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I'm not one who is extremely against prong collars. I tried on out on my dog, and I tried it around my own wrist before I put it on her. It's not really evil, or painful, just uncomfortable. As a matter of fact, it didn't seem to bother my dog at all, meaning it didn't help. I did find something called the Gentle Leader Easy Walk Harness, and that works amazing. I went through chokers, pinch collars and a regular gentle leader, none of which worked with my crazy german shepherd.

For anyone firmly against the prong/pinch collars, but in need of a solution, I recommend this Gentle Leader Easy Walk Harness. Most harnesses promote pulling, think of a sled dog with the attachment on the back of the dog on the harness. This one has its attachment on the front by your dogs chest, making it nearly impossible for him/her to pull your arm out while walking!


 

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When I bring out the prong she gets excited and knows we are going for a walk and I would think if it was so much torture she would back off
The fact that she likes it, tells me that the way you are using it is humane. I would encourage you to keep going.
I would not confuse your dog's excitement for what the collar represents (a walk) with an appreciation for the collar itself. This is an example of classical conditioning. Pavlov's dog salivated at the sound of a bell because he associated the bell with food. Your dog gets excited when you grab your leash and collar because he's associated these antecedents with a walk. All this says is your dog likes walking.
 

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I'm working with Luna on not pulling, too. I'm seriously confused about using clicker training to teach loose leash walking because I don't WANT my dog to stop, turn around and wait for the darn treat. I want her to keep walking, just without collapsing her windpipe and pulling my arm out of the socket!

Right now I have a 4 month old Akita/GSD pup with an amazing amount of pent up energy because we can't go for adequate walks, because I'm afraid she's going to seriously injure herself. This dog PULLS. I'm talking front legs off the ground pulling when I stop or try to slow her down. I can SEE the pressure on her neck and hear her wheezing.

So, we'll stop and go the other direction. She's like, "No big deal. I'll just pull going in this direction."

I did manage to get some loose leash walking (a few seconds worth at a time) last night when we were walking away from the house, but as soon as we turned towards it, she turned back into crazy pulling pup. Then, I ran out of treats (not so sure I want to stick her gut so full of treats, anyway) and things REALLY got bad. I very nearly picked up my 40 pound pup and CARRIED her the rest of the way home (we weren't very far) because I was so worried she'd injure herself.

And most of the "loose leash walking" was her either stopping and turning towards me or turning her head towards me and practically making me trip over her because she's crossing my path in her eagerness to get the treat.

So.. advice for me? Explanation to how clicker training works in this situation?

My puppy class (mostly socialization) trainer has suggested either a gentle leader (which I saw work AMAZINGLY well on a Viszla puppy) or a plastic prong collar (I think something like THIS ). I don't know that the Gentle Leader will work on Luna... my trainer readily admits it works really well on some dogs, but not at all on others.

Oh, and we start formal obedience class on April 2nd. The trainer at that facility is thinking he's going to have us skip Puppy Kindergarten and go right into Beginning Obedience because of Luna's size.
 

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I don't WANT my dog to stop, turn around and wait for the darn treat.
You mean your dog can't walk and chew gum at the same time? :p

Then, I ran out of treats (not so sure I want to stick her gut so full of treats, anyway)
If you can get away with using her daily ration of food you're likely to avoid over stuffing her.

And most of the "loose leash walking" was her either stopping and turning towards me or turning her head towards me and practically making me trip over her because she's crossing my path in her eagerness to get the treat.
In clicker trainer you're taught to click for behavior and reward for position. You should deliver the treat where you want your dog to be next. I imagine you're rewarding across your body and that's why the dog is crossing in front of you.

So.. advice for me? Explanation to how clicker training works in this situation?
You simply click for a position, you may or may not click for eye contact too. And reward in that position. Are you stopping as you reward?

I would invest some time in a low distracting, safe enclosure - like a tennis court with gates that close. And just walk laps around the court, with you dog off-lead or on a long drag line. Your dog will do doggy things, sniff, maybe pee, and walk in random pattern like dogs do. When your dog checks in at your side, reward her, and keep walking. What you want to track is what happens over time. Does she check in more frequently as time passes, if so, use this one technique to reinforce that loose leash position.
 

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Thank you for your response!

Yes, I am rewarding across my body, but as things are now it's the only way I can. Since 99% of the time she is pulling like a sled dog on the leash, I have to have it tightly clasped in the hand closest to her (actually I have to have it wrapped tightly around my hand, otherwise it slips and she is "rewarded" with extra leash when she pulls).

