When thinking about what type of dog training equipment to get, it is important to consider the difference between dog training and dog control. For example, using hand gestures and reward for a given action by your dog, is classed as training. Whereas the use of choke chains and anti-bark collars, would be considered as a form of control.
Controlling your dog should not be considered a bad thing. Your dog will need to be aware that you are the leader (alpha) in the pack. If you do not adopt this role, you will end up with an unruly, destructive noisy dog that has little respect for you. So a certain level of enforced control is essential.
In the same sense, the alpha male in a pack of wild dogs will take control.
Choke collars are used to assist you in gaining control of your dog. Some dogs, especially the larger ones can be very assertive when on a leash. Pulling the owner is a big problem and can be dangerous. Certain breeds are also known to be slow learners. For dogs that do not respond well to leather or nylon collars, a metal choke collar can provide that extra bit of discouragement.
The big problem with the use of a choke collar as a form of dog training equipment is that they can easily be used the wrong way which can be dangerous for the dog.
A choke collar fits only one way. If fitted the wrong way around, it can cause problems such as pinching and even suffocation.
Also a collar of incorrect length will cause problems. As a general rule, the collar should be two inches longer than the circumference of the dogs’ neck.
Prong collars can look like a form of medieval torture machine for a dog but thankfully they are a lot less dangerous than they first appear. That said, it is our view that these collars have little to no positive value as a piece of dog training equipment. The only good aspect of these collars is that they can only be closed down so far.
An animal that has got to the stage where a prong collar is needed is in need of more than a bit of poking and choking. They will need a committed dog behavior training regime designed to correct the behavioral problems of the dog.
A Halter collar is a harness type collar that wraps around the dogs face and neck without interfering with drinking or panting. This type of collar can give extra control but they have a BIG down side. They do not prevent biting or grasping and therefore have limited use.
It may be preferable to go for a good leash and collar or a chest halter. Both of these will provide equivalent forms of control.
No Bark Collars
'No bark’ collars are designed to help with dogs that tend to bark for long periods of time and often for no reason.
They come in two main types. Noise collars and Shock collars.
Noise collars produce an unpleasant sound that distracts the dog from its barking.
Shock collars produce an electric shock that is produced in response to the noise of the barking.
Using some forms of dog training equipment as a quick fix is very tempting to most dog owners. The problem is, they become a fix-all substitute for longer term training which is more beneficial to both dog and owner.
Taking the time to learn more about your dog and how you can both work together will produce a happier dog and a happier owner!
Article by Andrew Strachan. Find out more about dog behavior training and types of dogs at http://www.types-of-dogs.com