Top 4 Best Dog Training Tools & What You Should Avoid

a young man training his dog

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Training your dog may seem like a daunting process. However, the right dog training tools can make this process go much more smoothly. There are several different products that are great as well as several tools you should avoid.

This article is going to explore the top training tools to consider as well as the top tools to avoid. We will cover a little bit of information relating to each training item as well to help you make an informed decision.
a young man training his dog

Top 4 Dog Training Tools to Consider

#1. Clickers

four colorful dog clickers

Clickers are one of the best dog training tools to consider. For those who do not know, clicker training is a type of positive reinforcement that works on dogs, cats, and many other animals. To use it, you simply click the button whenever your dog does an action you desire.

Using this tool, you can communicate to your dog that they are doing a good job even when you are across the room. With time, your dog will learn to associate the sound of the clicker with praise or a reward. This helps to expedite the training process.

#2. Leaders

a woman walking her dog with a leader leash

Leaders are another one of the top dog training tools. These ingenious devices are perfect for leash training dogs and handling larger or more powerful breeds that are often difficult to walk. They work by taking control of the front portion of your dog’s head and muzzle. If they pull too far forward, the leader guides them back around to you.

With patience, leaders provide a very safe and effective way to leash train your dog. They are also very cost effective. Just remember to always remove the leader when your dog’s walk is completed and reward it for a job well done. By doing this, your dog will associate the leader with a positive experience.

#3. Chewing Deterrent Sprays

chewing deterrent spray for dogs

Chewing is a safe and normal behavior for dogs and many other animals. However, there are many household items that can prove to be fatal to pets. This is where chewing deterrent sprays come in. These products work by leaving a very bitter or sour taste on an object that naturally causes your dog to stop chewing or licking it. This is another one of the most popular dog training tools to checkout.

Make sure to use only pet approved mixtures. These concoctions can be applied to a variety of surfaces including kennel bars, leashes, and even bandaged areas when your dog is injured. To further improve the effectiveness of this training method, always ensure your dog has plenty of chew toys of their own. By doing this, your dog will learn which object is okay to chew much more quickly.

#4. Odor Removers

a pet stain and odor remover

One of the most difficult tasks new dog owners are tasked with is potty training their puppies. Unfortunately, pets leave stains and residual odors in areas where they have made a mess in the past. These odors encourage your dog to do their business in the same area again. This is why using a quality odor removal item is key to success and is included in our list of top dog training tools.

Pet odor removers work by breaking down the composition of pet urine and other matter that are lurking in your carpet. This helps to eliminate the odor completely as opposed to just masking the scent. With the odor removed, your pet is far less likely to return to the area to potty again.

Dog Training Tools You Should Never Use

1. Shock Collars

a sad-looking dog in a cage

In theory, shock collars can provide a way to stop unwanted behavior without actually striking or otherwise harming the animal yourself. This prevents the animal from associating negative behavior with its owner. Unfortunately, shock collars do have many drawbacks that make them one of the dog training tools you should avoid.

The main reason you should avoid these products is that they can cause skin damage to your dog. The electric prongs have to be in constant contact with your dog’s skin to work correctly. This contact and the electric charge can lead to sores and more. There is also the issue of selecting the appropriate shock strength for your dog. It is very easy to accidentally select too high of a setting for smaller breeds.

2. Choker Collars

a heavy metallic choker collar

Choker collars used to be one of the mainstay dog training tools new owners would regularly purchase. These collars work by applying increasing levels of constriction to your dog’s throat as they continue to pull on their leash. In theory, this stops the dog from pulling too hard and makes leash training easier.

Unfortunately, these types of collars can cause damage to the throat if your dog pulls too hard. There are far more effective leash training aids available like leaders and vest type harnesses. These solutions are able to correct unwanted pulling while distributing weight evenly across your dog instead of focusing on the neck only.

3. Spray Bottles and Newspapers

a blue spray bottle on a black background

Using a spray bottle filled with water or a rolled up newspaper used to be one of the original dog training tools must dog owners would start with. However, these tools can have a detrimental effect on the relationship you have with your dog.

With both of these training methods, your dog learns to associate the negative action with you since you are the one performing the action. This has a negative effect on training since the dog does not recognize their behavior as the root cause of these negative reinforcement methods. If you must use negative reinforcement, try using a firm voice to express your displeasure and stop unwanted behavior. You should never have to strike your dog.

Bottom Line

You should now have a firm understanding of some of the best and worst dog training tools to consider. Good training tools help facilitate positive reinforcement and prevent unnecessary pain from being inflicted on your dog.

Feel free to try these training tools out for yourself and tell us what you think. You can also share your own product recommendations with us as well.

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