Dogs & Laws

Quebec Bans Shock and Prong Dog Collars

The Canadian province of Quebec has taken important steps in protecting the safety and welfare of pets by establishing their “MAPAQ Guide d’application du règlement sur la sécurité et le bien-être des chats et des chiens,” or Guide to Implementing Rules on the Safety and Well-Being of Dogs and Cats.

The guide, which outlines regulations regarding pet ownership in Quebec including standards of care, licensing, housing and shelter requirements, was met with both praise and backlash when the latest version, released in November of 2013, included a province-wide ban on the use of shock and/or prong collars.

Specifically, the law states that the collar “must not interfere with breathing or cause him pain or injury.” In addition to an absolute ban on shock and prong type collars, the Guide further clarifies that choke-chain type collars should only be used as a temporary measure of restraint, such as during walks, and should never be left on a dog that is unattended.

Excerpt from MAPAQ Guide d'application du règlement sur la sécurité et le bien-être des chats et des chiens, Article 26, page 21, shows the two types of collars now banned in Quebec.

Excerpt from MAPAQ Guide d’application du règlement sur la sécurité et le bien-être des chats et des chiens, Article 26, page 21, shows the two types of collars now banned in Quebec.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dog owners in Quebec caught using shock or prong collars will initially be given a warning, and subsequently issued heavy fines, no less than about $600 per incident.

These types of collars are already banned in several countries and provinces around the world including New Zealand, Wales, Switzerland, parts of Australia, and are currently being considered for a ban in Germany.

This ban on shock (also called electronic collars, e-collars, zap collars) and prong (sometimes called pinch collars) collars is a victory for both the dogs of Quebec that will no longer be subjected to pain and suffering through such aversion training techniques, but also for proponents of scientifically proven Positive Training techniques.

Trainer Kevin Duggan, CPDT-KA of All Dogs Go To Kevin, LLC, explained, “This is a huge step in the right direction. These “tools” cause dogs to do things because they want to avoid the pain or stimuli associated with them. Science has shown us that there are better ways to teach dogs and also modify their behavior. Yes, even severe cases can be fixed without these. We refer to dogs as “man’s best friend” so lets treat them like they deserve to be treated.”

In other words, when properly trained using Positive training methods, your dog can reliably do what you ask of him because he wants to do it, not because he is afraid not to.

Still, those who oppose the ban believe this in an infringement on their right to train their dogs as they see fit, or in a method that they have found to work for them. Rather than viewing it as an opportunity to learn longer lasting, proven, reward-based training methods, these pet owners are angered by their government’s position, seeking to overturn the rule.

Do you agree or disagree with Quebec’s ban on shock and prong collars? Would you celebrate a similar ban in your own country or state?

41 Comments

41 Comments

  1. Chay

    Jun 4, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    This ban is dumb. This is exactly the same as banning pitbulls. It’s the owner that uses the trainingdevise wrong and causes abuse. Not the training tool itself. This is like blaming the dog when the owner is to blame for a dogs behaviour. Take away these training tools and u will have many dogs that ppl cannot control.

  2. HERTA LAPORTE

    May 30, 2014 at 11:16 am

    I HAVE A4YEAR OLD ROTTI,A DARLING DOG ,BUT WHEN HE SEES AN OTHER DOG HE WANTS TO GET HIM TO PLAY.HE IS 120 LBS,I AM115 LBS,WHEN HE GOES HE TAKES ME WITH HIM. THE E-COLLAR CHANGED HIM ,NO PULL, NO CHARGE,I AM NOT EVEN USE THE COLLAR,JUST SHOWING IT TO HIM DOES THE TRICK.I HAVE NEVER HURT MY DOG,HE WAS TRAINED LIKE THAT,AND WAITS TO HAVE THE COLLAR ON.

  3. Charlene

    May 17, 2014 at 1:43 pm

    Please, Please, Please Make This BAN Happen In The United States,…
    We Must Remove These Torture Devices From The Market,…
    Positive, Loving, Reinforcement Is The True Art Of Training…
    Those Who Are Abusing Our Animals In The Name Of “Training” Should Be Fined, Jailed and Have Any “Humane” License Removed.
    First Of All, Please Garner ALL Support For Banning Torture Devices For Our Precious Animals…
    Thank You…

  4. Garena Shells Generator

    Apr 25, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    There were also Battlefield 3 and Assassin’s Creed
    3 running in the back for passerby’s. One of the most interesting facets of the Law of
    attraction is found in it’s teachings. It is being said that to be born a poor is not your choice,
    but to die a poor is a sin, because there are ways to combat poverty.

  5. Michelle

    Apr 9, 2014 at 9:44 am

    I have a 110 pound Lab that is just over two years. The only way I could take her for a walk is with the use of a pinch collar. She is fine UNTIL we meet another person and then all of that puppy enthusiasm takes over and she will jump on them. She gets excited (happy enthusiasm) when she sees that collar because she knows she’s going for a walk. We have electric shock collars for our underground fence. Likewise, it keeps the neighbors safe from her playful enthusiasm and she knows her boundaries. Without the use of that collar, she would not be able to go outside and run / play. The shock collar is not her torture, but her freedom. We do leave the shock collar on her, and like any dog, she’s attached to her collar. It bothers her if we take it off. It’s never irritated her skin, but I can see how it would if too tight.

