What does real e-collar training look like?
It's not dramatic. In fact, proper e-collar use is so subtle it's very nearly invisible. Below is Jeff Gellman training a dog-aggressive dog to "down."
Not a big deal. Not a lot of drama.
Can you train a dog to "down" without an e-collar?
In fact you DO train a dog to "down" without an e-collar. Jeff shows how in this very short video.
But, as Jeff notes, the question is not whether you can get that done inside a distraction-free room for five minutes, but whether you can get it at the park with 15 other dogs around, and two squirrels scampering up the tree just 15 feet away.
Can you get the dog to "down" for an hour or two, and get that trained inside a week or two?
Not with most dogs if you are using food alone.
The simple truth is that dogs have epic Attention Deficit Disorder.
Not all dogs are food-obsessed, and many big dogs are not going to be too impressed by a 50-foot leash attached to a flat collar being held by a small or older woman. What follows there is bad timing, confusion, and frustration.
That's why smart dog trainers -- real dog trainers -- are not very quick to write off tools. Real dog trainers understand that their job is to solve client needs and to bring real-world reliability to the table for a wide variety of dogs, owned by a wide variety of people, with a wide variety of needs.