Ok I have tried all kinds of collars to help control Willow. Basically walking her is like trying to walk a runaway cement truck going down hill. Here are my experiences.
Regular collar and leash: useless dog pulls cough and strangles itself while pulling your arm out of the socket.
Choke collar: I donít like them never been able to use one donít like cutting off the air supply to a dog that doesnít know better.
Pinch collar: used one for years on my Keeshond thought it was the greatest things since sliced bread. Until my trainer asked me not to use in class and recommended a harness.
Harness: recommended by my trainer however found that it was hard to control Willow. Especially when she jumped up on people the harness had a little extra leeway that made it difficult to keep her in line.
Halti Headcollar: now THIS is the greatest thing since sliced bread. It doesnít hurt the dog in any way, it doesnít; restrict the mouth or airway. Dog can still breath pant drink and eat treats.
Best thing abut this head collar is the dog stays focused where you want her. If you call her name and gently pull on the harness she is forced to look at you. I love this collar and would recommend to anyone who has had any trouble with there lab or any dog.
In the 1 week of using this collar she is much more responsive to me while on walks if I give a command now she obeys and needs little or no correction. With this collar a correction is not a choke or pinch but a *gentle* head pull to focus on you.
****I did say gentle head pull as with any collar it should be used humanly. Choke, pinch and other collars are all safe if used correctly. Use your judgment and the judgment of a professional trainer to show you the proper way to use any of the listed collars if you are unsure for he safety of you and your dog.
I used a "Gentle Leader" head collar for awhile. Puff hated it but we reached an agreement that I'd not put the "over the muzzle" strap on unless needed. (The "GL" lets you slip that strap on or off in just a second or so.)
But more recently we got a GL "Easy Walk" (a body harness) and I like that MUCH better and Puff doesn't mind. A neighbor with a Lab got a similar harness (different brand) and it took off fur on his Lab's flank. Its advantages are that Puff doesn't mind it at all and if anything, it works better than the head collar. Its disadvantage is that it does take some tweaking and readjustments to get it fitting properly.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
If your choke collar was choking, it wasn't doing it's job, IMHO.
I'm with you on the choke chain - I've taken courses with it and could NEVER get the correct done properly even with the teacher's help. And yes -the choke chain isn't SUPPOSED to choke.
We use the halti (similar to the gentle leader face thing). Rocky tolorates it very well adn does have the "beaten" look Dryf did when using it haha. He DOES rub against my leg at times and I'm sure that it's because of halti. Dryf used the halti for a long while but by the end he just look positively depressed when we put it on. My dad has better sucess with the choke chain so he uses that, but keep in mind that Dryf is 13 and is pretty much BEHIND my dad at this point
Charlie (foster) and Rocky
I agree with Dweck.
Dani, Rider & Rookie
SHR Watson's Safari Rider, JH, WC, CL1-R, RA, CGC, TDI
SHR Endeavor Put Me In Coach, RN, WC, CGC
Member Since 6/2003
a choke collar is designed to choke.* if it did not choke, it wouldn't be working properly as a choke collar or the person using it has the leash clipped the wrong way.Originally Posted by dweck
by form and function, the choke collar is made in such as way as to get smaller around the dog's neck and cut off air supply for any length of time, which is caused by either the person or the dog pulling on the chain.
the training principle behind the choke collar is that the dog is motivated to behave in a manner that allows the dog to avoid being choked.
if you don't want the dog to be choked by his collar, do not use a choke collar.
i'm not a big fan of head halters either. :P
"Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend." ~ Corey Ford
We're still unsure of the best collar for CoCo and us to use.
We tried the easy walk harness... it tripped CoCo up... We must not have had it fitted correctly, but she just couldn't run as easily with it on, and if she took off after a bird it wouldn't allow her front legs to extend, thereby tripping her up.
Our trainer asked us to use a gentle leader in class, and while it worked, CoCo HATES it. She can barely tolerate it, and then suddenly she's on the ground pawing it off her. DH refuses to use it on her.
My BIL tried his Boxer's pinch collar on CoCo... I wasn't there, but apparently it was like walking a different dog. She stayed by their side and it didn't seem to bother her whatsoever. So I'm thinking that we may need to try this.
I will add that we have taken CoCo through beginner and intermediate obedience class. She heals like a star in class, even with the leash over my shoulder.... but on the sidewalk with smells and people and dogs and birds and everything else... she doesn't heal well at all. Yes, I realize that its our fault for not working with her as much as we should... But at the same time, perhaps the pinch collar can help with that aspect of training?
~Jo & CoCo
Disagree 100%.Originally Posted by luke from georgia
A choke collar is designed to alert the dog that there's something amiss. It's the SOUND of the collar closing quickly and then releasing immediately that gets the dog's attention; hence the direction that it should always be up behind the dog's ears. It's then incumbent on the handler to talk to the dog and tell him/her how to fix the problem.
A choke chain is completely ineffective if all it is used for is to cut off air supply.
by your logic, instead of using a choke collar, which is designed to squeeze tightly around the dog's neck when the chain is pulled, we can all simply use flat collars and carry around sound making devices to communicate with the dog. this way, the dog's collar will never squeeze tightly around the dog's neck and choke the dog as a choke collar would do when there is pulling motion on the collar.Originally Posted by dweck
"Properly trained, a man can be dog's best friend." ~ Corey Ford
I personally have problems with any trainer that refuses to let you use certain types of collars. I think that is BS. A good trainer should know how to use all collars, work with their clients and find the best solution for the dog and it's issues. My old trainer would let you use whatever you wanted. If you consistently had problems, she might recommend something, but you did not have to use it and she would work with you using whatever you wanted.
I don't really like GL's or Halti's and personally think that a prong/pinch is the way to go when training initially, later on moving to a chain. But that's what worked for me and my dogs....