Prong collar

Discussion of useful training and pet care tools.

Moderators: emmabeth, BoardHost

smokeyandme
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 6:29 pm

Prong collar

Post by smokeyandme » Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:35 pm

:?: My dog is a greyhound/pitbull mix, 65 #'s, mostly well mannered, INCREDIBLY strong and incredibly sweet.
He gets walked 3 times a day, and we go to the dog park about 2 times a week.
I have a friend who does volunteer dog training, and she first gave me a collar that was like a thick cord, with rings at each end. Used like a choke chain collar. It fit his neck closely, but didn't deter him from pulling. Since then she has given me a prong collar. It works very well, he even stops in mid charge, when he chases a bird or squirrel.
I feel like I should teach him to walk better on a leash. We use a flexi-leash. To train him without using the prong collar, should I switch to a standard leash?

User avatar
Noobs
Posts: 2536
Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 3:43 pm
Location: New York, NY
Contact:

Re: Prong collar

Post by Noobs » Thu Sep 23, 2010 2:57 pm

You use a prong collar with a flexi leash? Not a good idea, because the prong collar is probably constantly tight with the flexi. You should definitely get a regular 6foot leash.

As for the prong collar, please ditch it. (You'll be hearing from other members too, just to warn you.)

Use this method for loose leash and use a 6 foot leash and harness. NEVER a prong collar. viewtopic.php?f=20&t=858

Also I bet your dog is a beauty! So pics please! :D

ladybug1802
Posts: 1991
Joined: Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:39 am
Location: Surrey

Re: Prong collar

Post by ladybug1802 » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:02 pm

Your dog will stop mid charge because, putting it mildly, he is in a lot of sudden pain and discomfort! PLEASE dont use the prong collar again.....how would you like to wear it around your neck and have it tightened??

I would also be wary of taking advice from such a 'friend' - you say she does 'volunteer' dog training...well if this is what she is training people to do she shouldnt be doing training...but maybe thats why she volunteers to do it.

User avatar
Noobs
Posts: 2536
Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 3:43 pm
Location: New York, NY
Contact:

Re: Prong collar

Post by Noobs » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:06 pm

I'm sorry I didn't answer your original question. To train loose leash, a flexi leash will be no good to you because he's constantly at the end of it and it always feels like pulling. So with the method I linked above, you'll be able to do it with a 6 foot leash and normal harness.

And to note: Tools do not stop dogs from pulling - training does. I bought all sorts of "no pull" harnesses and was so confused, why was my dog still pulling? :lol: i realized I had to train him not to pull rather than waiting for him to get to the end of the leash and then pull him back on a no-pull harness. If you use a prong collar, yes, he'll stop pulling because it involves pain. (Used one of those on my dog too!) But as you're transitioning to positive training you will really want to dump that. And as ladybug said, don't listen to your friend the volunteer trainer. If she will use a prong collar to train a dog to walk on loose leash, she's probably of the antiquated "pack leader" school as well.

User avatar
Mattie
Posts: 5872
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2007 5:21 am

Re: Prong collar

Post by Mattie » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:29 pm

Greyhounds and their crosses should never have a prong collar on because of their necks, it can do a lot of damage as they are easy to damage.

If the collar is stopping your dog from going after squirrels etc then it is obviously hurting him a lot, when dogs are in this mode they don't feel pain unless it is excessive, ditch the collar.

Follow the instructions on the loose lead walking, have a harness on him which won't damage his neck and he will soon be walking on a loose lead. You will have a lot more control over him with a good harness on and won't cause him any pain or do any damage.

My staffy went to the Rainbow Bridge 5 weeks ago, because of damage to her neck she had a tracheotomy put in in January 2009, this is what can happen to a dog's neck, her larynx was completely crushed. This is her story, please read it then ditch that collar, I wouldn't like another dog go through what she went through. http://tracheotomy-in-dogs.yolasite.com/
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

dontpugme
Posts: 1294
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:01 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Prong collar

Post by dontpugme » Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:42 pm

I find it kind of odd that my dad used to be a vet and still prefers using prong collars and choke chains. I "hid/lost" both of them.
--dontpugme

emmabeth
Posts: 8894
Joined: Tue Oct 17, 2006 9:24 pm
Location: West Midlands
Contact:

Re: Prong collar

Post by emmabeth » Thu Sep 23, 2010 8:18 pm

Do check out the loose leash walking method as described in the Articles section of the forum.

