“Dude, why do you hate choke collars?”

An interested reader wrote:

“Dude, why are you so down on prong and choke collars? There are so many trainers that recommend them and I have been using one on my five month old GSD and am getting great results. I think you are missing the point about these collars and should be a little more open to using them.”

Yikes!!!!

GASP!!!!!

Maybe it's me.

Maybe I should be using them and recommending them.

Maybe I should follow the herd of dog trainers that swear by them and have the results to show.

That’s it! From this point forward I am going to toss my years of training and OBSERVATION and go back to using them.

Just kidding.

I used all caps with the word Observation because that is what I have done for years. My advice on dog training comes from YEARS OF OBSERVATION - not just following along with the crowd.

And here is what happens with choke and prong collars.

FIRST: They are overused. A correction becomes the answer for everything from pulling to puppy biting. I just read some advice that a prong collar should be put on a four month old puppy and used every time the puppy bites - TRAGIC!

SECOND: Cross associations. Using a prong collar in a group class can be a disaster. It can lead your dog to developing extremely negative feelings about other dogs. Correct a dog enough times on a prong collar in the presence of other dogs and you have the ingredients for dog aggression.

THIRD: You’re inflicting PAIN on your dog for your reasons. Come on man, I know we want our dogs to walk with us. I know that it is a major inconvenience having a dog that yanks your arm out of the socket everytime you go for a walk but do you have to inflict pain in order to have your dog walk by your side?

I know that even after my brilliant and extremely astute advice,  some will snicker, others will dismiss, some will get outright mad that I suggest that I am some kind of mamby, pamby, do gooder that thinks hugs and holding hands will save the world.

That would be wrong because I teach that in order to train a dog you have to understand and use positive AND negative consequences.

There is no way around it but you can do it without prong or strangle collars.

BTW - if you’re interested and want to see how leash walking can be taught with just a flat collar and leash check out any of our dog training classes.

Dog Training Class

Peace,

Eric

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