6 Best Dog Silencers | January 2017
- curbs barking within 2 weeks
- works indoors or outside
- remote has a very limited range
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
- 4 sensitivity settings
- good addition as puppy training tool
- battery life is a bit short
|Rating||4.4 / 5.0|
- led battery status indicators
- up to 50-foot detection
- 9-volt battery not included
|Rating||3.8 / 5.0|
- durable high-impact plastic
- works on cats up to 40 feet away
- includes a convenient belt clip
|Model||Dog Dazer II|
|Rating||4.6 / 5.0|
- installation is very easy
- runs off one 9-volt battery
- sturdy construction
|Rating||4.6 / 5.0|
- long-life rechargeable battery
- 3 color indicator light
- drytek waterproofing to 25 feet
|Rating||4.8 / 5.0|
Take A Bite Out Of That Bark
One of my neighbors recently brought home two horrible little dogs that barked unlike any dogs I’d ever heard. Their barking was endless, going on at all hours, and I’d never even seen the dogs. When I was outside and I heard them barking, I’d approach the fence, hoping to get a look at the pooches, thinking maybe that if I saw them and communed with them I might hate them a little less. Every time I reached the yard, though, the barking would stop and the dogs disappeared.
I’m not a cruel man by any stretch, and I love animals in particular; I haven’t even eaten meat in years. But these dogs were putting my patience to the test, and the sleep deprivation didn’t help. That’s when I caught wind of these dog silencers. When a friend of mine first mentioned them, I pictured the kind of silencer you might see at the end of a pistol, but attached somehow to a dog to muffle its bark. This sounded both cruel and absurd.
Once I got a look at them, my immediate concern was that these were going to hurt the dogs. I didn’t know how they worked, but my mind immediately went to the terror that is the dog shock collar, a device used for electrocuting a dog who wanders to far from a set point in the yard.
By contrast to those devices, a dog silencer works gently with a dog’s naturally enhanced hearing range. If you’ve ever blown a dog whistle around a barking hound, you’ve seen how it arrests their barking and traps their attention, even though human hearing can’t access the frequencies it creates.
Dog silencers work on a similar principal, first using a microphone to detect a dog’s bark, then emitting an arresting frequency that won’t harm your dog, but will train it to control its bark over time. Some of these silencers are manually activated, though, and the user can direct the emission of its ultrasonic frequencies toward the offending animal. This was the kind I got, and I directed it across the way to my neighbor’s lawn any time I heard those dogs start to yap. Before I knew it, my sleep returned.
Tuned To Paw-fection
Dogs’ personalities are as variegated as their owners’, so it makes sense that you’ll require different frequencies and different intensities of sound to fine-tune the training methods to de-bark your buddy.
As you peruse the dog silencers on our list, take special note of each model’s adjustability. The more you can alter the specific frequencies used and volume of tone emitted, the more likely that you’ll find a range that affects your dog’s specific patterns of behavior.
It’s also a good idea to evaluate these with respect to your involvement in your dog’s training. Automatic dog silencers, for example, operate only when your dog barks. This might discourage barking in all situations, when you might prefer that your dog still barks in the presence of an intruder.
Another option some automatic bark silencers offer is a programmable timer. In my neighborhood, the peak bark period is between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m., when virtually everybody who gets home from their 9-5 takes their deprived pooches out for a stroll. You could program an automatic dog silencer to run hot in these peak periods, helping to ensure training against over-barking at other dogs.
If you’re more of a hands-on trainer, you’ll want to look into manual dog silencers that you activate by the push of a button whenever your dog barks inappropriately. This way, you don’t train your dog never to express itself, but rather to confine its expression to more timely and useful outbursts.
Let Loose The Dogs Of War
Before the first World War, dogs served a litany of purposes, but one thing they did very little of was provide the kind of comfort and companionship we've come to expect of them today. Dogs were workers, hunters, executioners of household vermin, and generally treated as tools.
In that war, however, the allied military put dogs to use sniffing out mines and other explosives, guarding munitions areas, and more. The casualty rate among these pups was high, necessitating a large number of dogs endure training to replace those that gave their lives (rather unwittingly, I'd say) for their country.
After the end of the war, those trainers returned home with a unique specialty, and a market just happened to be there waiting for them. It was around this time in America that the middle class truly began the growth that would explode after the second world war. Fewer people worked on farms at home, and more worked in factories, shops, and mills. That meant they had to trust their family dogs not to cause trouble when left home alone. You can imagine how well that turned out.
So, the demand existed for someone to come along and train these dogs to behave, and a whole shipload of canine behavioral adjusters just arrived from Europe looking for work. Those behaviorists started the next wave of doggy domestication, and their work spread out among inventors, who created everything from the shock collar to the ultrasonic silencers on our list.