Medium and message: The Kennel Club

The Kennel Club has been using shock tactics to persuade the Welsh Assembly to ban electric collars.

The Kennel Club has been giving Welsh politicians electric shocks in an unusual bid to persuade them to back their latest campaign to ban electric dog-training devices.

Representatives from the canine charity have been visiting members of the Welsh Assembly in their Cardiff offices to demonstrate just how painful such devices are by zapping them with one of the dog collars, which are commonly used as training tools. Even when set at only 30 per cent of its full power, the shock caused pain and discomfort to members who volunteered for the treatment, according to the charity.

The charity hopes that the tactic will help it to gather support for a ban on this type of dog collar, which is currently being discussed in the Welsh Assembly.

"We thought it was important to actually show the politicians how cruel and unnecessary the collars are so they could make up their own minds," says Holly Lee, public affairs manager at the Kennel Club.

"All those we shocked said it was painful and now support our cause. I think it was a brilliantly effective campaign strategy."

Nick Ramsay, the shadow minister for local government and public services, is one of those pushing for the ban. "As one of the unlucky assembly members who volunteered to receive a shock, I can appreciate how painful and distressing it must be for a dog that is forced to wear one of the collars, " he says.

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