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Discussion Starter #1
So yesterday I went to a new training club and Evie was evil, so they said that I need either an American Martingale Collar or one of the metal chain collars that looks like a P. Do any of you have any suggestions about what type of collar to get and where to get one?
 

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I would be wary of any training club that recommended anything other than a flat buckle collar.
 

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I would be wary of any training club that recommended anything other than a flat buckle collar.
Most of the AKC training clubs promote these collars, fjm. I just ignore what everyone else is doing. I used harnesses when the spoos were puppies too, when everyone else was using prong collars.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you for responding.
The problem with Evie is that she drags with or without a harness and I have tried everything I can possibly think of from, from treats to gentle leaders, I am at my wit's end. So I talked to a person there who owned has owned poodles from years, and she said that she thinks it would be easier to train Evie to heal with a training collar versus without one. And what I mean by evil is she acts like a maniac, she drags, and barks, because she wants to play with all the other dogs wich, makes the whole entire class go crazy.
Thank you
 

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I "flunked" Asta out of training class because they practically insisted on a choke chain collar. Not sure if that is the P collar you are thinking of. IMO, choke chains are evil.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
This class also prefers that all large to medium dogs have to chain collars, there was only one dog that did not have a chain collar but that dog was a little tiny dog. I would change clubs but there this is the only club that is within forty minutes away. Do you think that a fabric martingale would be better than one with a chain?
 

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I use a prong/pinch collar. It works very well for us. You do not make corrections per se, when the dog pulls it evenly pinches around the neck and the dog realizes that when he backs off it doesn't. I don't like choke chain the type with 2 O's on each end, they choke. Prongs look harsh but really used correctly they are not. Renn has a very nice loose walk and he stays right beside me. I keep it on for when he may decide to leap and lunge. That usually doesn't happen when he has this on.
 

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I would use a martingale nylon collar or a pinch collar. The only kind of collar I do not permit novice students to use are unlimited slip collars (aka choke chains). Also I have a method recommended to me by Ian Dunbar for introducing a pinch collar in such a way that you will be able to fade its use. You need to have someone show how to fit a pinch collar and how to use it.

Before you try to do things in the thick of the class though if you have such poor impulse control and attention I would go to the class setting and stay outside the working ring and just work on focus and attention/impulse control/look at that types of exercises. I have a new person with a GSd that I have been working with privately, but they also come to my club at the time of my novice class. The dog is young and very nice, but was having a very hard time understanding that she wasn't there to play with the other dogs, so they did work with my assistant outside the ring just to develop attention and impulse control. Last week they did their first real in the ring class. Talk to the instructor of the class you signed up for to see if they can let you come and do that attention work and then enter the real class in a few weeks.
 

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Most of the AKC training clubs promote these collars, fjm. I just ignore what everyone else is doing. I used harnesses when the spoos were puppies too, when everyone else was using prong collars.
Interesting. In the UK it would be a huge red flag - at the classes I went to an instructor would take anyone who brought a dog to class in a choke collar quietly to one side, talk to them gently, and lend a flat collar till they could acquire one! Prong collars are practically unknown in the UK. A wide martingale collar for a sight hound is another matter, of course.

I would try Catherine's method - sit beside the class playing Look at That with really good treats or games as a reward for returning attention to you. I think it also helps to encourage your dog to meet and greet lots of other dogs without playing - if they rarely meet other canines it is hugely exciting, if it is a frequent and regular thing it quickly becomes ho-hum. I know many trainers expect their dogs to ignore everything and concentrate on their human to the exclusion of all else at all times, but I prefer to encourage good manners in greeting dogs and humans while we are out and about. Polite body language and a quick sniff for the dogs, a few moments conversation between the humans, and we continue our walk. Rambunctious teenagers get firmly warned to behave by Sophy if they look like overstepping the mark, and rarely do it twice! Dogs are much better at teaching canine good manners than we are.
 

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In addition to the new dogs, the new place is exciting, the new people are exciting, the new smells and sounds are exciting!


