Dog Training Collars: Finding the Right Level

For those that have never used an electronic dog training collar, finding the right correction level is one of the most important things to establish.

The reason this is such a vital step in the process, is because we want to create the best environment for your dog to learn. If the level on the dog training collar is too low the dog continues to ignore training commands and no learning takes place. If the level is too high, the dog may become stressed, which creates an environment where a dog is not in an optimal state to learn.

In previous articles I have discussed selecting the right training collar for your dog and how to ensure your dog does not become collar-wise. So, let’s assume we have covered those areas and we are at the stage of wanting to use the dog training collar for the first time. Our next goal is to establish the lowest correction level where your dog acknowledges the static impulse from the training collar.

First Thing's First - Fitting the Collar Correctly

Before adjusting the correction levels on your dog's receiver collar, it needs to be fitted correctly. Your dog's receiver collar needs to be positioned high up on their neck (just underneath their jawline) and adjusted tight enough so that you can't move it side to side. Once the collar is in this position, wiggle the module up and down to shuffle the probes through your dog's fur so that they're touching your dog's skin.

It's extremely important that the probes on the collar are always in contact with your dog's skin. The reason for this is because the static stimulation is delivered through the contact probes. If the collar is not fitted tight enough, the probes won't be in contact with your dog's skin which will result in the collar not working properly because your dog won't receive the static electric correction.

Note: Your dog's collar must only be worn for a maximum of 8-10 hours each day.

The Best Environment to Find the Best Level for Your Dog

Once the collar is fitted correctly, we recommend leaving your dog in a familiar area such as your backyard or in your home. Give them time to wander around and don't give them any attention. When your dog is not focused on anything in particular, it's time to test the stimulation levels.

Start Low and Work Up

Begin with your remote transmitter set to the lowest static stimulation level. Press the stimulation button on your remote to deliver a correction. You can either use the nick stimulation or continuous stimulation. Increase through the stimulation strengths one level at a time until you see a reaction from your dog.

The Reaction you Should see from your Dog

What you're looking for is a change in the dog's demeanour. Common reactions are an ear flick, head movement, or the dog appearing to become alert. If you get a reaction like this, you've found the lowest stimulation for your dog.

If you see no visible reaction from your dog at all, you need to gradually increase the stimulation one level at a time until you do see a reaction from your dog. Remember, all dogs are different. Some dogs respond to low stimulation levels, some dogs respond to medium stimulation levels, and some dogs respond to the high stimulation levels which is why the best way to find the best level for your dog is to start low and work up.

Different Environments Require Different Stimulation Levels

Over time when using your remote dog training collar, you'll find that you may need different correction levels for different training applications. Your dog may need higher levels when in a state of high drive (in the case of a dog going after wildlife) and lower levels for more precise training (sharpening up heel work).

Remember, we only want to use the training levels of the E-Collar for unwanted behaviour or obedience training, not beyond. The key is to start low and work up. In a short time you will be aware of what levels are required in certain circumstances.

My Dog Isn't Responding to the Static Stimulation

If your dog isn't responding to the static stimulation no matter how much you're increasing the stimulations, we'll need to troubleshoot what's going on.

The Most Common Issue - Fitting

Going back to the basics, double check the fitting of your dog's collar. If the collar can be moved around your dog's neck, it's too loose. Position the collar at the top of your dog's neck and adjust the collar strap one hole at a time until you can't move the collar side to side. Once in this position, you'll need to wiggle the module up and down to ensure the probes are constantly touching your dog's skin. Once you've done this, reset the collar level to the lowest level and work up until you see a reaction from your dog.

Dummy Probes

Some remote training collars come with plastic probes screwed into where the metal probes should go. If this is the case for you, simply replace the plastic probes with the metal probes. Be sure to reset the stimulation level to the lowest level before pressing any stimulation buttons.

Flat Battery/The System Hasn't Been Turned On

Before using the remote training collar, be sure that the system is charged and turned on.

The Remote Transmitter and Receiver Collar aren't Paired Together

All manuals come with pairing instructions. If your dog isn't responding to the corrections, the collar may not be paired with your remote. Follow the pairing instructions in your manual. Alternatively, feel free to call us on 1300 668 931 and we'll walk you through how to do this.

Faulty Product

In the rare case that you've received your remote training collar and it doesn't appear to be working properly, please give us a call on 1300 668 931. All remote training collars are covered by a 3-year warranty.