Advice On Citronella No-Bark Collars

Dear Adam:

I have a client who has just adopted a dog. The dog is adjusting to its new apartment, but is barking a bit when the owner leaves. A friend of hers has lent a citronella collar for her to try.

My question is: Is there any health concerns with using the collar in terms of the spray getting in the eyes or lungs?

I would love to hear about peoples experiences with the collars whether they are negative or positive.

Thank you in advance!!

Dear RD:

They have a tendency to jam up. Not to mention run out of spray. And – although it probably won’t kill the dog – who knows what spraying that stuff in their eyes and nose will do over a long-term period of time.

Ideally, the dog would only need to be sprayed once or twice and then he’d learn to never bark while wearing the collar. But everyone I know seems to go through the refill spray bottles like a worm eats through a discarded balogna sandwich. And this would suggest that the correction from the spray is only motivational enough to get the dog to cease the current exhibition of the behavior, but is not motivational enough to make him remember to not do it later.

I recommend the Tri-Tronics Bark Limiter. It’s a quality product (it gives the dog a mild shock when he barks) and it works very well. Try a web search on

Good luck,

P.S. If you’ve already got the Citronella collar… go ahead and try it and see if it works for you. It’s not going to kill the dog overnight.  And you may just get lucky and find that one or two sprays will be all that you need to curb the behavior… if your dog has a fairly soft temperament to begin with.

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