The Best Dog Training Collars Australia - For Extra Control
Our #1 Pick
The Best Value for Money
ET-300TS Mini Educator Remote Dog Trainer
Training your dog with positive, effective techniques needs no special tool. However, we can all do with a helping hand every now and again! Dog training collars are incredibly useful for walk training, bark training and even agility training.
There are many different types of training collars and they come in all sizes and styles. In this article, we’ll talk about how to find the best training collar for your dog. We’ll also give the best recommendations for dog training collars Australia has to offer.
Let’s dig in!
Types of Training Collars Dogs May Need
There are several different dog training collars on the market, and they all have their varying strengths. The right one for your pup depends on the type of training you’re doing. Here is a quick summary of the main types you’ll encounter.
Martingale Collars - for walk training
Does this sound like a choke collar? I promise you it’s not. This is a human alternative that remains effective as a training tool.
The martingale collar tightens but is not restrictive or asphyxiating in any way like a choke collar would be.
Martingales are effective walk training tools for any dog. However, they are specially marketed towards sighthounds with small heads. Think greyhounds, whippets, salukis and afghans. Because of their slinky heads, they can escape quite easily when walking. They’re also notorious chasers. They will chase small rodents, birds and even smaller dogs. So a martingale is not only a training tool - it’s added safety while walking your dog too.
Show trainers and agility dog trainers love martingale collars too.
Citronella Collars - for barking
Citronella collars are most often used for barking training.
They work by having a small cartridge filled with citronella on the front of the collar. Most are automatic but some are remote controlled. When your dog barks, the cartridge emits a small spray of citronella to distract and deter your dog from raising hell in your backyard.
“The Cornell University study found that all dog owners found citronella collars to be effective at reducing or stopping nuisance barking, and many preferred them over the electric shock collars. Citronella bark collars are also used in several stray and pet adoption organizations to help control excessive barking.” - Melissa Brasfield at Everyday Health (2)
The cartridge is refillable, and the collar is generally easy to use. These collars are designed to be worn for long periods but ensure that your dog doesn’t sleep in a citronella collar. If your dog snores at all or barks in their sleep, the citronella spray could wake them up and disturb them. An unrested dog will probably result in more barking and agitation during the day.
Vibrating Collars - for barking and other signals
Vibrating collars are also primarily used for bark training. They work but have a small vibrating box at the front of the collar and vibrating when your dog barks or does some other undesired behaviour.
These tend to be remote controlled but there are some automatic options. You’ll see vibrating and sound collars integrated into one as well.
Vibrating collars are also incredibly useful for deaf dogs. You can train your dog to respond to certain pulses and signals. This is vital for communicating with your dog while walking as a dog’s eyes are almost always ahead of them as they walk. They can’t look at you at all times to receive signals.
Beep Collars - for barking and agility training
Beep collars or sound collars work similarly to vibrating collars and are most often employed to stop your dog from barking too much. Many collars combine vibration and sound to create a more integrative training approach.
The sound used is too high a frequency for human ears to pick up.
Head Collars - for walk training
Head collars are likely the simplest on the list. No automatic censors or moving parts. A head collar is very similar to a flat collar with an extra strap that rests over your dog’s snout.
The design of a head collar allows your dog’s head to turn when they pull forward. This is how head collars work as a corrective tool when walking.
About Aversive Collars: Never Use Them
The collar types I mentioned above are very widely used in the dog community. Though each veterinarian and trainer have their own methods, the collars in the previous section are widely seen as humane ways to train your dog.
So you’ll notice some notable absences from the list. Shock collars and choke collars are nowhere to be seen.
These two forms of “corrective” dog training are old fashioned and broadly considered inhumane by today’s standards. Let’s explore both of them and you’ll see why.
Shock collars are also known as “e-collars”. They are electric collars that carry a live current. When a dog misbehaves, however that is defined by the owner, the collar can zap the dog with a small pulse or shock.
This was a very common dog training technique in the 1960s (in other words, when we didn’t know any better). (3) Vets used to purport that dogs would barely feel the electric shock and it was perfectly safe. But dogs often suffered electric burns and heightened anxiety over prolonged usage of shock collars.
Luckily, we humans have come to our senses and realise that shock collars are not appropriate as a teaching tool for any animal.
