I am a retired dog trainer and my thinking is that although Dr. Zink's concerns deserve attention, the best compromise is, as others have suggested, choosing the least restriction front attachment harness and using it as infrequently as possible. We all know that some dogs are much easier to train not to pull than others and some owners have more skill than others. As a positive trainer, I have special skills coupled with a great deal of motivation and commitment to train my own dogs not to pull on leash, and yet I have found this particular behavior very challenging to train to the point of reliability and consistency. My present dog, a young high energy Border collie, who is trained to do passable attention heeling for short periods, as well as loose leash walking for leisurely jaunts around the neighborhood, will still do at least some pulling under certain more exciting circumstances. Therefore, when I take her on our animal assisted therapy visits, when in addition to holding her leash, I have to carry some items in and out of facilities, I use her front attachment harness.
Are you frustrated trying to walk your dog on a lead
I could really use some help. I have 2 Samoyeds; both wearing White Pine collars (they are same as Martingale but soft fabric so they don't damage the fur). One of my dogs will walk just fine, no choking from the collar even if she pulls, but the other is another story. She chokes herself with the collar constantly and we use an Easy Walk Harness (front clip) so that we avoid that with her, however, she still pulls and we need her to be able to work w/o a harness for rally, conformation, etc. The rally trainer suggested a Halti head harness or prong collar for her, however, with a strong dog that pulls, I don't want to injure her neck or give her whiplash! Sled dogs pull naturally so training it out of her is the best option but if she wants to get to another dog (or squirrel etc) she will pull. What do you suggest so that we don't harm her trachea, etc, even while training??? Thanks!!
Dog Collar Selection Guide: Choosing the Right Dog Collar
I just want to say that this article supported my opinions on the prong collar exactly. I worked for a time at a dog day care and I cannot count the number of times I’ve seen dogs pulling their owners across the parking lot. We had one poor woman who had just had a baby and her border collie would nearly yank her off her feet while she was carrying her newborn in her arms. We would all hold our breaths until they were safely inside and he was taken back to play with the others. It didn’t take us long to convince her to switch to a prong collar and almost instantly he was a completely different dog on leash. He was no longer pulling and you could see the dear womans confidence in both her dog and herself growing. It was a beautiful sight to behold. That’s why, when I got my puppy from the shelter, I purchased a prong collar of my own not long after I brought him home. I want my dog to grow up happy and safe and with his love for people and other animals, his lunging behavior was already worrying me. He was choking himself and scaring our little neighbor boy in his excitement. I was fearful for his safety and used that reasoning to convince my girlfriend that the prong collar really was the best tool for him. After taking him for his first walk with the prong collar and running into another dog on a walk, my girlfriend finally conceded that it really works wonders. My little boy was the perfect gentleman and he’s no longer choking himself and scaring our neighbors. The prong collar is a training tool not a barbaric torture device. The only way this tool could harm an animal is if someone deliberately used it for such a purpose. That person would be the barbarian, not the tool. Use your head and keep your dog safe from those who would see his pulling as aggressive behavior. Your dog needs you to teach him how to behave in public so that he won’t make a mistake and lose his life for it.
Halter-type Dog Collars will give you the best control over your dog.