A Review of 2 PetSafe Bark Control Collars

PetSafe has a good reputation for high-quality products. So why am I so disappointed with not 1 but 2 of their bark-control collars?

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Anti-barking collars can deliver an electric shock, a small beeping noise or vibration to the dog who wears them. By: tatsushi_o

My dog, Lulu, barks when the doorbell rings. It’s annoying, and no matter what I do, I can’t get her to stop. I’ve tried distraction, scolding her, putting her away, giving her more exercise and attention and pretty much every other trick there is to get her to shut up. No luck.

I find her barking annoying, but I would be willing to overlook it, considering that she is such a good dog otherwise. She (mostly) stays out of the garbage at home — the street is a different matter — she doesn’t fight with other dogs, she is excellent with children and she is always available for a cuddle.

PetSafe Vibration Bark Control Collar

In an effort to try to do something about this problem, I bought an anti-barking collar.

There are lots of anti-bark collars on the market; some issue an electric shock, others make an annoying beeping noise to reprimand the dog and still others vibrate.

I decided to go for the kind that vibrates. They aren’t as cruel as the electric shock collars (which have been outlawed in some countries), and they aren’t as annoying for the people around the dog as the beeping collars.

They aren’t cheap. I shelled out $109.99 for a Vibration Bark Control Collar by PetSafe. Annoyingly enough, they are now on sale for $84.99.

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The Test

I took this newfangled anti-bark dog collar home and put the battery in, made sure I got the series of beeping lights in the proper order and put it on my dog. I adjusted it firmly around Lulu’s neck and waited for the doorbell to ring.

Because life is 1 big cliché sometimes, the mailman was the first person to ring my doorbell. Lulu unleashed a torrent of woofs and ran in circles to let me know that the doorbell had chimed. She was completely unfazed.

I tightened the collar. I reread the instructions to make sure that I didn’t miss anything. I double-checked that the collar was in the “on” position.

Yup.

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PetSafe has a good reputation for making high-quality products. I don’t know why this product didn’t work. In all fairness, Petco had said that if it didn’t work, I could return it.

Unfortunately, I purchased the collar while in the United States and am now back in Cairo, so bringing it back to New York is not realistic. I’m out the 100 bucks, and my dog is still as noisy as ever.

If you’re someone who actually enjoys listening to dogs bark, watch this video:

PetSafe Ultrasonic Bark Control System

OK, I’m beginning to feel like a grumpy old lady, but I’m really fed up with expensive pet products that don’t work. Now we have another bark control product from the same company.

Can you guess where this is going?

I bought the PetSafe Ultrasonic Bark Control System, model PBC-1000, from an inflight magazine. It is also available at Amazon (affiliate link), discounted at around $20.

This little beauty brags that it:

  • Activates automatically or manually
  • Requires no receiver collar
  • Operates via table-top or handheld device
  • Features a 25-foot range
  • Includes a limited lifetime warranty

With this unit and a simple 9-volt battery, you can have a bark-free home — or so it claims. PetSafe says it “stops your dog’s constant barking almost like magic.”

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Although PetSafe offers a full refund if a customer is not entirely satisfied with its dog products, getting your money back could be tricky if you live in another country with steep customs duties. By: yeowatzup

The Test

I brought this home, read the instructions, tested the battery, tested the product with the battery and stationed it by the door.

The doorbell rings. My Dachshund, Lulu, barks. The ultrasonic device doesn’t make a peep, but that’s OK; I’m not supposed to hear it.

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I check to see if it is working while Lulu continues to bark. Yes, the light that indicates it is working is on. Either this device doesn’t work or my dog is deaf.

My Conclusions

As Lulu responds to her name and has senses keen enough to know when I have dropped even the smallest morsel of food in the middle of the night in a darkened room, I’m not buying that my dog is deaf.

She also recently heard someone in our backyard around midnight of whom I had been blissfully unaware; Lulu did her guard dog best and scared the bejesus out of some worker the building manager had hired. (Midnight is not an unusual time for people to work as it is 4,000 degrees during the daytime here.)

As with other products by PetSafe, the company does offer a full refund if I am not satisfied. However, after paying the customs duty — which was more than the cost of the product because Egyptian customs officials have the honesty quotient of an illiterate amoeba — and the cost of postage to send it back, returning this thing will cost more than I would get back in a refund.

Thus, it has become another product to bury in the “Overpriced Pet Product Graveyard.”

Sarah Blakemore

View posts by Sarah Blakemore
Sarah Blakemore has been researching and writing about pet care and pet behaviors since 2007. She has cared for many pets over the years and has volunteered with several animal shelters around the world.

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