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Bill & Bob
April 27th, 2004, 12:40 PM
So, I've got a Halti (or gentle leader) or whatever they are called for Bob's first walk of the morning. Tried without for quite a while, but Bob was going to rip my shoulder out of the socket during our first walk of the day. Did the heel thing, did the choker chain (I didn't like that at all). He still pulled like a Clydesdale. When we go out later on he's better and I just use the collar, it's just that he's so excited first thing in the morning because he knows he's going to see his buddies and play.
Now, my question is...How long have these things been around and why does everyone think the damn thing is a muzzle!?! Even people who seem to know dogs really well look at me like I have a biting dog when they see it. First question "IS THAT A MUZZLE!?" If they don't think that, they think I'm being cruel or something. Of course I've put on my mind reading toque here, but it's just a vibe I get. Maybe I'm wrong. These things are pretty popular though aren't they? I've seen quite a few people using them.
Someone who's a trainer I talked to said that the dog would never be "truly disciplined" if I continued to use the thing. I think she was trying to get me to hire her on though. She recommended one of those damn shock collars! Couldn't believe it. Myself, I think of the Halti as simply as a tool that's available and alleviates a negative situation. Bob certainly is disciplined with the thing on, and I can get him to halt in his tracks and sit at every street corner, almost without having to open my yap or tugging the least little bit on the leash!
And another rant for the morning is why do people act like I'm restricting Bob because I don't walk him offleash when we're wandering about? Lots of people do. I'm not interested. He's boistorous, and not 100% under voice control and an 85 pound German/Belgian Shepherd, and I know I don't like it when I see dogs running through peoples gardens ripping them up and running up to people and scaring the crap out of them. If people want to walk their dog off leash, that's fine. It's not legal, but hey lots of people do it and that's their choice. Not my business, and I certainly don't bark at them if that's what they want to do. I just don't get it why people can't understand that I'm not interested in having an off leash dog. Now LEASHES I know have been around for a while and are a generally accepted tool.
Anyhoo, just wondering what popular opinion is out there.
I need more coffee. I'm feeling surly again today.

April 27th, 2004, 01:23 PM
I have a response collar similar to the halti, and I have gotten the same strange reactions from people! My dog is about 80 lbs (a bluetick coonhound) and her size and the collar and I would see people avoiding me.

I thought it was a great thing, my dogs reaction to putting it on was great (she knew she was going for a walk). However, if one day I just wanted to snap on a leash I was finding that she was not learning not to pull, she was aware that the response collar controlled her from pulling, but as soon as it was not there she pulled.

My unprofessional opinion was that she really was not going to be trained that way. In the end I decided that I wanted her to learn so I could just put on a leash. I worked very hard, everyday using a clicker to reward her when she was not pulling, and I am happier this way (not to say the training is over, it isn't! A coonhound isn't exactly the easiest DAWG to train on a leash!)

I think it all comes down to personal preference, the fact of the matter is a large dog needs to be walked safely under the control of the owner and if you need the halti and it's working that is great!! I still have mine and I will use it if needed for a situation out of the ordinary for my dog, where she just wants to walk me.

And I agree people shouldn't be walking their dogs off leash in unsafe areas and infringing on peoples rights and property!

Lucky Rescue
April 27th, 2004, 01:42 PM
I hear you! I have a pit bull, and it was suggested to me to use a Halti for her pulling, but I just know everyone would think it was a muzzle. (although why people think a muzzle would allow a dog to still have it's mouth uncovered, I don't know!)

And of course, other people with their unleashed and untrained dogs is my biggest peeve! :mad:

I cannot count the times I've heard, "It's o.k. - he/she is friendly!" as someone's uncontrolled, barking or growling dog rushes across the street towards us.

"But MINE is NOT!" I yell back at them. I guess they've never heard of the leash law, or think it does'nt apply to them cause their dog is sooooo "friendly". Blah!

April 27th, 2004, 01:55 PM
You have posed several good questions and I will throw my 2 cents worth in.

First of all I use the Halti (Gentel leader) or what ever you want to call it.
I have a super aggressive - very protective white German Shepherd that is around 90 pounds of steel watch spring muscle. Walking him is a chore for anyone and the only thing that easily controls him is the easy leader. He respects it, and responds to my control factor, without pain, to him.
Dog trainers are like auto mechanics. Some know what they are doing and a lot don't. As for shock collars I would put one on any person who recommended it to me and see how they like it.

