Shock collars can lead to aggressive behavior, according to BC SPCA


The BC SPCA urges dog owners to refrain from using shock collars following a recent dog attack.

A group of off-leash dogs wearing shock collars attacked a smaller dog in Coquitlam on Monday, and the SPCA’s senior director of behavior and welfare says these types of attacks are often motivated by predatory behavior.

“Proponents of shock collar training often attempt to justify the use of painful training tools by claiming that they protect wildlife and other animals,” says Dr Karen van Haaften.

“But as this case proves, shock collars are not effective in deterring a motivated attack. Additionally, studies show an association between aversive training methods, in which pain and fear are used to change a dog’s behavior, and aggressive behavior in dogs.

She says the inhumane training methods these dogs were subjected to may have directly contributed to their aggressive behavior.

Shockproof collars, also known as electronic or electronic collars, are used by some dog owners as aversive training tools for the sake of protecting their dog.

However, they can cause physical and psychological pain to the animal.

Dr van Haaften notes that the human and reward-based training options available are just as, if not more, effective in tackling unwanted behavior.

“If a dog is behaving aggressively, it should be restrained with a physical tool, such as a leash and / or basket muzzle,” adds van Haaften.

“Relying on a shock collar as the only management tool for a dog with aggressive behavior is unfair to the dog and puts community members at risk. “

On August 24, Coquitlam RCMP were called after witnesses said five off-leash dogs attacked a smaller dog, which was seriously injured, and the owner of the five dogs left the scene and refused to give her name.

Part of the incident was filmed and thanks to the footage, the police were able to locate the 36-year-old suspect.

He has since been charged with five counts of having a free range (off leash) animal under the Coquitlam Animal Care and Control Rules (5x $ 150.00).


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