How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?
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Thread: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

  1. #1
    bibber's Avatar
    bibber is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultHow do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    We took Sam and Bodie to a "Bark at the Park" last weekend. They wore their flat collars, and I am embarrassed to say that they were probably the worst dogs there at walking nicely (and there was supposed to be a couple thousand dogs there). I heard a laughing "who's walking who?" more times than I wanted.

    I know this is obviously our fault and not theirs. What happened is we took them through obedience classes, they heeled pretty well, they got very big and pulled too much to make a walk easy, and we got prong collars. Pulling stopped instantly, and I thought "great!". So they've been walked exclusively on a prong for a couple years. I never thought they would behave so badly on a flat collar, but couple the freedom from the pinch of the prong with the excitement of all those other dogs, and now I'm still sore and wanting to fix this ASAP.

    So how do I transition them from a prong collar back to a flat collar? I'm guessing we're going to go back to how we learned it in obedience, stopping every foot or so when they start pulling. Only now I have 100 lbs. on the other end of the leash, not a sweet little impressionable puppy. Good going, mom. :

    Brenda, Sam & Bodie

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  3. #2
    luke from georgia is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    start with low distraction areas and increase distraction with each successful loose leash walking session. lots of posts on loose leash walking here. the search feature should be helpful.

    "Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend." ~ Corey Ford

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    Dani's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    put the prong and the flat collar on at the same time...so the kids aren't sure of which collar is making the correction...and then absolutely REFUSE to go forward until they are not pulling.
    Dani, Rider & Rookie
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  6. #4
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    What made you decide to forego the prong collar at the event? Was it a "stigma" or fashion appearance issue? Next time, just bring the other collar along. The most important element for you, your dog and those around you, is maintaining control over the dog.

  7. #5
    Chester B. Dickens is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    You should have been using the prong to teach a proper HEEL the whole time. So that by the time you went back to the flat buckle collar, HEEL would have been entrenched enough to be obeyed.

    Dani's got good advice - use both collars together. And be sure you're using the prong to teach, not as a way-of-life!

  8. #6
    luke from georgia is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    check out this article, particularly towards the end:* http://www.flyingdogpress.com/prong.html

    Dogs who wear prong collars do not have to wear them forever, no more than a dog who wears a choke collar has to wear that forever.* The need for leads and collars begins to disappear as training progresses.* If the training is thorough and followed through to off leash control, the prong collar becomes just another intermediate step in the training process. It is up to the handler to continue training to the point where equipment is necessary only to obey leash laws and protect the dog.

    "Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend." ~ Corey Ford

  9. #7
    bibber's Avatar
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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked off?

    Thank you guys for the responses. The reason I didn't bring the prong collars was twofold: one was the "stigma" and second was my mistaken belief that they would behave. I've really been doing it all wrong, and this incident and your posts have helped me see this. I just got so used to the fact that they weren't pulling, I thought everything was ok without really thinking of how it SHOULD be (no pulling AND no prong).

    Brenda, Sam & Bodie

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    DefaultRe: How do I switch from a prong to flat collar without getting my arm yanked of

    When you walk with them do you make them heel? Not saying your doing this but I see so many people walking their dogs with prong collars and the dog is out in front of them, which totally defeats the purpose of the collar.
    Olie

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