Not every dog can be safely walked off leash. I know some people will disagree with me on this but having been a dog trainer- kennel owner - and rescuer for years I speak with some knowledge.
I have had people tell me any dog can be broken to behave off leash. Dogs should not be broken to respond. Humans don't respond the way we want all the time and we can communicate with each other. We try to understand our dogs but we don't always know what is going on in their minds or what will trigger them, just like we don't always understand what is going on in each other's minds at times.

I have been in dog parks and had people's dogs running loose and bothering others and myself. Some owners think they control their dogs but their idea of control and mine often differ, just as I sometimes differ with parents on what is a well behaved child in public.

Also in dog parks you meet and can understand why some dogs are ill behaved. I had one fellow tell me to move from a bench because his dog was hard to control and he didn't want his dog to start something with my dog (who is big - but was behaving). When I didn't close my book and jump to my feet he stood up to impress his point (he was about 6'2" 220) but when I finally got up he decided it was not where he wanted to sit anyway and moved on. Slumped on a park bench I don't look 300 or 6'10"

As for feeling surly- no problem I do too at times and sometimes am mistaken for being grumpy especially before coffee.

April 27th, 2004, 03:24 PM
Dee,I would love to see a picture of your Blutick coon-hound :)

April 27th, 2004, 03:49 PM
I say whatever works and your dog is safe...thats what counts. My border/dal will pull and pull and she is 4 yrs old. The gentle leader helps with that problem. Yes I get the "Oh gosh do they bite"
Lizard my Dal has a Lupi (harness for pulling but its used on the chest) No reaction to that but it does the same thing?

I hate stupid people...we had an incident at the park- we came upon a 3 month old lab and border mix. The people were talking to us and everything was cool. All of a sudden these people and their long haired shepards decended upon us and litterally just covered the pup. The one fellow went up into Lizzy's face. Bad bad bad thing to do to her and there was no way to get to her as I was pinned in the trees. I wrestled out of the way and the got my dogs the heck out of there. The poor pup was could hear it. We took off cause both peple and dogs were overwhelming. We seen the people with the pup later and even they said it was awful. The pup didn't seem traumatized by it but dang!!!!!! Stupid's your sign lol!

I don't run mine off leash till we are in a fenced park....Liz is never off leash cause she loves to run after cars. I have her on a 15 lead..but want to find a 30 ft one.

Bill & Bob
April 27th, 2004, 04:00 PM
Now don't get me wrong, if people want to walk their dog off leash, my opinion remains, whatever floats your boat; but if an off leash dog gets in my dogs face on the street that's another issue all together. I will not hit another dog, but I'll certainly say some nasty things to the owner. Believe me, I'm the nicest guy in the world, but once I get started they'll be calling the crisis line when they get home. I agree with Woodbyter, that some dogs can and some can't. My friends dog is great off leash. When we get near a busy street, they usually put the dog on the lead until we're across. Again, if you like that, fine. Just don't come crying to me expecting lots of sympathy when your dog gets sprayed by a skunk or worse, nailed by a car because she was chasing a squirrel and ran across the street. You took the risk, you gambled and lost but your dog paid the bet.

My beef is that they keep bringing it up that "someday Bob will be able to be walked off leash when he grows up a bit", instead of being "tied down by being on the leash". I told them the other day, that I am simply not interested in having an off leash dog, full stop, end of sentence. I told them that I just don't like the idea. They looked surprised, and almost took it as an insult, and that I was inferring they were doing something wrong! Once I explained that I couldn't care less if they kept their dog on the leash or off, and it's their business not mine they seemed to appreciate my opinion a bit more.

Of course they are still trying to convince me and say that it's more "natural" to have the dog off leash. I explained that for one, having domesticated dogs isn't natural to begin with. Either are fast cars, buses, traffic, busy streets, other people on sidewalks, bad dog owners with angry dogs, stucco homes, poop bags, elevators, wheelchairs, pop cans, adsl service, the internet, ballpoint pens, guns, plastic, etc. Lots of things aren't natural! Thankyou for being master of stating the obvious!
Oops. I need more coffee again. Or maybe that's the problem today. Hmm. I think I'm just going to be grumpy all day.

April 27th, 2004, 05:28 PM
Hey the next time one of them starts yacking about being natural just water on the grass in front of them. Perfectly natural-dogs do it all the time...LOL
I am anti dog parks anyway-too many non responsible dog owners- too much disease.

