E Collar Training for Resource Guarding


Unfortunately, many pet owners mistakenly use e collars to treat aggression in their puppy or dog. When inapproriately using an e collar to train an aggressive dog, it can lead you down a path where you’d prefer not to go.

Before we get into how well e collar training works with managing a dog or puppy that exhibits aggression such as resource guarding, let’s begin with….what not to do and why.

It has been Dedicated Dog Training’s experience that resource guarding is almost, for the most part in many canines an automatic response to protect an item that:

1. the dog views as limited;
2. that you are going to take away (here is a very important thing to be aware of; the dog just has to percieve you will take it away. So, in reality, you may just be passing by with no intentions of removing the item from the dog’s possession, but it makes no difference if the dog thinks that’s what you’re going to do – his reaction will be the same!)

Another important thing to remember about “resource guarding” is most of the time, if you are holding the item or the dog has not yet claimed it, aggression will not be activated. This is also where it gets a bit tricky; everything is most of the time, claiming it (which will be different for every dog), the tenacity of the aggression, and other factors that make it absolutely neccessary to have a professional dog trainer present.

What Not to do With Your E Collar

While the growling may be very disconcerting to you and your family when you attempt to remove an object from your dog once he or she has claimed it, you must try to remember, this on many occassions is an involuntary response. So meeting it with aggression will more times than we’d like to admit cause one or the other:

1. Aggression (other than resource guarding)or a
2. Fearful dog or puppy

….Neither good, and none an easy fix.
OK, now on to the good stuff. A quick reminder, this does not take the place of using a professional dog trainer that uses e collars to train successfully.

Use the E Collar as a Command, Rather than a Punisher

….You can train your dog to respond to a “COME” command. A”DROP” it command. Or something similar in nature. That way, if you remember what we stated above, your dog is no longer in possession of the item. When this happens, you may be able to safely pick-up the item. Mission accomplished. More importantly, the objective was met without any spill-over effect, the development of a fearful or dominant aggressive dog. E collars can also be used in territorial aggression cases as well.

Dog Behavior Modification, Aggressive Dogs & Puppies

Our Long Island dog behavior modification program has helped many pet owners to make things better for them and their dog or puppy. We can help you too! However, you MUST take the first step and make the call. We’re a professional dog training school that believes in treating potential clients respectfully, so you’ll never have to worry about pushy sales tactics.

Long Island dog behavior modification

  • Becky

    Would like information on training the aggression out of my dog due to resource guarding . Only with dogs tho and not people.
    Food, toys, personal space, affection

    • dogtraining

      Hi Becky,

      Thanks for taking the time to write. If possible, a good starting point would be to know how old your dog is? And, how long has he or she been displaying resource guarding towards other dogs? Also, it would be helpful if you’re able to share whether you are referring to other dogs as dogs outside of your household or in the same dwelling.

      Thanks and look forward to your reply.


  • Cara

    I am having the same issues as Becky resource guarding toys, treats, affection with other dogs. This is a year and a few months old golden doodle. She has been exhibiting this behavior since she was 6 months old. She doesn’t live with any dogs, but when she stays with me (my brothers dog) she guards with my roommates dog that she otherwise gets along with and plays well with. I have seen her display aggression towards my neighbors dog when treats were being given. She is being trained with an e-collar, but the training isn’t in home, so it’s not addressing her guarding behavior. Any resources would be greatly appreciated.

    • dogtraining

      Hi Cara,

      Thanks SO much for writing to us. Typically, we do not like to give advice while your dog is already enrolled in a training program. We find that when canines are already enrolled in a training program it can create conflict (information overload, if you will). There are many ways to achieve results with training. Although, trainers and dog owners will disagree on some training areas, I believe we all agree that being consistent with our dog is a MUST.

      When a dog is enrolled into a training program it can be confusing to you, the dog trainer and most importantly your dog when jumping form the system to system. With that in mind, you did take the time to write, so I want to provide you with a very general response to hopefully demystify some thoughts you may have about your current training program.

      To begin with, a board and train program is a JUMP start to your overall training program. Secondly, although the foundation training is not taking place at your home, it should not be abandoned or minimized; we get this query a lot too (it is a good one, so you are not alone). Your dog should respond to you outside your home, in your home, a friends’ home, a vacation home, etc….regardless of where some of the foundation training takes place.

      For some, it is a very hard to wrap their head around, this example may help you…..If a trainer trained your dog in your home, does this mean that your dog should not respond to you outside the home or at a family members’ home?

      There is a term used in dog training – it is called ‘generalizing.’ This is where the canine has a strong foundation to commands and can call upon it in different environments. It is up to you upon completion of the initial foundation building to take your dog to locations where you will need to manage his behaviors.

      Stay with the program, be consistent.

      Some Free & general advice: Dog’s safety has to come first, these are in our opinion & experience the one of the MOST effective ways to reduce the chances of injury:
      1) do not treat the dogs when together and
      2) remove anything before play that has the potential to bring out the resource guarding.
      3) Always supervise them

      Thanks again so much for taking the time

    • dogtraining

      Hi Cara,

      Thanks for getting in touch! Resource guarding can be a bit tricky. That said, in all honesty, commenting on what protocol we may employ or recommend would not serve you well if you have a trainer; we do want to help, but it may interfere with your dog trainer’s protocol and may be counter-productive to helping you achieve your goals. More importantly, it probably would not be fair to your dog; your dog may find it confusing.

      If and when you’re done with your current trainer and the issue is still not under control please feel free to reconnect so we can share some ideas that have worked to improve many of our clients’ situations.

      Thanks again SO much

      Dedicated Dog Training

  • John Benson

    We have had a rescue lab mix for about 7 years. He resource guards his area, his food, even the family members primarily in regards to our older lab. If the master is the resource, how do you get him to release the resource? Maybe tell him to go and use the collar?

    • dogtraining

      Hi John,

      Thanks for SO much for your inquiry! Although resource guarding can be attributed to a few variables, we find that a common denominator with certain types of resource guarding like you mention is often related to how we reside & communicate with our dog(s). With that being said, for Dedicated Dog Training through our obedience training can suggest, based on getting to know you & your dog how you can implement some changes in the relationship along with adding commands to help communicate, control & manage the resource guarding that you’re experiencing.

      Please feel free to send an email to: [email protected]/ so we can take a deeper look into some of the triggers and make suggestions with respect to you moving forward to make things better.

      Best regards,

    • dogtraining

      Hi John,

      Thanks SO much for the inquiry. If the Master is the resource there is definitely some improvement that needs to be made in the relationship. It is more than just obedience; there probably needs to be changes to the way that you reside with your dog. Where does your dog sleep at night? How long has the resource guarding occurring for? Can you be a bit more specific of how you react to the resource guarding?

      Thanks look forward to your reply


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