E Collar Explained in 3 Simple Phases!

To get a dog off leash reliable with e collar training, we teach it in 3 phases.
I’d like to take some of the mystery out of this stuff and break down the three phases for you. Here’s a very basic overview.
Even before we get into e collar work we make sure the dog knows all the commands on a basic level with prong collar pressure. We use leash pressure and release to show the dog what pressure means and how to turn it off. Gentle pressure is applied and we guide them into the position then the pressure is released at exactly the right moment. Once the dog understands the language of pressure we can more easily transfer things to e collar.
Learning Phase:
in the learning phase we use low level e collar stimulation on continuous. We say the command, apply continuous stimulation pressure with e collar on the lowest level the dog can feel. We also use light prong collar leash pressure to guide them into position, when they are in position we remove the leash pressure and come off the e collar button as well.
Prompting Phase:
When the dog starts to get better at the commands we move to prompts. We start to back off on the leash pressure and will only use leash for guidance if needed. In the prompting phase we say the command and simultaneously give a quick tap on the e collar still mainly at the lowest level the dog can feel.
Correction Phase:
Once the dog absolutely knows the commands 100% they must be held accountable for non compliance. At this point there have been hundreds and hundreds of repetitions during the other phases and we’re watching for signs that the dog absolutely knows the command inside and out. If the dog knows what to do and chooses to blow us off anyway we will give a quick tap on e collar at slightly higher levels, repeat the command, tap and sometimes dial up to a level that the dog cares about until they complete the command. So from here on out the e collar is only used for non compliance.
We teach all the commands this way, recall, place, sit, heel, and down. The amount of time that it takes each dog to be off leash reliable varies. There are lots of factors involved and it also depends on the amount of time spent doing repetitions. If you are teaching your own dog these phases at home each phase may take a week or more, it just depends on how much time you invest. If it’s a board and train dog we generally can achieve the beginnings of fully off leash reliable in less than two weeks. At that point the owner just has to maintain and keep practicing all that the dog has learned.
I hope that all makes sense. There is no magic about this training it’s just hard work, repetitions, consistency, and accountability. With lots of commitment to the training your dog can go anywhere with you, will recall under any distraction, hold place for hours when asked, and stay in a down while you eat at an outdoor cafe. This stuff is totally achievable whether you decide to pay a trainer to teach your dog or learn from videos and teach him yourself.
*I only recommend collars from E Collar Technologies or Dogtra; other collars tend to be less reliable in consistency, have fewer levels, and often have sharper non blunt stimulation. If you are unsure of what collar is best for your dog please contact a knowledgable trainer who specializes in off leash e collar training before you buy anything.
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