The 5 Best Shock Collar Alternatives! (2024)

Best Shock Collar Alternatives

Dog training has two parts: teaching a new behavior and reinforcing that behavior. 

This is especially true when training basic obedience commands because you’re not just teaching them to obey you, you will use these new commands to help curb and reduce unwanted behavior. 

Shock collars are very effective for negative reinforcement training and become practically the most efficient training regime if combined with Positive Reinforcement.

However, shock collars come with a certain stigma. Anybody who doesn’t know much about them will quickly assume you will use painful shocks to train your dog into submission, making it sound like torture. 

In reality, the biggest rule you should follow with shock collars is never to use them for punishment. There is a correct way to reinforce behaviors using them, and their electric output is actually significantly less powerful than people think. 

Great Shock Collar Alternatives

If shock collars are still not your thing for dealing with bad behaviors, then we will show you four examples of the best shock collar alternatives you can find on Amazon. We will list their features and explain them in detail. 

Hopefully, they will give you insight into your dog training needs. But before that, let’s show you a prime example of a well-balanced shock collar for comparison.

Product
Best Overall
Pet Resolve Electronic Training Collar
Runner Up
Paipaitek No Shock Remote Vibration Collar
Image
Dog Training Collar with Remote - 3960Ft, Hunting...
PaiPaitek No Shock Dog Training Collar with...
Rating
Prime
Amazon Prime
Amazon Prime
Best Overall
Product
Pet Resolve Electronic Training Collar
Image
Dog Training Collar with Remote - 3960Ft, Hunting...
Rating
Prime
Amazon Prime
Runner Up
Product
Paipaitek No Shock Remote Vibration Collar
Image
PaiPaitek No Shock Dog Training Collar with...
Rating
Prime
Amazon Prime

Comparison Pick: Pet Resolve Electronic Training Collar

This kit may be the best way to illustrate all the potential features of modern shock collars. They usually come in three forms: invisible fences, bark collars, and remote training collars. Pet Resolve is a combination of a bark collar and a remote training collar and has all the minimum features required for outdoor activities like hunting, advanced behavioral training, and so on. The bonus is that it comes with plastic prongs that give this device a vibration and beep-only option. 

 

  • Training Features: Static Shock, Vibration, and Soft Beep
  • Ten Adjustable Intensity Levels (Both Vibrate and Shock)
  • 3/4 Mile Range 
  • Can be Switched Into an Anti-Bark Collar
  • Supports Up to Three Receivers
  • Remote Remembers Levels of Each Reciever
  • Waterproof Receiver
  • Splash/Rainproof Remote
  • Plastic Adjustable Collar Strap
  • 50-Hour Battery Life
  • Includes Plastic Prongs and Extra 2 cm Long Metal Prongs for Long Fur
  • Free Plastic Training Clicker

This was picked as the alternative because it has a powerful and adjustable vibration. If you replace the metal prongs with plastic prongs, it will remove the electric shocks altogether. You can then use the vibration and beep for aversive training methods. 

Contrary to popular belief, training devices like this don’t use intense shocks. In fact, the usual static zap you feel is at least ten times more powerful than the jolt of electricity this can give, even at the highest stimulation level. At worst, it will cause your dog’s neck muscles to pulse rapidly. Your dog may find the sensation so sudden and alien that some dogs may yelp when they feel it, especially during their first time. The remote has 10 levels, making it easier to find the lowest level your dog will respond to for training. 

With a wide range of 3/4 miles, you’ll be able to recall or signal your dog from a very far distance, almost guaranteeing that you can reach them as far as 500 yards behind a brick wall. This is especially useful for Pet Parents who allow their dog to roam far, like those with homes close to forests or wide areas. It also complements the fact that you can manage up to three dogs with one remote, and each receiver will have a different LED color when you press the numbered button they were assigned with. 

Top Shock Collar Alternatives

It’s worth noting that the Bark-Limiter will only work on Beep and Shock, so if you convert it into a non-shock device, you won’t be able to take full advantage of it. It will still beep when your dog barks, so if you train them to stop barking when they hear the beep, the receiver will beep automatically when it hears the bark. If you do use the metal prongs, it will deliver a shock 1-2 seconds after the beep, if your dog keeps barking through it. The level of the static shock depends on what level it was on when you set it to Bark Limiter Mode. The remote won’t respond when in this mode, and will automatically train your dog to avoid excessive barking and after perhaps a few weeks of training, completely remove any chronic barking issues. 

Since the device doesn’t go into sleep mode or standby mode, it will stay responsive for up to 50-60 hours depending on how often you use the features. To compare, there are some shock collars that go to standby mode after not being used for 15 minutes and will last up to 11 days when not used. Standby mode is a double-edged sword, as it means you have to turn the remote and collar on by pressing the power button when you need to use them. This collar just works and responds until it’s out of juice. If you use it every day, you need to charge them once every two days. You can always turn the device off when not in use. 

The receiver is waterproof for 1 meter of water for 30 mins. That means the device is impervious to any water activities dogs normally go through, which is often just running in the water and the occasional dog paddling. The remote is NOT waterproof, but it’s weather-resistant. It will not be damaged by rain or even running water, it’s fine as long as it’s not submerged. 

