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prong/ pinch collars

StaceyB
July 17th, 2005, 01:02 PM
I have a question. I do not use these collars nor do I suggest that my students use them but I am curious to know something. For those of you who do use them or have used them in the past. How many of you were able to get your dogs off the collar and back onto a flat collar? How many of you have had aggression issues with your dogs?

BMDLuver
July 17th, 2005, 01:47 PM
I used a prong collar as a training tool on 110lb lab cross. He would walk beside you, hop up in the air and leap forward then continue walking as if it hadn't happened. I put a prong on him and after about 2 weeks he learnt that this odd behaviour during a walk wasn't worth getting slightly pinched over. He then went back to a 1 inch, all nylon martingale collar and walked with all four feet touching the ground. I certainly do not advocate prong collars to the inexperienced as I have seen the results on dogs coming into rescue who were incorrectly corrected and showed various degrees of aggression.

twodogsandacat
July 17th, 2005, 01:48 PM
After back surgery a prong was the only option I had. My dog had learned to walk sideways in a harness (this results in me losing the leverage the harness provided) and backwards in a Halti. He is extremely strong and is a puller.

As I could not afford any jarring of my back he went to a prong collar. Great results although a trainer was required to teach me how to use it. The trick which I think may of been posted here is (and get a trainer WITH experience to teach you this as if the collar isn’t fitted right you could hurt the dog)....one good correction is worth a hundred weak ones.

As he doesn’t pull on it and there is no need to correct him often I continue to use it ‘just in case’. Additionally my girlfriend also walks him with it (at my insistence) and she looks as if she is in much better control than before. Although she didn't like to use it she did agree that to see her come down the street with the dog most people would be more comfortable with a dog that looked like it was under control than a dog that looked as if it were making the decisions.

twodogsandacat
July 17th, 2005, 01:54 PM
He then went back to a 1 inch, all nylon martingale collar and walked with all four feet touching the ground. I certainly do not advocate prong collars to the inexperienced as I have seen the results on dogs coming into rescue who were incorrectly corrected and showed various degrees of aggression.

Agreed about the experience and chokers can be dangerous too. Also what about young dogs? Is there a minimum age to use a choker or a prong?

Am I reading in a suggested link between prong collars and aggression?

BMDLuver
July 17th, 2005, 02:03 PM
Agreed about the experience and chokers can be dangerous too. Also what about young dogs? Is there a minimum age to use a choker or a prong?

Am I reading in a suggested link between prong collars and aggression?
I have seen prong collars used on dogs above the age of 8 months in training classes with experienced trainers. I would not suggest using one on any dog without monitored training.

Prong collars are a wonderful training tool when in the right hands and used correctly. One dog that came into rescue wore a prong collar 24/7 as their "trainer" had told them to use one on her. She was probably the most trained dog I ever met and responded beautifully to commands wearing simply a flat collar. The dog was walked by a younger child with this collar on at all times. This dog learnt that the person on the end of the leash always inflicted pain. This dog was in rescue for 6 months, worked with regularly by a positive reenforcement trainer, and diligently continued with the fosters. We put her to sleep in the fosters arms after she broke free from her and lunged at a woman's throat. Did the prong collar do all this damage? I don't know for sure, but yes, I think it did definitely contribute in this case.

This is just one of a few examples I have witnessed sadly.

Lissa
July 17th, 2005, 03:32 PM
I never ever thought I would use a choke or prong collar.

But when Dodger and I were at our pre-agility class the trainer believed in them 100%, insisting that a lot of professional trainers think highly of them. She demonstrated the difference it made in her chamipon BC and I was amazed.

I asked my obedience trainer about them and she said it would be a good idea for Dodger and let me use one throughout the class.

I bought a prong collar about a month ago and have used it 10 times. I often forget it on walks because I only use it when we are working on heeling. It makes Dodger much more responsive while he's wearing it and I do think it has desensitized him to his regular collar. I haven't really given it a proper shot though, I've been a bit lazy with the training of late (now that classes are done until the fall :o !) I am probably taking the easy way out but now that I have a prong collar it's worth trying to make it work properly!

Dodger is a year old and hasn't shown any aggression, fear or anxiety while wearing the prong (not that I've used it that often :D).