Each method you have tried so far involves aversives... and the more you use those to punish the 'wrong' behaviour, the more you will HAVE to use those, and the harsher they will need to be to work..

So far you have gone up the scale of aversion, and believe me, soon a prong collar will not stop your dog from lunging and pulling on the leash, then what will you do?

You do also risk doing severe damage to your dog, as well as it being a fairly ineffective way to train.

You need to turn this on its head, currently you are giving him a reason not to pull, which he only remembers after he pulls, because it hurts.

Give him a reason to walk beside you, so instead of saying 'don't do that it will hurt', you will be saying 'DO do this, its rewarding'. Dogs (and people and most animals) respond MUCh better to being set up to succeed, shown how to get things right, and rewarded for getting things right, than they ever will by being set up to fail, punished for failure and not shown how to do things right.
West Midlands based 1-2-1 Training & Behaviour Canine Consultant

smokeyandme
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 6:29 pm

Re: Prong collar

Post by smokeyandme » Wed Oct 13, 2010 12:39 pm

Thanks so much for your input. I wanted to let you know that he stops before he reaches the end of the leash, because he knows he has the prong collar on. This still isn't a good way to go, if I want him to trust me. I guess he stops because he knows it will hurt. Gee, thanks, Mom!
However, I am committed to changing over to a loose leash. I've been using one off and on, and he seems to be getting the hang of it. Now, once I "get it,"
we'll both be happier.
I would love to post a picture of him, he's a dark brown brindle with white paws and muzzle. The white tip of his tail helps me find him at the dog park. Unfortunately, I am computer illiterate, so maybe someone can help me enter the present :P

dontpugme
Posts: 1294
Joined: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:01 pm
Location: Houston, Texas

Re: Prong collar

Post by dontpugme » Wed Oct 13, 2010 2:24 pm

smokeyandme wrote: Unfortunately, I am computer illiterate, so maybe someone can help me enter the present :P
1. Host a picture at an online site like photobucket.

2.Once your picture is hosted, follow the instructions on the site to copy the URL for the picture. (the URL is the 'address' of where the picture is to be found on the internet, it tells the net-hamsters that work your browser where to find it. Its the bit that starts http in the bar at the top of your browser window).

3.You can post the URL as a link by copying the url. Then go make your post. Type what you want then press the button that says "URL" at the top. Then paste the copied url into the tags

Or you can put the image right into the post.

Websites like photobucket are great because they give you the image url automatically. Copy the image url. Then create your post and type what you want. Press the button that says "Img" and paste the image url into the tags.
--dontpugme

smokeyandme
Posts: 32
Joined: Thu Sep 09, 2010 6:29 pm

Re: Prong collar

Post by smokeyandme » Fri Oct 15, 2010 5:31 pm

:D We have graduated to a Sporn harness, and he's doing very well with it. Today he saw a squirrel, but just watched it, instead of chasing it. Not sure if the harness made the difference, but he seemed more relaxed when I walked him this afternoon.
I used to think that I was good with training dogs, but watching Victoria showed me that I have just scratched the surface. I like having a book to reference, rather than checking on the laptop every day. Is there a book that you all would suggest?
I'm not looking to make a star out of him, I want to teach him the things that he and I need to know, to keep him happy and safe.

User avatar
Mattie
Posts: 5872
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2007 5:21 am

Re: Prong collar

Post by Mattie » Sun Oct 17, 2010 9:44 am

Wearing a harness often makes a dog feel more secure, dogs are much happier wearing them once they get used to them, even an ordinary flat collar can do a lot of damage to a dog.

