Got a Prong Collar for 6m old, and didn't get the results... - Page 3 - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #21 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-20-2013, 04:49 AM
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I just got my prong collar in the mail today for my almost 6 month old puppy. She has well trained for various commands but she has problems with proofing and discipline. I hit a ceiling where I can only get so much response from her because the check choke/martingale type collar correction was having ZERO affect on her.
Anyway, my puppy pulled on the leash on walks. Constant corrections and she comes double force forward for each 1 leash correction back. I was throwing out my shoulder. This is with a check choke btw. She didn't really feel anything so I can't even label it as a correction. Just more of a tug. I can give her really hard corrections and she will not be phased, the tool was ineffective. I have done switching directions and marker training as marker training with food is part of the foundation for my training. It wasn't very successful.
Today the prong collar came and I fitted it on her neck and just spent 3 minutes "testing" it to see how she reacts. To see if she would shrivel up and cry, her ability to rebound, etc.
We have formal training class tomorrow so I needed to get some ideas before I throw her into a brand new environment with a new tool she isn't used to. Anyway, I can tell you I gave her zero corrections. I didn't tug on the leash as I felt that for her, it was pretty sensitive. She will try to pull on the leash and walk forward as she had done in the past and will yelp, then turn around and come back towards me. Luckily I am familiar with Michael Ellis' leash pressure work and saw the video about 4 times at least so I had my treats ready and the minute she turned around and "gave way" to the pressure, you mark YES! and follow with treat. Took about 3-5 times of her yelping then turning around to have her completely stop pulling and sticking close to my side. I felt no need to pull or yank or anything. It was self correcting. I find prong collars much more humane and less damaging even versus nylon collar corrections because it doesn't rely on brute force or forceful snaps and jerks that can hurt the cervical bones. It is a pain compliance tool and just like any compliance technique, it causes the dog to move voluntarily and out of its own volition then being forced into a physical movement.

Here is the video on leash pressure with Michael Ellis. It's 3 or 4 parts and all are on youtube. It's only his seminar or class. if you want more you can buy the DVD - Focused Heeling with Michael Ellis at or rent it on but I haven't gotten to watch it yet. Still waiting in queue at bowwowflix. It's very good. He's very level headed, concise and very knowledgeable.

Last edited by pancake; 01-20-2013 at 04:52 AM.
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post #22 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-24-2013, 11:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Cstout View Post
Oh, forgot to say.... my pup HATED the halti at first. He still dislikes it, but its better. He would paw at it and rub on everything to get it off. He would rub his face on the ground and cry like a wuss becasue he didnt like the feel of it around his head and around his muzzle. But now he tolerates it because he knows when it comes out, it means its time for a walk.
Originally Posted by Capone22 View Post
If your pup HATES a tool that much than it is much more aversive than a prong or choke or whatever. If y dog hated wearing a prong I would not use it. Just because a tool looks "kind" or "cruel" to humans does not make it so for dogs. At least with a prong the dog had the power to shut it off by not pulling. If the dog doesn't like the halti on his nose, it's **** out of luck because he can't turn it off no matter what he does.

Read this. The Lighter Side of Darkness: What Does the Dog Think?

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Not tolerating it. Nice example, of that blog entry.

Last edited by jae; 01-24-2013 at 11:54 AM.
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post #23 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-24-2013, 03:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Capone22 View Post
Btw I'm not anti head collar or all about prong. I use whatever works for that individual dog, if it's needed at all.
I agree, and I'll add that no-pull harnesses are often a better bet than a head collar because some dogs just really hate the head collar. I'll give the dog a short session or two to get used to a head collar, but if they continue to react strongly to it by crying, trying to get it off, etc. then I figure it's not really doing what I want anyway and will switch to another method.

Originally Posted by pancake View Post
I hit a ceiling where I can only get so much response from her because the check choke/martingale type collar correction was having ZERO affect on her.
I've talked to some trainers who believe that choke collars can actually exacerbate pulling with some dogs, because of how dogs respond to generalized pressure like that, even when it is just applied as a short correction. I'm not sure though, as I've never used a regular choke myself (just prong collars in the past). Just thought I'd put it out there for discussion.

The rowdy dogs:
Hector-2 y/o GSD (mix?) rescue
Scooter-12 y/o ACD/Border Collie mix
Bandit-8 y/o ACD
Wooby-14 y/o ACD
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