The use of electric shock collars is already prohibited in countries including Denmark, Germany, Slovenia and large parts of Australia. The Kennel Club wants a similar ban to be introduced in the UK, considering the use of negative training methods and devices such as electric shock collars to be “both irresponsible and ineffective”, pointing to the success of positive training tools and methods when training dogs for military and law enforcement work.
The results of the Kennel Club’s own survey into the use of electric shock collars found that of 2,050 respondents:
72 per cent of the English public disapprove of the use of electric shock collars on dogs
79 per cent agree that positive reinforcement training methods can address behavioural issues in dogs without the need for negative training methods
74 per cent of the public would support the government introducing a ban on electric shock collars
The Kennel Club’s survey follows two research studies from DEFRA last year which highlighted the negative behavioural and physiological effects of using electric shock collars when training dogs, even when professional trainers are involved.
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club secretary said: “The results are absolutely clear. A large majority of the public are against the use of electric shock collars and would support the government in banning these cruel devices.
“The government’s current proposal and response to its own funded research is to work on creating guidance with the electric shock collar manufacturers regarding how to best use these tools without compromising the dog’s welfare. This does not reflect what the public want and the Kennel Club and other major welfare organisations and parliamentarians believe this would fail in protecting dog welfare, as the DEFRA research itself has shown.
“It is time for the government to stop delaying what the evidence has highlighted is needed, and what the public has clearly said it wants – a ban on the use of electric shock collars.”
Dr Matthew Offord MP’s Ten Minute Rule Bill, which called for a ban on the sale and use of electric shock collars, will have its Second Reading in the House of Commons on February 28.