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Best Bark Collars to Maintain the Silence

Is your dog’s unceasing barking getting you down? [1] We can relate.

No matter how often you try to positively reinforce your new puppy to settle down, it seems like there’s always something that gets under their skin and causes them to go crazy.

dogs barking

Not only can it keep you and your family up at night, but it can also disturb your neighbors, other pets around the house, and—in a worst-case scenario—it can even cause some pretty severe strain to your dog’s vocal cords, which can result in pain and discomfort. [2]

While incessant barking should always be a cause for concern that prompts a check-up with your vet, there are times where there is nothing medically wrong, and yet little Fido just won’t stop yapping.

Regardless of whether this is due to anxiety, over-excitement, [3] or negative associations with external stimuli, a bark collar [4] can assist in reducing the frequency and intensity of these outbursts in order to restore peace and quiet to your home.

How do bark collars work?

Dog with bark collar on

These collars primarily work with batteries and are strapped around the neck of your dog much like any other collar.

While there are many different types of aversive stimuli that can be applied, they all work in similar ways – when active, the sensors inside the collar pick up the vibrations of your dog’s vocal chords when they start barking.

If the intensity of the vibration is high enough, then the collar introduces the negative reinforcement of your dog via smells or sensations.

So, all that being said, do they work? As a whole, yes.

The collar is active 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and in this way, owners who work or are otherwise unavailable during the day don’t have to worry about training schedules being interrupted when they’re out of the house.

This results in rapid responses from your dog, and a much healthier (and quieter) living situation overall.

If your pup is a roamer, you’ll have peace of mind with these GPS dog trackers

Bark collars reviewed – Top 5

Now the question remains, which one should you buy? That answer depends on your specific requirements, but we’ve compiled a list of five great all-around options that should suit the needs of most dog owners.

This way, all you need to do is read on and pick out the one that sounds most appealing to you, and plop it right into your shopping basket.

SportDOG | No Bark 10R Bark Control SBC-R

SportDOG No Bark Collar 10R Bark Control SBC-R

SportDog is a trendy brand for a wide variety of dog related apparel and accessories, so it’s no surprise that they have their hand in the dog collar market as well. This model, in particular, is one of our personal favorites due to some handy little features.

The lithium-ion batteries that it contains are rechargeable by plugging it into any standard wall outlet, which will save you a ton of money on disposal batteries in the long run. It accommodates a wide range of dog sizes due to the adjustable holes lining the neck of the collar.

The manufacturer states that it will fit dogs with necks between 5” and 22”, and while we haven’t tested each size category, the dogs that we have tested it on have experienced extremely secure, snug, and comfortable fits that give us the peace of mind of knowing that they won’t be losing it in the backyard anytime soon.

What intrigues most owners, however, is the level of discipline that it can provide, and this is another realm where the SportDOG collar shines the most. By offering ten different intensity levels of static shocks, owners are better able to tailor to punishment doled out to suit the behavior of different dogs.

This way, one harmless little yelp won’t be punished by a massive surge of electricity. Along with this same thought, the sensor is quite sensitive, which means that your dog will never get punished for a crime he or she didn’t commit.

Pros

  • Durable and sturdy
  • Attractive design
  • Varying levels of intensity

Cons

  • The batteries take a while to recharge

Customer Feedback

The vast majority of owners of this device were delighted with their purchase and rated the product with 4.3 out of 5 stars. Most of them reported that their dogs never bark when it’s not needed after just one or two activations of the collar, which is a massive relief for owners who desire quick results without wanting to hurt their beloved canines.

Impressively, the results held up when the owners were away as well, as they report that neighbors stopped complaining about the noisy dogs. One of the most important outcomes, however, was the improved disposition of their pets. Some owners said that their dogs were more relaxed, comfortable, happy, and are less likely to act up at strange noises, animals, or people.

It should be noted, however, that there are a few reports that as the collar ages, it’s more likely to administer jolts at random intervals, rather than when the dog barks. This could be due to the sensor becoming more sensitive with age, and it should prompt contact with the manufacturer to correct the issue. It doesn’t seem to be widespread, but it’s useful information to keep in mind.

See it on Amazon

POP VIEW | Intelligent Anti-bark Collar

POP VIEW Bark Collar

 

POP VIEW might not be a name that you’ve heard of before, but the few products we’ve tested have come back with a positive review, and this one is no different. While simple, we feel that design is objectively one of the best of the bunch since it’s non-invasive, understated, and quite appealing.

We’re also big fans of the collar material itself since nylon is much less likely to degrade over time compared to cheap imitation leather or thin rubber. This also gives it the added benefit of being truly adjustable, since the owner isn’t bound by the number of holes around its perimeter. We wouldn’t say that this model can accommodate the biggest dogs, but it should serve most owners well enough.

Like the previous entry on our list, this model uses sounds and vibrations to deliver its message to your dog and does so consistently. We didn’t notice any unusual or unneeded punishments, which gives us the confidence to give this one our recommendation.

What aided this decision is the price, which is a steal for the quality of the components that you’re getting. Finally, one feature that caught our eye was the weather-resistant nature of the nylon.

