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Need some opinions on Shock collars. Our 9 month old GS has been very ornery and aggressive from the day we brought him home at 7 weeks old. Mostly with my husband though. He purposely stays focused on his hands and bites them. He will stand in front of him and just bark and bark and bark. If he's not barking at my husband, he's just barking, at what I don't know. My husband plays with him, walks him but when he's not doing those things with him, the dog gets very nasty with him. My husband finally had enough and said he was going to purchase one of the shock collars. I'm not so sure I like that idea.
Can I get some peoples opinions on these collars. We never needed to do anything like that to our other GS that passed a year ago.
 

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Shock collars (electronic collars/e-collars) are not for this purpose. We have always used an e-collar with max, but we went to training for it. It's to be used with positive training, not the word NO. It's just like a clicker but doesn't give off the loud obnoxious noise, meaning:
Say "Sit" (press button)
Say "Down" (press button)
Say "Come" (press button)

Try using "No" firmly, or turn around and ignore the dog, or give him a timeout, meaning when this behavior starts, give him the command to go to his bed or go lay down. Give him the idea it's NOT playtime.

This advice is just for this one situation, NLIF (by your husband) is needed for everything after this not an e-collar.

And I LOVE our e-collar and wouldn't want to do without it.
 

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I use an electronic collar for some things, but I think it would be a mistake to utilize it to discourage biting behavior.

It's just a tool, and used incorrectly can cause more problems than it solves.

Invest the money in a trainer familiar with GSDs instead, or get husband and pup in obedience class with large breeds together.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

If you husband wants to stop the behavior the dog is doing, the e-collar isn't the way to go. And for the $300 dollars the collar costs, and the trainer for that........................I'd do what the rest of us do instead.

And YOU can do this, not your husband. Find a great dog trainer in the area and take dog classes. This is just normal dog stuff that needs normal dog training.

What I know now (3rd dog in) is if I keep using the same training method I know, and my dog doesn't improve (usually gets worse) then the problem IS ME... not the dog. I don't have the proper skills in my bag of tricks to help with this issue.

So I go to someone who does, who can help me, and THEN I can train my dog.

Frankly (and this isn't all guys, but many guys...) they REFUSE to learn anything new and refuse to go to class and if they go they don't listen/practice/pay attention. To the extend they just feel criticized and get their feelings hurt, so quit the classes and THE DOG SUFFERS in the end.

For some reason, we females tend to be more open minded about going to class, learning new methods that work, practicing them so our dogs improve, and life is much better at home. (and the husband/significant other than takes the credit, but who cares??).

Most all problems our dogs have can be fixed with TONS and TONS more exercise (swimming, hiking, running, miles a day), more socialization ( has your dog done all this stuff? and this stuff yet and dog classes! For as long as WE need go to learn how to train our dog.
 

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Ditto to all of the comments given above.

I've used an electronic collar with my dog (with excellent results: happy dog and happy human!), but ONLY with the advice, guidance, and <u>careful supervision</u> of an excellent trainer--he has experience with GSDs and in working with an electronic collar.

As zyp has posted above, I heartily encourage <u>anyone</u>, especially GSDs and their owners, towards <u>obedience classes</u> with trainers who are familiar with the breed.

I'm just an average dog owner, speaking from experience. The electronic collar might not be necessary. I'd give obedience classes a try, if I were in your situation.

Good luck--please keep us posted on your progress!
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

As above. A shock collar would only get your dog more riled up and may cause him to strike out in pain and fear, completely defeating the purpose. And puppies, from seven weeks on, even into 9 months are NEVER dominant and agressive. They are full of energy and play, and biting is how they play, and barking is how they try to get someone to play with them.

I have a 14 week old working lines right now, and my arms are bruised, scratched and in spots, bleeding from his biting. HE IS NOT BEING AGRESSIVE NOR DOMINANT!!! HE IS A PUPPY THAT IS DYING FOR SOME FUN AND INTERACTION.

When his behaviour becomes obnoxious and difficult to bare, and I feel like I'm under attack, that is when I say: Okay, time to go for a walk! And we go for a walk, or go outside and play fetch, or play chase the rag/rope.

15 to 30 minutes of fun, and we come back in, and I have a calm, contented puppy, and I'm a happy puppy owner.

Has you pup been to classes? He may need more mental stimulation, and have his mind exercised. Obedience, tracking, agility, other activities where he gets to use his brain sounds like what such an active pup needs. I think you are right to not feel quite right about a shock collar. Electronic collars are used for training, for communicating, not for correcting behaviour.

