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Product Reviews

Spray Commander

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No one likes to discipline their pets any more than they like to discipline their kids.  The really neat thing about the Spray Commander is that you never have too.  If your favorite pooch is barking incessantly, you simply press a button and the “Dog God” releases a quick, harmless spray of citronella into the air, just enough to startle Fido, and he suddenly realizes that he is not supposed to bark.  He doesn’t learn that he’s not supposed to bark when you’re around, or when he’s wearing a “special” collar, or when you’re holding a remote control.  He learns that when he barks for no reason, he is going to be punished by some higher power.

The Spray Commander is one of those products that you never have to feel guilty about using.  You don’t have to worry about hurting your pet, you never have to worry that your pet will hate you after you use it, and you never have to think about what will happen when you’re not there. Everything is done for you, and for an inherently “laid back” society, this is a beautiful thing. 

[note style=”5″ type=”danger” icon=”yes” class=”template-style”]Please remember that this is an aversion tool. While it is effective, it is no longer necessary to use aversion to train animals. Check out more recent articles for information on positive reinforcement training and techniques. [/note]

Let’s discuss how it operates.  The kit shows up with several pieces, and it even includes the batteries, which tells you that it was not manufactured here in the United States, because we never include batteries with anything. It comes with a handy little remote control that is easy to hide in the palm of your hand, a canister of Citronella that is used to refill the collar, a collar that you can choose to use or not, and even a video tape that teaches you everything you need to know about modifying the behavior of your carnivorous canine.

The first lesson we had with this product was in teaching our terrible teenage dog, Cheiss, not to beat up our Coyote anymore.  Tristan, the coyote, is getting a bit long in the tooth, and we hate to see him lose his Alpha position to a younger pup.  I have a rule in the house, which I’m fully aware goes against the law of nature (but don’t care) and that is the Alpha dog can retain his Alpha standing as long as needs too.  Tristan is not yet ready to give up his status, and Cheiss is a “dirty fighter”.  He jumps on the back of Tristan’s neck, where Tristan can’t reach him, because he’s so wily, and hangs on until he is able to choke Tristan down.  Personally, I think that’s an unfair method of gaining Alpha status…  It’s like throwing dirt in someone’s eyes and then sucker punching them, which (if Cheiss were a human), he would probably do. 

So – we strapped the collar on Cheiss and waited for the attack.  And eventually it came…

With the first sign of impending doom (a.k.a., the first low growl erupting from Cheiss’ throat and the side-by-side posturing that occurred), we released the “spray” and didn’t say a word to either dog.  The effect was immediate.  Both dogs jumped, then froze, and finally looked around in confusion.  There was no one in sight, and they had no idea where the sound or spray came from.  As far as they knew, the “dog Gods” did not want them to fight.  And so, there was no fight. 

The collar also works when they try to eat the cat food, sniff around the cat litter box, or try to steal paper towel from the garbage can. 

Now I’m not completely sure that this is what Inter-Vet intended their product to be used for, but that is how we use it. You may use it in a completely different way.  I’m sure that would be fine as well.  Every dog has different needs.  What you will find that is that you will be able to modify any type of negative behavior without being the bad guy and without injuring your dog.  What you are going for is a psychological correction.  It’s like calling your kids up when they are away from home and saying, “Put that drink down!” when you are 100 miles away from home.  They will spend half the time wondering  how you knew they were drinking, and the other half of the time wondering if you are psychic.  What they won’t be doing is drinking…

Alas, once again this is a product that I love and our dogs, well – don’t like so much.  What we can tell you is that it is a highly effective product for behavior modification, it is simple to operate, and it is cost-effective.  The collar is a little too big for smaller dogs, we recommend that you use it on medium to large dogs.  However, contact Inter-vet to see if they have a smaller size available.  It is worth the call.

From the Dogs:

Growls: The dog Gods are at it again. Why do they have to constantly interfere with the natural order of things???

Leaps of Joy: None.  We know that the smell and noise is coming from somewhere and when we find it, we will destroy it!

From the Humans:

Two opposable thumbs up: We love it!  Discipline from afar, and we don’t have to be the bad guy!  Our dogs still love us and training is still possible!  No more dog fights, catfood stealing or litter box raiding.  Life is good…

Drawbacks? The collar itself is a bit large, particularly for smaller dogs.  We recommend that you use your dogs own collar, not the one included in the kit, as it is not as sturdy as the one you probably have already.

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