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Author Topic: chokers  (Read 6884 times)
aspen`s mom
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« on: June 02, 2004, 10:37:29 AM »

when is the best time to use a choker collar? aspen will be 5 months next week and is really starting to pull on his walks. thought about a choker or maybe a longer leash ?( . any ideas on this?
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aspen
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« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2004, 10:43:53 AM »

I just could not use a choker.  I know trainers say they have their place but I just could not bring myself to use one.  I have used the head collar(gentle leader) to bring Schatzi under control.  She does not pull at all with it on and she is getting better on her regular leash too now that she knows how she should be walking on lead.  Our walks are very peaceful, she does not even bark at other dogs anymore when she has it on, she is very calm.  Pleased
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« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2004, 11:26:21 AM »

I tried a choker for Bailey and it didn't work, she still pulled. I also have a gentle leader which works, but Bailey hates it.  Her tail goes down on walks and she doesn't enjoy walks with it on.

I have found something that does work.  It's called the Good Dog Collar by Petsafe.  It's the same idea as a prong collar but it's plastic.  She loves walking with it on.  No more pulling, no more barking.  She's great with it on.  She trots down the street with no problem and I can correct her with it with ease.

I am not a fan of the metal prongs, they do work wonders though with big, powerful dogs and for people walking them that weigh less than the dogs,  but for Bailey I didn't like that method.  Since buying this collar I am extremely happy with it.
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Marie
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« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2004, 11:40:13 AM »

I have used the Gentle leader but Lola didn't like it on.  I now use a body harness when we go for walks and I have more control with that on.  I don't like using the choke collar.  Lola didn't respond well with that on at all.
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« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2004, 12:44:04 PM »

I don't  need anything for walking Shiraz, but have seen the gentle leader do wonders for some of my friends dogs, although on one friends' dog it rubbed the fur off of his snout and gave him a sore.
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« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2004, 12:47:33 PM »

I would never use a choke collar either.  I don't want to have that kind of relationship with my dogs--Do what I say or I'll cut off your air!  Not for me.

There was also a study showing that a huge percentage of dogs that had choke collars also had tracheal damage.

If your dog will use a Gentle Leader, that is wonderful.  Mine wear harnesses.  One of the best harnesses to reduce pulling is called a Sensation Harness.  You might have to order it through the web, I'm not sure it's in pet stores.

Another good method is to use a harness but instead of hooking the leash to the ring on their back, hook it to the ring on their chest.  That way if they start pulling, they just get turned around to look at you!

The best thing is training and management.  Don't EVER let him move forward even a foot while he's pulling.  Just stop and "Be a Tree" when he pulls.  As soon as he loosens the leash, say "Yes!" and start walking.  At first you might not make it down the driveway but he is smart and will learn fast.

Another method is to put a really yummy treat (hot dog piece) on a chair about 15 feet away.  Start walking the dog toward the chair.  The split second he starts pulling, you just go "Oops!" and sort of dance him backward to start over.  He can advance toward the chair as long as the leash is loose.  A tight leash sends him dancing back to the start line.  Most dogs only take about 10 to 15 minutes to make it to the chair with the leash loose.  Gradually, over lots of short training sessions, you increase the distance to the chair.  Then start practicing in the driveway, down the street (without a chair!) etc.
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« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2004, 01:58:45 PM »

Our trainer suggested the treat to the nose thing, but when we go out on a walk she isn't the least bit interested in treats, she'll actually turn her head away from them because everything out there is more interesting to her.  I have tried the standing still when she pulls, walking in a different direction, everything out there, I have tried.  Bailey will heel beautifully when in classes or practising in the house, but when you go outside she totally loses focus and doesn't care about anything I say.  She is the first dog I've ever had that I can't train to loose lead walk.
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eskieagilitygal
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« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2004, 02:17:02 PM »

Gentle Leader gets my vote!  Love Them!  But, please make sure it is fitted correctly. If not sure,  take it to someone who would know... and not normally anyone working at the pet store... go to a trainer if you have to.
You'll find that normally after a couple weeks of using the Gentle Leader that you can go back to a regular collar (Martingale/premier or Soft Web style).  I stopped using buckle collars all together after an incident I had with Winston on a walk crossing a busy intersection... scared me to death when his head slipped out of his buckle collar and their he stood in the middle of the traffic and cars rushing by.  Thank goodness nothing happened, but I have purchased nothing but Soft Webs and Martingales ever since (No more slip incidents).  They are only a couple dollars more and well worth it in my opinion.  

When I first started training Gordan you could tell he was use to slipping out of his collars, as he would put on the brakes and pull back, lowering his head... he thought he was sneaky... but was surprised when he realized that his collar no longer slipped... Fooled his little butt!   I winded up using the gentle leader on him to get more control, but I was starting to go back to the SoftWeb, when he got adopted.    

