Are "pop-release" corrections safe? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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Are "pop-release" corrections safe?

So I started puppy class and they advocate the pop-release correction with a flat collar...i.e. giving slack on the leash, pulling back abruptly, then slacking again.
Prior to this I'd been using noise/scruff grabs as corrections which is what the breeder told me to do as that's how the dog's mom's say "no". I've heard of (and done) these corrections with prong collars on other dogs, but I'm having trouble wrapping my mind around them with a flat collar... Isn't that just essentially hitting the dog in the front of their neck? Isn't that going to cause damage? Or am I totally underestimating how tough their necks are...
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 05:03 PM
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If you have a young puppy, I would not be doing pop/release corrections at all. I would be using positive reinforcement/praise and food motivation for a very young puppy.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 05:58 PM
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Yes you're correct on the damage thought. That's why prongs are so nice, you don't have to use as much force. That being said I would not use these techniques on a puppy at all. Puppies need all positive fun training. If your trainer is still advocating that, I might look into another trainer.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 06:03 PM
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It really depends on the dog. A prong is more effective in making the correction quicker and more exact, and also gets through to many dogs. A flat collar has the same effectiveness but you need a softer or more handler sensitive dog that doesn't really have a mind of its own. Many people have trained with just a flat collar using positive reinforcement or even some corrections, really depends on the dog.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 06:35 PM
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I found leash pops to be useless. They do nothing to teach the dog what you want, they only interrupt a behavior. There are kinder ways of doing that, especially on a puppy.

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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 07:01 PM
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How old is your puppy? In a puppy class the question shouldn't be whether one type of correction is safer than another, it should be why are you using corrections to train new behaviors with a young puppy.

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 07:09 PM
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I just checked your earlier posts and it looks like this is a 13/14 week old puppy? Wow. I definitely wouldn't be in a class that used leash corrections on a puppy that young.

Where do you live? Are there other options for classes near you?

-Debbie-
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 09:51 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the feedback, guys.
I'm not using them, I was kind of surprised that they were. Yes, he's 13 weeks today, actually. The only time I have is when he tries to run out into the street on walks to chase the cars (yes.. we've graduated from "what are those big scary things!" to "ooh, can I play with them?!" *sigh*). Personally I don't think a puppy that young needs corrections during training unless they're doing something that's going to endanger his/her life, but from a more general curiosity standpoint I was wondering if they were even safe at all, even on older dogs.

I'm near Peoria, IL. I know of one other training place nearby, but I had opted for this one because it was closer and my vet recommended it more (I didn't know anyone else in the area with dogs to ask). So far, I'm not impressed and probably won't be back for obedience, but it's good socialization for him if nothing else.

Also (I'm not thinking about it any time soon, but just to keep in the back of my mind..) when is a reasonable age to switch to a prong for training? I'm hoping I won't have to - trying to go the positive reinforcement route - but he's already a very confident, stubborn, and strong willed pup and he's quickly going to be much stronger than I am.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 09:56 PM
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Usually prongs are introduced at around 6-8 months...some dogs never need a prong. Some dogs shouldn't wear a prong if the prong ramps up the behavior.
I would let your vet know that their recommendation is a bit compulsion based(at least for the young puppy class)

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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 10:02 PM
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Are "pop-release" corrections safe?

Prongs should not be used until the pup is very good at commands. I would not put one on a dog under 8 months, probably not until a year.

Puppies need to learn how to learn. There should be a lot if waiting for the puppy to offer behaviors and reWrd what you want. I want a puppy to be throwing out every behavior in the book in the hopes if getting a treat.

Compulsion of any kind is only to be used when a dog turkey understand what is being asked and decided not to do it. A 4 month old puppy is NOT there yet.

If the pup is not responding, you are not giving a good enough reward.


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