If you’re looking for a Remote training system for your dog/s, you’ll want to read this guide.
We’ve aimed to help you save time and effort researching by identifying the Best Shock Collars, E Collar and Remote Training Collars on the market.
We’ve picked out some of the more popular remote training collars for regular to advanced training, and provided reviews of those training systems.
We’ve also put together an FAQ type buyer’s guide with important information to consider when buying.
Let’s jump in and check them out!
(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)
Best Shock Collar, E Collar & Remote Trainers For Dogs in 2018/19: Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
Our top picks for the best e collars, shock collars and remote training collars for most dogs are:
SportDOG FieldTrainer 425 (on Amazon) – Best Standard/Basic E Collar For Dogs with Neck Sizes 5-22 Inches
SportDOG FieldTrainer 425s (on Amazon) – Best Standard/Basic E Collar For More Stubborn Dogs with Neck Sizes 5-22 Inches
Dogtra 1900S (on Amazon) – Best Advanced E Collar For Dogs 35lbs and Over
NOTE: these are just some of the most popular models for everyday and advanced use. If you are looking for a specialised remote trainer system for K-9, upland and wetland hunting for example – you’ll obviously need to look at other options.
Best Shock Collars, E Collars & Remote Training Collars For Dogs: Reviews
SportDOG Field Trainer 425
- This is a dog training collar/e collar receiver, that comes with a handheld remote transmitter with controls for functions
- Overall, it’s one of the best of it’s kind on the market
- It allows you to work with static stimulation, vibration and tone
- The transmitter has a 500 yard range to the receiver/collar
- The transmitter’s dial allows you to select one of the 7 levels of static stimulation in low or medium ranges
- The transmitter’s buttons allow you to deliver your choice of momentary (nick) or continuous stimulation
- You also have the option to train with vibration (buzz) and tone (beep)
- Both the Remote Transmitter and Collar Receiver feature DryTek technology making them waterproof and submersible to 25 feet
- The devices have rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that charge in 2 hours and last 50-70 hours per charge
- Both the Transmitter and Collar feature a low battery indicator and can be charged at the same time using the included split-end charger
- The Transmitter button functions can be customized
- You can train up to 3 dogs with the same Remote Transmitter with purchase of additional Add-A-Dog Collars (SDR-AF) – SDR-AF Collar Receiver (on Amazon).
- The Collar Receiver fits dogs 8 pounds or larger with neck sizes 5″ – 22″
- With the transmitter and collar kit, you get a detailed operating guide, training DVD, and a Customer Care Center, available 6 days a week, provide support when you need it
- Comes in both black and camo colors
- Overall, the SportDOG products are designed with the heat, cold, rain, snow, dust, mud, and wind in mind
- SportDOG provide some of the best customer support we’ve seen compared to other companies
- Works better in wider open areas than areas of lots of obstacles and obstructions
- The charger connectors don’t stay super secure while charging. You’ll have to make sure you have them securely jacked in before you leave the transmitter and collar to charge
- No LCD display. If there isn’t much light out or you don’t have a light source, it can be hard to see the dial setting
- The layout and default functions of the buttons and dial are pretty good, but could use some more improvement
- Overall, despite the drawbacks, this is one of the better e collars on the market, despite it’s price. It’s definitely worth the money
View the SportDOG FieldTrainer 425 on Amazon
SportDOG Field Trainer 425s
The SD-425S is essentially the same e collar and transmitter as the 425, except it has a higher range of stimulation than the SD-425.
It is designed specifically for larger, harder to train, or more stubborn dogs that don’t or won’t respond to lower level stimulus.
So, if you know you have a stubborn dog, or you’ve tried lower level static stimulus training collars that your dog won’t respond to, this one could be better for you.
As the two products are essentially the same, you can read our review of the SportDOG 425 here.
You’ll be able to see all the features and drawbacks of the 425s in that review.
- Designed for the most demanding conditions, and for serious amateurs and professional trainers in pet obedience, hunting, competition trials, and K-9.
