Cruel shock collars are set to be banned in Ireland following new legislation from Minister Charlie McConalogue, according to Ireland’s National Public Service Media.

The ban will prohibit the use of remote-controlled, electronic shock collars for both dogs and cats in Ireland, according to a press release from The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine.

“Dogs and cats are much-loved companions for so many of us in Ireland, and the use of manually operated remotely-controlled electronic shock collars is not an appropriate way to treat them,” Minister Charlie McConalogue said in a statement.

Cats and dogs are intelligent animals who deserve to be treated with compassion. Becoming an animal’s guardian means taking responsibility for their wellbeing, health, and happiness. Using pain to control animals is unacceptable.

Painful punishments like shock collars will not solve behavior issues — fearful, stressed animals in pain will likely display even more unwanted behaviors. Humane training methods are more effective; The American Veterinary Society of Animal Behavior and other animal behavior experts endorse reward-based training.

Unfortunately, the ban is not all encompassing: Collars that shock when an animal barks or when an animal leaves a boundary fence will still be permitted. And, dogs who have already been subjected to the cruel devices could continue to endure shock collars if their guardians register their microchipped dogs for an exception within three months of the legislation’s introduction.

No new remote-operated shock collars will be used on dogs and cats after the legislation goes into effect, however — meaning the use of shock collars will be phased out over time. This new law will be a significant step forward in the country’s animal welfare legislation.

Ireland’s ban will follow several other bans from European countries — including England, Wales, Germany, and Sweden.

Lady Freethinker welcomes the news that fewer dogs and cats will suffer the unnecessary pain of cruel shock collars and encourages the U.S. to adopt nationwide legislation banning shock collars.