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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, I know this question has kind of been answered already in other posts that I've seen, but I am looking for advice on what size prong collar to get for my GSD.

I had bought a Herm Sprenger 3.25mm under recommendation from the seller, and now that I have it I find that it does not fit well (either too loose and slips or too tight). So, I am looking into getting another one. After wasting 40$ on that one, I want to make sure I get it right this time, hence why I am writing for advice.

I don't know whether to get the 3.0mm or the 2.25mm. After reading stories about prongs breaking apart, I am kind of worried that that the 3.25mm won't be strong enough.

Another thing that really bothers me about the 3.25mm is the chain. The links are big and I find that they do not go through the hole smoothly, it's like it catches on each link. So, I was also wondering if the smaller models have a finer chain, stopping this from happening. I don't even know if I explained myself properly, I can make a video if you want.

And, last question, if my dog's neck measures 16" (top of neck), does that mean I need to use a 16" collar or do I need the extra link to make it 17"? This question is not about me being too cheap to buy an extra link, lol, but more to know how you fit your collars. Also, the 3.0mm is sold in 22" with 1.5" prongs, so I could get it down to 16", but not to 17".

Thanks for your advice.
 

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well im sure others will chime in, but my trainer fitted my dog with a prong collar. this took all the guess work out and she also showed me what could go wrong and how to fix it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks for your reply.

And, just to say that the last paragraph that I wrote came out completely wrong, I re-read it and I kind of feel like an idiot now, lol. Sorry about that.

Basically, what I was trying to ask is if prong collars are sold by their actual size or for the size of the dog's neck? I would have checked length on the one I had, but I already sent it back.

As in, when a prong is labeled 16", is that for a 16" neck or is the collar itself 16" length (meaning I'd have to add)?
 

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My trainer (back when I used prongs) said they prefer to use the "small" (2.25) size prongs on most dogs except for giant breeds and types with really thick neck fur like Malamutes. They find it to work better, give more feedback and it also helps to give a better fit.
The prongs breaking apart is not generally a strength issue, but rather due to the links getting 'loose' over time due to the collar being out on/off (since you have to pinch the links) so that the links separate and the collar comes off. Sometimes using a collar that comes on/on in another way than pinching th links together may help because the links aren't being messed with. I never had my dog's come apart once I switched to a quick release prong which attaches at the chain part, but I know other people have said the release has come loose on theirs. If you are worried about this you can use a safety strap or double collar attaching to the leash so if the prong comes loose, the dog will still be on leash.
 

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Choosing the correct length should be easy enough. Just measure around the dog's neck below the ears and add a little. You can always remove links. Remember the collar should fit snuggly and just below the ears. It also depends on how handler hard your dog is and what you are using the collar for. If you have a very handler hard dog, I would go with larger prongs for protection obedience corrections. If he is more handler sensitive, go with smaller prongs. With obedience, go with smaller prongs.
 

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get the 2.25 and I would get a few extra links you never know when you might need an extra I have crushed a few in my tail gate even.

The only way to find the perfect fit is to put it on.
 

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The 3.0mm and the 3.2mm collars have the same size links with the exception of the gauge, however the martingale chain on the 3.0mm is much finer and won't 'click' through the sides in the same way the 3.2mm does, it should be a much smoother action. The link size is 1.25" not 1.5". The 2.25mm gauge collars have a 1" link size.

The comment about links coming apart from being too 'loose' is correct, one bug bear is a large portion of people don't maintain equipment properly then blame the equipment if it fails. If the links seem loose or can slide too far down the preceeding link all it takes is to remove the link, put your thumbs between the prongs and force them outwards, it'll tighten the collar back up and reduce the chance of links coming apart at random.

The gauge seems to be a highly contectious issue, personally I wouldn't dream of using a 2.25mm collar with a GSD for anything other than specialist training in controlled conditions, the correction is too harsh for most dogs and the links have more potential to bend out of shape, I see it as an irresponsible choice by purpously putting the equipment at its limits and risking fallout or failure, but others will disagree.

If the larger gauge seems too loose and keeps sliding down the neck the obvious solution is a change of technique, I don't understand the want for a collar to perform in one way but not adapting technique to make it work like that. If you expect a dog to run ahead on a 6' lead and not have the collar slide down the neck, and making the collar smaller means it's too tight, then your expectation is incompatible with the equipment and the trade off is to prevent this is not to have the dog running ahead on a long lead but to change to a short lead and keep the dog closer. You can't always have your cake and eat it.

The collars are sold in absolute sizes, a 16 inch collar is exactly that, 16 inch. It's just a starting point where you modify the size from to suit the dog. Based on a 16 inch neck you'd be better set having 2 additional links with the 2.25mm collars, but I've already given you my opinion on the unsuitability of using that gauge so it's down to your own preference.
 
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