April 27th, 2004, 06:04 PM
ahhh i just hate irrisponsible owners (none of you ofcourse). when i see a dog with a gentle leader or muzzle i actually feel quite comfortable, hey they cannot attack my girl like they would without one. and muzzled dogs have problems, so i think it is nice for them to meet my girl who is very social and kind (not one to iniate a fight), it is nice for us and really nice for the owner as someone is actually treating their dog with kindness not like a killer and it also helps with the dogs rep as the other owners see me talking to it. i live in a small country town witbh lots of retirees, everyone here has little dogs and my girl (around 80 pound) is the biggest we know. and everyone avoids us like the plague, apparently a big dog is a natural killer, didnt you know??
i see all of these little dogs fighting and acting like they would kill my girl if they could, it drives me crazy. there is this social group at the park, of little dogs, never has anyone said hello or asked to meet my girl. when we go out she is on her lead and choke chain. we walk to the park (absolutly huge area, and fenced) and then she is let of leash. she walks beside me until we get to our spot. at our spot we throw the ball and she retrieves it and brings it to my feet. we also do our training excersises here. often i do the excersises to show others around what a good girl she is (and we like to show off, hey she is really clever and i want everyone to know it). any fool on the street could watch us and see the control i have. we can have someone walk 2 meters away from us with a greyhound and she doesnt move, doesnt care, just watches the others. and we do this everyday of the week and have for years. yet she is still treated poorly like she cant be trusted with the other little freaks. i can tell she wants to play with the others but cant, it is like she is the fat kid in the school yard and they tease her, well i just tell her they are freaks and not to be trusted anyway.
as far as dogs of leash coming to us, well that really gets me. if i see them coming i will call to the owner and say friendly or what. if the dog is not friendly watch out( and as many of you know some dogs just ocme in gunning for a fight). my girl is always getting picked on by dogs for fights, and at times has been attacked by more than one dog. well i see it as we are a team. you mess with her, you are messing with me. if a agressive dog attacks her well sorry but it has to fight both of us. once she was attacked by three dogs at once and i just started kicking (i know you may find this terrible but i feel it is my duty as a team to protect her). and god help the owners if they are around, cause once i get the dogs off my girl i will turn to the owner. and i tell you i will do anything for my dog, i dont care what, she is my baby and will be treated that way. i find when she also gets attacked i point out to the owner her (my dogs) insurance details and make it clear if their uncontrolled dog hurts her my insurance company will sue them, that always helps. sorry for the carry on but it is such an annoying topic.see bill, we are many a surly people here, now where is my cigerettes and tea :mad:

April 27th, 2004, 07:23 PM
Chico2, would love to attach a picture, but I am having trouble. How do I do it, I have clicked on manage attachments, selected a file and it never works. I have had this problem before on other sites with a similar way of uploading I can't seem to figure it out, any ideas??

April 27th, 2004, 07:34 PM
"Someone who's a trainer I talked to said that the dog would never be "truly disciplined" if I continued to use the thing"

This is true for most dogs.

Well, what I think is that if you use one of those things, it is easier on you, but you aren't really training the dog not to pull. I have used one on a dog more than half my weight, but soon I realized, if I was ever going to teach the dog not to pull, I'd have to use a choker chain.

I started training in the backyard with a number of different distractions, with the dog on the choker chain. When the dog began to lunge one way, I'd walk the other way, so he'd get a large "pop" on the leash. After a few times like this, he actualy payed attention to me, and I put him on his regular collar.

Time and efort will make a big difference. When you see your dog about to lunge, quietly walk the other way so he gets a really BIG jerk on the leash when he lunges. Try circling to get his attention when he seems to pull in the other direction. It'll all work out.

And this is funny: I saw a tiny dog not more than 10 lbs with a gentle leader on! So don't feel bad about using it in public places where you know that he will be pulling if it makes better control for you.

April 27th, 2004, 09:50 PM
Dee,I am not good at explaining Pc-stuff,but I have my pics scanned and in my Pc-album,before I can post them,I've had to make them smaller.
I don't have a digi-cam like Luba,just a regular camera.
I am going to post one pic and write down how I do it,ok...

April 27th, 2004, 09:52 PM
It is fairly on Manage attachment,then click on Browse,chose your picture and click on Upload and click on the lower Submit Reply.

April 28th, 2004, 07:45 AM
Dee,I don't know if it makes a difference,but are your pictures Jpg files?
Where's Luba when we need her :D :confused:

April 28th, 2004, 09:09 AM
I tried over and over again last night and it didn't work, but finally it worked today, maybe the site was just busy at the time or something anyway, here is my bluetick coonhound patches!

