You are probably one pet owner who wants a well-behaved pet but is still looking for the best dog training collar. By now, you must have researched a lot about shock collars. How do they work? And if they are safe? So let’s skip that part. Instead, here are the complete details of a reliable shock collar with long prongs. I hope you will get the complete information on how these prongs work? Whether they are safe or not? And what’s their purpose? As a bonus, the pros and cons of a dog shock collar, tips for using it rightly, and the features of the best shock collars have also been added. Happy reading!
Do Shock Collars Have Prongs? How Do They Work?
Yes, shock collars have metallic prongs. These prongs deliver the electric shock from the collar to the dog’s neck by acting as contact points between the two. Shock collars work with two devices. One is the transmitter, also called the controller or the remote and the other is the collar itself. The trainer holds the remote, and the dog wears the collar with the prongs facing the neck. When switched on, the collar and the remote remain connected over some distance. The trainer can press the button located on the remote as soon as he finds his dog misbehaving. The collar receiver will give the shock through the metallic prongs to the dog’s body.
The Electronic Bark Collar Works in the Same Manner
Sometimes, a shock collar is referred to as an electronic bark collar, too, as it is customized to give dogs shock only when they bark. The contact points – prongs, of the bark collar are designed and fitted in such a way that they correspond to the vibration of the vocal cords. As soon as the dog barks and the vocal cords vibrate, the collar gives the shock automatically. This type of collar does not need a trainer to hold it. Instead, it works on its own. But this type of dog collar cannot be used in place of the traditional shock collars that can be controlled by the trainer and give the shock when necessary.
Why Need Shock Collars That Have Long Prongs?
Dog breeds like Pomeranian, Dachshund, Irish Setter, Collie, Chihuahua, Great Pyrenees, Golden Retriever, and other long-haired dogs face problems during training. The reason is that even when you put the shock collar rightly on dogs with thick fur, the contact points are unable to come in contact with the dog’s skin and hinder delivering the shock. So, there must be a specialized shock collar for long-haired dogs that must have long prongs that can pass through the dog’s thick fur easily and make contact with the skin.
To buy the best shock collar with long prongs for your canine companion, go for either of the following: Basic shock collar, Easy educator E collar, Homeled dog shock collar, Petrainer wireless receiver collar, Patpet dog shock collar, and the collars by Pet resolve system if you have multiple dogs, rather than one dog system you can choose the collars that allow many dogs or at least two dogs to be trained at the same time.
Are Shock Collars Humane?
These remote dog training collars have been condemned for a long time. But why is there a rise in sales? Cognitive Market Research gave a report analyzing the sales of shock collars from 2016 till now. Surprisingly, there was a massive increase in sales. The report also predicted the future sale till 2028, and a further rise is expected. The question is why people are buying the shock collars for dogs more and more when at the same time internet is loaded with articles calling these collars inhumane and unsafe? Here is the reason why:
The electronic collars made a few years back were really not safe for the dogs. They gave the shock right away and were made without the consideration that each dog has a different tolerance towards the shock. The large and small dogs were subjected to the same shock and suffered much harm. At that point, many trainers abandoned the shock collars, also called electronic or E collars. But then the shock collar industry revolutionized. Caring about the pets, manufacturers made such collars that provided an opportunity to be subjected to a shock that matched their tolerance level. A single collar is capable of fulfilling the tolerance demand of multiple dogs at the same time.
Still, the E collars are receiving condemnation from several users. The reason behind this is the unawareness of the right use of the collars. Many users don’t know that a shock collar is built to be an adjustable collar that can be fitted to different dogs according to the neck sizes. The major mistake by these users is that they overlook the adjustability of the collar and use the same fitness for multiple dogs resulting in injuries and suffering.
Another thing that we really need to focus on is that these are static shock collars that deliver a static shock to the dogs. It is not a shock that the electric circuits deliver, and it is a mere shock that we often suffer in our daily lives, like a shock from the doorknob in winters or the shock that causes the hair to straighten up after they are brushed frequently. All these aspects make electronic collars safe and humane training collars.
