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Tassle
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21-10-2010, 08:35 AM
Originally Posted by swarthy View Post
how in gods name do you work that out?

A harness will never train a dog to walk correctly on a lead - on young dogs they can damage the skeletal system.

A chain or slip lead used correctly will train the dog how to walk properly - note the use of the word CORRECTLY - used incorrectly, yes potentially fear and damage - but not when used correctly.
Hmm.....Not sure where you get that idea from - harnesses can help teach dogs how to walk correctly (or maybe more accurately - how the owners would like them to)

I note you say can for harness and then highlight the word 'Correctly' for choke chains obviously understanding that any tool (even a standard collar) can damage a dog when a person uses it incorrectly.

Correct me if I am wrong....My understanding of how you use a choke chain is as follows -
The chain must be on the release side?
The dog starts to move to far forward and you check (ie tighten) then release?

Does the dog respond to the noise or the pressure?
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Wysiwyg
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21-10-2010, 08:39 AM
Originally Posted by crumpetface View Post
,..... Not sure it will go down well with the more experienced staff though - i went this morning and helped out in the cattery, most of the dogs i saw being walked were on choke chains and slip leads. I just don't think an already stressed out, anxious dog is going to feel any better having pain inflicted upon it by me. And I don't think anyone who goes there looking for a big dog, is going to expect it to be trained perfectly and not pull at all on the lead. It certainly wouldn't put me off rescuing a dog.
Difficult as you don't want to come across as a know it all from the very beginning. Try to use a harness, then if you have to use a choker, try to get the dog's attention on you so the bad effects are minimised (but this might be easier said, than done!).

Then as you are better known, maybe you can start to suggest changes. However the RSPCA have been walking dogs on chokers for years and years....

Slip leads are easy to get on the dog, but very bad for walking with, worse than choke chains, due to the fact that rope leads etc tend to get caught and not always release..... not pleasant for the dog.
In fact much of the walk could be extremely uncomfortable for it.

Wys
x
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Meg
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21-10-2010, 09:00 AM
Originally Posted by swarthy View Post
how in gods name do you work that out?

A harness will never train a dog to walk correctly on a lead - on young dogs they can damage the skeletal system.

A chain or slip lead used correctly will train the dog how to walk properly - note the use of the word CORRECTLY - used incorrectly, yes potentially fear and damage - but not when used correctly.
Hi Swathy, I use a harness not to 'train a dog to walk correctly' that is my job not the job of the harness, I use one to make walking comfortable for the dog by distributing any pressure (should it pull) around the body rather than concentrating it on the neck and throat. If I was a puppy I would much rather wear a nice comfortable padded harness than a noose around by neck .

IMO training a dog to walk correctly on a lead is down to the methods the person teaching the dog uses rather than the equipment they use.
I would never use a choke chain or anything that causes a dog pain and discomfort and I can train dogs without the need to use these things, it just take time and patience and a measure of common sense.
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PONlady
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21-10-2010, 09:23 AM
Originally Posted by swarthy View Post
how in gods name do you work that out?

A harness will never train a dog to walk correctly on a lead - on young dogs they can damage the skeletal system.

A chain or slip lead used correctly will train the dog how to walk properly - note the use of the word CORRECTLY - used incorrectly, yes potentially fear and damage - but not when used correctly.
Let us agree on one thing at least - no "thing" trains a dog to walk correctly on a lead - that can only be done by a handler using patient, careful training, regardless of the equipment used.

Sadly in most rehoming centres you don't have the luxury of being able to spend all the time you might wish with every dog that comes in.

Modern harnesses do not damage the dogs skeletal system - in fact they are very carefully designed NOT to - and many are very effective at preventing dogs pulling like steam-locomotives, such as the Mekuti, the Walk Easy, and others. They aren't an excuse for not bothering to teach a dog the right way to walk on a lead - but they do help while such training is being worked on.

I used to be a 'pro' check-chain person - like you, I thought as long as they were used correctly, they were harmless and helped achieve the 'loose-lead' walk quickly and effectively - that the harm only came in when they were used incorrectly. But I changed my mind because of two reasons:

Firstly, no matter how well-trained the dog, no matter how well-versed the handler is in using a check-chain, you cannot remove the fear-factor - something could happen at any time to spook your dog, you cannot predict it or anticipate it. A dog who is spooked while he's wearing a check-chain is effectively punished for being frightened. I cannot see how that benefits the dog OR the owner in any way.

Secondly - I've come to realize that positive reinforcement is 100 times more effective when training a dog than negative (and so much more fun, too!) - and a check-chain is negative reinforcement.