Choke collars are even worse somehow. It’s very frightening to think that choke collars were part of popular culture not too long ago.
Choke collars used chains to enforce strangulation on the dog whenever the dog “misbehaved.” It led to many dogs getting severely injured with skin damage and asphyxiation. Beyond the physical harm, the psychological harm was irreparable. Dogs who were choke trained would have high anxiety, depression and sometimes even more aggressive tendencies.
Choke collars are very different to martingale collars as martingale collars do not disrupt the blood flow or asphyxiate the neck. They apply gentle pressure without strangling your dog.
What To Look For in A Dog Trainer Collar
Finding the right training collar for your dog is very similar to finding any collar for your dog. The four main tenets are the same:
For a dog training collar to be effective, it needs to be the right size for your dog. Generally, we go off of the rule of two. You should be able to slip your two fingers between the collar and your dog’s neck snuggly. If there’s a huge gap between the collar and your fingers when you do this, it’s way too loose and needs adjusting. On the other hand, if you can’t get your two fingers around the sides of the collar to your dog’s neck, it’s far too tight.
Sometimes some adjusting of the collar itself will do. Other times you need a completely different collar entirely.
So how do you preempt this to ensure you make the right purchase from the beginning?
You need to measure your dog’s neck at two points.
- Around the midpoint of their neck
- Around the base of their neck (where it meets the shoulders)
This is to ensure that it’s not too tight if your dog is pulling and the collar slides further up the neck. But the ordinary resting position for a collar would be towards the base of your dog’s neck.
The manufacturer of any collar should give adequate measurement guidelines for the sizes they provide. Have a quick look at the reviews too to see if anyone mentions the collars coming up small or large.
Dog training collars are used in acute situations generally. You don’t keep them on all of the time. Hopefully, you can phase them out entirely once your dog has learned the desired behaviours and you can use voice commands to keep them on track.
That said, it’s no use investing in a dog training collar that won’t even last you the duration of your training regime. I use the word “investment” very purposefully here. These extra special collars are not cheap. Particularly the remote-controlled ones or collars with automatic sensors.
The only way to tell if a collar is durable or not is to see the materials and read reviews. Generally, steel and nylon are hardy, but they’re not foolproof. If a consumer is unhappy with the build quality of a collar, they’ll be sure to write about it in their reviews! Don’t ignore them.
Your dog can only rain effectively if they are comfortable with the tools you’re using. A huge part of the comfort level of a collar is the fit. We’ve spoken about sizing before, but just to reiterate - a well-fitted dog training collar is an effective dog training collar.
Other metrics of comfort would be the materials that the collar is made of and the weight.
The weight is of particular importance to any sound, beep or spray collars you look into. These collars have a small cartridge at the front of the collar, under your dog’s nose.
If it’s too bulky or heavy, your dog will do everything in their power to get the collar off. That’s not an effective training tool. So, ensure that the collar is suitable for your dog’s weight. Ideally, you barely want them to notice the collar as they wear it. You want it to be just as comfortable as a regular collar.
Finally, style is no small thing! It means absolutely nothing to your dog, but it may bring you some small pleasure to purchase a fashionable collar for your pooch. Not only that, but the more styling looking collars are also less conspicuous when it comes to training your dog.
In some cases, if a person sees a dog with a training tool on them, they’ll automatically fear the dog. It often happens with head collars and muzzles. Because of the associations with muzzles and dangerous dogs, people and other dogs are less interactive and open with dogs who wear them.
Buying a collar that isn’t so easily spotted as a training collar may help your dog blend in.
8 Best Dog Training Collars Australia: 2022 Edition
Now that you know all there is to know about the many types of dog training collars and how to find the best one for your pup, here is a list of the best choices on the Australian market. There’s something for every dog and every training style. However, we will not be recommending shock collars or choke collars in any way. We take our name as Gentle Dog Trainers very seriously and therefore will not be promoting those forms of dog training in any way.
Our first recommendation for training collars is the ET-300TS Mini Educator Remote Dog Trainer from Dog Line. This is primarily a vibration and sound collar that can be used in a myriad of ways.
During training, some dogs become desensitised to the buzz of a training collar or outright ignore it. This collar removes that possibility by having 100 Control of Stimulation (COS) levels. That means there are 100 different minute settings to increase or decrease the sensation of the vibration.
