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Dog Collars - choosing the right one
We are frequently asked by customers about what the best type of dog collar is to get their dog so we thought we would provide a guide on what dog collars are available and how they compare. To see our range check out the dog collars section of our website and for an ever greater selection don't forget to pop into our shop.
General collar handy hints
We recommend that the collar be taken off when indoors, particularly if your dog sleeps in a crate to avoid the collar getting caught on the crate. If you have more than one dog collars can get caught or be chewed threw by the other dogs so this is another reason to leave the collar off when not out on walks.
When fitting a collar you should always be able to fit a couple of fingers between the collar and your dogs neck to avoid it being too tight. If you are concerned that your dog may be able to slip the collar then a martingale style dog collar may be the best option .
What sort of dog collar should I get?
There is no one right answer to this question. Part of the choice is down to personal preference (some people may like a plain traditional style whilst others, like myself, prefer to have a something a bit more funky!) and part is to do with the type of dog you have. We do not view the collar as a training tool but rather a practical requirement for keeping your dog safe and under control and being able to display the legally required ID Tag when out in public. If you are looking for something to help with pulling then other items are better for training with (headcollars, harnesses etc).
Nylon Dog Collars - This is the most popular type of collar sold in our shop. They are lightweight, easy to adjust and they can be frequently washed (making them a good choice for dogs who like to swim). Most nylon collars now come with a side release buckle which makes them safe and easy to put on and off. Nylon collars are often popular for new puppies as they are not too cumbersome and can be easily adjusted for growth. The Red Dingo range of dog collars and leads are very popular in our store and this is the style we use on our dogs Daisy and Sam. The Wag N Walk dog collars range are a popular budget range but are still good quality.
Leather Dog Collars - Leather dog collars are also very popular. If you purchase a good quality leather collar they can last a long while whilst looking very stylish. We do not tend to recommend leather dog collars for dogs which are frequent swimmers (especially those that like to go in the sea) as the salt water can start to perish the leather over time. The dye can also come out of vegetable dyed leather dog collars when they get wet. If you are purchasing a leather collar bear in mind that they do not usually have as much adjustability as a nylon one with a side release buckle so they are not always ideal for puppies in terms of getting the longest use out of them whilst the pup is growing.
Martingale or Half Check Dog Collars - Half checks and martingale collars can be useful but it is very important to ensure that they are fitted properly. They are handy for dogs which are Houdini experts at slipping their collars (often Hounds are prone to be able to do this). By fitting the collar so that if the dog puts the breaks on or moves at an unusual angle it will tighten slightly this will save the dog slipping the collar. Some trainers use them for "correction" purposes when training but we do not recommend them for use in this way as we believe that it is more effective to use positive training methods when training and often they can be made too tight meaning that they can still choke/hurt the dog.
Round Rolled Sewn Dog Collars - These types of collars are often used for dogs which have a long or soft coat to minimise breakage and damage to the coat. Because they are very slim line we don't recommend these being used for dogs which are strong pullers as they won't provide as much support for the neck as a wider, flat collar.
Correction Style Dog Collars (including Choke Collars/Check Chains, Prong Collars and Shock Collars) - We do not advocate the use of these types of collars at Just Dogs as they have been proven to have potential adverse effects which include inhibition of learning, increased fear-related and aggressive behaviours, and injury to animals and people interacting with animals. They can also cause physical side effects such as nerve damage and asphyxia.
Hound Dog Collars - We also stock collars which have been designed specifically for the long, slim necks of Hounds. These are a herringbone shape so they provide extra support for their necks. Because Sighthounds can often make a lunge if they see their prey it also means more support if a sudden strong pull happens. Hound owners often select martingale style collars as Hounds are experts at slipping their collars!
Rubber style dog collars - New to Just Dogs are the Dublin Dog range of collars. These are made from a comfortable and durable rubber and are ideal for dogs that love the water!
Headcollars - These come in a variety of different styles including Halti, Gentle Leader, GenCon, Canny Collar, Dogmatic. They all essentially do the same job but they have their own pros and cons. Some sit slightly differently on the dogs face depending on the breed. Some pull from slightly different positions. A Headcollar is designed to help stop your dog pulling. It can often be an effective "quick fix" but you should be aware that a Headcollar does not teach your dog to stop pulling and training should be done in conjunction with using the Headcollar otherwise the dog is still likely to pull when the headcollar is not in use. Whilsta good fitting Headcollar can be hugely helpful dogs often need a bit of time and help in getting used to wearing it. Whilst it is not harmful to the dog it can be an unusual sensation. If you are planning to introduce a Headcollar this video by Jean Donaldson is so useful for showing you how to get a positive reaction to it from your dog.