    • Angie

      Apr 23, 2014 at 8:13 pm

      Hello,
      If you would like, I could meet with you and give you some tips about your 110lb lab. My name is Angie and I have 2 dogs. I am an ESL teacher, however dogs are my passion and I board/walk and do basic training the rest of the time. I can assist you if you like with your dog so that you would no longer need the pinch nor shock collars.
      Call me anytime
      Angie
      514.892.8003

      • Mary Lynn

        May 18, 2014 at 10:18 pm

        Angie I have two Labs and I don’t use a Ecollar or shock collar as you folks refer to these collars. Unfortunately these collar and the prong collar have been given a bad rap by some who have misused them. When Ifirst started to train I treated all these items collars etc as tools. These tools simply helped my dogs get to their goal. The one dog never needed to be burned as they call it but mostly I used the pager for long distance retriever training. The other dog was a confirmed barker if I left his side he would start up. Thank goodness for the collar. Now I just show him the transmitter and he does not bark. Without that tool I doubt very much I would be very far with training or having pleasant dogs. Now like I say neither one of them have an E collar on.
        It is too bad Quebec banned these tools. Used properly they can work very well. I would have to say you now have limited tools to train with. Positive training only goes so far with a food mongering Lab. And how would I train these guys on the long distance blinds etc. I am interested in what you would suggest to me instead of an aversive?

  6. steph

    Mar 17, 2014 at 11:22 am

    i do not want to start a debate on whether or not to use these collars, i am just gonna give you some info, the information is wrong! the law article 26 states “the collar must not interfere with breathing or cause him pain or injury.” they did not ban the use of these collars, they banned the misuse of them… i have contacted MAPAQ and even a lawyer to get to the bottom of this. when i spoke to MAPAQ they said they would only step in in extreme cases, for example if someone chains there dog outside and the dog has a prong and is lunging all day than they would step in, but if someone is using it to walk their dog on a walk then that is fine, as it is its intended use. Also the picture in the article is taken from the “Guide d’application du règlement sur la sécurité et le bien-être des chats et des chiens” which is NOT LAW it is just recommendations.

  7. Christine

    Mar 15, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    These are tools which can be used responsibly or not. An Ecollar used and trained correctly is just like a parent touching a child’s shoulder to get their attention when they are focused on the TV. The collars can be set at many levels. I could not even feel the first 2 levels on the one I tried.
    A prong collar is often used on a walk with a high drive dog. The dog will self correct with the collar if it forgets its training in a high drive situation. (Think squirrel and busy road). A well fitted prong can only tighten to a set degree; it will not actually choke the dog, unlike a “pretty little” choke collar that can actually tighten enough to cut off the air supply. So why are the choke collars legal, if they are truly watching out for the welfare of the dog? Could it be that the CKC use choke collars habitually to control their show dogs and have more power than working and hunt dog trainers?

  8. Jaque

    Mar 1, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    If an experienced trainer has to use a prong or electronic collar
    to train…..they obviously, are not knoledgeable trainers.
    Using electronic collars to train competitively is only for the
    sake of the owner/trainer. It’s an ego trip for a title or prize.
    Dog sports are suppose to be fun for the dog. What’s so funny about a dog
    getting a shock or pinch on the neck????
    I can tolerate an elderly senior using a prong collar in order to
    walk their dog on leash. But only if the dog wears it for that purpose.
    Most sensistive dogs shut down with the use of the prong.
    Those who use these forceful “tools” are actually cruel to their
    so called beloved pet.
    The pet stores etc., who sell these devices are the real culperts making
    the money without explanations….

    • Jay

      Mar 28, 2014 at 9:11 am

      I’m curious what you would suggest when exercising my dog off leash in the bush, and he decides to go after coyotes or deer. Saying “Please come back Fido” doesn’t seem to work well, no matter how good his recall is in other situations. I’ve only trained 7 dogs in my life, albeit all to a very high level of obedience, but recall on deer and coyotes has always been extremely difficult without an e-collar.

      • Dave

        May 18, 2014 at 8:25 pm

        Ask hunters in Finland.

        Their dogs are not allowed to chase deer or livestock. E-collar has been banned since the 1980s, and they have lots more hunting dogs than we do; and higher participation percentage of active hunters.

        Seriously, it’s time for North Americans to smarten up and ask other cultures how they train their hunting dogs.

    • Mary Lynn

      May 18, 2014 at 10:22 pm

      You are misguided in your conception of use of these tools. Obviously you are seeing these used incorrectly. I would get some assistance to help you learn how helpful these tools are to your dog’s initial teaching!

  9. Conrad

    Feb 21, 2014 at 8:09 am

    What a hypocrite, all these decision-makers will be ready to give care to others to resolve behavior problems, regardless of the tools used, provided that it is not they who do it, provided that problem is resolved.

  10. chris

    Feb 19, 2014 at 5:56 pm

    What a step backward in the training of dogs. Knee jerk reaction and morons deciding what is “best” with no real science or understanding of how these devices work.

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