Melissa

Perhaps a way to transition a dog off the prong collar is to buy caps for the prongs as your dog gets more obedient!????? :confused:

twodogsandacat
July 17th, 2005, 03:47 PM
Perhaps a way to transition a dog off the prong collar is to buy caps for the prongs as your dog gets more obedient!????? :confused:

Seen them. Maybe so.

We went with the prong shortly after our dog got jumped by an off leash Shepherd and thought that led to his 'agressiveness' on leash but now maybe it's the collar. I hate being confused. :confused:

MIA
July 20th, 2005, 11:53 AM
I used one when we first adopted our Doberman, BUT I only used it for walking, as she would easily drag me along. Once she understood some basic commands I went to a martingale collar which is basically what she uses now or her flat buckle collar. The thing about prongs or chokes, as most people have said, one needs to know how to properly use it. Also please if you use them and head to the off leash park, TAKE OFF THE PRONG or choke for that matter if your dog is running around off leash!!! I hate seeing dogs running around with them on, it's dangerous and could potentially cause some serious harm to your dog.

Beaglemom
July 20th, 2005, 12:27 PM
I have only ever used choke collars. I have never used the pinch collars. Misty will obey most commands when not using the collar, except for the heel command. This is the only command that we have not been able to get her to listen to without the choker. I don't have to give her corrections, she just knows that when the collar is on, she must heel. Her harness is for her to use during her "sniffing" times at the park. It is extremely important that people know that the choker and pinch collars should never be left on a dog. Many choking accidents have happened. I tried to explain this to someone the other weekend and it fell on deaf ears. Her dog is still wearing the choker as a primary collar unsupervised and even in his crate!

StaceyB
July 20th, 2005, 12:36 PM
The worst is when these collars are used to tie the dog up. Their excuse is usually because the dogs slip out of regular collars. They would rather choke them to death.
Using choke chains in general can be very dangerous. They tend to be put on wrong, and are especially are used wrong. You are not supposed to jerk to correct but make a noise with the collar. The noise is supposed to be the correction. Besides the fact that a pinch collar can cause aggression and there is some danger in damagng the neck. The choke chain is far more dangerous.

pags
July 20th, 2005, 01:01 PM
The worst is when these collars are used to tie the dog up. Their excuse is usually because the dogs slip out of regular collars. They would rather choke them to death.
Using choke chains in general can be very dangerous. They tend to be put on wrong, and are especially are used wrong. You are not supposed to jerk to correct but make a noise with the collar. The noise is supposed to be the correction. Besides the fact that a pinch collar can cause aggression and there is some danger in damagng the neck. The choke chain is far more dangerous.

I never used a prong collar.. and probably never will... But I did use choke collars on my GSDs. And YES it's so nice to see it in writing.. the correction with a choke chain is the sound -- not choking the dog near to death! I have always been horrified to see people using them incorrectly and yanking full force on a collar that's been put on incorrectly and is now stuck in a choking position while their dog coughs and gags.... And woo the PEOPLE are irritated that the dog still isn't listening. Used correctly the choker can be great though... My biggest GSD was eventually trained to heel off-leash.. as long as I put the choker on he knew it was time to heel and did so beautifully.

Beaglemom
July 20th, 2005, 01:03 PM
StaceyB, I agree. Most people don't use them correctly. As for people leaving choke collars on, there is a technique that I learned years ago that you can use to prevent the collar from choking if it ever must be left on the dog. You have to loop it in a specific way and the collar is "locked" and will not slide at all.

as long as I put the choker on he knew it was time to heel and did so beautifully.
My dog is the same way, if the choker is on, she heels, no correction needed!

tenderfoot
July 20th, 2005, 04:04 PM
It's like asking if you should use a gag bit on a horse or a severe tie-down to stop him from running off - both are harsh and un-necessary. Take the time and understanding to teach the correct behavior from the start and you don't need the devices at all. If a dog loves, trusts and respects you then the problems just don't show up. Not to say they become robots and are perfect, but they have trust in their person, love them and respect their wishes - this is how you raise a good dog with good manners
I may have told this story before, but we had a client with a giant Mal who wore every device possible all at the same time and still lunged and pulled. In one session on a flat collar he stopped pulling and in the next session he stopped lunging at dogs & horses. Done. NO tricks no devices. Teach first and then you don't have to try to control. These devices control a dog's behavior - they don't get him to use his brain to choose better behavior except to think that "wow I better be super submissive or else" not "wow I really want to please my person because she's wonderful and I respect her word." Put yourself in the dogs collar so to speak - which would you prefer? A trainer who hurts you or a teacher who loves you and works to teach you? I know a "good" trainer can use these devices with skill and sensitivity - but shouldn't a "good" trainer be able to get the job done without them?

