The use of electric pulse training aids (EPTAs) in companion animals

Mills, Daniel, Soulsby, Ernest, McBride, Anne , Lamb, David, Morton, David, Wesley, Sean, Deeming, Charles, Dixon, L. and Foster, D. (2012) The use of electric pulse training aids (EPTAs) in companion animals. Project Report. CAWC.

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Item Type:Paper or Report (Project Report)
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There is currently little regulation of training and behaviour modification
processes in the UK (CAWC 2008) besides measures enshrined in the Animal
Welfare Act 2006 and a voluntary Code of Practice launched in 2010 (see: This Code is consistent with current UK
legislation outside of Wales and emphasises the need to safeguard the
welfare of all interested parties involved in the “training contract” (animals and
people alike) and the importance of adopting sound scientific methods within
the skills base of the practitioner. There is much debate and opinion over
whether the use of certain training techniques and devices meet these
requirements, especially the use of electric pulse training aids (EPTAs). An
EPTA is defined for the purposes of this report as a device designed for use in
the training of dogs, cats and other companion animal species, which involves
the application of an electric current to the skin to aid the training process. In
Wales the use of all electronic collars has been banned ostensibly on animal
welfare grounds, including those related to boundary fencing (The Animal
Welfare (Electronic Collars) (Wales) Regulations 2010). It has been
suggested that there are currently around 350000 EPTAs in the UK, although
the number in active use is unknown. Nonetheless they clearly represent a
significant practice within the sphere of animal training and it is appropriate
that careful consideration be given to their use, especially when there appears
to be so much contradictory information available and such passionately held
convictions (often linked to ethical and animal welfare concerns) by those
expressing an opinion. This report critically reviews current evidence and
arguments used both for and against the use of such devices and the
conclusions drawn. It highlights gaps in our knowledge and awareness of both
theory and practice. Recommendations are drawn on this basis.

Keywords:Animal training, Electrical training aids
Subjects:D Veterinary Sciences, Agriculture and related subjects > D328 Animal Welfare
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
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ID Code:14640
Deposited On:07 Aug 2014 12:31

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