As soon as I even mentioned dog collars, I could hear people looking behind my shoulder waiting to jump on every word I type. There are many dog collars out there that you can use. Many of which are acceptable in different situations, and for different dogs. There are many opinionated people out there that will attack you if you use one collar over another. Below I’ll create a list collars that I currently use, or have used in the past, and some that come recommended.
For most purposes outside of dog shows we use a martingale collar with chain. I’ll add photos soon. It’s a collar with a chain on it for audible correction. The cinch is limited and not meant to choke. The chain itself is intended to give your dog an audible cue for what you intend them to do. I’ve used these collars on the most aggressive pullers with success. You can also opt for a martingale without a chain, but I believe in the audible cue for your dog. Martingale’s with a chain are not meant to remain on your dog all the time. However, I’ve had them on my dogs for years with no problems.
There are some dogs who overly pull. I’ve even heard some dogs who pull so much that their owners collapsed the dogs spine. In these cases I definitely would recommend a leash harness. This exerts all the weight of a pull to the entire body and not limited to the neck. I’ve personally never had to use this specific type of leash, however I do know a couple people who do use them and swear by them. I would buy a harness where the leash attaches to the front. Otherwise you’ll train your dog to pull again.
When we had Alaskan Malamutes, one of them pulled like nothing other. I tried every collar in the book. I finally resorted to a gentle leader head collar or head halter. Alaskan Malamutes are bred to pull. Telling them not too pull goes against everything they know. So sometimes you have to find other ways in not making them pull. It’s not the most fun for a dog, but they do get used to it being around their muzzle. They would rather go on a walk with it, than not go one at all.
For our non aggressive pullers I use a British Slip lead. These easily go over the neck and there is no need for attachment to an existing collar. Willow does not pull, and I have a leather version that I love using with her. They are the simplest lead I can use.
Now for those who like to go to dog shows and your dog is well controlled you can use show chains. They are smaller snake chain version of choke chains. The link given is the actual size I use for my smaller golden retrievers. I also have a 2mm for my larger goldens. I hate the name choke chain. The real intent of the chain is for an instant cue for the dog. If the dog is pulling, then the dog is in control and not you. If the dog is in control you will of course choke them with these collars. However, a dog should always be controlled by the alpha human. If done correctly there should be no choking involved. I use a nylon snap lead that attaches to our show chain. All the dogs we show we use a show chain or a small leather Brittish Slip. Specifically we use kangaroo leather show slips. They are very expensive though, and I get mine custom made for my dogs.
There are many other collars and leads out there such as flat/rolled collars, and prong collars. I’ve used prong collars on police dogs. I’d never recommend them for the general population. I also have rolled collars that I use when I’m on long hikes. They are large in length and it gives the dogs more room to walk ahead. This is the only time I allow them to walk ahead of me when they are on these leashes. I gave links to many collars. You can always look to find better alternatives to the different types. Also some collars I would use if a dog has never been leash trained. I wouldn’t use a show chain if they have never been on a lead before. If you start young, you’ll prevent a lifelong time of pulling. If I missed a lead that you feel is important feel free to comment below.