Remote Collar Dog Training Techniques

Remote Collar Dog Training Techniques: Toys and Tricks

Learning some basic remote collar dog training techniques will teach you that your dog can have fun while learning commands and discipline.

I bet that feels like a pretty big deal, especially if you’ve tuned into much of the propaganda that is out there about “shock collars” also known as remote collars. I’m sure it sounds like “rubbish” as Victoria Stillwell might say. (Victoria the actress that portrays a dog trainer on the television show, It’s Me or the Dog.

But the truth is, it’s not a big deal if you know some basic remote collar dog training techniques whether you’re focusing on training techniques to include toys and or tricks.

Knowing what you are doing means understanding that the sensation is just that, a sensation and it can be conditioned to mean whatever the trainer decides they want it to mean.

The e-collar stimulation can be “too high” and that might mean whoa, stop that right now, get away from there or any other reason to create an avoidance response in your dog. I’d say that sort of use is generally when people refer to the tool as a shock collar. Or the e-collar stimulation can be “too low” and you can push the button till you’re blue in the face and the dog won’t seemingly mind or even notice. Or the e-collar stimulation can be “just right” and you can use it to prompt your dog’s attention into a behavior you would like.

It is up to the person holding the tool’s transmitter to decide if it’s a shock collar or a remote training collar.

I prefer using a remote training collar and it’s what I’ve taught my staff and what many other professional trainers around the world are also doing. (click here if you want to find help in your area)

They say a picture is worth a thousand words so perhaps a video is worth even more. Here you go, you can decide.

This is typical toy dog training protocol at our place, you decide if it looks this little one is having fun or not?

*Updated 1/11/16


  • Hi Robin,

    I have an 18 month mixed breed who has resource guarding issues (toys, sticks). Id just like to know if this is something that can actually be trained out of her? I’ve had a local dog trainer tell me it’s very very difficult and sometimes even impossible depending on the dog. She just told me to train recall and drop it, and try to avoid situations where it might happen (but it can happen anywhere at any park at any situation). This has made me kind of give up on working through the issue. But I just wanted to get a second opinion from another trainer. Very curious what you think. Thank you


    • Hi Chris,

      Great question, I’m glad you asked! I’ll flesh out my answer a bit, so bear with me.

      The short answer is, no, you can’t “train it out of them”. By that I mean, there is no one solution that will ensure the resource guarding will never come up again in the future. Dogs resource guard.

      So do humans. It is a survival instinct.
      This is critical to understand BUT you can improve the behavior and make the dog easier to live with. To further that thought, imagine walking through a park and you stumble upon a wad of money just laying in the weeds. How do you feel when you discover it? Do you feel an adrenaline surge?
      Now you see someone approaching from across the park, do you feel the desire to stuff it in your pocket and walk away? Do you secretly hope they aren’t searching for a wad of money they recently dropped or hope you can keep the wad of cash and no one will know?
      Take those feelings and imagine what your dog experiences when they stumble on their version of “something valuable”. Dog’s don’t possess ethical or moral judgements. They don’t do a deep “thinking through” of the morality or consequences of their behavior.

      They act on instinctual behavior UNTIL we train and teach other associated behaviors with the stimuli.
      And (this is important) instinctual behavior will ALWAYS resurface unless the new associations are maintained with consistency.

      So the good news is, yes, you can train new associations. You can teach the dog more than just recall and drop it. You can teach a dog to trade, you can create associations with your approach to the dog that has just found an object. You can teach anticipation of a higher value reward. There is a LOT you can do to make a dog more biddable about giving up resources, but it is behavior that you will have to maintain for the life of the dog. And the reliability does not automatically transfer to other humans.

      If you are interested in working on it, I’d be happy to set up some coaching sessions to help you create a plan for improvement.
      You can learn about coaching sessions here and reach out if want to move forward with it.
      warm regards,

  • I have an 11 week old Border Collie puppy. She is a doll, with only one major “fault”. She thinks my toddler son is another puppy, and that she can play rough and tumble with him the way she did with her litter mates. She hasn’t drawn blood, but she loves to mouth his arms, legs and belly, and pulls on his clothes. I’ve even caught her sitting on top of him. (I do not leave them together unsupervised, I can assure you!!!) Pushing her away gently but firmly usually gets me a little nip, and she goes right back at my son. I am wary of giving her a toy to chew on, because that feels like rewarding her for the unwanted behavior. And trying to walk away from her just has her nipping and tackling my ankles. It’s app in good fun on her end. I am trying to figure out how to communicate to my puppy that this is unacceptable behavior. Could an e collar be used on a puppy this young? I know NEVER to use an e collar as a punishment, because she might very well assume that my son is the one causing her discomfort and bite him in self-defense, but is there an appropriate way to use it in this kind of situation? Or is she simply too young yet? She sits, lays, and comes with a treat lure, but I have never gotten her obey those commands without a treat. I’m just floundering around, trying to figure out how to deal with this situation appropriately. Many thanks!

    • I have started young pups on the e-collar. Generally I condition with a recall and then use to interrupt the play biting with very low stimulation or vibration. As they mature you can add the collar to other aspects of the training as well.
      However, if you don’t want to make the investment (because you should purchase a quality piece of equipment rather than an inexpensive, poor quality unit) you could attach a leash and use that to interrupt the rough play. Depending on the age of your son it is also very helpful to engage him in the process of knowing how to redirect the pup to toys and proper games.
      Plus, of course, use a crate or confinement area to manage when you can’t focus on the pup or supervise. Lots of play, exercise, and training games to keep the pup learning the right things to do and interrupt the play biting so the dog learns it is inappropriate to put teeth on humans..keep working at it, it takes repetition and practice.

  • I just stumbled onto your blog while trying to find a helpful solution to a big problem I’ve been having with my pup. She’s a year and a half, terrier chihuahua mix, and she’s a runner. I constantly worry about her visiting with family, and running off. I don’t know too much about “shock/ e-collars” at all. Is it possible to train her to not run with one? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

    • Hi Allie,

      It is not that the e-collar will train her not to run, it is that you can use the tool to dramatically improve her recall. Once you have a much more reliable response to the “Come” command you can begin to eliminate this problem behavior. The other thing I would teach is for the dog to not bolt out of open doors. If you teach the dog she must sit when a door opens and she is not to go forward out through the opening until she has permission that will help eliminate the problem as well. So the e-collar can be used to assist in teaching both of those behaviors. Additionally making sure the dog has enough exercise is always part of the solution in creating more calm and bidable behavior in general.

    • We have a few people in MI, please make sure to check the Trainer Referral page here in this blog and on my home site of

  • I wish the video had some indicator when the button is being pushed. People unfamiliar with this way of training will think it was never used. I AM familiar with use of a remote training collar and I could only make some educated guesses!
    Cute puppy!

    • Yeah, one of these days I’ll have to do a clip with the sound box on. We were just filming this little girl cause she was such a hoot!…and then I decided to use the footage. I can assure the viewers the e-collar was being used though. Generally this early in the training we prompt simultaneously on the verbal (or physical) cue.

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