Finally, the training kit includes a free plastic clicker. This small but mighty tool offers a quick and consistent way to signal your dog, whether it be when they do a good job, or using it to catch their attention. In dog training, consistency gives the most success and a clicker is great during the teaching phase such as establishing your first verbal commands.

The first on the list of our shock collar alternatives is a pure vibration and beep collar. It has no shock features whatsoever, and the vibration levels can be adjusted. 

Price-wise, it’s significantly more affordable, but that’s because it’s not designed for more rugged use but is sturdy enough to be used in the rain.

  • Training Features: Vibration, and Soft Beep 
  • 10 levels of Vibrations 
  • 1/3 Mile Remote Control Range 
  • Remote Supports 2 Receivers 
  • Waterproof Receiver 
  • Splash/Rainproof Remote 
  • Nylon Adjustable Collar Strap 
  • 20-Day Battery Life w/ Standby Mode

Vibration can still be used in Aversive Behavior Modification, but despite what you may think, you still should not use the vibration as punishment. 

For example, if your dog is digging up your garden, don’t just press the collar to jostle them. Vibration is less stimulating than shock, but it’s all about expectations. If you use it without proper signals or processes, your dog may end up becoming afraid of the vibration.

As far as they know, it could come at any time. The buttons can adjust the vibration levels too if it’s too much. The vibration strength is moderately strong, not enough to be jarring, but that’s purely subjective as it depends on your dog. 

It will be more effective on smaller dogs, but may not be as effective on large breeds like Golden Retrievers. 

Good Shock Collar Alternatives

The range is quite short, but since it’s not meant for long-range outdoor activities, you’re likely going to use it with your dog within earshot, like in dog parks or training them in the yard. 

The receiver doesn’t have any prongs or nubs, so you have to place the receiver tightly. It’s not difficult to do so since the nylon strap that comes with it is easy to adjust. 

Check on the tightness every hour though, as nylon collars have a small tendency to loosen if you have a particularly active dog. You can keep training even in the rain, or keep the receiver on your dog when they play in the lake. 

The remote is water-resistant and rainproof while the receiver has standard waterproofing that is good to be submerged as deep as 1 meter of water for 30 minutes before any water damage can occur.

It’s difficult to measure the battery life in hours because of the standby mode. If the devices are on but you haven’t pressed any buttons for a while, it will automatically shut off and you have to turn the remote and the receiver back on. 

It does save battery in the long run, and if you’re using it on short training sessions then you’ll barely feel any inconvenience from it.

The way shock training works is through the combination of negative reinforcement and positive reinforcement. 

Essentially it’s press the shock just as you say the command and stop the sensation when your dog does the command properly, then reward them. 

Citronella Collars do not work that way though, since you can’t really turn the citronella off when your dog does something correctly. Instead, the citronella can only be used for punishment, which has its own cons. 

The best way to train your dog when you can only use it as punishment is to consistently say a specific command to make them stop the behavior first. 

You can call their name, then say the word “Stop!” and if they don’t stop doing the bad behavior, you can use the spray to “punish them”. 

At least in this manner, your dog expects the spray because you telegraphed it by saying “Stop!”. Eventually, your dog will just stop what they are doing when they hear you stop because they don’t want their noses irritated. 

  • Training Features: Citronella Spray, Vibration, and Soft Beep
  • 3 Spray Levels, Fixed Vibration Strength
  • 300 Yard Remote Control Range
  • Mildly Rainproof
  • Nylon Adjustable Collar Strap
  • 17-Day Battery Life w/ Standby Mode

The good part though is that it has vibration and beep, so you can still use those for aversive behavior modification via negative reinforcement, as long as your dog finds the vibration annoying enough. 

It also has a beep so you can teach your dog recall, which is one of the best behaviors to teach your dog when you have an electronic collar. 

It has a range of 300 Yards, or around 1000 ft, which is more than enough when you’re out in a dog park, or even when you’re walking your dog without a leash. 

One big con, however, is that you’ll eventually run out of citronella spray. You can’t recharge it with just any other spray either, it has to be from the same company you ordered the device from. 

This at least includes a free refill pack which is good for 300-400 sprays depending on the spray intensity you use. A word of warning though, the citronella spray is not 100% harmless. 

There’s a chance that your dog may be allergic to it, or find the scent too irritating that it causes adverse effects. It really depends on the dog. If you know your dog doesn’t have any adverse reaction to the oil, then it should be safe to use it.

Since it has spray and inhalation holes, this device is only mildly waterproof and should not be immersed in water in any way. You’re likely not to use the spray collar near bodies of water anyway, so this shouldn’t be much of a con for you. 

With the nylon strap and the small receiver size, you can use this collar on virtually any breed apart from the exceptionally small and giant breeds. 

They should all react the same to the burst of citronella solution and if they don’t react enough, the remote has three levels of how much of the solution it will output and a full receiver canister is good for around 20-35 sprays. 

Thanks to the standby mode, it has a very long battery life. It will auto-sleep when not in use and you just need to press the power button on both the remote and the receiver to wake the device back up. 