Choke /Pinch / Prong Collars all have a purpose, but all to often they are used incorrectly and cause more damage then good (as Kathy mentioned).   I think it a crime that they sell these at pet stores with no instructions for use and/or how to fit correctly.    I see them used incorrectly all the time while out walking as well as people who use them as the full time collar on a dog.    I'm not against the use of the devices for certain cases, but would hope more postive methods be used prior to resorting to one of these devices and for a short period of time only.

I'm also a fan of the "BE A TREE METHOD" that Kathy mentioned.  I did this with WInston when I first got him.. .Our first walk took 3 hours... a walk that now only takes us 40 minutes.  Lol!     The second time it took a little over 2 hours, but then from there it got better... it took a week to get to the 40 minutes, but it worked.   Take a good book/mag with you.
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« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2004, 03:06:01 PM »

If you opt for a choke collar, please do so with the guidance of a good trainer.  Just like it's easy to put the gentle leader on incorrectly, it's easy to improperly use the choke collar and you can cause back, neck, and other problems to your dog's health from long-term improper use.  

I've used a choke collar and I can't emphasize enough how easy it is to improperly use one.  Even knowing how to use one, it's still easily to accidentally over pull, have the dog step out of place and cause you to pull improperly, or to just wind up with everything wonky.  I've never used a gentle leader, but from the research I've done, if it was my dog, I'd go for the gentle leader first.  

Having said all of that, it's up to you and your dog as to what will work best for the two of you.  Let us know what you discover.   Happy
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« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2004, 04:06:09 PM »

what does a gentle leader look like. i have never heard of them? but then i am new to this `doggie stuff`` Happy
just what i have heard i will not use a choker...heard enough to make up my mind.
aspen had the first 7 weeks of training.we finished up when he was 4.5 months old. i am not going to do any more til maybe hes 7 or 8 months. hes doing so well with what we learned and we both need a break..the kids and i still work daily with him.we really did not get to the `heal` thing for a pup that young. he normally walks very nicely..but hes getting into the teen years i am thinking.  :rolleyes:
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aspen
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« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2004, 04:49:23 PM »

Here's some info:  They have decent prices (especially on training  packages) and they have a cute section with dogs modeling the Gentle Leader...  Click on "See the Gentle Leader".

http://www.bargraph.com/gentleleader/
« Last Edit: June 02, 2004, 05:06:06 PM by eskiagilitygal » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2004, 08:39:28 PM »

Chloe does wear a choke collar, but only because it is the only thing she does not chew apart.  No amount of tobasco sauce or bitter apple helped her either.  We also had a halti collar, which we bought through our local kennel club.  They fitted it to Chloe, but it was too tight she couldn't open her mouth.  She only had the collar on twice, what a waste of money, because they wouldn't take it back.  Because of this, she hates to have people touch her head, an issue we are still working on.  We have worked with several trainers with the choke collar.  I needed something to keep her tags on(rabies, dog license) at all times.  Wish she wasn't a chewer, because they are a lot of cute collars out there.
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« Reply #12 on: June 03, 2004, 03:43:52 AM »

Anyone know why they still use choke collars in show rings?  

I know martingale ones are good, too, but no one was using them at the show I went to.  

My breeder said to get a fancy choke chain for show and training purposes, although she is very much for positive reinforcement training.  Kaiya does ok with it, but I am afraid of it.  I wish we could use regular type collars in show...I don't want to hurt her ever, even by accident.  

Anyone else see Eskie people use martingales in show?  I know the skinny shorthaired dogs use them all the time.  Is is due to long hair not being as easy to use the lead with?
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« Reply #13 on: June 03, 2004, 10:39:09 AM »

Tundra was sent home with a martingale collar and the rescue we used swears by them.  I don't really like it though because I really have to fiddle with it if I want to get it off, this is not the little skinny type one.  

Apparently with the type of heads that eskies have they have been known to back out of their collars.  We've never had this problem with Bailey, but for Tundra we'll keep it on him.
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« Reply #14 on: June 03, 2004, 06:33:45 PM »

I know you guys don't like the prong type collar, but fact is that it works for us.  We only use it on walks, it doesn't stay on Gracie any other time.  Funny thing is that we never have to pull on it!  She doesn't tug against it, ever.  I don't know why it works for her, but it does!  
When we did obedience training, they required a choke collar.  This  type of collar didn't work for her.  She would still pull (really bad) while walking.  The minute we put on the prong collar, she was under control!  
If we ever had to pull her or utilize the prongs in a way that hurt her, I would take it off of her and try something else.  But she doesn't shy away from the collar before walks and really loves her walks, so that is a good enough clue for me to know that it's okay for us to use.
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Donna G
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« Reply #15 on: June 03, 2004, 07:48:11 PM »

Hey Donna, I tried the metal prong on Bailey and found the prongs really got wound up in her hair and it was a pain to get off.  That's why I returned it and got the plastic type one.

