06-23-2019, 05:53 AM
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: Cambridge MA
Mentioned: 50 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
My large dog who was 63 pounds the day I adopted him and now over 90 pounds, has permanent windpipe damage from being yanked around or pulling too strongly on a plain flat or martingale collar.
At the shelter when I adopted him I was told by the adoption counselors and vet recommendations to always only use a harness or gentle lead. He destroyed a gentle lead and head halter and I didn't like the risk of spinal damage I read about; when he sees a rabbit or other dog he used to pull, jump and twist and bend his whole neck and head at horrible angles. No way.
I've only ever used a prong on him when I hurt my wrist so severely I couldn't use my hand or arm at all, the day after surgery to put it back together, and after he knocked me down in a snowstorm once and almost dislocated my very bad knee. Never in a punishing way, just in a "I have to control this very hyper large strong dog to get him safely to my car so I can get him to the nearest fenced dog park to run his brains out and be calm again" way. Never used it in a threatening punishing harsh way. Only for absolute safety when I've been severely injured to get him to the car to exercise him safely so he won't get loose and get run over and killed.
He cowers the minute he sees the prong and hides and doesn't want to even go out. And I have the gentlest kind with plastic tips to not cause pain and I never yank or tug it the very few times I've used it at all. So some previous handler must have been pretty harsh since he has permanent damage and is so scared.
Now that's he's gained so much weight and is so much better trained I just use his front clip ez walk harness. Heck I used to walk him loose after my surgery and he stayed with me. Granted I had lots of bacon treats which he loves.
Op I hope your dog is better and you found a good alternative!