BMDLuver - that story was tragic beyond words. This poor creature was merely restraining herself from her impulses because the consequences were going to be too intense from the collar. But once the collar was gone she hadn't learned a thing. Maybe she did learn that people were a source of pain and not to be trusted. But she was so out of balance in her relationship with people that she lashed out in the end. My interpretation may be extreme but I know in my heart that had this dog had proper training she would not have been abandoned and then killed.

BMDLuver
July 21st, 2005, 08:56 AM
BMDLuver - that story was tragic beyond words. This poor creature was merely restraining herself from her impulses because the consequences were going to be too intense from the collar. But once the collar was gone she hadn't learned a thing. Maybe she did learn that people were a source of pain and not to be trusted. But she was so out of balance in her relationship with people that she lashed out in the end. My interpretation may be extreme but I know in my heart that had this dog had proper training she would not have been abandoned and then killed.
We think of her everyday and it reminds us how truly cruel humankind can be. She really was a dog desperate to please and letting her go was devastating. I don't know if we could have done more for her than we did and this haunts me regularly. :sad:

TToucher
August 7th, 2005, 08:06 PM
Prong Collars were first used in Europe to train dogs to be aggressive . . . so doesn't it make sense that a dog will associate what he sees (another dog, person etc.) everytime he receives pain around his neck? :sad:

Prin
August 7th, 2005, 08:08 PM
Boo pukes whenever he sees a prong...

LavenderRott
August 7th, 2005, 08:40 PM
And yet I have met dozens of dogs properly trained with prong collars that are not in the least aggressive and a complete joy to be around. My beagle mix NEVER wore a choker as she would have killed herself on one, couldn't wear a flat collar for a walk because she pulled so much that she gagged and vomited, yet walked like a dream with a prong on WITHOUT being corrected with it.

YES, just like every other training tool, in the wrong hands prong collars can be dangerous. BUT, just like every other training tool, if used properly can be safe.

oreokitty
August 10th, 2005, 03:07 PM
We don't use one either.... I use the Halti and LOVE IT!... Our trainer (who is also a doberman owner) told us about chokers... Shiver.. Won't ever use one again!

Pomermaniac
August 11th, 2005, 05:40 PM
Haltis, Easy Leaders, Prongs, Slip (choke) collars, flat collars, harnesses, and variations of these are all tools...
You must learn to about these tools before trying to use them, or risk injuring your dog.
Yes, a prong can do damage. So can a flat collar...and if you really reef on a dog wearing a halti, that would hurt too.

Prongs can work just fine without hurting a dog in any way...they aren't sharp and DO NOT INFLICT PAIN when used properly; but 95% of those who use them don't know how soft you have to be with them or the way they are supposed to fit.

They are definately not the torture devices that many judge them to be based on their appearence. The severity of the correction depends on the sensitivity of the person. I've put them on Bostons and Poms, and I've never heard anything remotely close to a yelp from them.

All of these things (harnesses, flat collars, prongs, haltis, etc) are tools...and remember, tools don't train dogs, we do.

StaceyB
August 11th, 2005, 06:11 PM
If 95% of people use the prong collar the wrong way and risk injuring them then why suggest using them at all. Like I said before, if you wouldn't allow someone to put it on you or especially your children then why would you ever have to use it on a dog. If you trained your dog properly in the first place you wouldn't ever have a need for it anyway. A great trainer can teach successfully w/o aversive tactics. They are really not necessary.

jjgeonerd
August 11th, 2005, 06:22 PM
I'm just curious, but if chokers don't work by choking (i.e pain) and prongs don't work by pinching (i.e pain) then what makes them superior to a flat collar? It would seem a flat collar would be sufficient with less chance of hurting the dog. If it's a noise issue then put a bell on the leash or maybe the tags themselves make enough noise.

