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I use a prong collar on practically every dog that comes to Nitro K-9. Let me tell you why.
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Unfortunately, we continue to regularly see prong collars on dogs throughout San Francisco. We know most dog owners want to do the right thing, and they may not even know they are hurting their pets.
Share the post "Proper Use of Dog Training With Prong Collars"
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Our german shepherd mix is just over a year old and he is starting to bark and lunge at people. I have no idea why – we have had him since he was a puppy & he has never been mistreated. He is very protective but he’s not trusting us to tell HIM what is dangerous/what is not. A trainer suggested a prong collar, and honestly with other dogs I have had (a collie, a lab) I would never had considered it… but these dogs were a totally different type. They recognized me as alpha and listened. This dog is constantly testing and is just a different breed who requires different tools, as you say. I would be devastated if his behaviour escalated and we had to give him up or put him to sleep. I feel like an irresponsible owner for not being able to control him, but I’m beginning to see the trick is the right tools, and if a dog needs a stronger tool, well, that IS way preferable to death, or having them bite a person. Thank you for putting my mind at ease. We are going to try this tool ASAP. 1, 2 – Choke, Prong, and Shock Collars can irreversibly damage your dog, by Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM
Photo provided by FlickrPros & cons of prong dog collars
Photo provided by FlickrPros & cons of prong dog collars
Photo provided by Flickr
Of all the tools used in dog training, perhaps none is more widely misunderstood and maligned than the prong collar (also known as the pinch collar). Many well-meaning but misinformed people assume that judging by its looks, the prong collar is a barbaric device intended to "stab" a dog's neck in order to correct misbehavior. While walking my own dogs on this type of collar I have encountered complete strangers who think nothing of telling me how cruel I am to use such a harsh device. While I am indifferent to this type of comment, I worry that similar incidents will drive responsible dog owners away from using this excellent, effective and kind (yes, kind) training tool on dogs that benefit from it the most. This article is meant to reassure those who are already using the collar or are considering it and more importantly, to educate those who think it is "cruel" or unfair to the dog. The prong collar works on the concept that evenly applied pressure is gentler and more effective on a dog's neck than the quick jerk and impact of a choke chain or the steady, relentless pressure of a flat collar. While a professional trainer can make a choke chain correction look fast and flawless, it is very difficult for most pet dog owners to master the timing and the release of the correction. Also, even a perfectly executed choke chain correction is a repeated impact on a single spot on a dog's neck. The current trend of the "head halter" system is equally flawed. In an earlier edition of this article, I referred to it as a good choice for dogs with structural problems. In the past few years I have spoken with veterinarians, trainers and owners who took issue with that recommendation based on the potential insult to the soft tissue of the dog's upper neck and the often careless way in which the headcollar is used by people who are assured that it is "humane" and cannot harm their dog. Like every other training tool, it also has its place. However, for a breed already beset with potential spinal and structural problems such as the Doberman, I find myself recommending it less and less. The self-limiting tightening action of the prong collar also makes it a safer bet for strong-pulling dogs. A prong collar can only be pulled so tight, unlike the choke or slip collar, which has unlimited closing capacity and in careless or abusive hands, can cut a dog's air entirely. While many people think that the prong collar is a trendy new gadget for the modern dog owner, the fact is that it predates the much more commonly used choke chain. Prong type collars appear in photographs and sketches in European training literature from the turn of the century. Presumably invented by people who relied on their dogs' obedience, responsiveness and good attitude in a time when most dogs had actual "jobs", the prong collar still has a prominent place in the "toolbox" of the modern, balanced dog trainer. The prong collar is often referred to as the "hearing aid" collar: a dog properly introduced to it in the hands of a person likewise prepared suddenly understands the expectations upon him. Rather than the nagging of a choke or slip collar or the constant muzzle and poll pressure of a head halter, the dog feels no pressure at all except at a precise instant when he makes an incorrect decision. Because of its ease of use and the usually rapid positive change in the dog's attitude and behavior, the prong is an excellent choice for elderly or physically compromised people with strong dogs, small people with large dogs, and even the tiniest of the toy breeds which risk permanent damage from regular collars. Even dogs with certain structural problems can be worked successfully on a prong collar rather than allowed to drag their owners around on a harness!