Training Tip #44
Should All Dogs be Trained with an E-collar?
From: Training with Mike Lardy Volume I
In an interview, Mike was asked about his recommendations for using the e-collar. One question was should everyone use the e-collar? The entire discussion can be found in Training with Mike Lardy Volume I, a collection of articles published in Retriever Journal.
Mike said: I do not recommend using the e-collar if a person is only going to use the dog for very simple tasks. If you only want our dog to be obedient in the general sense- to be a good citizen or if their hunting involves only very simple retrieves and not many of them, I don't think it is worth the time and effort to go through a proper e-collar program ---because you can't use the e-collar haphazardly. Using the e-collar correctly takes quite a bit of work on the trainer's part, and there are plenty of ways to teach general obedience and simple field work without an e-collar.
Generally in my own e-collar program, we don't start a dog until he is eight months to a year old, long after he has been taught all his basic obedience and has been doing lots of retrieves, he's almost steady, and can do singles and doubles.
A point I'd like to make is that you don't teach a dog anything with an e-collar. There's a misconception that somehow the e-collar is a method. The e-collar is not a training method- it is a tool.