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Is your vet being very harsh about your dog's ecollar/prong collar?

A vet telling a patient, “you should not use an ecollar, it will definitely harm your dog, and make your dog more anxious” causing the patient to feel really terrible — despite the fact that the dog is actually much better behaved than other dogs in the clinic.

Sounds familiar?

I have heard this many times and l would like to take a moment to address this.

First of all, many anxious dogs that l have met were already very anxious without ever seeing an ecollar in their life. They did not become anxious because of ecollar (they have never seen one). Ecollar had nothing to do with their anxiousness. So, obviously, anxiety can be caused by something completely unrelated to ecollar.

After proper training which included the use of ecollar, these dogs became much better. That’s my first hand experience since 1996. We have seen this literally over a thousand times. Many of my colleagues have also witnessed the same thing thousands of times.

So, my factual observation is that these anxious dogs did not become anxious from ecollar, and they all became better after receiving some training which involved the use of ecollar.

Secondly, I have come across many anxious dogs who were trained by reward-based trainers prior to coming to me. Can I draw the conclusion that treats must have caused their increased anxiety just because treats was being used extensively during their prior training? If the dog was wearing a harness, would it be logical for me to tell everyone that harness is responsible for anxiety?

Even if a dog has become more anxious after some training and this dog is also wearing an ecollar, it does not mean ecollar must be the reason for the increased anxiety. No scientist will find such a conclusion logical.

Furthermore, anxiety is not something that will just go away on its own. Anxiety rehabilitation is the most challenging because there are many complex factors involved and every dog is different. Without proper help, their anxiety will get worse over time no matter what training tools are being used.

How could a vet take one look at a dog and conclude that this dog will definitely become more anxious from ecollar training?

How could a vet say something so insensitive to an owner who has been working really hard to achieve drastic improvements with her dog?

I do not offer medical advice to my clients. I only advise my clients on dog training related matters.

It is very irresponsible to offer uneducated opinion from a position of authority about things one has no expertise in. It can be very misleading and is really unprofessional, in my opinion.

Vets are trained medical professionals. I will look to them for medical advice. l have no problem trusting them with medical treatment. However, when it comes to dog training advice, I would recommend everyone to please go to a competent trainer instead.

Hope this makes sense.

Thank you.

Reactive GSD training via board and train dog training program


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