Transcript from Steve's Video:
Today we're going to take a look at the Garmin Bark Limiter products. These are bark collars made by Garmin based off of the Tri-Tronics design that we've had the last 10 or 12 years.
There are two versions of the bark limiter. You have the rechargeable which is just a little bit smaller and then you have the battery operated which is just a little bit bigger. That's the only difference between these two products—rechargeable, battery operated.
There's an up and a downside to that. It really just depends on what you want. Rechargeable technology nowadays is pretty good. You are not going to have to charge this really that often. Once a week would be plenty for most folks. You may be able to get away with even going out longer than that. It really depends on how much your dog barks.
10 years ago I hated rechargeable bark collars because they had so much downtime. You had to charge them every day. You'd have these situations where you needed your bark collar but it was out of battery. Nowadays it's just not that common. The technology is really good.
So, not a lot to worry about there. There's a price difference between the two of them, about $20. So that's something to keep in mind.
The size difference is not that great either. It's just not that much bigger. On a little bitty dog it may make a difference. But for most dogs it's not going to matter. So it really just depends.
The dial has N, which is a neutral position. It cuts the collar off. Then you have V, which V is a vibration only mode. When the dog bark it gives a vibration. There is no electrical stimulation involved whatsoever. It's strictly vibration when he barks. The A is a rising stimulation. The way this bark collar works, when the dog barks it gives a correction at the lowest level. When he barks again it gives another correction. If he continues to bark, the stimulation increases until you get to a level where the dog stops barking.
I like rising stimulation in bark collars. It allows the dog to figure out which level is going to work for him. So I'm a big fan of it. Some people don't care for it because a dog that can take a lot of stimulation is going to be able to bark several times before it reaches that level. So a lot of it depends on your situation.
My dogs wear bark collars not so much because of my neighbors, because I live out in the country. They wear bark collars because of me. I don't want to listen to them. So when they are wearing a bark collar, they get a bark or two in. something comes up and they choose to bark once or twice. It's not really that big of a deal to me. I just don't want them to bark constantly. So most of my dogs work in a rising stimulation.
Then you've got direct set levels, which this unit has 1-7. Some dogs just don't work well in a rising stimulation mode and you want to be able to give them an exact level based on what they need. So you've got seven different levels to choose from.
Now, a dial on the outside of the collar can be a problem if it's a free spinning dial. So what Garmin has done is they've made it where you need something to turn the dial. A penny works really good. You can use a screwdriver, anything like that. You can turn it by hand, but it's not easy. And so, they've got a little key slot there. You just take your penny and you set it.
What's nice about this particular collar is that once you figure out what level you want to use, you can actually leave it there the majority of the time.
A couple of features that this collar has, it has a sleep mode. So if your collar is on and it's on the dog, you take it off and you leave it on Level 4 and you set it down, after a short period of time, once it's motionless the collar is going to power down. What that does is conserves battery life. The idea behind it is if your dog is curled up and he's asleep, he's not going to need the bark mode, so it powers down to save battery life.
Well, the same thing is true when you take it off the dog. So if you figure out the level that you want, you set it on that level and you can leave it there pretty much all the time.
If you do that, though, you miss out on one of the features. Garmin has what's called a bark odometer. The system will record the number of times the dog is corrected. And so, if you set it on a 4 and now you want to see how many times your dog barked while you were gone, take it off the dog, turn it back to N. Before it shuts down it's going to blink at you and tell you how many times the dog was corrected.
So if you turn it off and you get no blinks or one or two, then you go, "OK. Good. The 4 is working." If you get 30 then you know your dog has been barking the entire time you were gone. We need to increase the stimulation level.
So it's a pretty neat feature. It's called the bark odometer. Both collars have them.