When she first came to live with me, Belle was not used to walking with a leash. Naturally, she pulled a lot on the lead. This was mostly because she was fearful of it and was trying to get away from it. She managed to pull a retractable leash from my hand once, and the noise it made as she ran down the street frightened her so much, she went faster and faster trying to outrun it.
OK, it was a little funny, but believe me, the pulling on the leash gets old quickly. Now that Belle enjoys her walks, she still pulls at the leash, but now it’s because she wants to walk faster or go over and smell something or chase a squirrel. I like to walk her twice a day, and it was getting so that I dreaded doing it. She even pulled down to the ground one time when I was trying to tie my shoe.That was the end of that!
After talking about my frustrations with walking Belle, one of my neighbors loaned me her dog’s steel pinch collar (also known as a prong collar). I was a little hesitant at first because this type of collar looks like some kind of torture device, but it made a huge difference in my walking experience.
The pinch collar has made a huge difference in my enjoyment of walking my dog. I can control her a lot easier when we encounter squirrels, loud cars, or other dogs. Even when she gets very aggressive and jumps up and tries to twist out of the collar, it’s not a problem because the collar allows for twisting without twisting my hand off!
How to Use a Pinch Collar
Here are a few things that I learned about using pinch collars with dogs.
- Do not jerk it like you would to correct a dog wearing a traditional leather or vinyl collar. This can injure your dog.
- Size the collar to your dog. You may need to take out a few prongs to make it fit a little better, but don’t make it too tight.
- Place the collar at the top of the neck, closer to the head. This may require you to keep your lead a little tight to keep the collar in place. However, this gives you the best leverage for controlling your dog. If you keep the pinch collar down at the base of the dog’s neck, they may ignore it completely.
- Don’t take the collar off or put it on over the dog’s head. Have one prong that you have bent a little more than the others to make it easier to take on and off.
- Do not leave this collar on the dog when you are done walking or training him or her. This collar can get caught on something like a fence or a shrub and constrict on the dogs neck as he/she pulls and potentially hurt your dog.
I’ve been using the pinch collar for two years now and my dog doesn’t mind or fear it one bit. I have to admit that a lot of the time I have it down at the base of her neck lately, but as soon as I see another dog approaching we stop and raise it to the top of her neck for control. It has made walking with Belle so much more enjoyable and I no longer dread it.