StaceyB
August 11th, 2005, 06:40 PM
lol my point. Unfortunately there are many people that see these dogs wearing such collars. If the dog seems to be well behaved, they think that if they put one on their dog, it will also be well behaved. They don't take any training into account that the dog they saw may have had. These people then go out and get one and either try it with no training at all or get instruction from an uneducated person. The prong and the choke(almost always used incorrectly) end up being aversive tools. The prong is intended to pinch the dog. People who use this believe that the dog would rather listen and avoid the pain. The choke is supposed to offer a negative sound for incorrect behaviour. Far too many people jerk on the leash to offer a choking correction thinking that this is how it is supposed to work. A bell wouldn't do anything because it would continually make noise. Proper training with positive methods is highly successful and no pain tactics need to be used.

These collars cause more problems with health/behaviour than would ever help them.

jjgeonerd
August 11th, 2005, 06:56 PM
I agree StaceyB...I was hoping to get an explanation from someone who uses chokers or prongs...I'm a flat collar guy (after learning how to do it correctly from Tenderfoot).

Bottom line...prong collars are designed to pinch the dog and chokers are designed to squeeze the dog's neck. The degree to which they do this is, and thus the amount of pain inflicted, is variable. Ideally they shouldn't inflict actual pain, but rather pressure to get the dog's attention. It just seems to me when people say prongs shouldn't pinch and chokers shouldn't choke they are kidding themselves.

StaceyB
August 11th, 2005, 07:02 PM
Good to know you don't use them. The choke isn't actually supposed to add any pressure but as the metal slides on the other it makes noise. This is what the correction is supposed to be.

Prin
August 11th, 2005, 07:14 PM
The only time I ever thought a prong was ok was when an over 80 year old woman had a HUGE rottie with a prong on. No way that woman could handle that dog lunging without breaking herself in two.

Pomermaniac
August 11th, 2005, 08:07 PM
I'd let one of my students put a prong on me...and all of my clients put it on their arms, legs, etc. before they EVER get it on the dogs neck; just to see exactly how the pressure is applied and how little pressure is needed to get the dog's attention.
My kids (ages 12 and 16) have put them on each other (they are boys, so of course they wanted it around their necks lol) to see how the prong works.

Just because it is often misused does not make it abusive or wrong...it just means that there is more to it than putting it on the dogs neck and yanking away....nothing ever gets done that way.
Its valuable for protection and patrol training because of the sensitivity and "sharpness" that it teaches the dog...trust me, if these dogs were being abused then they WOULD NOT be performing this way for me. I have taken very scared, timid dogs from other enforcement agencies that were mistreated using prongs and chokes...I admit that they can sure be weapons, but I have successfully turned them around without switching collars!
My "top dog" (champion schutzhund and my own best drug dog) goes insane and jumps around wagging her tail like a fool when I come to her with a leash and a prong to "take her to work"...and I've never had one of my dogs cower or wince when I put it on or use it.
Its all in who's using it and how its used...its definately for more advanced trainers and owners who are dedicated to learning a more precise, sensitive way to command their dogs.
I know that many, many people see it as abuse but just watch a good trainer who uses one (and I'll admit that they are few and far between lol) and you will see my point.
I will aggree with you though that they should not be reccommended to everyone. I don't think that the prong is for every person and every dog. But I don't buy that there is one way to train and only one proper collar to do it.
If a flat collar works for you and your dog--great! If its a halti that does it then why not use it... But nothing gives us the right to judge the effectiveness of a method or tool based on the looks or the results of misusing such methods...
I've seen lots of dogs that were mistrained or abused using various methods, including clicker training. That doesn't mean that the method is bad.

StaceyB
August 11th, 2005, 08:35 PM
all of my clients put it on their arms, legs, etc. before they EVER get it on the dogs neck

I don't think that the prong is for every person and every dog.


I am a little confused. Do all of your students need this to train.

Training techniques have evolved over the last 30 plus years, moving towards positive vs aversive. Aversive training was used when people thought that you had to mentally and physically punish your dog. The relationship between human and dog have changed drastically. The same aversive techniques have been removed/ decreased from all areas of training, humans/ animals alike. If you are willing to research the subject, check out the history of dog training.
I picture an old man set in his ways and unwilling to change even though the studies tell him to.