This will be of great comfort to those owners who have a doggy-door that gives their pup free access to the rain or snow since they don’t have to worry that their investment will go to waste due to the interference of mother nature.

Pros

  • A budget-conscious price
  • Solid design
  • All-weather
  • Universal size
  • 30-day money back guarantee

Cons

  • Requires 6-volt batteries, which consumers are less likely to have lying around the house

Customer Feedback

This collar earned a rating of 4.2 out of 5 stars, and if you’re looking for reliability, then rest assured that you’ve found it in the POP VIEW collar. Like most of the entries on this list, the collar is reported to have worked right from the first set of vibrations, however, what sets this collar apart from the rest is the fact that even years after the fact, owners claim that the sensor still never misses a beep.

That’s incredibly comforting and should assure owners that they won’t have to worry about this one steering them wrong for quite a while after their initial purchase.

One negative thing that did stand out from the reviews, however, is the fact that not all of the products are created equally. That is to say there is an apparent lack of consistency. Some break within a few months, some don’t work at all, and yet others still seem to last an eternity before showing any signs of fault.

Since you can directly contact the manufacturer if any of these issues come up, it’s not a significant problem, but it does show that POP VIEW has a way to go yet in tightening up their manufacturing and quality control processes before becoming a major pet accessory brand.

See it on Amazon

DogRook | Bark Collar

DogRook Bark Collars

If you’re looking to add a little flash to your dog accessory game, then you might want to consider this compelling little package from DogRook. The orange highlights may seem out of place at first, but they’re quite handy for spotting your pup in the rain, fog or other inclement weather. Thumbs up for that ingenious design feature!

This model hits the sweet spot regarding price, which means you’re not paying a luxury tax for a recognized brand, but you’re also not skimping on some much-needed features, either. It not only sports seven levels of correction to give it some versatility, but is also entirely water-resistant, making it ideal for those living near bodies of water, or for their pups who might like to take some dives into the pool every once in a while.

One thing that may or may not appeal to users is the utilitarianism of the design. From our perspective, it works. No, there’s no fancy LED screen, no remotes, and no bells and whistles, but what you get as a compromise is a device that has no apparent points of failure, and one that gives your quite a bit of battery life each time you pop a new pair in. You’ll either love it or hate, but we choose to see it as a glass half-full, rather than half-empty.

Pros

  • Accessible price
  • Very durable
  • 100% waterproof

Cons

  • Not the most aesthetically pleasing device on the market.

Customer Feedback

You may not like everything about a product, but you have to give credit to one that has the performance where it counts, and this bark collar has just that. Customers are in widespread agreement that this model is one of the best anti-bark collars on the market thanks to its blend of price, performance, and longevity and rated it with 4.1 out of 5 stars.

Performance is the key word here, as owners have experienced a dramatic reduction in the intensity and frequency of their dog’s barking. It hasn’t been effective for all users—products of any kind rarely are—but those that experience success have been prompted to share their experiences with others to encourage them to give it a shot, and we can see why.

Some reviews indicate that this collar outperforms other, more expensive collars, which makes this an appealing option for owners who have already tried other models and are at their wits end with what to do next.

Are there cons? Of course. Some report that it often stops working but these reports aren’t frequent enough to make it a concern worth fretting over. Besides, if it didn’t have any of these faults, it would cost much more, and there would be complaints about that too.

Ultimately, the decision you need to make is whether you want to spend a little bit of money on something that works but might not last very long or three times as much on something that probably won’t last three times as long. That decision is entirely yours, and there’s no wrong answer. It’s just something to keep in mind.

See it on Amazon

PetSafe | Elite Bark Control Collar

Dog Bark Control Collar

PetSafe has appeared in our articles before, and for a good reason. They’re a value-oriented brand that emphasizes the quality of their products, which makes them an excellent choice for owners who are always looking for an upgrade on their existing accessories.

This bark collar is, unsurprisingly, no different. Much like the SportDOG, this model features ten levels of bark correction to help users fine-tune the level of discipline they wish to impart on their dog, but it comes with some unique features as well.

In order to prevent long-term harm associated with malfunctioning electronics, this collar features a safety shut-off that automatically shuts the device off after 80 uninterrupted seconds of punishment. If being honest, even 80 seconds is a little too long, since that prolonged sensation can be quite unpleasant for our dogs, but when we’re at work for hours at a time, we’d much rather have an 80 second shut off versus a collar that doesn’t have one at all.

One negative feature, however, is their use of a propriety battery to power the device. While that ensures that it will last longer than consumer components that are purchased right off the shelf, it does mean that PetSafe is the only company that can help us out if ever something needs to be replaced.

That being said, their customer service is well-known for being excellent, so it’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just inconvenient, and we would prefer the ability to service our own equipment if need be.

Pros

  • US-based support
  • Safety shut-off timers

Cons

  • A costly product

Customer Feedback

Customers who believe that you get what you pay for are, in general, thrilled with their purchase and rated the product with 3.2 out of 5 stars. While some do note that they feel they paid a premium for the brand, they often feel that it’s worth the trade-off in order to know that the product uses quality parts and comes from a company that is easily accessible if ever a problem should arise.