- Overall, it is high quality, and when assessing it for the features it does have, it is one of the best dog training collar systems on the market
- Has 3/4-mile range
- Is fully waterproof (waterproof certified to IPX9K)
- Has 127 different levels of static stimulation/shock for the most sensitive through to the most stubborn dogs
- Control the static stimulation level through an easy to twist dial
- Has both nick (temporary) and continuous static stimulation/shock options
- Comes with a vibration option
- Has an LCD display on the handheld remote which has an illuminated blue background – good for darker conditions
- For dogs 35 lbs and over
- Comes with a belt clip for the handheld remote
- Batteries charge in 2 hours
- Comes with short contact points only
- Collar fits most medium to extra large and Giant dogs
- Dogtra does a Black Edition with increased range and LED lighting – check out the Dogtra 1900S Black Edition here.
- Dogtra does a Wetlands edition of the 1900S for wetland hunters – check out the Dogtra 1900S Wetlands Edition here.
- Not for dogs smaller than 35lbs
- Doesn’t have a tone/sound training mode (only static and vibration)
- Comes with short contact points only – you’ll have to buy long contact points separately for longer hair breeds
- Designed for controlling only one dog at a time. You can’t control or train multiple dogs from the one handheld remote like you can with the SportDOG or Garmin models
- Despite these drawbacks, overall, this is a very very high quality dog training collar system.
View the Dogtra 1900S on Amazon
Best Shock Collars, E Collars & Remote Training Collars For Dogs: Buyer’s Guide
What Is A Shock Collar, E Collar or Remote Trainer Collar?
‘Shock Collar’ is the outdated phrase used to describe these collar systems.
These days they are called ‘E Collars’ or ‘Remote Trainers’ or ‘Remote Training Collars’.
E Collar is a more accurate phrase for two reasons:
- a good and safe remote training collar shouldn’t shock the dog, but rather stimulate their muscles/skin to provide a cue that a specific behavior is not desired. The static shouldn’t cause pain to your dog
- The static training mode doesn’t need to be used. Vibrate or even sound training modes can be used instead
They are systems which include a receiver collar worn by the dog, and a handheld transmitter remote. The owner or trainer controls the collar from the remote at a distance, and control is instantaneous.
E Collars/Remote Training Collars vs Bark Collars
E Collars, which are controlled manually from the handheld, should be distinguished from Bark Collars which are just collars that respond automatically when they sense barking. Bark Collars are only for bark training, and do not include a handheld device.
You can read more about Remote Trainers vs Bark Collars in this guide.
Types Of E Collars, Shock Collars, and Remote Training Collars
There are many features that can make remote trainers differentiate from each other. You might classify them by type by the type of correction they are able to deliver such as:
- Static stimulation (shock)
- Sound/tone or beeping
- Spray (citronella or a scent free spray)
- Multi correction e.g. all three separate training modes in static, vibration and sound
You may also classify them by the type of activity they are intended for such as:
- Basic training
- Advanced training
- Professional training
- K-9 Activity
- Wetland/Upland Hunting
There’s other ways you could classify them too such as by their range of function (how many yards or feet they work at), whether they are a one dog or multiple dog trainer, and so on.
How Do E Collars, Shock Collars & Remote Training Collars Work?
Each collar system will work differently.
Make sure you read the owner’s manual and operating guide (about how to use and training) before using the system, and seek the advice of a qualified vet and/or animal expert if you are unsure a remote trainer is for your dog/s.
But generally, the way a remote training collar might work is:
- You turn the system on
- You set the modes and settings on the remote and/or collar that you want to use, and you test everything is working
- You put the collar device on your dog and make sure it is securely on the neck as the operating guide recommends
- Train one or multiple dogs at the one time according to the training guidelines in the operating guide
- Use the remote handheld to control the function of the collar receiver and pay attention to the range between the two, and that you and your dog/s are staying within that range
What Key Features Might You Look For In An E Collar, Shock Collar or Remote Training Collar?