BMDLuver
August 11th, 2005, 08:36 PM
Excellent points Pomermaniac. I do think I'll pass on letting my toddlers try it out though... they kill each other without additional help. :D

Prin
August 11th, 2005, 09:45 PM
Pomermaniac, you need prongs for every dog you train?

Joey.E.CockersMommy
August 11th, 2005, 10:33 PM
We used a prong with a our malamute husky and I actually found it quite effective. With a choke which he originally had he would pull and ignore every correction I actually thought he was choking himself. He hated the Halti and would just walk with his head turned sideway. The prong worked great he did not pull at all, he had one or two corrections in the beginning and after he walked beatifully on the lead with it on.

I dont think a prong is the answer for every dog, but if used properly I believe it can be useful on certain dogs. One thing I know is that you should never have constant pressure on it or the dog will become immune to it.Joey sometimes pulls when he sees a bird or cat, but in general walks quite well in the leash. Sometimes I look down to check if he is still on the other end. :)

Pomermaniac
August 12th, 2005, 01:18 AM
:confused: Actually, I'm a 26 year old lady...norweigian/swedish ancestry (strawberry blonde hair, 5'9", slim build)....
Not really set in her ways at all! :thumbs up

I DON'T use the prong on every dog, lol....I thought I said that about a million times already...

Every client who is going to use a prong tests it out...I don't just introduce myself and pass the prongs around lmao...it depends on the dog. If its not necessary, its not used.

I don't think the prong is for everyone. I have met lots of dogs that will never need them.
It's a tool, ladies and gentlemen--and only used when necessary.

Its not a punishement. Using it to inflict pain won't work--using anything to inflict pain won't work!

Using it properly, an educated individual can train their dog quickly and effectively.


I don't leave toddlers around the dogs, and I don't think I'd let them play with any of my training tools...thanks for the sarcasm though

BMDLuver
August 12th, 2005, 07:44 AM
I don't leave toddlers around the dogs, and I don't think I'd let them play with any of my training tools...thanks for the sarcasm though

It wasn't at all sarcasm. My daughters are forever trying on leashes and collars so the prongs I do have are put away.

Lise
August 12th, 2005, 08:33 AM
I agree with Pomermaniac,all dogs and owners have different temperaments and different tools are used in different cases.When I first started working with dogs I never recommended prong collars and even now I seldom recommend and use them.When I do recommend them I make sure the client understands how important correct size and proper use is,it is an effective training aid and if used properly humane.Any training aid if used incorrectly can injure a dog.I use leather buckle collars on all my own dogs and they're fine with that everone listens (most of the time)

tenderfoot
August 12th, 2005, 09:32 PM
: I have met lots of dogs that will never need them.

In all our years of training we have never met a dog that needs one.

Pomermaniac - you do say lots of things we agree with when you talk about who dogs are, but I am afraid I may never be able to agree on the prong collar. Not because my mind is closed, but because time and again our methods have worked without ever needing any devices beyond a flat collar.

I think I said this earlier - why use a hammer when a feather will do.

You're probably not happy I got my modem back, sorry. :p

Wudjah
August 12th, 2005, 10:39 PM
While training my Siberian husky in obedience, I resorted to using a prong collar on the recommendation of my trainer. She was impossible to handle on a flat collar, difficult on a choke, and hated the promise halter (similar yet better quality then a halti). The prong worked the best, she learned to heel and not to break away from an onleash stay/recall. I only used the prong for a short time and then returned to a choke. I have nothing against a prong in the right hands and I find that dogs rarely pull (ie little need to be corrected) while on it. There were never any aggression problems with my girl, but then again, I didn't use it all the time.
One of my current dogs uses a martingale and rarely pulls (just his nature) and my other (a 10 year old APBT) cannot be walked on anything less then a choke and although I know a prong would control her better she is too soft for that. I think it all depends on what your dog is like and what they can handle. I don't think it's fair to paint every owner and dog with the same brush - some owners can responsibly and properly use a prong (or a choke) and some can't. Same as some dogs react favourably to them and some don't.
If someone could teach me how to control Jasmine on a flat collar I would be all for it!!!!!

White Wolf
August 12th, 2005, 10:41 PM
With that, I will close this thread. This issue has been discussed at length several times in several different threads, and it's time to move on. ;)