Features That a Shock Collar Must Have
Besides long prongs, a good quality shock collar for dogs with long hair must have the following features:
Varying Stimulation Levels
In contrast to the old shock collars, new ones have varying stimulation levels that can be set for each dog differently. The best way to know your dog’s tolerance level and set the collar to that level is to make the dog wear the collar. Set the Stimulation level to zero or the minimum option available before wearing it on the dog’s neck. Now give the command and notice if the dog responds. If he does, there is no need to increase it further as the E collar means to gain the dog’s attention and not to give him any sort of punishment. But if he ignores the command and you fail to get his attention, you need to increase the stimulus level. Again, there is no need to increase it by a large value; increase and notice the dog’s behavior. It is recommended to gradually increase the stimulus and notice the dog’s behavior to reach the optimum set point.
This feature is also good for long-haired dogs. If it seems the thick fur blocks the stimulus from reaching the dog’s skin, just increase the stimulation level a bit. Though almost all dog shock collars have this option these days, it would be great if you check the collar by yourself and confirm it before buying.
Besides the stimulation level, many transmitters allow continuous or momentary shock too. Some have options for both, while some have options for either of them. Continous shock remains till the trainer presses the button. Then, he can control the time span for which the dog gets the shock. Momentary shock remains for a short moment only. No matter how long the button was pressed, it will stop after a certain time. To train dogs in a humane way, the latter option is the best.
An ideal dog shock collar needs to be adjustable. It should allow the trainer to adjust the collar around the dog’s neck. Manufacturers can make collars with a constant width and size. But they won’t be any good. The collar will either be too loose or too tight. Let’s suppose if your dog’s neck is quite small, but the collar is way too large, even larger than its head, he can easily escape the collar. It causes a lot of concerns for the owner. The dog can wander anywhere after escaping the collar, and the owner will have no idea. He can get into an accident that can cause injuries. A loose collar rubs the skin and causes irritation. Moreover, the dog can strangle himself with the extra-long strap resulting in death due to choking.
Now in the case, if the collar is too tight, it also causes concern. An extremely tight collar can choke the dog to death. This is because it can constrict the windpipe, resulting in less or no air exchange. Besides this, the dog can suffer internal injuries too. For example, a tight collar can easily hurt the trachea and associated organs.
To avoid such circumstances, buying an adjustable collar is a necessity. It usually has an adjustable strap that is attached to a buckle. One can easily loosen it, put it on the dog’s neck, and tightens it so that it won’t choke the dog. The ideal tightness of the collar around the neck should be such that one can easily insert two fingers between the collar and the neck.
Even if your dog does not love water and does not like to play in rain, you still need a waterproof dog shock collar. The reason behind it is that dogs get dirty often. So even if they hate water, they are going to play in wet dirt. Moreover, you can be out on a walk, and it might start raining out of blue, both you can your dog can wet. At such a time, a waterproof collar can help. It won’t get damaged, and you won’t need to replace the collar often.
A disease or another health condition can cause the dog to drool. The saliva will definitely fall on the collar too. It makes the collar smelly. If it is not waterproof, you will have to replace the collar, and the previous one goes to waste. Buying a waterproof one can save you from this. You can easily wipe off his drool and dirt from the collar making it clean and reusable.
Moreover, the simple unwashable collars are not hygienic. Once the collar is dirty, it is loaded with a lot of bacteria that can deteriorate the dog’s health. A waterproof collar gives the opportunity to clean off the collar from those bacteria making it perfectly safe for the dog’s health. Furthermore, this type of collar is a great option when you are near a beach or in an area with cold, damp climates.
Not only the E collar but also its remote should be rechargeable. A rechargeable collar does not need to be replaced by a new one. You can just charge the collar each time prior to the training session. It should have a good battery life so that it can at least last one entire session. Another amazing reason that makes a rechargeable collar preferable over a non-rechargeable collar is that if the dog owner forgets to take off the collar after the training session ends, the collar will turn off once the battery runs out. It will prevent the dog from getting unnecessary shocks while not training.
For easy outdoor training covering large areas, your dog’s collar needs to have a long-range coverage. If you buy a collar that is effective only within a few yards, you will not be able to take the dog to large training areas and set him free. After the dog will be out of the range, the collar will not work. Short-range collars work best within the backyard. But in case you are taking him out, at least buy a collar with the range of half a mile. As a precaution, you can also buy the one with a range of a mile. For the training of the hunting dogs, E collars with an even greater range are used. Some are effective within 2 miles, while others are effective within the 4-mile range. The greater the range of the collar, the better it is for training purposes. It is the only feature that will not hurt if excessive. But remember it will get expensive. Most cheap collars won’t provide long-range effectiveness. They will be effective within a few yards only.