April 28th, 2004, 09:54 AM
Awwww Dee,she's beautiful...loove the hound-ears :D Do they flop in the wind :confused:

April 28th, 2004, 09:59 AM
Yeah, Especially when she gets to stick her head out the car window! :)

Bill & Bob
April 28th, 2004, 04:40 PM
Melanie, I know what you are saying. I find it irritating when I'm walking my pooch and people with little dogs cross the street right away, or pick up their dogs which in my opinion is the worst thing you can do for a little dog. One day, someone lost control of 4 little yappy things, which I couldn't understand because they were all on leashes. Bob and I stopped moving and just stood there as they circled around us growling. The owner started to laugh about it. I told them that if one of her dogs took a bite at Bob's leg, I wasn't going to stop what happened next. She stopped laughing.
That's rough in a small retirement town with populations of wee yapper dogs. Good thing your pooch is well trained enough not to go and run at the other dogs. Bob isn't there yet. He won't do anything bad, other than try and get them to play. Not good that he doesn't listen perfectly yet, but if you want your dog to be sheltered from other dogs, don't go to a dog park.
Spoiled, I have to say I do agree with you about the Halti. I know it's not actually teaching him not to pull, but when I used the collar the nylon leash cut into my hand one day and I'd had enough. We work on the collar in the evenings when there are less distractions. I do have one of the larger linked, police choker chains for Bob. Used it a fair amount at the beginning, but I swear he was being dumb enough to hurt his trachea or something.

April 28th, 2004, 05:06 PM
although i get hassled a bit for a big dog, i would never want anything else. i have had her for 8 years and in that time i have never been robbed, harassed or anything else, we look after each other well, a great team.
and lots of people love big dogs too, they just dont hang at the park. when i was a little younger and she was 1-2 yrs we used to hitchhike together. she is around 80pound so you can imagine what it was like. we found that it was mostly the elderly, uni students and young families that picked us up and we never got stuck after dark ect as we always got a lift eventually. and charlie looked so cute sitting on the side of the road it helped, so many old ladies used to stop and pick us up and tell me how cute she was. but it also really detered those dangerous lifts, they would see dog and take off. ahh that was a fun time for us girls. but alas my husband has put a stop to that sort of activity now.
i use a chooker chain and have for years (we used them at dog school). i have tried to change it to something else but if i do she goes mental and tries to take my arm off which she doesnt on on the chain and she walks like atrue lady with it. i think it is the sound of the chooker chain that is a type of routine or comfort.
i have heard of stories when a person has picked up a yapper when a big dog approached and the big dog attacked the human. i even saw one of the little ones the other day bite a passing stranger, so maybe i dont want them near my baby girl anyway.
Bill Bob will be perfect in what will seem like no time at all (every now and again feels like forever, but that passes), i have waited many years for charlie to mature and be a lady and after all this time it has happened and it is great. it really does feel like the reward for hard work and it is great for our relationship as we have very few problems these days so we just cruise along happy. :D :)

April 28th, 2004, 08:06 PM
About leashes cutting the hands: you should get a really good quality leash. They are made with woven nylon, and are expensive, but they last forever! Well, as long as they aren't chewed up they do. I was thinking that maybe if you got a different collar (one that feels much different and has a different shape to it) and taught Bob never to pull on that one collar it might make a difference for you.

April 28th, 2004, 10:53 PM
Speaking of leashes, I needed one that was really long, but the retractable ones weren't great for my big dog (trying to reel her in if I had to wasn't easy) So instead of paying a pet store price for a 25 foot nylon leash, which was at least $30-$40 I bought what is called a lunge line for a horse at a tack shop, which actually looks exactly like a leash and is very thick. I think I paid $15.00 for it and it is way stronger and very good quality compared to the pet store ones.

April 29th, 2004, 07:43 AM
Dee are you in Canada? I need one to and have no idea where to get one. I went to one feed shop and the guy was such a jerk bait. I felt so awful I left the place.
I would like one about 30ft or get 2 at 15 ft.
Aren't the little dogs just the worst?????? when I go to the dog park I really try to go early morning. I love the place cause you go on hikinh trails and I would be totally upset if I couldn't go. i will take digi one day to show you all what I'm talking about. Listen on bald ass prairie you take what you can get lol! :p

April 29th, 2004, 09:39 AM
Amaraq, yes, I'm in Canada, Check your yellow pages under "tack shops" or "riding apparel and equipment" maybe call first if it's out of the way. It is called a Lunge line.

April 29th, 2004, 10:18 AM
Oh man, reading through these posts I'm like, yeah, yeah, yeah, been there, heard that, etc. What is WRONG with people?? Every situation mentioned has happened to Brick and I. The whole "oh he's a biter eh?" just because he has a gentle leader on....grrrrrrrrr!!! DUHHHH, does it LOOK like a muzzle????? Sheesh people are DUMB!!!

