Author Topic: Choke Collar  (Read 1662 times)

Christen83

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Choke Collar
« on: April 04, 2007, 10:27:53 AM »
I know we've been having the discussion over the last few days about prong collars being a temporary solution to bad walking behaviour.  What about choker collars?  I never looked favorably upon them, but last week my training club gave me one to test out on Bruce for the week and he's doing great on it.  We still use the flat buckle for simple potty breaks, but use the choker for "training" walks.  Should I have the goal of moving to a flat buckle all the time?  I kinda like the two different collars for different situations.

Renee

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2007, 10:34:43 AM »
I use different collars for different things - collars for obedience, harnesses for tracking, collars for agility, collars for everyday walking -

although I buy collars and leashes like other women buy shoes...

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Should I have the goal of moving to a flat buckle all the time?


My goal is that I can comfortably use whatever I want, when I want.  If the dog walks nicely on a leash, the collar it's attached to doesn't make any difference...

Newcastle

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2007, 10:48:18 AM »
If those were the only two collars available, I would choose the prong over the choke any day of the week.  I'm not a fan of either, because I'm not a a fan of correction-based training, but prongs have been shown to cause less damage, and if used properly can give the dog more information with less force.  (That said, my own experience was that even when used properly, some dogs couldn't care less about a prong or a choke! ;) )

I like the idea of different collars for different skill sets, too, but I'm not sure what you mentioned falls into *my* concept of that.  To me, it would be for example conformation training vs. obedience training - some 'done only in one arena' behaviors, and some different expressions of the same behaviors, if you will.  (Like - you don't 'Sit' or 'Down' in the conformation ring, and gaiting in conformation is very different from heeling in obedience, even though both (at times) involve moving with the handler on-lead.)  So I guess the question would be, what's the difference between what you expect of him on a potty break vs. a "training" walk, and is that enough to warrant two different collars?  (To me, I'd think it would be the same - you want a loose leash, no lunging/barking/pulling, and the dog to have you on his radar - but your needs may be different.)

That said, I do think the goal should always be to move away from training tools, which can become crutches all too easily.  A flat buckle or martingale collar - or no collar at all, though there are legal issues on that - is the ideal for walking.
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BoxerWB

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2007, 10:54:52 AM »
Christen -  I think because of the "crutch" issue, I'd try to train him to walk nicely on any kind of collar.  If you like the variation of "training" versus "everyday" collar, you can always buy a special flat buckle you only use for training.   I have a nice leather collar and leash for Xena's training and when I get them out she knows it's class/practice time. 
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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2007, 12:09:22 PM »
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My goal is that I can comfortably use whatever I want, when I want.  If the dog walks nicely on a leash, the collar it's attached to doesn't make any difference...

That's a fair point.  If I'm reading this right, it means the dog walks nicely on a prong collar, or a choker, or a martingale, or a flat buckle collar, or whatever else Renee chooses to use on a particular day. 

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Christen -  I think because of the "crutch" issue, I'd try to train him to walk nicely on any kind of collar.

I agree.  The problem that sometimes happens with training collars - especially, I think, prong collars - is that the dog gets 'collar smart' - they learn that if the prong is on, they get a correction and so don't pull, but if any other collar is on, they don't get that correction and so still pull like crazy. 
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Boxermom,K

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2007, 09:12:54 PM »
In my opinion you do not have leash control until you can walk your dog on a regular flat buckle collar or even a piece of string for that matter. I am not a fan of training collars, however I do prefer the martingale over prongs and chokes. I have used choke collars before but only for very short periods of time alternating with the martingale then I use different colored collars for different activities. For instance, Bubba knows that the Red collar means he is going to do therapy work, the Green collar means he is going to town or just for a walk and he can sniff around and be on a long lead.

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Shaeward

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2007, 07:41:25 AM »
For instance, Bubba knows that the Red collar means he is going to do therapy work, the Green collar means he is going to town or just for a walk and he can sniff around and be on a long lead.

I wonder if he knows the difference due to color or if it's something else (smell, feel, your body language, etc.). It is believed that dogs are red-green color blind and see in blues, yellows and grays. Years ago I read an article that said dogs can't see a red ball laying in green grass so must find it with their nose (I stopped buying outside toys in red for a while and stuck with blue...didn't seem to make a difference to the dogs... :laugh4:). I can't find that article now but here's another:

http://psychlops.psy.uconn.edu/eric/class/dogvision.html

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Dogs are unable to differentiate colors that appear as green, yellow-green, orange or red to people

However, based on the color band found here, it appears that a dog would see green as white and red as yellow. If so, then it is possible that Bubba can tell the difference between his collars based on color, he just doesn't see the colors the same as we do.

Sorry...didn't mean to get off topic but I've always found it interesting how animals see things so differently than we do.
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Christen83

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2007, 08:21:51 AM »
We're switching between the choker for training sessions and class and the flat buckle for potty and more casual walks.  This seems to be working well and he is getting better on the flat buckle as well.  I do think it will take some time to wean off the choker completely though.




highdrama

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2007, 08:27:33 AM »
I've never used anything other than a flat collar on Henri, it's been down to the methods of training used, not the accessories.  Walking in different directions, training "watch me", using squeezy cheese, other treats, constantly talking and interacting with him.  He walks beautifully with a loose long lead right by my side (most of the time) and if he wants to wander, when he gets to the end of the lead, the slightest pressure reminds him.  I don't have to haul on him or choke him to get him to do as I wish.  I hate choke collars with a passion but that's my opinion.  There are other ways to train and I'm a fan of positive reinforcement.

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2007, 06:17:38 AM »
Our trainer told us flat buckle collars are dangerous to use for training purposes b/c after a cetain time they cause damage to the throat...especially if you have a puller..

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Re: Choke Collar
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2007, 10:09:59 AM »
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Our trainer told us flat buckle collars are dangerous to use for training purposes b/c after a cetain time they cause damage to the throat.

If you're training with corrections, this is probably true - a flat buckle collar is not intended to be used as a correction collar.  (Of course, any collar can cause damage to the throat with constant or repeated pressure; if you have a puller, and are having trouble teaching them not to pull, it's probably best to switch to a GL or no-pull harness.)
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