I truly believe that use whatever works for you as long as it's not harming the dog.  If the gentle leader worked for us, I would have kept using it, but it wasn't working so we needed to try something else.  I have a harness for Bailey as well and she still pulls, like I said I've tried everything.
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« Reply #16 on: June 03, 2004, 09:58:47 PM »

As I stated, in my early post, I won't use anything but a martingale collar now on Winston... as when I first got him, I had several incidents with him backing out of his collar... also with Gordan, he would try and back out, but since I learned with WInston Gordan was in for a shock.   Winstons Collar is a Martingal... never comes off except for bath time and during Agility Trials... no real need to pull it on or off daily.  I keep all his tags on the extra metal loop.    You can keep them pretty dang loose, so they slip off and on easily (WInston's does).
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« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2004, 11:21:02 PM »

As has been mentioned here, there is a place for most all the collars named here. The key is knowing what's best/when, and particularly how to use it(especially the prong types). For dogs where any of these have worked well when used properly, super.....that's good for owner AND dog!

Each dog is also somewhat unique and you'll have to find a combination that works for you and your dog.

My own usage varies like the wind. Depends on what I grab half the time! Smile I have a harness and leash for Shelby and someday will have one for Amber too(not while she's in full coat yet though). I don't know if I had that down at the Mpls shows or not, but that's one I have for her. The harness is "adjustable" and about 1" wide webbing, so a nice firm harness. Once Shelby and I get our groove, she's comfy with it. If she even THINKS I'm packing leashes, she's running around making a racket to not forget her. Hmmm.....

Another lead I have for Shelby I made when she was a pup. This is a martingale style! Personally, I really like that format also. Particularly for showing. They make them from heavy duty to "fine" for showing. I just made my own out of thin nylon cording I had on hand....looks sweet though! I see them for sale in the catalogs regularly, so would assume some folks do show with them! Remind me to bring mine next show, Megan, and you can see those if you like.

I've also got a slip/lead, which to me is like a grooming noose with a leash length to it. It's just a loop at the end, and a slip knot that you slip down once the lead is on. Mine is pretty fine, so only use it at shows or other safer places.

There are lots of other kinds of things out there too, and each of us has to find our own combination(s) that work. If you want to try a choke collar, consider one  of the cloth/nylon ones and ideally use it only for training. Consider a harness or martingale or other style as well.....it just might work well.

Just some thought....sorry no real answer.

Take care...
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« Reply #18 on: June 04, 2004, 10:29:06 AM »

Jenny Jen,
To get the prong collar off of Gracie we just unlatch one of the prong links.  It IS difficult to pull it off of her head because it does get caught up in her hair.  Also, you can buy extra links if the prong collar gets too small.  (In winter with more fur around her neck, the collar seems a bit tighter without the extra links)
I haven't seen the plastic prong collar.  I'll have to keep my eyes open for it.  Same with the Martingale collar.  I've never even heard of it before.  
I haven't been to the collar row of PetsMart for ages.  Sounds like I need to check out all of the stuff next time I go!
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« Reply #19 on: June 04, 2004, 03:40:15 PM »

PetsMart really does not have a good selection.. neither does very many other pet stores... just plain ol' buckle collars mostly.  Lots of colors and fabrics of these, but no a wide selection of training collars and types.     To get a good selection of colars, chokes, etc you'll need to go to one of the on-line stores, to a large dog show or dog training center/club.
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« Reply #20 on: June 04, 2004, 06:08:56 PM »

We got our "Good Dog Collar" at Petsmart in Chigaco.  You can't buy them her from what I've found so a lady I met over the internet bought me one and shipped it here.  It's been great.  I never tried to take it off over Bailey's head, I pulled apart a link, but all the prongs were tangled in her fur so I didn't like it.  I figured it must hurt if it were to pull so that's why I returned it.  I had been looking everywhere here for one and the lady I met has one for her lab and recommended it so she bought me one and I sent her the money for it.  It's worked wonders with Bailey.  I just use it for walks and they are 100 times more enjoyable now.

http://www.petsafe.net/behavior_training/good_dog_collar.htm

If you wanted more info
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« Reply #21 on: June 06, 2004, 08:13:24 PM »

Quote
Originally posted by aspen`s mom
when is the best time to use a choker collar? aspen will be 5 months next week and is really starting to pull on his walks. thought about a choker or maybe a longer leash ?( . any ideas on this?



 The best time to use a choke collar is when the situation demands it!  For instance if you are enrolling in a class and the instructor demands it.

  A longer leash will not stop a dog from 'pulling.' It just gets the dog further away from you, putting him in more danger if he chooses to do something dangerous.  

  A choke collar will NOT stop a dog, any dog, from pulling.  It is the human holding the leash who stops a dog from pulling.

  As to why dogs are shown on choke collars while in the ring - many breeds, esp the sporting breeds have their collars removed when in the ring. The choke collar or a martingale are the easiest ones to get off and on the fastest.
Mary
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