And the whole dog off leash in the neighbourhood thing....although once I wasn't as nice as you Bill!!! :o This dog had been causing Brick and I grief from DAY 1, comes running out of his yard barking and barring his teeth. One day he attacked Brick who was on leash and behaving very well, all my yelling and trying to get Brick out of the way wasn't know you're all going to be mad at me for this) but I kicked the dog to get him away. I was soooo mad and he would NOT leave. I felt bad after but the darn thing deserved it!! I'm sorry...don't hate me now!!

We take Brick to an off leash area as a treat for him, and he gets a reallyyyy good run!! He loves it, but I agree, its not for everyone, and many many people should not take their dogs as they are not responsible and cannot control their dogs! I never have him off leash in our neighbourhood except in the back yard. Anyways, I just wish more dog owners would be responsible and not just think of themselves and their dog when they are out there walking.....their dog may be friendly and not bite, but dogs are unpredictable...even the little ones!!!

Thats my 5 cents!!! ;)

Bill & Bob
April 29th, 2004, 12:24 PM
I've found dog parks to be an interesting adventure. One I am being more wary of. I am noticing that dear sweet Bob is growing into his boyhood, despite the fact he's been fixed. For the first month I had him, he was great around all dogs. Now he's not so fond of other male dogs. Especially ones that haven't been fixed. Even ones that have been fixed sometimes, you just have to watch him more carefully with them.
This morning we were at the park and a fellow with a Rotti came up. The dog still had it's "yarbles", so I know it wasn't fixed. He and Bob had a good sniff, wagging tails, then about 10 seconds later they started growling and baring teeth at each other.
Boy dogs can be a pain. I guess the same could be said for boy humans.

April 29th, 2004, 01:45 PM
The only off leash park I take Yukon and Tron to is the one that is on the SPCA's property.There has never been a problem there with any of the dogs.It is totaly fenced in.It is so funny watching Hooper(black Great Dane)play around with a little Chi.Hooper is a special assistant dog.All the dogs get along great.With this off leash dog park,you have to drive to.So it's not overly crowded with dogs.They are all well manoured.

As for people picking up their small dogs,I know how you feel.Yukon and Tron are large GSD's.BUT would not hurt anyone.Unless you hurt us.But that's natural.They pick up their small dog as soon as they see us.But to be honest,I can understand.I have seen a few times where a big dog has gone after a small one.And it's scary.

I tell you,dog owners are so much different in Toronto(born and raised there)then in Hamilton.In Hamilton they just seem to be more friendly.Maybe it's the air up here on the mountain........LOL

April 29th, 2004, 01:55 PM
WHOW... unfortunately, I only had time to read Bill/Bob's first rant...

all i gotta say is this (sorry, if i'm repeating): ppl wanna voice their opinions on something they see, whether they have first hand knowledge/experience is a whole other story. :rolleyes:

take it w a grain of salt and keep walking. after all, this is ur dog's walk :)

oh, and I got both of mine on gentle leaders and i wouldnt have it any other way!
... except if i ever wanna take them while rollerblading... someone suggested for me to get them a body harness... but that discussion'll be another day ;)

from the experience that i've had w my first dog, Chocolate, the PRONG collar will only be good for so long before it hair loss will appear from the rubbing. and besides if the dog's got loose skin around the neck, it's hard for the prong OR choke collar to actually work.. at least don't see a truly preventable way of it working on my dog. :rolleyes:

the body harness didnt work well at all when Chocolate was growing up. the instant we'd be out of the house, he was walking on his back legs... another, *sigh* terrible memory... lol

regular collars are totally out of the question, i got POINTERs. i prefer the gentle leader over the halti actually bc the fabric is thicker and the plastic piece holding the harness in place doesnt' actually give way as the halti. the whole point of the mouth harnesses is to have them on securily...

good luck :)

Bill & Bob
April 29th, 2004, 04:35 PM
Ok, now this is interesting. I thought the gentle leader was a halti, just with a different name (i.e. Halti was a brand name or something made by Mr. or Mrs. Halti)? So....what actually is a gentle leader?

April 29th, 2004, 05:03 PM
Catt, the little dogs can and are usualy more unpredictable than the big ones! :D :eek:

April 29th, 2004, 06:03 PM
I know...scary thought!!!

April 29th, 2004, 06:11 PM
the gentle leader is much more sturdy while the halti seems too flimsy for my tastes... check them out in the pet store.

April 29th, 2004, 07:09 PM
Really? I never knew there was a difference between them! Well, it's good to know that. :)