Garmin just released a new dog collar product, but the reaction from dog owners has not been at all positive.
Garmin, a company known for its GPS tracking products, released a new dog collar product last week called the Delta Smart. However, the reaction from dog owners has been less than positive - in fact, it's safe to say that this product has even sparked outrage.
The Delta Smart is a small collar product which can be slipped onto a dog's collar. It's compatible with smartphones, and can be used to track the amount of time your dog spends active versus how much time he is sedentary. It could be useful in helping to keep your dog fit and healthy, and at first glance sounds like a very positive product which would receive a positive welcome from the dog industry.
But the Delta Smart has an additional feature that dog owners find serious fault with. If you watch the video created by Garmin (below), you'll learn that the collar product can help to "reduce or eliminate unwanted behaviors" in your dog by beeping, vibrating, or creating "static" when your dog is performing an undesirable behavior, such as barking.
See the video for yourself:
In short, the collar acts like a shock collar, creating a punishment when a dog performs a negative behavior. It's not the first shock collar that Garmin has made, but it's the first to evoke such a strong public response.
Veterinarians, dog owners, and dog trainers have all commented on the video, arguing that the device is inhumane and unsuitable for training dogs. One of the major arguments against shock or electric collars is that they only punish the dog, rather than demonstrating an appropriate behavior.
The video does explain that owners can choose from different static levels. The device is portrayed as being a useful training tool when the owner is away from home, dealing with issues such as barking while monitoring the dog's behavior so that an owner can review the data when they're not around to observe the dog themselves.