If I was doing pet training I would want excellent attention with a quick redirect to handler. For ring sports I insist on the dog's undivided attention in trainings and matches with the expectation that in a trial ring I might have a dog that is a bit distracted or concerned, but would want to be able to get 100% attention back almost instantly.


The discussion on collars is certainly always an interesting one and clearly potentially quite provocative. I prefer flat buckle collars for well mannered adult dogs and martingales for puppies since they can't back out of them if they put the brakes on. Our dogs are all used to wearing pinch collars when out and about although I often don't attach leashes to them. I can use them if the situation warrants it. I always spend time orienting people on how to properly use them and how to be able to fade their use. The only type of collar I don't like at all are unlimited slip collars.
 
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Forget the leash would be my advice. I would start training without a leash altogether. Heel and everything else - because it sounds like the leash is being used the wrong way - if you pull on it - she will pull back. Get into your yard or any enclosed area and start working on your sits by your side etc - all the way to walk next to me with a massive jackpot treat as a lure. This takes a lot of work - many many many mini sessions tailored to the age of the pup. You also have to build up your attraction to you - with hide and seek games with lots of treats and love as a reward every time she finds you. In other words make staying with you more attractive than pulling away from you. This is just the beginning - you are basically starting over. I would very much concentrate on off leash work instead of on leash struggling. Make her forget about what leashes are for - until you re-intro it. Lots of fetching games so she keeps coming back to you and awesomeness happens every time she does.
 

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Also - just reread your post what you are describing is leash reactiveness to other dogs - so the problem is not really "not heeling" but losing her mind wanting to play with other dogs. A big dog will not act any differently because you slap a different collar on her. She will still pull like mad over any discomfort in her neck area because she has not been taught to pay attention to you over the distraction that is "other dogs". She needs to desensitized to other dogs first - then you can intro the behavior you have practiced without the other dogs (heeling etc)again with the dogs present. That can be done, but takes a lot of work. Lots of walks where you are going to meet other dogs and you practice the behavior you want - preferable something like "eyes on me". Where she gets jackpots for paying attention to only you over another dog The moment she loses it you have to back off and start all over. Then you can slowly try for meeting two other dogs etc - or dogs coming from two directions at her and so on and so forth...
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thank you all very much! I am going to talk to one of the trainers and see if she would be ok with me and Evie working separately from the rest of the class for a while. I think that some of the problems were caused by me accidentally signing up for intermediate instead of the beginner class. I have decided that I will spend a lot of time working on leash walking and meeting other dogs and people. If I end up having to get a martingale type collar, then I will get the fabric type. Evie says thank you.
 

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There are three great games I use with my dogs for attention and impulse control. One is Susan Garrett's "It's Yer Choice." Another is what I call "Get It Get It" and the third is what I call the "five cookie" game. You can find It's Yer Choice all over if you Google for it. I have described and think I have YouTube video links for the other two here on PF that you should be able to search for.
 

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I have used chain collars for both conformation and obedience as well as just for walking around. I have used them on almost every dog I have owned or trained over the past 50 years. The majority of poodles shown in conformation wear "snake chain" collars in the ring because they are the least damaging to a show coat. They are NOT used to correct behavior!

Certainly chain collars are not a good choice for many novice dog owners because they should not be used to choke a dog! The idea is to let the dog correct him/herself. The same applies to prong collars. A dog can certainly injure the trachea by pulling while wearing a leather collar.

Besides the fact that the dog learns not to pull, the sound of the chain moving in the ring lets the dog know that s/he is approaching the limit.

So the idea is to use a collar that is appropriate for the dog and the situation. Harness? I think the primary use of a harness is to teach a dog to pull!


I really like "It's Yer Choice" - a great way to teach impulse control.
 

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So the idea is to use a collar that is appropriate for the dog and the situation. Harness? I think the primary use of a harness is to teach a dog to pull!
No! This is one of those myths that needs to die! Easy Walk harnesses do NOT teach a dog to pull!!!

The harnesses with a back clip can make a dog pull more ;)
 
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