If pup is still biting at your husband's hands, then he is unwittingly rewarding the behaviour. See if you can get a trainer to observe your pup and give some pointers on how to redirect and stop rewarding unwanted biting, and turn his attention seeking into some more positve venue.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

Puppy is telling hubby:

"Hey! I need more excersise.. you think being sent out in the YARD is enough for me? Do I look like a 12-year-old GSD senior citizen to you??"

Puppy is telling hubby:

"I need WAY more MENTAL stimulation! Tire my BRAIN out-- let's do sits and downs with treat reward on rough surfaces like a brick walkway, on smooth surfaces like the sidewalk, on a high surface like the picnic table, and do this every single day! Make me have to concentrate! Let's work focus! Enroll me in dog classes-- and actually DO the homework several times per day with me! At home.. in the park.. make me THINK! Tire my brain out!"

Hubby wants to tell puppy:

"Don't bother me in this manner."

Hubby needs to get very, VERY busy with this puppy, or you do-- he needs mental stimulation. He needs walks. He needs ball playing. He needs training homework from doggy class done at home, several times daily. More than you are currently doing-- way more. He needs to tire his brain out, too.

Puppy is being a real you-know-what because he needs more from YOU, and has been telling you so since he was 7 weeks old. He needs more than you are giving him in terms of time, involvement, excersise, training practicing, etc. Puppy is "being a jerk" so to speak, because he can't tell you any other way. He needs more than your last dog did. Each GSD is different. MOST of them are exactly like your current puppy. Mine is.

An e-collar used to stifle this would ramp this puppy up, make him more hyper, frustrated at not having ANY outlet for his physical and mental urges. He needs both you and hubby to give him that outlet, instead of trying to stifle this behavior, as annoying as it is, it is a cry for help.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

LOL Pattie! You must have been typing as I was posting. Great minds think alike! But you pass the message on with so much more tact and helpful insight than I. Love your post, you are right on!
 

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My parents tested out a shock collar (against my advice) with their black lab. They left it on the poor thing constantly and noticed that she was suddenly afraid of water. The next time I came to visit I made my mom take the collar off to discover two puncture wounds where the prongs were. I guess the thing malfunctioned and shocked the poor dog like crazy when she took a drink. While my mom used the collar incorrectly, it still shouldn't have done this. I hate shock collars, and I think it just confuses the animal.
Also, 7 weeks is too early to take a puppy. He may not have learned his bite inhibition. I went through this with my male shepherd. I would yelp when he started biting, and he would normally stop. Sometimes he would ignore me, and then I'd give him a sharp growl. The barking could be boredom, but he should never be getting nasty with anyone. It sounds like he may think he's boss, which means he doesn't respect your husband or recognize him as a leader.
 

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Originally Posted By: FrauleinNeed some opinions on Shock collars. Our 9 month old GS has been very ornery and aggressive from the day we brought him home at 7 weeks old. Mostly with my husband though. He purposely stays focused on his hands and bites them. He will stand in front of him and just bark and bark and bark. If he's not barking at my husband, he's just barking, at what I don't know. My husband plays with him, walks him but when he's not doing those things with him, the dog gets very nasty with him. My husband finally had enough and said he was going to purchase one of the shock collars. I'm not so sure I like that idea.
Can I get some peoples opinions on these collars. We never needed to do anything like that to our other GS that passed a year ago.
Make sure that your husband isn't playing rough or wrestling with him. I know a lot of times guys like to get rough with pups and think it is funny that they are trying to bite their hands while playing, but it creates a situation that you are seeing now.
Request barking, or Demanding more like it, happens a lot. All it will take is a schedule and a basic training course with a trainer and you should have your problems resolved. I wouldn't recommend a shock collar for this because it could be easily solved with just teaching basic manners. Check out this website to find a Certified Trainer in your area: http://ccpdt.org/rstr/index.html

Good Luck!
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

Just want to make sure I didn't chase any of the GREAT male dog owners/ trainers off with my previous comments. There are some wonderful ones out there.

It just seems that GENERALLY they lack patience to learn something new, and GENERALLY stick with 'it's the way I trained my first dog 30 years ago so it has to work with this dog too (even if it's clearly NOT), and generally refuse to take a dog class(es) cause 'I can do it myself how hard could it be ' (even if the dog is clearly not improving and is usually getting worse).

And I will say I know some blockheaded women dog owners too......
(but not me
)
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

First, I think you, you DH and the 9 month old pup need training classes with a qualified trainer. Once in a great while you can find a good trainer at Petsmart, but most of the time other than a great place to work with distractions the trainers aren't worth what you pay. If there is a SchH club around, call them and ask if you can bring your dog out for some basic OB work.

