How to Train Your Dog Not to Run Away With a Shock Collar?

Last Updated on July, 2024

A dog can be a man’s best friend, but that doesn’t mean it behaves the way we expect it to. It has its thoughts and feelings and does things according to its wishes.

Therefore, as humans, we need to conduct positive reinforcement training to change unwanted behavior.

A dog running away from its owner is a common occurrence. It does not mean that your dog doesn’t like you. There are several reasons why your pet might do this. More on that later on.

However, you would intend to keep your pet safe and sound and within your sight. The use of a dog shock collar can help you keep your dog within boundaries. Learn how to make the shock collar work best for dogs who want to escape always.

Quick Summary

Training with positive reinforcement and using a shock collar can help prevent a dog from running away and teach good behavior.

Traditional fences, invisible fences, and behavioral training are all methods that can be used to keep a dog from escaping. It is also important to properly identify the cause of the dog’s escaping behavior and address it appropriately.

Separation anxiety, frustration, and fear are common reasons for dogs to run away, and it is important to identify the cause before implementing training methods.

Will a Shock Collar Stop a Dog From Running Away? 

A dog running on the grass ground

Yes, shock collars will keep your dog from running away. You can use it with positive reinforcement training to teach your dog good behavior. Shock collar training your dog is an important step to make it stop running away.

You can also use shock collars, so your dog learns the meaning of commands like ‘come’, ‘sit’ etc. The shock collar will allow you to keep your dog on track when you go for a walk with it.

A remote training collar is effective, especially when you have a dog with destructive behavior that’s always escaping the house. However, before deciding on using the shock collar to train your dog, you need to identify why it’s running away.

Why Do Dogs Run Away?

If your dog is an escape artist and you think you have no control over it, it’s time you reconsider. Training your dog begins with identifying the reason it’s escaping. 

There are a few common reasons that lead to this situation. Once you identify the exact cause for your dog’s negative behavior, you have more control over it.

It makes it easy for you to find the solution and teach your dog how to overcome this dangerous situation.

Separation Anxiety

If your dog is very attached to you, it might leave when you’re not around. This type of separation anxiety in dogs is easy to identify. Here are a few factors that indicate your pet has separation anxiety. (1)

  • Your dog destroys objects in your house when you’re not around.
  • Your pet looks nervous when you’re about to go out.
  • Your dog has accidents in the house even when he is well-trained.

Dogs with separation anxiety usually run away soon after you leave home. But, even when they leave, they don’t go far away from home.


Your dog may be frustrated that it wants to escape all the time. Frustration is common among dogs, especially those with a lot of energy. (2)

There could be many reasons for this to occur.

  • Your dog could be lonely when you leave them for a long time.
  • Your dog could be bored at home.
  • It may have a lot of energy that it needs to use by playing with toys and other dogs.
  • Your dog may prefer to go to a neighbors’ house where it can play with children and so many dogs.


Fear is another cause for dogs to run away. Although you may not think of it, dogs fear many things. For example, your dog may be afraid of fireworks, thunderstorms, etc. (3)

In such instances, all they want to do is go far away from the sound source. Most dogs go missing soon after hearing a loud noise.

How to Use a Dog Shock Collar to Prevent Your Dog From Running Away?

A dog walking on the road while wearing a training collar

The good news is that you can train dogs to come back to you using remote training collars. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how you can do recall training.

  • Teach your dog to recognize a collar signal. Set the collar stimulation mode to tone and stand next to your dog with a bag of treats. Turn on the simulation using the remote control and see if you can get your dog’s attention. If your attempt is successful, give your dog a treat and keep repeating the process.
  • Get someone else to stand a few feet away with a bag of treats. Ask him to show the dog the treats.
  • Say ‘come’ when your dog walks away from you, and then press the button on the remote training collar. If it listens to you, praise with a bag of treats.
  • Repeat this process by moving your dog further away before pressing the button.

Note: If tone stimulation does not work you can use the vibration or shock simulation modes.

Why Use a Shock Collar for Dogs That Run Away?

A shock collar is a device that is helpful for dog training in several ways.

  • The tone stimulation in new electronic collars serves as a reminder for your dog and gets his attention towards you. Therefore it does not give any painful shock to the dog.
  • Shock collars work by turning negative behavior into positive behavior.

