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View Full Version : Collar or harness?



irzi86
07-28-2009, 04:31 PM
What do you (or your pooch for that matter) prefer?
I have been thinking about harness for Kona, but i worry that it will cause her discomfort?:??:

And if you use a harness, which model do you use?


it would help me a lot, thanks:D

lauralu
07-28-2009, 05:06 PM
I just use a slip lead for quick outings (to the vet, etc) but if I am going on a walk or hike I use a no pull harness. The dogs love it because they don't get choked, and I love it because they don't pull! It makes for a very pleasant experience all around. And it makes it easier for me to walk multiple dogs since they are much calmer walkers when wearing it.

Here is the harness I use. MUST be fit properly or it won't work. Fit information is on the website.

http://www.softouchconcepts.com/

autiger23
07-28-2009, 05:38 PM
Laura- do you find that the dogs 'remember' how to walk properly (no pulling) after using the harness even when they don't have it on? That's been my biggest reason for not getting one (now that I understand that my friend just didn't have hers fit properly and that's why it was useless). Scout is also now getting the hang of not pulling even when she doesn't have the prong collar on. I'm going to slowly ween her off of it, simply because we go on lots of walks (no yard), and I don't want to rely too heavily on any training tool. Just wondered if you'd been using it long enough to see a difference when they aren't wearing it.

irzi86
07-28-2009, 05:47 PM
thx lauralu:) i like that harness, it seems so lightweight.


i was considering this one
http://www.hurttacollection.com/products?a=catalog.product.view&product_id=69


or this one

http://www.ruffwear.com/Stown-Go-Harness?sc=2&category=1131#


Kona doesn't pull on the lead, so i do not have to take this into consideration thx god:)

lauralu
07-28-2009, 07:40 PM
I would not get a harness that attaches in the back as it actually encourages pulling. Think sled dog.

My dogs are all trained not to pull on any leash BUT when we are on a hike and they get excited, they will pull on the slip lead or martingale where they won't on the harness. So I pretty much quit using anything but the harness, since it comfortable, non-aversive and positive for all.

lauralu
07-28-2009, 07:50 PM
Laura- do you find that the dogs 'remember' how to walk properly (no pulling) after using the harness even when they don't have it on? Just wondered if you'd been using it long enough to see a difference when they aren't wearing it.

I'm not sure what you mean. My dogs are either off leash or on leash. When they are on leash, they are on the harness.

KAKZooKpr
07-28-2009, 10:18 PM
I'm not sure what you mean. My dogs are either off leash or on leash. When they are on leash, they are on the harness.

I think she means if you were to walk them by collar, rather than the harness, would they walk without pulling? Have they actually learned to walk on a loose leash?

I think for my guys, currently they would behave according to the equipment I am using. They have not yet generalized not to pull regardless of what they are being walked with.

Kristina

lauralu
07-28-2009, 10:37 PM
I think she means if you were to walk them by collar, rather than the harness, would they walk without pulling? Have they actually learned to walk on a loose leash?

I think for my guys, currently they would behave according to the equipment I am using. They have not yet generalized not to pull regardless of what they are being walked with.

Kristina

All of my dogs have all been trained to walk on a loose leash with martingale collars and / or slip leads, but some things make them pull (cats, squirrels, skunks, prairie dogs, bunnies, skateboards, etc...) regardless of the equipment. They pull less and are much easier to control with the harness. I would never walk my dogs just on their regular collars. My dogs wear their collars pretty loose. I guess what I am not understanding is that if the harness works so well for me and my dogs, AND my dogs love it, it is comfortable for them to wear, AND it is very comfortable for both of us to use, why would I ever NOT want to use it when walking them? For me and them, because we love it the most, (and I have tried almost every kind of equipment out there) it is lifetime equipment!

nschiro
07-28-2009, 10:41 PM
Pawsom uses a Premier Easy Walk Harness when we are in situations that are too hard for her to concentrate on walking politely. We do practice polite walking on a collar and leash too but are still too early on in that part of our training to go without her harness. I don't like her to pull by her neck ever plus that can sometimes reinforce a dog to pull more. They have a natural opposition reflex.

When she is tied out or we are hiking she wears a regular roman style harness from Earthdog. It's made out of hemp so it's really soft especially after washing.

She wears a martingale collar otherwise.

A no-pull harness will not teach your dog not to pull on leash except when they are wearing the harness. So you still will need to work on polite walking. I teach my dogs that the zone around my legs is super good - lots of good things happen there (treats and toys get thrown). I also teach my dogs to target my hands at my sides to bring them back to position if they start to pull. So we use the harness to be able to walk and not reinforce pulling when the environment is beyond Pawsom's training level and so that she can still get plenty of walks and exercise.

