage training, basic sit and stand or fetch command. Make each interaction with your puppy a learning opportunity and make sure he’s wearing an e-collar each time as it will help him get used to the actual physical item wrapped around his neck. Continue with dog training routines such as housebreaking, controlling nuisance whining, jumping up and barking, fighting the inhibited play biting.

Best age to start e-collar training

If you are considering how old enough your dog should be for e-collar conditioning, then the truth is there are no fixed age criteria that fit for all dogs. It depends upon the condition and maturity of the dog. Some pups are ready for this training at around 14 to 15 weeks of age while for the majority of others the age should be around 6 months before you start.

So now you know at what age you should start with e-collar conditioning, but there is a lot more to it. You must also follow the correct procedure of training so that your dog remains obedient and you can take the most advantage of your e-collar. If properly trained you don’t need not to remain around your dog continuously and can give it freedom too.

How To e-collar condition your dog?

There are two main principles of using an e-collar, they are:

  1. Show your dog what you want it to do.
  2. Reinforce this command with the collar.

Showing your dog what you want is collar-conditioning. This is because, before you whack up your dog, you should at least tell him what you expect. Else he would end up being scared as well as confused. But most people forget the principle of conditioning and try to correct their dogs in a way in which the dog cannot link the punishment to anything. With collar-conditioning, you can prevent that.

But it should be done with care. Here are some steps how you can do it:

  1. Show your dog what it has to do. You can start with the kennel command. You must show the dog what a kennel is by pushing it inside and repeating the command. Put the collar on the dog while doing this, but make sure that it is turned off.
  2. When your dog gets a sign of understanding then you should turn the collar on. But keep it on the lowest setting meant for the dog. If it is a new dog it is good to start with 1 or 2 rather than moving to 10 or 15.
  3. Turn the stimulation on first and then give the command. If the dog complies then turn off the stimulation. If he does not comply then you should force him to go into the kennel while the stimulation is still on. Once he enters the kennel then turn it off immediately.
  4. Once he starts to grasp the command with stimulation then you can move to the next stage. You must do this after 1-2 weeks. Give command first and follow it with stimulation. If he complies then turn off stimulation immediately. Do this for several days.
  5. Next stage is to give the command and apply stimulation only if your dog does not comply.
  6. Lastly, you must generalize the command. Do this by moving the crate to different areas of your yard or to the back of your truck. Make sure that the dog obeys the kennel command in different places.

You should not rush the process of training and let the dog learn at its own pace. With proper collar-conditioning, you lay the foundation for all future collar use. The procedure for conditioning remains the same for all commands such as sit, here, there, fetch etc. you can give commands verbally or while whistling.

Many people do good training in the yard but fail in the field and this is because of the dog’s excitement. While you cannot control the dog’s behavior, you can control yours. While correcting your dog, make sure to control your temper and do not give any corrections in anger.

Correct the dog only after you give proper command verbally or by a whistle and he disobeys willfully. Turning on the button again and again and activating the stimulation can make the dog irritated to a great extent. Lastly, give your pup benefit of a doubt if he makes any mistake – give him another chance and keep your thumb off the button.

Also, it might be a good time to introduce a clicker to your dog.

What is the right size of e-collar for your dog?

To know the correct size measure the size of your dog’s neck in inches and measure the size from neck to the snout. Here is a guide to finding the most appropriate size for your canine.

X-Small: Neck Size = 8″-10″, Cone Length = 4″
Small: Neck Size = 12″-14″, Cone Length = 6″
Medium: Neck Size = 13″-15″, Cone Length = 8″
Large: Neck Size = 15″-17″, Cone Length = 10″

Can your dog sleep while wearing the e-collar?

You can allow your dog to sleep with the e-collar on his neck, but if the pup is not comfortable with the new hardware, and then you should not force it to wear while sleeping. It all depends on personal preferences and comfort of your dog.

Dog Training Secrets

Repetition

Dogs are creatures of habit and learn by repetition. It may take several repitions of the same command before the response becomes implanted in the dogs brain and the action you are trying to teach him becomes automatic. Your dog will also require refresher sessions so that the command or action does not become lost during his life. You should always praise him when he does something right.

Session length

Keep all training sessions short and enjoyable so that you dog’s concentration is maintained throughout. Quality not quantity is the key, you should also always try to finish the training session on a positive note I you can.

Attitude

Always be reasonable in your expectations of what your dog can achieve. It takes time to get results. If your dog has difficulties in picking up a certain command try and look at why he is having difficulties. Come back to it another day.

Praise

Always use praise whenever you dog has successfully completed an exercise. This should also be done as soon as your dog has done the desired act (remember the section on timing) When delivering the praise look directly into his eyes so that he understand the connection between the voice or touch and his action. Deliver the praise either verbally or with the hand by either patting or stroking him.

Eye contact

Using eye contact can be more effective than using the spoken word especially if there is a close bond between the dog and owner. If a dog wishes to communicate with you he will look directly into your eyes trying to read your intent.

Hand Signals

Using specific hand signals while at the same time speaking to your dog can be an effective way of training you dog. It will be useful in getting young dog to respond at long distances and you can eventually stop the verbal commands so that he responds to the hand signal only. Give hand signal in front of and above the dog’s head as this is in their line of vision.

Voice Signals

Dogs are known for their intelligence but they are only able to understand a few words, even those are more of an association between the sound you make and the action the dog has learned to respond to the sound with.

Use one command for one action and pronounce the command with the same tone of voice. You should gain your dogs attention by saying his name before starting a command.

It is important to realise that you dog will not understand every thing you say and may misunderstand the meaning of what you say. For example if you have trained you dog with the “down” command he may well if he is sitting on the furniture not respond to the command “get down” as he has only recognised the word down.

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