I don't like the idea of walking dogs in rescue-centres on slip-leads or check-chains because of these two reasons, but I can see why it's the only practical way of coping. Money is extremely tight - good harnesses are expensive, and a harness that suits one dog would not suit another. It's better to take them out on slip-leads than not take them out at all - but that doesn't mean I'm comfortable with the idea.
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Crysania
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21-10-2010, 12:13 PM
Originally Posted by swarthy View Post
how in gods name do you work that out?

A harness will never train a dog to walk correctly on a lead - on young dogs they can damage the skeletal system.

A chain or slip lead used correctly will train the dog how to walk properly - note the use of the word CORRECTLY - used incorrectly, yes potentially fear and damage - but not when used correctly.
Gee I don't know. Maybe because pain tends to create stress and fear in all creatures, both human and not? Maybe because suddenly being choked for something, especially when you don't even understand why, is a scary thing? Maybe because a reactive dog is often reactive out of fear and the last thing you want to do is cause them pain, which gives them a reason to believe they're right to be afraid?

Harnesses do not harm the skeletal system. Where on earth did you get that from?

And choke chains used "correctly" or not are still meant to do one thing: choke. Even if it's briefly, it's still frightening. If you don't believe me, have someone put one around your neck and have them "check" you every time you do something they don't want you to do. See how it feels.
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majuka
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25-10-2010, 02:49 PM
Having recently started as a volunteer dog walker at Dogs Trust, your thread has really interested me. During our induction we were advised that the majority of dogs we would walk would be walked on a normal collar and lead. Once we have been there longer, if we we want, we can work with some of the more challenging dogs who might be walked on headcollars. At no time were choke chains mentioned.

I know that in an ideal world all dogs in rescue would be able to walk nicely and not put off potential owners. DT told us they were not expecting miracles but they would like us to try and get the dogs to walk nicely. A couple of the dogs that I have walked that have now been rehomed didn't have the best walking I've ever seen but it obviously didn't put the new owners off!

I have recently walked a little chihuahua at DT. Had I been given a choke chain to walk her with I would have walked out there and then and never gone back.
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rune
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25-10-2010, 03:29 PM
I thought most educated dog owners nowadays had dumped choke chains.

It is shocking that the RSPCA still find them acceptable.

I can understand the need for aslip type lead with some dogs---usually half checks work in these cases. To have choke chains as a blanket policy is pretty appalling.

rune
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Gnasher
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25-10-2010, 07:37 PM
Originally Posted by rune View Post
I thought most educated dog owners nowadays had dumped choke chains.

It is shocking that the RSPCA still find them acceptable.

I can understand the need for aslip type lead with some dogs---usually half checks work in these cases. To have choke chains as a blanket policy is pretty appalling.

rune
Tai had one, went straight in the bin when he came to live with us, as did the one I am ASHAMED to admit I had bought for Hal I think, although it might have been a previous dog. Ben came with a strange collar, sort of half a choke, half an ordinary collar, didn't like it all, and that went straight in the bin too and he wears an ordinary leather collar and very rarely pulls on the lead. Is this a half check?

I do have a couple of slip leads, but I don't like them really and very rarely use them.
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Gnasher
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25-10-2010, 07:40 PM
Originally Posted by majuka View Post
Having recently started as a volunteer dog walker at Dogs Trust, your thread has really interested me. During our induction we were advised that the majority of dogs we would walk would be walked on a normal collar and lead. Once we have been there longer, if we we want, we can work with some of the more challenging dogs who might be walked on headcollars. At no time were choke chains mentioned.

I know that in an ideal world all dogs in rescue would be able to walk nicely and not put off potential owners. DT told us they were not expecting miracles but they would like us to try and get the dogs to walk nicely. A couple of the dogs that I have walked that have now been rehomed didn't have the best walking I've ever seen but it obviously didn't put the new owners off!

I have recently walked a little chihuahua at DT. Had I been given a choke chain to walk her with I would have walked out there and then and never gone back.
Nice to hear that the DT are commonsense people. You most certainly do NOT need a choke to get dogs to walk nicely. I have very large northern breed types consisting of mainly Malamute, a breed notorious of course for pulling sledges, and using a normal collar and clip on lead I have trained both my dogs not to pull, easily, no pain, no choke, just simple calm consistency.
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wilbar
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26-10-2010, 08:41 AM
When I was a dog-walker for the DT about 5 years ago, they didn't use choke chains then either. The dogs were, as majuka says, on normal collar & lead, sometimes a half check for the skittish lurchers/greyhounds & with the strong pullers, they were on padded harnesses so they wouldn't cause themselves damage by the constant pulling. In fact, when I got to know the dogs I walked regularly, I would ask for a harness if it came to me on just a collar & lead. After a while I just helped myself from the "tack room" & "dressed" the dogs as I saw fit. I also used longlines for training & these were always attached to a padded harness.

I think it's a great shame that the RSPCA still uses choke chains as a matter of course.
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