At the highest level, it is still within safe and humane parameters. However, if you have a very strong-willed dog, it’s helpful to have the option to crank the stimulation all the way up or not.
Most dogs won’t need to have the highest setting on, but you can personalise it to your dog’s personality and sensitivity. There is a lock feature too that allows you to lock in the stimulation level that is working the best for your training or communication purposes.
This is a remote controlled dog training collar giving you extra precision in how it’s used. The range is impressive at 800m. The remote control has a night light tracker and lost transmitting beeper too in case your dog goes missing or out of sight at any time while wearing it.
The collar is fully waterproof which is great for camping trips and active environments.
The battery charges within 2 hours and the collar supports both tone only and vibration only modes.
This collar basically has everything you could need from a training collar and more. The only con is that it’s not suitable for dogs of all sizes. The manufacturer recommends that only dogs over 2.2kg use this collar.
Verified Review - 4/04/2021
Great Durable Harness
"excellent product could not be any happier with it and there service was so good. P.S l recommend these guys 100%."
The Canny Collar is a great option as a simple head collar for walk training.
The noseband on this collar is purposefully designed to be loosely fit, allowing a full range of movement for your dog’s mouth. Some head collars can be restrictive but the Canny Collar avoids that problem. It’s both easy to fit and comfortable to wear.
Made of cotton webbing, the collar is quite durable. It’s not as hardy as some of the other options on this list with nylon webbing, however, it will last you for walk training sessions. Remember that you shouldn’t let your dog wear training collars all of the time as it’s unnecessary. A head collar is only for use in short bursts.
The sizing is pretty good overall. The smallest neck circumference is 7cm and the largest is 58cm. Most small to large breeds will be perfectly happy with this product. Some extra-large dog breeds can have neck girths of up to 65cm. So the Canny Collar wouldn’t be a good fit for them.
With great reviews and a decent price point, this is an excellent choice if you’re after a walking aid as you train your dog.
Verified Review - 20/11/2021
Pretty good. A bit pricey though.
"The product is made well. I don’t like it as much as the Halti collar I use, because I can’t control the head as easily. I like that the leash attaches behind the head instead of under the chin giving my dog a bit more freedom to sniff. I was hoping for more head control when I bought it."
Onto the martingales!
The CollarDirect Martingale Collars are very high quality no matter what model you choose. I chose this one because the tribal patterns are so cool! They’re unisex, bright and a little different to the typical patterns you see on collars.
Beyond that, with this product, you can expect durability and comfort. It’s made of woven nylon which is very sturdy. Even if your dog wears the martingale all the time, it’s unlikely to fray or break for years and years. The nylon may be as tough as old boots, but it isn’t harsh on your dog’s skin. It’s soft and forgiving.
There are 3 sizes to choose from. The smallest is 30cm in length which is a bit of a con. This size will work for medium dogs, but small dogs/puppies are excluded. The larger sizes are much more representative of extra-large dogs ranging up to 60cm in length.
If you’re looking for a comfortable martingale collar with an eye-catching design, look no further than the CollarDirect line!
Verified Review - 27/03/2021
I ordered this for my Australian cattle dog
"I ordered this for my Australian cattle dog, it was good quality story, but it turned out that it was a little too thick/wide so I gave it to a friend of mine who has a bigger dog, they absolutely love it."
When you first start working with dog control collars, you may encounter this common complaint: “The collar activates when it’s not meant to.”
This can happen with automatic collars that use sensors to detect barking. For example, your dog may be yelping and crying for help and the collar vibrates or beeps for them to stop. Not ideal! Some collars have advanced technology to avoid false activation happening but it’s not a perfect system.
The only nearly perfect system would be a remote-controlled collar that you can use during selective moments. That’s where the My Pet Command training collar comes in.
Even though this is named a citronella training collar, it integrates four different training modes: light, sound, vibration and citronella. This is a great option for those who are training their dog more comprehensively. The collar can help you with way more than just nuisance barking. It could help you with daily training as well as more advanced skills like agility.
The one-size-fits-all collar does come close to fulfilling that promise. It can cover 15cm-65cm which is quite impressive. However small dogs are excluded.
The battery life lasts 7 days on standby and takes less than 3 hours to charge fully. The manufacturer also offers a 1-year warranty.
For a great all-rounder with remote control precision, this is the choice for you!
