5 Reasons not to use a shock collar - BC SPCA
Search by
postal code:
Search our site:

Animal Helpline:


For all other calls and inquiries
see our contact details.

Find a BC SPCA location in your area:

5 Reasons not to use a shock collar

Sad Boston terrier wearing shock collar

Shock collars do not help your dog understand what positive behaviours you are seeking – they only inflict pain for unwanted actions.

Five reasons not to use a shock collar:

1.) You love your dog.
The bond between you and your dog is precious. Using aversive training methods based on fear and pain may result in your dog avoiding you, or even becoming aggressive with you. Using humane training based on rewards instead of punishment addresses unwanted behaviours without jeopardizing the special relationship you share with your pet.

2.) Shock collars are not more effective than humane training.
While punishment-based tools like shock collars can result in changes in your dog’s behaviour, studies have shown that positive, reward-based training is just as effective.

3.) Shock collars can harm your dog.
The electrostatic shock can cause psychological distress for your pet, including phobias and high levels of stress, and can result in unhealthy increases in heart rate and painful burns to your dog’s skin. Use of shock collars can also habituate your pet to pain and cause increases in aggression and fear-based behaviours.

4.) The experts advise against using shock collars.
Veterinary associations and humane organizations have long recognized that punishment-based training can be detrimental to animals. The Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s position statement on training strongly discourage aversive training methods.

5.) There’s a better way.
We understand that, as a pet guardian, you need to address unwelcome behaviours such as barking and lack of recall. There are many solutions and resources available to deal with behaviour issues without compromising your pet’s well-being. Learn about reward based dog training.


Learn more

Professional resources and position statements on electronic collars >>