The above reasons are enough to train a dog using an electronic collar. However, shock collar training has many benefits overall, apart from reasons enough to stop your dog from running away. 

Different Methods to Prevent Your Dog From Running Away 

A dog running towards the photographer

Each dog is different from the other. Therefore, the reason your dog is running away can be any of the above-stated ones. It’s your job to identify the cause for escaping.

Once you find out why your dog is running away, there are several methods you can use to keep your dog from running away. You can use any techniques convenient as a dog trainer and its owner.

Here are a few of the conventional methods you can use in dog training.

Traditional Fence 

Installing a traditional fence is one of the easiest ways to keep your dog from running away. However, how you build the fence depends on the type of dog you own.

If your dog is big or is good at climbing, you need to install a tall fence. You can keep most dogs within your yard by using a fence that is 4-foot tall.

And we have a list of the best shock collars for large dogs. Check out it here, if you are looking one.

If your dog is a good climber, ensure that the fence does not have any “footholds.” These footholds will assist your dog in climbing up the fence and escaping. Avoid fences with horizontal slats and wire fences that are easy for your dog to climb.

A taller fence with a smooth surface is ideal for a good climber. If your dog loves to dig then, it’s best to dig the fence so that it can’t creep from underneath. Burying about six inches should be enough.

Invisible Fence

Another type of fence you can use to keep your dog from escaping is an invisible fence.

This type of fence works by sending a mild electric shock to your dog’s collar when it tries to cross over the perimeter of the fence. 

The collar has a beep tone that informs your dog when it’s about to cross the fence.

The sound helps your dog stop and prevents it from getting any shock.

However, this training method takes time for the dog to understand.

A dog sitting near the invisible fence boundary

Make sure to change the batteries, as a device with low battery power will not be effective as a training tool. Interference from other electronic devices will also reduce the fence’s effectiveness so that your dog runs away.

Behavioral Training

Start training your dog to eliminate unwanted behavior and enforce positive behavior. Start with training your dog to understand basic commands like ‘come,’’ sit,’ and ‘down.’ 

It’s best to start any training method in a controlled and quiet environment that is small. First, it helps your dog to feel comfortable during training sessions. Then, gradually, move on to training at a dog park or any location with distractions.

Other Methods

If you find out the reason, there are a few more ways you can stop your dog from escaping. 

If separation anxiety is the reason, give your dog a special treat each time you leave it and go.

If frustration is the reason, here is what you can do.

  • Take your dog for a walk.
  • Keep your dog busy by giving it toys to play with.
  • Have a friend walk your dog if you’re leaving for a long time.
  • Teach your dog tricks and play with it.
  • Keep your dog inside if you are unable to watch it.

If it’s fear that makes them run away, here is what you can do.

  • If you know that fireworks or thunder are causing fear in them, leave them inside.
  • Give them a separate room space without windows or put loud music to help with the noise.
  • Get help from a vet to help your dog cope with its fear. It might include playing a sound repeatedly or even prescribing anti-anxiety medicine.

How to Keep Your Dog Safe and Find it if it Takes Off?

Dog Running on the beach sand

Even with everything in place, your dog might run away. So here are a few tips to follow to keep it from wandering and find it if it does manage to do so.

  • Check your gates whenever a visitor, worker, or someone enters the premises.
  • Put a collar with some form of identification, including your phone number, around your dog’s neck.
  • Train your dog on the ‘stay’ verbal command.
  • Hold on to your dog’s shock collar whenever someone comes home or put it in a crate.
  • Don’t let your dog go off leash while you are on a walk with it.
  • Don’t forget to give your dog a treat whenever he returns to you.


Now you have a better understanding of what causes a dog to run away from its owners. Once you find out the cause, you can implement any suitable method above to make him stop escaping from you.

For example, recall training helps you train your dog not to run away when using a shock collar.No matter what you do, your dog might find a reason to set off on its own.

The most important thing to remember is not to punish it when it comes back to you. Positive reinforcement training is beneficial to you and your dog and can be done by rewarding your dog for good behavior.




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Thomas Villalpando
Thomas Villalpando is the main author of Dogs Academy. He spends his time reading, training, and working with several Dogs' behaviors. He has been featured in MSN, Yahoo Finance, The Sun, Entrepreneur & More. You can find more about him here.

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