It’s still a good practice to turn the devices off when not in use. 

The third on our list of shock collar alternatives is a bark collar and it’s the most reviewed brand of non-shock bark limiters. 

If your dog has a chronic barking problem that’s keeping you up at night, or causing your neighbors to complain, this may be the device for you. 

  • Uses Vibration and Beep
  • Auto-Adjusting Intensity Levels
  • 5 Microphone Sensitivity Levels
  • Easy-Fit Nylon Strap
  • Up to 2 Weeks Battery Life
  • Splashproof Device

The bark limiter is almost fully automatic apart from the fact that you have to charge it yourself. When you turn it on and place it on your dog, it will start listening to your dog’s bark. 

When it hears it, it will send a beep, and if your dog still keeps barking, send the lowest vibration level. If it still barks through that, it will increase the level of the vibration on the next cycle and so on until it reaches the maximum level. 

If your dog still barks through that, consider a different option. If your dog doesn’t bark after a while, it will reduce the intensity levels until it’s back to level 1. 

If your dog is responsive to it, then it will solve your dog’s barking issues in a month or so. Eventually, your dog will learn to limit their barks even without the collar on. 

If you live in a rather noisy environment and you’re worried that it will falsely trigger your dog’s bark-detecting microphone, you can adjust the sensitivity where 5 is the least sensitive. 

Perfect when you have multiple dogs in the same household and 1 is the most sensitive, suited for more quiet places where your dog’s high-pitched bark would overwhelm the room.

The device is only splashproof and is not waterproof, so if you have bodies of water like pools that your dog has free access to, consider getting a different device. 

It can, however, withstand rain, and water from the sprinkler, and even be washed with running water in case it gets muddy. 

Since it doesn’t have many functions compared to remote collars, it has a fantastically long battery life, going as far as two weeks thanks to its rechargeable battery. 

This doesn’t mean you should keep the collar on your dog the entire time. Remove the collar after 8-10 hours of use to prevent pressure sores from appearing on your dog’s neck. 

(These same pressure sores are often mistaken for burn wounds on a dog’s neck, which is why it’s very important to only keep the collar on for 8-10 hours and no more than that.)

Last on the list of shock collar alternatives is a Vibration-Only collar with some extra features. Its effectiveness depends on your dog’s sensitivity, so it can be hit-and-miss. 

Some owners place the collar tight so that their dog will feel the sensation in their throat and vocal cords better. 

Consider this when the vibration isn’t grabbing their attention, but make sure you still follow the 2-finger rule, which means the max tightness you can put the collar on your dog, should still allow you to snugly place two fingers between the strap and their neck. 

  • Training Features: Vibration, and Soft Beep
  • Adjustable Levels of Vibration (1-16 Levels)
  • 2000 ft / 660 Yard Remote Control Range
  • Remote Activated LED on Receivers
  • Tiny Flashlight on Remote
  • Remote Supports 2 Receivers
  • Waterproof Collar Receiver
  • Splash/Rainproof Remote
  • Nylon Adjustable Collar Strap
  • 15-Day Battery Life w/ Standby Mode

The vibration is limited by the size and strength of the rotor and this one has the standard rotor most training collars have. 

If your dog finds it too jarring, or you’re just using the vibration as a way to silently signal them, you can set the vibration down to the lower levels. 

The fixed plastic prongs somewhat maximize the effect of the vibration, but your dog can still get pressure sores out of it, so don’t keep the collar on your dog for more than 8 hours.

The remote can support up to 2 receivers (additional collars sold separately), and with a range of around 660 yards, you can let them roam in an open area all they want and you will be able to reach them. 

We say open area because the signal can reach far but does not perform well against obstacles. If you’re in a place with plenty of flora and trees or obstacles like structures and cars, you may only get around 100-200 yards.

The added features are the remote light and the small LED lights on the receiver. The lights are not enough to light the way, per se, but with them, you can see your dog in total darkness, and even better, other people can see your dog, especially people in cars. 

The flashlight on the remote is not bright, but a small light goes a long way when it’s completely dark. 

The remote is only splashproof, so don’t let it get submerged underwater. It will work even in heavy rain or wash it with running water. 

The receiver has the standard waterproofing that keeps it intact even if your dog decides to play around in the rain, or wet grass, or even swim in shallow bodies of water. 

As with all devices that have a standby mode, it will turn the device off after a certain amount of time if you don’t use it. It doesn’t technically mean you can use the device for the whole 15 days, it likely has a total of 40-50 hours of battery if it were to work non-stop. 

The advantage is that you don’t have to charge as often because it will turn off on its own. 

Conclusion For "Best Shock Collar Alternatives"

All pets deserve respect from us. After all, having a pet is a responsibility and not just a hobby. Training your canine companion means you care about your long-term relationship with them. 

You’ll find many opinions about training, with some using words like humane options and humane methods. In the end, these devices are just training tools and it’s still up to you how to use them. 

A vibration collar used incorrectly can cause your dog anxiety which does a long way. So, before using any tools, read on about how to use them, do your homework, and when you’re properly informed, come back and pick one from our list!

Last update on 2024-05-24 at 15:25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API