I don't buy into the theory of not rough housing with dogs, my DH plays rough with all the dogs and the dogs have never tried it with me and the all learned one command and it is "Enough" that means rough play time is over.

My first GSD was an absolute working pup terror. That is no excuse for what is going on now. My pup would lunge and bite at me when he was a young pup if he didn't get his way. So how the pup was at 7 weeks is no excuse for him not having some solid training at 9 months old.

So to correct the problems you all need to go to classes. I get the feeling that your young pup doesn't get enough exercise and doesn't see either of you as a leader. The eCollar isn't going to make either of you a leader, it will cause more problems and will not fix the problem. BUT some good OB classes can work wonders.

Val
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

Quote:It's just like a clicker but doesn't give off the loud obnoxious noise, meaning:

Say "Sit" (press button)
Say "Down" (press button)
Say "Come" (press button)
Not to take this thread off topic, but the e-collar functions nothing at all like a clicker, it's not even used in the same place as a clicker. Clickers are used to mark the correct behavior when it occurs.

Example: Say "sit". Dog's butt goes down. Click clicker. This lets the dog know that putting his butt down is the behavior you wanted. Reward. Continue and phase out clicker and reward.

You don't use the e-collar to mark the correct behavior ... that would kind of defeat the purpose.

Quote:I hate shock collars, and I think it just confuses the animal.
e-collars are actually very clear and non-confusing to the dog if they are being used by someone who knows what they are doing and who is using them for training, ideally under the supervision of an experienced trainer.

Beyond that, I second what Patti said so eloquently. Puppy is bored and not stimulated enough. He needs to get worked - long walks, play time, obedience training.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

Originally Posted By: Castlemaid A shock collar would only get your dog more riled up and may cause him to strike out in pain and fear, completely defeating the purpose.
I beg to differ. If the remote training collar is used as it should, your not going to see an animal riled up that is stiking back in pain and fear. If used correctly there is NO pain or fear.

Proper use is the key to success with e-collars or any other training aid for that matter. No training aid should be used with the intent to have a dog obey because they are pain compliant!

Certainly DO NOT get an e-collar if your only intent is to use it as a punishment tool! The e-collar already has a horrid rep because of "trainers" who use it as a punishment tool at levels way too intense. Used properly and under supervision of a seasoned e-collar trainer, the e-collars are EXCELLENT training aids.

Like any other training tool, a dog has to understand the command before implimenting the use of the training aid. Meaning that by strapping an e-collar on the dog, your dog ISN'T instandly smart. The dog has to understand the command before you can expect it to respond to the command through use of stimulation.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

Originally Posted By: Tracie
Originally Posted By: Castlemaid A shock collar would only get your dog more riled up and may cause him to strike out in pain and fear, completely defeating the purpose.
I beg to differ. If the remote training collar is used as it should, your not going to see an animal riled up that is stiking back in pain and fear. If used correctly there is NO pain or fear.

Sorry Tracie, did not mean to give the e-collar a bad rap. I understood the OP was wanting to use the collar as a correction for biting, and I was addressing that particular issue. As you so well came to my rescue to clear up that point about the correct use for training, it is an important distinction and I should have explained better.

I'm quite interested myself in learning how to use an e-collar as a training tool myself, but lack the expert guidance to do so confidently.
 

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Originally Posted By: MelpaMy parents tested out a shock collar (against my advice) with their black lab. They left it on the poor thing constantly and noticed that she was suddenly afraid of water. The next time I came to visit I made my mom take the collar off to discover two puncture wounds where the prongs were. I guess the thing malfunctioned and shocked the poor dog like crazy when she took a drink. While my mom used the collar incorrectly, it still shouldn't have done this. I hate shock collars, and I think it just confuses the animal.
Classic example of why e-collars get a bad rap. The collar did not malfunction. The purchaser of the e-collar did not read the instruction manuel or seek advice from a seasoned e-collar user before putting the collar on the dog! The collar HAS TO BE ROTATED EVERY 2-3 hours so that the prongs do not cause contact dermatitis (hot spots) or it was put on the dog way too tight. E-collars DO NOT CAUSE BURNS nor do they malfunction to "shock" a dog.

Also, the e-collar does not confuse the dog, the handler does by improper use and inconsistancy.
 

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Re: Shock collar..... not!

No problem Lucia.

The e-collar, like any other training aid (prong, clicker, treat trainer) is only as good as the hands holding it
 
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