The remote control of the collar should be easy to use. It must give clear directions about the buttons present on it. It would be better if they are made ergonomically so that they won’t hurt the hand or the thumb after the long training sessions. Manufacturers should consider giving the user guide with all kinds of collars. The remote control of all the collars doesn’t work in the same manner, so the trainer must know how to use it in the right manner before engaging the dog in any training session.
Best cheap shock collars should provide all the features in a single collar. An ideal collar is defined by its features, not by its price. Though there are many expensive E collars that work perfectly, I have seen many cheap shock collars that work exactly the same as the expensive ones.
Tips for Using the Shock Collars Rightly
By now, you must know what features best shock collars should have in them. But before you start using them, there are a few more things that you must acknowledge. These include the following:
Make Sure the Collar is Charged
Before starting the dog training process, I recommend you ensure the collar is charged completely. It is not something that you should follow for the first time, but each time before you get the dog ready for the training, ensure the collar and the remote control are charged. The reason is that in case one of them (either the collar or the remote control) gets out of battery, the other will not work. With that said, I would repeat one of the features described above: buy the collar with a good battery life that would last at least one training session.
My friend’s dog experienced a drawback: she was training the dog while the collar ran out of battery. She does not notice it because the transmitter (remote control) was still charged. She gave the commands, and her dog did not respond. So she increased the stimulation level a bit. Again she gave the command, and the dog did not respond. She again increased the stimulation a bit. No results this time too. Then she removed the collar from the dog’s neck and examined the problem. She came to know it was out of battery. She put the collar on, charging. Everything was okay till now, but she forgot to put the stimulation level back to what her dog was used to. In the next training session, when she gave the dog shock, he was startled and looked quite afraid. The dog suffered anxiety for some time and recovered slowly.
Though it was a rare case, a similar mishap can happen to your dog due to your mistake. So, it will be thoughtful of you to charge both the collar and transmitter before training the dog.
Turn It Off While Putting on the Dog’s Neck
Never turn the collar and transmitter on before properly fitting it around the neck. It is because if the collar is left on, there is a chance of giving the dog an unnecessary shock while he is not ready for it. Let’s suppose you had an unpleasant experience with a thing you are not familiar with and don’t even know its purpose. Would you use that thing again in life? Never, right? Even when you come to know the right use of that certain thing, you will be afraid of using it.
The same goes for the dogs. Getting a sudden shock when they don’t know what this collar is for will make them fearful to wear the collar. Before wearing the collar, if you have not set the stimulation level, the dog might get the shock of high stimulation, which can worsen the condition more. Hence, always get the dog to become accustomed to the collar. Let him wear it without giving any shock for some time so that he can trust the collar; after that, set the stimulation level and use it for training purposes.
Ensure the Right Fit
As mentioned above, both loose and tight collars bring hazards for the dogs, so ensuring the right fit of the collar is very important. The ideal rule is to keep enough space so that you can easily slip your two fingers between the neck and the collar. In case you are measuring the dog’s neck size with a measuring tape, just measure the accurate length and add a few centimeters to it. It should be not too loose for the dog to escape it easily, neither should it be too tight to cause harm to the neck and the skin.
Choose the Right Training Mode for Your Dog
Not all shock collars are made the same. The best shock collars for dogs have three training modes that make them completely safe and humane. These three training modes include beep, vibration, and shock. The beep mode works exactly like sound collars. When you give the beep command, it makes a sound that makes the dog realize he is doing something wrong and stops him immediately. But this training mode is not good for all types of dogs. While it would be great for a long-haired dog, it will not help a deaf dog in any way. Here comes the second option on the scene – vibration. When this training mode is turned on, the prongs on the collar that are placed against the neck vibrate. This vibration diverts the dog’s attention and helps him in dropping the undesirable behavior. If one asks for what types of dogs, does this training mode work? It is entirely contrary to the beep mode. The deaf dog cannot hear a beep but can feel the vibration. In fact, initial vibration collars were specially made for deaf dogs. Similarly, sound collars or shock collars with beep mode are good if the dog’s coat is very thick, but the vibration will not be felt by him as his long hair will damp out the vibration.