Nicole

autiger23
07-29-2009, 02:02 AM
I guess what I am not understanding is that if the harness works so well for me and my dogs, AND my dogs love it, it is comfortable for them to wear, AND it is very comfortable for both of us to use, why would I ever NOT want to use it when walking them?

Oh, that's just one of my trainers telling me not to let them be 'reliant' on something that she considers a training tool. It's all about what works for the particular dog and all. I probably shouldn't let one person's opinion make a difference on what I do. Scout's been using a prong collar to learn to not pull, but I don't want it to be something we always use because a) I don't always have it on hand and b)lots of people see it and assume that she's mean. That's a lack of education, but it definitely makes a difference since we are constantly out among other people and dogs.

Does the harness get easy to put on and off them, or do you just leave it on all the time? We go on about three walks a day not including when I take her to the park, day care, training, etc- so I was worried about taking it on and off a bunch of times if it's difficult.

MaggieDog
07-29-2009, 07:50 AM
I use lots of different equipment. :)

For hikes and walks where slight pulling is allowed (on longlines, hikes, etc.) the dogs wear regular body harnesses that clip on the back because I 1) like having a cue that pulling is ok and 2) if they hit the end of a line on a harness with a back attachment it's much safer for them. Maggie wears an Alpine Outfitters Urban Trail Harness (also when rollerblading), Z wears a Lupine Roman Harness, and Kes wears a Ruffwear WebMaster harness.

For situations where perfect leash manners are needed, Z and Maggie are trained on martingale or flat collars. Kes is still working on manners so unless it's a training session and he has my full attention, he wears a Gentle Leader Easy Walk front lead harness. When we're working on it, he wears a martingale.

lucystrauss
07-29-2009, 08:31 AM
I used a gentle leader on Lucy while we were training. Now that she heels perfectly even off-leash, I just use a regular buckle collar. She's offleash on most of our walks, but around traffic and kids, I leash her and she knows to stay by my side. Those softtouch harnesses seem nice though!

lauralu
07-29-2009, 09:25 AM
Does the harness get easy to put on and off them, or do you just leave it on all the time? We go on about three walks a day not including when I take her to the park, day care, training, etc- so I was worried about taking it on and off a bunch of times if it's difficult.

The front close harnesses are super easy to put on and take off because they slip over their heads, they don't have to step in them. And they are safe to leave on while playing at the park, the ones I use don't have that extra martingale loop in the front that can get caught on stuff. So often I will just detach the leash and they are ready to go.

And I guess your trainer has a point, but I just see the harness as part of the leash. Again this is just has worked for me and my guys. I volunteer at a shelter so I often have access to a bunch of tools to test drive.

MICKEYSMOM
07-29-2009, 09:39 AM
This is by far the best HARNESS/COLLAR I have ever tried...and I tried them all!!!

http://www.softouchconcepts.com/ http://www.softouchconcepts.com/images/SA100ML-PRP_wdiag250.jpghttp://www.softouchconcepts.com/images/Brie_fromLisa315.jpg



YOU PUT THIS ON AND IT WORKS LIKE MAGIC...AND YES, MICKEY DID LEARN NOT TO PULL WHEN HE'S NOT WEARING IT...^^

It is worth the money...:D

lauralu
07-29-2009, 11:46 AM
Amen Michelle, that's the same one I use!

autiger23
07-29-2009, 05:25 PM
The front close harnesses are super easy to put on and take off because they slip over their heads, they don't have to step in them. And they are safe to leave on while playing at the park, the ones I use don't have that extra martingale loop in the front that can get caught on stuff.

Ah ha!! This all makes sense now! The one mine friend has is COMPLETELY different than this one. This one looks wayyyyyyyyy more awesome! Hers has the martingale loop you are talking about which, with my two, means you have to remove it every time since they would use it as a handle to drag each other around even when supervised.

The slip over the head part I think is also different than hers. I think her dog has to step into it and Scout is just not a fan of that sort of thing. The fact that you can leave it on is the part I really, REALLY like though. Good deal- now I have an alternative. Thanks for all the info! Are there any tips for making sure it's properly fitted or are the tips on the web site sufficient?

lauralu
07-29-2009, 06:03 PM
Just measure before you order. These fit instructions are pretty detailed, but it will also come with a hard copy!

http://www.softouchconcepts.com/support/instructions_2.html

Once the harness is sized, one "cheater" tip I use that helps a lot of voluteers at the sheletr that forget how to put them on is to put their right hand over the label with the ring hanging down, facing the dog, slip over the head, buckle behind the front legs and you are done!