I had a dog that had to have a tracheotomy in because her larynx had colapsed completely, this is normally caused by pulling on a lead with a flat collar or choke chain, if you want to read what happened to Ellie, go to http://tracheotomy-in-dogs.yolasite.com/, make sure you have plenty of tissues near you.
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

ckranz
Posts: 1028
Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2008 12:18 pm
Location: San Diego CA

Re: Prong collar

Post by ckranz » Thu Oct 21, 2010 8:48 pm

I thought I would through my 2 cents into this discussion. Based upon your description you have 2 entirely different issues. Fisrt ditch the prong.

Impulse control: The desire for your dog to chase and persue prey. This is espcially high in sighthounds.

Walking on a loose leash: Politely walking at your side or slightly ahead of you without having the leash taught.

Follow the links for teaching your dog to walk on a loose leash they will help you tremendously.

For impulse control do some reasearch on the premack principle. Understanding this principle will go a long way in helping overcome impulse control issues.
A basic understanding is in order for your dog to get what he wants....he has to give you something you want.

While training agility I had a problem with my dog chasing bunnies on the field. He would much rathher pursue a flashing cotton tail will all abandon than perform a contact obstacle.

They reward became allowing my dog to chase rabbits (I used a harness and waist tether). What my dog had to give me was a simple look. If he looked at me zoom we were off chasing the bunny together. Eventually he even ran at my speed :). It was exhauting, but over a period of a few weeks he found running with me much more rewarding and his desire to chase bunnies on the field is now a thing of the past. We still from time to time to have fun chase rabbits together, but he is content to stay with me and play with me both on and off leash.

Another game to play would be "Hey Look at that" Its kind of the opposite of "watch me" The marker and reward are time for when your dog looks at something (usually a trigger like a squirrel in your case) at a distance to where it is noticed but the sound of your marker and reward will end with the dog looking at you.

Dog looks at squirrel...click...dog turns head towards you and receives treat.

Its a great game for teaching dogs that things that make them anxious (excitied or fearful) can be looked and its all right.

Rewards may start out as food rewards, but more than just food can be a reward (chasing rabbits can be a reward, tug, what is important about the reward that your dog considers it as such. Patting your dog on the head is likely not something your dog views as a reward...fact is most dogs consider it as punishment. For a reward to work your dog must understand the reward.

User avatar
Mattie
Posts: 5872
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2007 5:21 am

Re: Prong collar

Post by Mattie » Fri Oct 22, 2010 1:44 am

I hate terminology, it is so confusing, what is premack principle please? I am far too old to learn to be technical :lol:
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

ckranz
Posts: 1028
Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2008 12:18 pm
Location: San Diego CA

Re: Prong collar

Post by ckranz » Fri Oct 22, 2010 7:42 pm

As defined
Premack Principle: This is a principle of operant conditioning originally identified by David Premack in 1965. According to this principle, some behavior that happens reliably (or without interference by a researcher), can be used as a reinforcer for a behavior that occurs less reliably.

In my case with KHan the reliable behavior (chasing rabbits) was used to reinforce the less reliable (checking with me). Over time as the checking with me becomes more and more reliable. The rewarding bad behvior begins to decline.

Leslie McDevitt devotes many words to this principle and its uses with dogs in "Control Unleashed". A wonderful book if you have not read it. Just because it centers around agility, the lessons are not about running agility, but dealing with dogs who run away from handlers, too nervous around other dogs at trials and such. Lots of great games to apply to everyday life.

User avatar
Mattie
Posts: 5872
Joined: Tue Jan 09, 2007 5:21 am

Re: Prong collar

Post by Mattie » Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:30 am

Thanks ckranz, I am still not a lot more wiser although I think I may have it.

If I can get so confused by terminology I feel really sorry for those coming into dogs, I still don't understand operant etc but then I am an old age pensioner who's brain doesn't work as well as it used to. :lol:
[url=http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/PIXIE.jpg][img]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v312/Nethertumbleweed/th_PIXIE.jpg[/img][/url]

Post Reply