Recently I reviewed the Sonic Egg by Sunbeam. It's a humane and effective way to stop dogs from barking. Unlike methods like shock collars, the Sonic Egg emits an unpleasant noise whenever a dog barks. Humans can't hear the sound, but it's irritating to canine ears and deters their bad behavior.
I was quite intrigued when I received a new version of Sonic Egg: a cute little miniature device. It's shaped just like the original, and it has the same function, but now it comes in a convenient handheld size. Would it perform as well as the full-sized version? I have plenty of noisy neighborhood dogs around my home, so I was able to put it to the test.
Control Barking Anywhere
The original Sonic Egg unit, while very effective, is too large to carry around. Instead you put it in a fixed spot, whether indoors or out, and let it do its work.
But what about those times when you're taking your dog for a walk or heading out to the dog park and you want to be able to shush unwanted barking on the spot? The handheld Sonic Egg is easy to take along and use wherever it's needed.
Like the larger version, the little Sonic Egg emits a sound that only dogs can hear. It's unpleasant enough to stop most canines from barking when they hear it. The regular Sonic Egg works automatically, sounding off when it senses barking, while its miniature counterpart is activated by pushing a button. Both versions are battery operated, so you don't have to worry about being near an outlet even if you're using the full-sized version.
Obviously, the main use for the handheld Sonic Egg is when you're out and about with your dog. However, you can also use it at home when you want to encourage appropriate barking while stopping your pet from annoyance barking. Since you activate the unit yourself, you can use it if your pet is barking at nothing and let him continue on if he's alerting you to a sound or is otherwise making noise when he should.
The handheld Sonic Egg is weatherproof, so don't be afraid to take it with you on walks. It will be fine even if you're caught in a rainstorm without your umbrella. There's a handy wrist strap so you don't have to worry about dropping it when you've got it out and ready for action.
You can also use either version of the Sonic Egg on any dogs in the immediate vicinity. Do you have a neighborhood nuisance? The small unit works on dogs up to 15 feet away, and you can get the regular unit if you need a little more distance.
Even though the Sonic Egg isn't meant as a discipline device, some dog owners use it as a training aid. The sound is annoying, but not painful, so coupling it with a firm "no" can help nip other bad behaviors in the bud. However, I don't recommend buying it exclusively for that purpose, since you can't predict how your dog will respond until you actually try it.
The Sunbeam Sonic Egg is sold exclusively at Petsmart. You can buy it in the store and online for around $20. The regular version costs roughly twice as much (around $40), so opt for the handheld unit if you're on a budget or if you want to see if your dog will respond to this training method.
It's a well-known fact that dogs hear a much wider range of frequencies than we do. Dog whistles work on this principle, as do toys like Hear Doggy and, of course, the Sonic Egg products. Not every dog will take the device's sound as stop-barking cue, but it works on the majority of canines so it's well worth a try.