Verified Review - 30/06/2021
Love this Collar. Bought for two of my dogs.
"These collars are perfect for what I was looking for. I like the option to spray the citronella when they Bark and I use the buzzer ( not electrical) to tell them its time to come in if they don't come when called. The light is good at night since I'm on a dark farm and can see then off in the yard. Definitely works for me."
If you want to give a citronella collar a go with your yappy dog, the PetSafe collar is the one for you. It’s offered by dog training collar specialists Dog Line so you know it’s a great product that you can trust.
Whenever your dog barks, the collar uses sound and citronella spray to distract and deter your dog. It’s very effective at what it does with minimal false activation risk.
There are two training modes to customise your dog training. It’s always recommended to start on the weak mode and increase to the strong mode if your dog isn’t listening.
It’s quite rare that citronella collars come with any citronella refills. It’s the bane of a dog trainer’s life! But this collar comes with not one, but two additional citronella refill cartridges to last you a long while. Each cartridge contains 35-40 sprays and is fully recyclable.
Best of all, the price point is decent for the category and it has a 3-year warranty. This is a no brainer!
Verified Review - 4/10/2021
"I was being driven mad by my Maltese Shih Tzu barking at anything and everything in the “witching hour” - about 6 to 7 each evening. Even though I am averse to punitive training, desperation won out and I tried the Citronella collar. The first time he stopped barking because he was trying to get at the unfamiliar “thing” under his chin. The next time his puzzlement at the citronella spray was entertaining to watch. I have only put it on a few times since then, and it stops his barking every time. I do have to admit that the action of putting the collar on may be the reason for the cessation of barking. Who cares? The end result is what I wanted. Easy to put on and off as needed."
Finally, we end on a sound collar. As we’ve seen. A lot of collars integrate sound and other techniques together. Anti-Fury has created a sound and vibration collar that truly excels.
It’s an automatic bark collar meaning that it detects your dog’s voice as they wear it. When it detects barking, it will emit a sound and/vibration combination.
There are 7 training modes of varying sensitivities. You can tailor the collar’s response to suit your dog.
The battery life reportedly lasts over two weeks on standby and charges relatively quickly. We love the bright colours the collar comes in too.
The downside is the sizing. It’s very limited. The minimum is 15cm and the maximum is 50cm. This will work well for medium breeds. Extra small, large and extra-large breeds are excluded.
As a Sydney-based company you’re supporting an Aussie business when you purchase the Shut the Bark Up Collar. A percentage of the proceeds even go to RSPCA Australia.
To support an Australian business and get a great sound collar for your medium dog, we fully recommend this product.
Verified Review - 10/04/2021
It does help!
"My dog is a chronic barker and this definitely helps but doesn’t completely eliminate the barking. Product is well made and sturdy. Battery life is insanely long and very easy to use."
Top Choices: Dog Control Collars
The best dog control collar for your purposes depends on what type of training you’re doing and the behaviour you’re trying to correct. For bark control, the Dog Line training collar is fantastic. Using gentle vibrations to distract and deter, this collar will certainly help with nuisance barking when paired with calm vocal commands.
If you want more flexibility with your training collar for all kinds of uses, we recommend the My Pet Command Remote Control Collar. It has 4 training modes so you can personalise your dog’s training techniques to work best for the two of you.
No one training technique will work for every dog. From personal experience, one of my dogs responded well to citronella training. The other kinda liked the citronella smell and would bark on purpose to make more citronella spray in his face.
All dogs are different. For this reason, the best course of action is trial and error. You won’t know what works for your dog until you try!
- Ellison, J. July 3, 2016. “Martingale Dog Collars – Types & Uses”. The Artful Canine. Retrieved November 23, 2021. https://blog.theartfulcanine.com/martingale-dog-collars/
- M, Brassfield. November 15, 2017. “Pros and Cons Of Bark Collars”. Everyday Health. Retrieved November 23, 2021. https://www.everydayhealth.com/pet-health/pros-cons-bark-collars/
- L, Holmes. May 17, 2020. “Are Dog Shock Collars Harmful? E-Collar Training Dangers”. Petful. Retrieved November 23, 2021. https://pethelpful.com/pet-ownership/Are-Dog-Shock-Collars-Harmful-The-Dangers-of-E-Collar-Training