Explanation of the law determining whether pet owners can use electric shock collars while training dogs


Shockproof collars have always been a controversial tool for dog training. These are small bands that can send electric shakes to a dog as a training method. But are they legal to use in the UK? The answer is complicated.

Electric shock necklaces were banned in Wales over ten years ago in 2010. However, people are still allowed to use them in England and Scotland.

Fortunately for dog rights advocates, the government previously promised a ban on these collars in 2018. A ban was even proposed in August of the same year, with Michael Gove claiming the collars caused “harm and suffering.” to domestic animals.

“We are a nation of animal lovers, and the use of punitive shock collars causes harm and suffering to our pets,” he said. “The ban will improve animal welfare, and I urge pet owners to use positive reward training methods instead.”

These necklaces could soon be banned across the country

Basically, the government has said it will ban impact collars in the future, but the ban has yet to be put into law, TeamDogs reports.

Samantha Gaines, RSPCA Dog Welfare Expert, said: “Electric shock collars have been illegal in Wales since 2010 and the RSPCA has long called for them to be banned in England as well.

“In May 2021, in its action plan for animal welfare, Defra (the Ministry of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) announced that it would ban remote controlled electronic training collars, given their ability to harm cats and dogs.

“These collars are used to train and control cats and dogs, but can cause pain and fear. They are useless for long term behavior change which can be achieved using training based on positive rewards.

Shock necklaces are considered inhumane
Shock necklaces are considered inhumane

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“It’s time we relegated electric shock collars to the history books, because they have no place in today’s pet ownership. “

Can I use a shockproof collar on my dog ​​in England?

Technically yes, it’s legal, but it probably won’t be for long. In addition, the government announced a ban, and animal welfare charities such as the RSPCA and Dogs Trust said the devices caused “pain and distress” in animals, so use necklaces – although still legal – is not encouraged. They were banned in Wales.


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