Here comes the last opinion among the three training modes, which is the shock. Most stubborn dogs often ignore the beep and tolerate the vibration just to ignore their owner, but they cannot escape this last option of shock. All types of dogs feel it. In case a dog’s hair is long and thick, and there is a chance of the contact points not touching the skin, one can buy the collar with longer prongs.
Don’t Overuse the Collar
The dog has a tolerance toward bearing the collar’s weight for some time. However, he cannot wear it all day long without any break. Ideally, don’t let the dog wear the collar for more than 8 to 10 hours in a day. Wearing the collar for prolonged periods of time can cause several skin infections and other complications. Even between the training hours, try to relocate the collar every two hours minimum. If possible, try to break the 8 hours training session into two sessions of 4 hours. It gives the dog a sense of break and focuses more on the training without losing interest.
Don’t Leave the Dog With a Collar on Unattended
Making the dog wear the collar, training him for hours, and then forgetting to take it off is what many irresponsible pet owners do these days. Unfortunately, leaving the dog without supervision can cause several problems, especially if you leave the dog in a kennel with sharp edges. The dog can get his collar stuck in the kennel and might try to pull himself away to free himself, but he can choke himself during the process.
This precaution also goes with leaving no room for shock collars to have a leash attached to them. A leash is made to prevent the dog from escaping. When the dog pulls on it to escape, it tightens the collar and can damage the neck and the windpipe. Moreover, in some cases, when the dog suffers a choking hazard, he is unable to scream and cry for help due to the damaged neck portion leaving him unable to utter a single sound.
Dog training academies and even hospitals strictly follow the guidelines in which the caretakers are advised to free the dogs from any kind of collar when it is their free time or when no one is there to supervise. If academies and hospitals are strictly following the guidelines, why would you not follow them at home?
Pros of Shock Collars for Dogs
Electronic collars with long prongs are not only beneficial in training dogs with thick fur, but they also provide the following advantages:
Using an E collar dog training system, one can get a well-behaved dog within a few days. The reason behind this is the stimulus they get. Though the static shock is not harmful if subjected carefully. But the dog would not like to get the shock again and again as it gives an unpleasant feeling. The dog probably does not like to experience it again and again. So, to protect himself from this unpleasant shock, he obeys the owner, which results in fast training.
Moreover, many trainers overlook the importance of positive reinforcement while training dogs. Yet, it is an extremely important tool that one needs to use to get the desired behavior out of the dog. This method involves treating the dog with his favorite snack or any other food he will eat with relish or giving him toys after completing a particular task. Associating the shock collar with something positive and pleasant can encourage the dog to obey the owner and develop that particular behavior.
In short, a dog training collar cannot bring out the desired results alone until the dog starts associating it with something pleasant.
If one goes through the history of why the first shock collar was invented, he would encounter a statement stating that they were invented initially for training hunting dogs. The first collar made for dog training was a simple cord that farmers and other people used to train their dogs. But the hunters faced a lot of problems in training their hounds, that’s when the shock collars appeared on the scene. Though they were not the best shock collars yet, they were the result of a great effort. Later on, the collars were modified to make them safe.
Besides dogs used by hunters, others can also have off-leash training. The collar allows the dog to wander around, yet he is under control. It gives him a sense of freedom. When the dog enjoys his company without a leash, he trusts his owner more. It improves his mental health. Dogs that have been trained for walking off the leash have been found to be happier than other dogs. Such dogs remain alert to their surroundings and are more active. They learn to deal with their surroundings on their own and become more social.
Humane Than Many Other Dog Training Collars
Many dog trainers and dog owners have called shock collars aversive training collars. However, they are not aversive as they are thought to be. The main drawback is the unawareness of the users on how to use them the right way. Other than shock collars, there are many training collars that are way more aversive, and the fact is widely accepted. These include prong collars and choke chains. Prong collars have large sharp-edged prongs on the inner side of the collar. They are used to keep the dog on a leash. As soon as the dog tries to escape the collar, the owner pulls on the leash, which tightens the collar, causing the prongs to form wounds on the neck. When the collar is worn again, and the leash is pulled, the prongs puncture the wounds causing them to bleed badly and delaying the healing process.
