Well, eventually I plan on proofing all of them. I tend to have the view regarding E-collars that they are not reserved for problem dogs. I am considering them as a training tool because I feel they allow a trainer to have excellent consistency. I really look at them as a "wireless leash".
And I haven't even bought one yet so he will be closer to a year before I would really begin using one.
Off-leash recall is what I am focused on proofing first. Off-leash training seems to be the best application for the E-collar but it also seems that it would be good all around because I would be able to improve consistency substantially.
Because he is obedient thus far, I just feel that I won't have to use it much once he becomes "collar-literate". I just want him to know that I can reach out and touch him at all times. He is starting to realize that he is much faster and more agile than I am.
Bottom line: Dog training is a breeze if you are consistent. I feel that few other training methods would allow me to reach a level of consistency that matches the E-collar.
If you think that dog training is a breeze if you are consistent, that's all you really need to be.
It sound like you've already decided what you're going to do - but just incase you're open to suggestions:
I honestly think all you need is kind treatment, consistancy and most of all make yourself the centre of your dogs world. Have fun with him, play tug, ball, hide and seek, chase, football etc. Don't control your dogs walks off road - allow him freedom to explore, by using a long line, or a good quality extended lead (not many people on here like those - but I think they're great if used safely) call him back to you regularly and play with him and really praise him - give him a really tasty treat, if he values treats - mine doesn't.
Keep your leashed walks interesting by changing direction regularly, speeding up and slowing down, so he has to pay attention to you - talk to your dog, don't walk in silence, and praise him when he's doing what you want, such as walking nicely.
Make sure your recall is 100% at home - then 100% on a long line before you let him off leash outside where there are distractions.
Make sure he knows a rock solid leave it, wait, stop and sit, and practice when on a long line. Pay attention to your surroundings, so that you can act before problems arise.
GSD's love their owners so much they don't tend to roam far - you'll find that if you run away from your dog, he'll soon be after you.
Give it your best shot first - and you'll find you won't need a shock collar.
Enroll him in agility or whatever sport you think he'd be good at, if you want to - he'll then get used to having other dogs and distraction around.
Take him to shopping malls, or wherever you can where he will see lots of people, dogs, prams, bikes etc. great places to practice diverting his attention to you.
Do you intend to enter competions or will your dog be first a foremost a family pet?