Unfortunately, I don't know that I can use her daily ration of food as a reward. I haven't been able to actually find a food that she likes. She's pretty indifferent to it, so I've had to invent creative ways to get her to eat it (throwing it around seems to be the most effective.. chasing it is a great fun game). She's also on a bland diet right now while her tummy settles (she had diarrhea problems, but has had normal stool for over a week now). I will definitely try using her regular food as reward, though. Maybe she will like it better in this fashion.

I am not stopping as I reward, just trying to shove the treat in her as quick as I can so she keeps moving. Silly dog, can't multitask apparently. LOL!

The tennis court idea sounds like a really good one. I will have to bring her in to town this weekend and give it a try (we live about 35 minutes outside of the nearest city/town).
 

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I'm working with Luna on not pulling, too. I'm seriously confused about using clicker training to teach loose leash walking because I don't WANT my dog to stop, turn around and wait for the darn treat. I want her to keep walking, just without collapsing her windpipe and pulling my arm out of the socket!
Here's my experience (also have a large dog): I used the clicker to mark the moment when he was in the "sweet spot", which is right around my left leg while walking. At first he stopped to get the treat, but now he just walks there without getting rewarded every step. I can got 25-30 steps before giving him a treat, and because he's already in that position there is not stopping or turning that he has to do.

We're currently working on giving me eye contact after he's sit, using Ian Dunbar's Sit/Stay Loose-leash walking technique. Basically, we are walking, then if he starts to pull or the leash goes taught, I stop, wait for him to sit (on his own) and look at me, then I take 1-2 steps and do it again. I want him to learn that when the leash goes taught, it either means he's pulling or I've stopped. Either way, I want his focus on me. Focusing on me is not one of his strong points.
 

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Discussion Starter #47
I don't think the plastic prong would be strong enough for her and she has such thick dense fur she probably wouldn't be able to feel it.

CB- Why would she not want to go on a walk then when I take out the halti but gets excited on a prong?? She definately knows these 2 are for walking. EVERY dog is different, maybe you haven't met many head strong pullers but think you have
 

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Trixie hated the halti at least as much as the prong. We had to settle on the Easy Walk Harness which worked well although My wife would put it on upside down because she didnt like the dog kicking the leash. LOL

But that harness and Lots of stops and starts w a flat collar worked fine.
 

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Yes, I am rewarding across my body, but as things are now it's the only way I can. Since 99% of the time she is pulling like a sled dog on the leash, I have to have it tightly clasped in the hand closest to her (actually I have to have it wrapped tightly around my hand, otherwise it slips and she is "rewarded" with extra leash when she pulls).
I clip a 4' leash around my waist, then clip another 4' leash to it. This is a great way to fashion a hands-free leash, and I can release the lead attached to Tucker easily. At 95 pounds, when he wants to go, sometimes even my waist can't stop him.
Unfortunately, I don't know that I can use her daily ration of food as a reward. I haven't been able to actually find a food that she likes.
Tucker *really* likes small bites EVO dog food with a cut-up hot dog, microwaved for 2 minutes as a treat. The EVO dog food is grain-free, with 42% protein, and while it's not cheap, it's cheaper in the long run versus buying crappy HFCS laden treats from the pet stores.
 

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Yes, I am rewarding across my body, but as things are now it's the only way I can. Since 99% of the time she is pulling like a sled dog on the leash, I have to have it tightly clasped in the hand closest to her (actually I have to have it wrapped tightly around my hand, otherwise it slips and she is "rewarded" with extra leash when she pulls).
You might be able to free up a hand with a hip leash. When she begins to surge ahead do you stop? Or continue walking as you gather her back? I would stop completely and wait for eye contact to reward, lure her into a sit next to you, then resume walking...repeating the process all over again. You might not get very far on that first walk this way, but what happens at walk 10, 20? If you're going farther each time something is working.

Unfortunately, I don't know that I can use her daily ration of food as a reward. I haven't been able to actually find a food that she likes. She's pretty indifferent to it, so I've had to invent creative ways to get her to eat it (throwing it around seems to be the most effective.. chasing it is a great fun game).
You might want to try spicing the kibble up. Maybe grating some cheese into it, or wiping you hands with salami or some other greasy meat and wiping the residue through the kibble will peak her interest. You should practice hand feeding at home too...not for free of course, but waiting for eye contact and giving her a piece of kibble may teach her that looking at you is rewarding, and kibble ain't all that bad either.

Why would she not want to go on a walk then when I take out the halti but gets excited on a prong?? She definately knows these 2 are for walking.
Likely because you didn't take the time to condition the Halti, and/or fit it correctly. Haltis use aversion too, and if you don't classically condition the collar, or keep the mouth loop too tight, your dog will refuse to walk. The Halti is NOT something you can throw on the dog and expect him to appreciate.