Choke chains are also the same. They are also used to keep the dogs on leash. As the name shows, it chokes the dog whenever the owner pulls the leash. They can suffocate the dog to death. Now let’s compare the shock collars to these training tools. Are they that aversive? They offer a varying level of stimulations that can be set for each dog differently, and on top of that, they use static shock that is not harmful. These things make them quite humane and safe as compared to other collars.
Cons of Shock Collars for Dogs
Everything has got a bad side too. Nothing is perfect so are collars. They have some disadvantages too, but most are observed when the collars are not used correctly.
Can Damage the Dog’s Skin if Used Incorrectly
If one does not how long can dogs bear the collars on their neck and make them wear them all day long, furthermore, if he does not change the positions or clean the collar, severe skin infections can occur. The same damage can also be observed if the collar is too tight. The most observed ones are the pressure sores, also called pressure necrosis or bedsores. Due to the pressure of the collar, the blood supply to the neck muscles is reduced, and the skin starts decomposing. Wounds similar to that of ulcers are formed all over the area where the collar was placed. The wounds can spread further. The dog suffers localized hair loss, pain, redness, swelling, pus, foul-smelling, and skin thickening.
That’s not where it ends. If not taken care of, the bacteria present on the dog’s skin and the environment can attack the wound, entering within it and causing infections. Initially, the superficial skin layer is damaged, but the underlying skin can also get damaged after the bacterial infection. Even deadly bacteria can attack the infection causing life-threatening diseases.
To avoid this condition beforehand, it is necessary to fit the collars rightly and to put them on the dog, not more than 10 hours a day. Moreover, clean the skin under the collar regularly and apply antibacterial ointments with the appearance of minor wounds.
Can Cause Fear and Stress
We all know that dogs show defensive aggression to protect themselves. If they get an extremely unpleasant experience with a shock collar, such as a shock of high level, getting shocked while wearing the collar, or the collar getting stuck in something. These experiences can trigger anxiety in them. They might start hating the collars. If they are forced to wear collars, they will become aggressive, most probably to protect themselves. It can result in extreme stress.
In such a case, it is advised to stop using the collar and later introduce it to dogs through desensitization and counter-conditioning. The first one is the method in which the dog is exposed to the collars slowly, from a distance, so that they won’t give an extreme reaction. In the latter process, the exposure to the collars is associated with something positive like treats or toys to encourage the dogs that these are not bad things.
Cannot Help in Teaching New Manners
You cannot teach the dog new manners or behaviors in a shock collar training system. You can just use the collar to reinforce an already learned behavior. For instance, if you want to teach the dog a basic command like sit, and you are using a shock collar for this purpose. Do you think the dog will sit when you will give him a shock? Never. Firstly, he does not know what you are saying. Sit is a new word to him, and on top of that, you are giving him a shock. He would never listen to you.
Now let’s compare it to another scenario in which the dog has already learned the basic commands and knows what sit means. But he is stubborn enough not to listen to the owner. Now you can use the shock collar. First, ask him to sit. If he does not sit, give him a minute shock and say firmly again. He will definitely follow you because he does not want to experience the shock again. It also shows that these collars are best for stubborn dogs. As said above, please don’t give him shock directly. If your collar has other training modes like beep and vibration, try to use them first.
Non-shocking Shock Collars for Dogs
Besides E collars, there are other shock collars that don’t give the dog electric shock but startle them to drop the negative behavior. Top of the list are the sound and vibration collars, whose features are discussed earlier. The former gives the beep, and the latter provides a vibration with that startles the dogs.
Another non-shocking shock collar is the citronella spray collar. This type of training collar works by spraying citronella in the dog’s face. Whenever the dog is doing something that is against his manners, the owner can press the command on the remote control, and the dog’s face will be showered with citronella spray. It does not harm the way a shock collar can, like pressure sores and infections, but it can startle the dog.
While some think they are the safest and most humane training option, many disagree. They say citronella spray is toxic for dogs. When it comes in contact with skin, it causes rashes and infections. If the dog licks it off, it can cause gastrointestinal issues. The dog is also prone to getting breathing problems. Citronella is a mosquito repellent spray that is safe for humans but not safe for dogs.
Can Shock Collars Be Used for Aggressive Dogs?
