Dog boarders are warning that their livelihoods are being put at risk by the proposed ban on e-collars.
A number of dog boarders have signed a letter to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), which has promised to ban the use of e-collars, warning that they are being refused licences if they use the training method.
Councils have said that although an e-collar ban is not yet in place, they can only allow businesses to operate if they use reward-based training because Defra guidance that states: “Where used, training methods or equipment must not cause pain, suffering or injury.
“Training must be reward-based that rewards good behaviour and ignores unwanted behaviour.”
The letter to Defra was organised through the E-Collars – UK ONLY dog owners supporting their humane use Facebook group, which currently has more than 1,100 members.
In the letter, the boarders warn that in some cases “the best means of deterring a dog from harming itself or other animals is to use an electronic collar at the request of and with the full and informed consent of the owner”.
The letter also questions whether there is “any scientific evidence that the use of reward-based training is effective at deterring dogs from unwanted behaviour such as attacking pregnant ewes during lambing season”.
In response, a Defra spokesperson told The Telegraph: “The government’s proposed ban on hand-operated electric shock collars will protect dogs and cats from these harmful devices which can be all too easily open to abuse.
“We are clear that it’s important that dogs are trained to behave well, ideally from a young age, and introduced gradually and positively to different environments, people and animals.”