They also note that it’s quite effective at its job at all levels of intensity, with one major caveat – if left on your dog for too long at a time, many of them get used to the sensation and start barking regardless. That means that if you have a dog that is always barking, then this isn’t a great tool for you.

If, however, your dog suffers from something like separation anxiety and only barks when you’re away at work, then this might actually mitigate some of those concerns and restore peace to the neighborhood.

We know all too well the headaches that a noisy dog can cause. We love them to death, but if they won’t stop barking, then it’s not fair to your neighbors, you, and – most importantly – your dog. Getting them equipped with an anti-bark collar can be one of the most significant quality of life differences that you can make since you can expect to have a more relaxed, happy, and peaceful dog who is more open to new people, animals, and experiences.

See it on Amazon

TBI Pro | Bark Collar with Upgraded Smart Chip

Bark Collar Vibration Mini for Small, Medium Dogs

Owners interested in a look of the future might be interested in this high-tech device from TBI. While they don’t have the name brand reputation of some of the other products on this list, they make up for it by offering proven results at a fraction of the price. This means that owners who haven’t had the opportunity to try a bark collar can dip their toes in with this reasonably priced model without having to spend a considerable sum of money for what is, essentially, a test drive.

Regardless, it still wouldn’t be worth it if the device didn’t work, and we’re happy to report that this collar does precisely what it was designed for. The adjustable neck of the collar makes it an excellent choice for dogs of all sizes, and they pair it with some impressive tech under the hood.

Their appropriately named “Smart Chip” is designed to be more discerning and less sensitive, which means that unlike the SportDOG collar that we just looked at, it won’t start delivering random, arbitrary shocks to your dogs after it gets up there in age. Perhaps the best feature, however, is the option to disable the shock function entirely.

The shock feature can be replaced by a ‘noise’ and vibration mode – an annoying beep sound which is paired with a mild vibration, which then startles, rather than hurting your dog if he should start barking unnecessarily. We really appreciate this inclusion, and it’s one of the reasons that it made the cut on our very competitive list.

Pros

  • Adjustable size makes it a good choice for all sizes of dogs
  • The LED display allows owners to make adjustments based on visual feedback
  • Beep mode means dogs won’t be punished for an innate vocal response

Cons

  • Requires three batteries to power, which can get expensive rather quickly

Customer Feedback

Customers weren’t quite as pleased with their purchase and rated the product with 1.9 out of 5 stars. Some of the most highly touted features are the ones we’ve discussed above, such as the beep mode, size, and reliability of the sensor.

One thing that we feel stood out from the customer reviews, however, was the quick, intuitive set-up process. Unlike some other cheap models that come with poorly worded instructions that are hard to understand and process, this leaflet was clearly detailed and provided enough information for users to quickly strap it to their dog’s neck with no difficulties, confusion, or headaches.

Unfortunately, nothing is perfect, and in the case of this collar, the price consumers needed to continually fork out for batteries was noteworthy.  We mentioned that it takes three of them to power, which is mildly excessive, but it seems like they get drained rather quickly as well.

This means that the up-front cost consumers pay is not the total cost of ownership. Due to this, we do wonder if the LED screen is entirely necessary. Regardless, customers still feel that the collar is worth it—they’d just rather pay a little bit more money for a rechargeable battery kit.

See it on Amazon

Final thoughts on choosing a bark collar

doberman and german shepherd

Just remember that before you try one on for size, it might be a good idea to spend some time at the vet to rule out any undiagnosed medical issues. As always, never rule anything out until you have authoritative advice, else you’re simply masking the symptom – the barking – and not the cause.

If you’ve tried everything else though, then feel free to pick out any of the products on this list and give them a try. We selected them specifically because we think that they deliver the best price-to-performance ratios, while also providing a list of handy features that we feel are important in a bark collar.

Just remember to start at small intensities and work your way up, and you should be well on your way to a quiet, happy household.

Another must read: Best Electric Dog Fences

Resources

  1. Assessment and treatment of excessive barking in the domestic dog.” S.V. Juarbe-Díaz. May 1997.
  2. Histologic investigation of hyperphonated canine vocal cords.” S. Gray. I. Titze. July 1988
  3. Shabelansky, Anastasia and Seana Dowling-Guyer. “Characteristics of Excitable Dog Behavior Based on Owners’ Report from a Self-Selected Study” Animals : an open access journal from MDPI vol. 6,3 22. 16 Mar. 2016, doi:10.3390/ani6030022
  4. Characteristics of electronic training collars for dogs.” J.A. Lines. K. van Driel. J.J. Cooper. March 2013

About the Author

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Gogsi

By fusing a passion for animal health with an extensive background (bachelor's degree, 10+ years) in marketing and finance, Gogsi helps caring pet-owners navigate through false advertising and make financially savvy, informed buying decisions (when it comes to providing exceptional care & daily nutrition to their beloved dogs).

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