By PR I specifically mean the treat-based clicker training. NR I'm referring specifically to the use of prong and/or shock collars. I know this is a fairly polarizing subject, but I'm hoping for some objective advice.
Our situation is that our retriever will not be a hunting dog, but we do want him trained well and would like to do CD and UD trials as a way to give us goals and structure to his training. We have a trainer in town that is fairly well recognized, using prong collars and such for NR type training. After our first session with her she just has us working on walking him with the prong collar.
Now, people close to me have taught me this type of training is inhumane, and can be especially dangerous to both the dog's mental and physical health. So, I'm a bit worried about continuing on with this training. But, on the other hand, it is undoubtedly effective, and I'm curious to know if this stigma is due to people misusing such devices or can NR, even when taught properly, really 'ruin the dog', instill trust issues, etc?
Is PR just as effective for basic obedience? I mean if they are both effective, and especially if I don't need a rock solid fetch, is there any reason to choose NR over PR?