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Alternatives to Shock Collars

Some people use shock collars as a way method for dog training, specifically to get their dog to stop barking. However, the consensus around this is that shock collars are not a very good method. Why? Simply because it's incredibly unpleasant for your dog, and physical punishment is rarely a good way to teach your dog new or old tricks. 

But don't fret! There are plenty of alternatives to  get your dog to stop barking. If vocal commands aren't enough, pair those vocal commands with one of these (dog-safe and dog-friendly) gadgets. 

Clicker Training

Clickers are a great tool to use with behavioral training. Accompany your verbal cues with a clicker so that they get used to the sound. And when they do something good, reward the with a treat! Positive reinforcement has been shown to be much more effective than negative reinforcement. 

Citronella Collars

Yes, citronella is typically used to ward off mosquitoes. But it is also used in bark collars. Citronella is a plant-based oil that is safe for pups. However, they hate the smell. So instead of giving your dog a shock when they bark, a citronella collar puffs out a little spray of oil. This is a better alternative because it doesn't hurt your dog; it simply annoys them. 


Whistles work in the same way as clickers in that your pup associates a certain sound with a certain behavior. A dog whistle (made specifically for their hearing frequencies) gets your pup's attention and can often stop their barking immediately. Of course, you have to pair this with verbal commands and stay consistent with it. 

Pheromones and Scents

Sometimes, your dog barks simply out of anxiety. To calm them down and subsequently calm their barking, you can used pheromone and scent candles or plug-ins. There are some scents that clip onto a collar and work naturally to calm your pup. Many companies make these, so just make sure that you're getting something that is safe to use for your dog.

And the last alternative? Patience, of course. With patience and training, you can build trust between you and your pup. 

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Jenna Gomes

Published by

Jenna Gomes