- What they are intended for i.e. basic training, advanced training, professional activities, K-9, hunting etc.
- Is the system for regular dogs, or stubborn dogs
- What size dog they are intended for e.g. 8lbs and over
- What size neck they fit e.g. up to 22 inches
- What training modes the system has e.g. does it have all 3 of static, vibration an sound/tone training
- Does the system have levels of each training option, and if so, how many? e.g. it might have 30 levels of varying intensity static
- What range does the remote work from the collar receiver e.g. 500 yards?
- How does the remote work – what buttons and modes does it have to let you control the collar
- What batteries the system takes – i.e. replaceable or rechargeable
- Can you add dogs to the system with add on collars? If so, how many dogs can you have on the system in total?
- Is the system waterproof?
- How many hours of charge do the batteries have?
- Do you get both long and short contact points in the kit for short and long haired dogs?
- Does the system have any extra features like beacon lights in the collar?
- What is the company like that manufactures the remote trainer? Are they reputable and established? Do they have reliable customer service?
- How long is the warranty on the system?
What Size Shock Collar, E Collar or Remote Training Collar Do I Get For My Dog?
Look for two things:
- The weight range of the bark collar i.e. it might say ‘for dogs 8lbs and over’
- The neck size that the collar fits i.e. it might say for dogs with neck sizes 6 to 28 inches
Measure your dog’s neck and weigh them and make sure they fit the requirements of the system.
Can A Puppy Use A Shock Collar, E Collar or Remote Training Collar?
It’s best to ask your vet.
Some remote training systems might recommend waiting until a dog is 6 months old until using an e collar. But, read the product description and owner’s manual for the system you are considering to see which puppies or dogs can use the system safely.
When Might You Use An E Collar, Shock Collar or Remote Training Collar?
As a regular dog owner you might look at using an e collar AFTER the following:
- Once you’ve worked on building a strong bond with your dog & you have their trust
- Once you’ve undertaken basic obedience with your dog, or advanced training courses
- Once positive reinforcement training without a remote trainer has failed to work
- Once you’ve consulted the advice of a professional dog trainer, and your vet (it’s usually safer to use the shock collar in the presence of a professional trainer who has deep knowledge of animal behavior & the use of shock/vibration collars)
- Once you’ve consulted the laws in your area as to the use of e collars & shock collars
- Once you’ve done your own research on the case studies of use of shock collars and e collars
Some people use remote trainers in their yard, in a park on a long leash, in an open field, during training, during events or out hunting.
They can be used to positively reinforce and already learned behavior as a temporary training tool. Once the behavior/s are learned, the system can be put away until needed again.
They don’t have to be a permanent thing.
Are E Collars, Shock Collars and Remote Training Collars Safe?
Safety is extremely important with an e collar. Some safety guidelines for using a remote training collar humanely might be:
- Always always get your vet’s advice or the advice of an animal health expert – nothing is a substitute for professional advice
- Read the operating guide, instruction/safety manual and training guide that comes with the collar system
- Research yourself how to use remote trainers effectively and safely
- Buy from a reputable company who put proper use of the collar and the safety of the dog as a priority like SportDOG, Dogtra, PetSafe or Garmin for example
- Monitor your dog’s response both mentally and physically to using one. Take the collar off immediately and discontinue use if you notice any negative implications or reactions
As mentioned above, a good remote trainer should not cause pain to your dog.
In the case of shock collars which people are usually most worried about, they should simply stimulate the muscle and perhaps cause some mild discomfort as a deterrent for problem barking.
The static function does not need to be used either – tone and vibrate training modes can be used instead.
Where Can I Read More About The Best Rated E Collars, Shock Collars and Remote Trainers?
You can read more about some of the best remote training collars and e collars in these guides:
- SportDOG Remote Trainer & E Collar Reviews Guide
- PetSafe Remote Trainer & E Collar Reviews Guide
- Dogtra Remote Trainer & E Collar Reviews Guide
- Garmin Remote Trainer & E Collar Reviews Guide
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