Canine aggression is something that even owners are afraid of. When the dog becomes aggressive (due to any reason), he doesn’t see who is his master and who is his enemy. He just barks and bites everyone that comes in his way. Solving aggression problems in these dogs is a big problem. Many people ask if a shock collar can solve this problem. The answer is a big NO. The shock tends to make the dog more aggressive. Instead of coming back to his senses, he loses his temper even more. So, never use a shock collar for aggressive dog training. Many dog breeds are aggressive by nature; beware of them.
There are other ways to solve the aggression in dogs, like identifying the core reason behind the dog’s aggression and removing the stimulus from his sight. Most of the time, anxiety becomes the cause of aggression, so grabbing the reason behind anxiety can also solve the aggression problems in dogs. Another thing that owners are afraid of is the end result of this aggression, which is often fighting. Two dogs fighting can be separated from each other physically. But don’t directly jump into the fight, it might put you at risk; there are some precautions to take.
Can Shock Collars Cause Seizures in Dogs?
0.75% of the canine population is suffering from epilepsy. The term epilepsy is used to describe the neurological condition in which the dogs suffer seizures due to abnormal activity of the brain. Most of the time, the reason why dogs are getting epilepsy is unknown. Therefore, it makes the treatment difficult. All the dogs getting epilepsy treatment is not actually getting the cure; rather they are getting the medication for reducing the severity of seizures.
In epilepsy, the electrical activity of the brain is disturbed. Using an electronic collar on a dog with epilepsy and giving him a shock does not seem a good idea. Already the brain’s electrical activity is disturbed, giving some electrical signals from outside the body can disturb it more, resulting in severe seizures. The condition is accompanied by limping, unbearable pain, and nausea.
Here’s an important point that we really need to focus on. Shock collars themselves don’t cause a severe neurological problem, neither they cause epilepsy or seizures. But if a certain dog is already suffering from any of these conditions, using a shock collar for his training can worsen the condition.
Do Vets Recommend Shock Collars?
Shock collars are based on the TENS system (Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation). Many doctors and therapists use this system for treating muscle pain and helping to relax them. So, vets know the system used in shock collars is not harmful. But many vets have been seen advising their patients not to use the collar; or in other words, they do not recommend the collar for dogs. The reason is that many people don’t know their right use.
I found an article written by a vet. He said that many people don’t use the collar correctly, that’s why I don’t recommend it. He focused on the word “correctly” and even told how the timing was important while training the dogs with a shock collar. He then said people using the collar incorrectly make me not recommend its use. The bad effects he told that occurred after the misuse of the collar included: fear, stress, aggression, and related problems. So the vet believes that shock collar can help better behavior from a dog but fear that people don’t use them correctly and do not recommend them. Another reason that stops him is the availability of the shock collars in the local market. He said it should only be available through veterinarians and dog behaviorists, as they would sell the most authentic and harmless tools.
Can Shock Collars Kill Dogs?
Shock collars can damage a dog’s health if not used properly. Anything can be expected, from mere skin irritation to pressure necrosis and fatal infections, if the owner is unaware of the right use. Too much shock can even damage the neurons, and the dog might suffer neurological disorders. These issues are difficult to recover from. In short, the dog can reach an extremely pitiful stage of health, but shock collars have not yet been accused of death in dogs. No such case has been reported saying that the negative use of the collar cost the dog its life.
A few cases were reported back in the years, and people started calling them aversive training tools. But when the cases were brought to the spotlight, it was found that the main reason was the trainer’s negligence. Besides the improper use of the collar, other factors were involved that resulted in the form of the dog’s death.
Shock collars have been widely used for training dogs. They have prongs that act as metallic contact points to deliver the shock from the collar to the dog. But long-haired dogs had a problem with these prongs. Their thick fur stops the signals from reaching the neck, and the dogs were not getting the shock. For such dogs, the shock collar was modified a bit and was made with longer prongs. They helped in such a way that they crossed the dog’s hair and directly contacted the neck, giving the dog enough signal to stop him from negative behavior.
Many people wonder if they are humane. If used properly, the shock collar is a safe and humane option for training dogs. Before buying a shock collar for long-haired dogs, make sure they have some other necessary features besides long prongs. These include a varying level of stimulations to set according to each dog’s tolerance, an easy-to-use remote control, and a good battery life that is rechargeable. It would be better if the collar is an adjustable collar so that it can be fitted to each dog with a different neck size. The collar has certain pros and cons, but it is worth buying if the owner knows the right use.