EVERY dog is different
Every dog is different, however, the principles by which they learn are the same, irregardless of the individual dog; just like the principle by which your feet stay firmly planted on Earth is the same principle for mine.

maybe you haven't met many head strong pullers but think you have
I recommend you stick with facts. Personal accusations and generaltions are not conducive to your forum use.
 

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I would not confuse your dog's excitement for what the collar represents (a walk) with an appreciation for the collar itself. This is an example of classical conditioning. Pavlov's dog salivated at the sound of a bell because he associated the bell with food. Your dog gets excited when you grab your leash and collar because he's associated these antecedents with a walk. All this says is your dog likes walking.

If the dog was getting hurt, then she would hate the collar. What did Dakotajo say about the halti? The dog hated it, it didn't work....
 

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If the dog was getting hurt, then she would hate the collar. What did Dakotajo say about the halti? The dog hated it, it didn't work....
CP
I have to go along with Corteo on this because for whatever reason I have had many dogs that when I go into kennel and put Prong collar on act extremely excited and this is not for a walk, this is for work and work sometimes can be tough. I make no claim of getting inside their heads, I have to make my read on the outside body actions, tails wagging etc. Just trying to confuse the issue a tad. I'm sure there are some that are excited by the possible walk program but not all.
Just as I have had some that are not excited at all because they have an extreme style loss the 1st 2 to 3 weeks of work and then style builds back up. All dogs are not created equal.
 

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If the dog was getting hurt, then she would hate the collar. What did Dakotajo say about the halti? The dog hated it, it didn't work....
You can argue with Pavlov all you like, but I don't recommend it. I hear he's pretty hard-headed these days. Now lets dissect what you just said...

"If the dog was getting hurt, the dog would hate the collar." Are you aware that a dog's survival is dependent on his ability to hide injury? If you are, than you're aware of how tolerant dogs are to our abuses. Don't confuse a dog's tolerance with like or dislike. So what if the dog likes walking more than the pain caused by the collar. Our humanity is not defined by what the dog likes, dislikes, or will tolerate. Our humanity is defined by being conscious of the pain we cause the animal; if we do use pain we darn well better acknowledge it, and seek to minimize its use.

As for the Halti, again, if the dog was not conditioned to the Halti, and/or the Halti was not fitted properly, it's not being used correctly...of course an ill fitted, poorly conditioned Halti will not work. This isn't news. But we're not talking about ill fitted prong collars (which require no conditioning), so we shouldn't talk about an ill fitted Halti. No matter how much you want to sugarcoat it, prong collars are effective when they cause pain. I see no reason to dance around fact.

BTW, the Halti, unlike the prong collar, was not designed to cause pain. It was designed to use leverage. Same with the EasyWalk harness.
 

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Discussion Starter #54
CP- I can tell you like to debate, and it is probably something that we could discuss forever. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but you don't know my dog and have never seen her pull or how she can run and run off leash for an hour and still race circles in my yard when we get home and I have a big yard! She's a full force puller and if this works this is what I will use until she can learn to walk without one. All I want is a dog to walk nice with me, geesh this is all I ask!


I take into cosideration everything everyone is telling me on this forum and the prong is working for us at the moment, who knows maybe it won't work for long and I'll have to try other things that have been mentioned here. I truly appreciate every single reply
 

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CP is not debating. CP is merely saying there are more humane, and more intillegent ways to train a dog rather than just slapping some pinch collar on to them to achieve what you want.
 

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CP- I can tell you like to debate...
I like the topic if it involves dogs, I like to be accurate, and I like stand up for our companions when they can not stand up for themselves. If this is a flaw of mine, I prefer being flawed.

All I want is a dog to walk nice with me, geesh this is all I ask!
That's it? Well heck, I saw this on sale last week.


:p <==Please take note of emoticon.
 

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I can't agree with that. There are plenty of other methods to use other than a tool. Think of it, if it was never invented, you would have had to use training methods without a tool and use good ol' praise and positive reinforcement.

But since man has decided to create things such as prong collars, choke collars, shock collars, electric fences, etc..no one really relies on training that takes a little while.

We live in a world of instant gratification.
 

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CP is not debating. CP is merely saying there are more humane, and more intillegent ways to train a dog rather than just slapping some pinch collar on to them to achieve what you want.
Actually I don't think I've debated alternate methods at all. What I have debated is misinformation that is commonly associated with this tool.

We live in a world of instant gratification.
While this is true, I don't believe dakotajo is seeking instant gratification at the expense of his dog. In fact I think dakotajo has acknowledged that several times.
 
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