Help, we need advice re training classes please

I'm glad to hear the gently leader is working for you. Do be careful, as if the dog opts to pull anyway, and particularly if he lunges into it, this type of restraint can damage their necks. It's modeled on horse halters…...but horses have far more robust necks than most dogs!

thanks for the warning eeeefarm. At present there is absolutely no pulling at all. I did feel that when we were checking the dogs and they had collars on that that may well be damaging.

@thunderbird8588:

thanks for the warning eeeefarm. At present there is absolutely no pulling at all. I did feel that when we were checking the dogs and they had collars on that that may well be damaging.

Absolutely! You can damage the neck with pretty much any collar. Surprisingly, the really nasty looking prong collar appears to be less likely to do physical harm than most. I think the biggest danger with the halter type restraints is if the dog lunges suddenly and hits the end of the leash hard. Not a good idea to use a long leash with these. Bottom line, if they don't pull the collar won't hurt them.

There are also some very good harnesses for loose lead walking without the issues of neck injury. My 14 year old uses the Wags, Wiggles, and Whiskers Freedom Harness because he has a bulging disc. When clipped in the front it acts as a no pull harness. Clipped in the rear it reduces pulling but doesn't really discourage a determined puller. It has been wonderful Nicky as it has eliminated the stress on his neck. Also, the company will repair chewed harnesses. Nicky has not damaged his but we have had many people with dogs who have.

http://www.wiggleswagswhiskers.com/newsite/freedom-no-pull-harness.htm

An issue I had with the Gentle Leader was that though my dogs did not pull with it on, it was because they clearly found it aversive and shut down.

@eeeefarm:

Absolutely! You can damage the neck with pretty much any collar. Surprisingly, the really nasty looking prong collar appears to be less likely to do physical harm than most. I think the biggest danger with the halter type restraints is if the dog lunges suddenly and hits the end of the leash hard. Not a good idea to use a long leash with these. Bottom line, if they don't pull the collar won't hurt them.

I would say that the gentle leader is totaly unsuited to use with a long lead or retractable lead.
If we use the retractables we go back to collars.

@lvoss:

There are also some very good harnesses for loose lead walking without the issues of neck injury. My 14 year old uses the Wags, Wiggles, and Whiskers Freedom Harness because he has a bulging disc. When clipped in the front it acts as a no pull harness. Clipped in the rear it reduces pulling but doesn't really discourage a determined puller. It has been wonderful Nicky as it has eliminated the stress on his neck. Also, the company will repair chewed harnesses. Nicky has not damaged his but we have had many people with dogs who have.

http://www.wiggleswagswhiskers.com/newsite/freedom-no-pull-harness.htm

An issue I had with the Gentle Leader was that though my dogs did not pull with it on, it was because they clearly found it aversive and shut down.

thanks for the link, i like the look of the harness . If clipped to the front do you find it realy works to stop pulling ?
Our two aren't keen on the gentle leader and try to scrape it off from time to time. I however don't feel it is causing them too much stress and it certainly doesn't hurt them. I am hoping they get more used to it as time goes on. The results have been dramatic and a lot safer, ie no lunging at traffic or in Kwame's case other dogs. Will keep an eye on them though and will bear in mind what you have said, thanks.

Yes, when the leash is clipped to the front it does work to stop pulling and seems to calm most dogs. It is also soft nylon and the strap that goes behind the front legs and under them is velvet. Which reminds of the other thing to watch for with the Gentle Leader which is that it doesn't rub the fur off their muzzle.

@lvoss:

Yes, when the leash is clipped to the front it does work to stop pulling and seems to calm most dogs. It is also soft nylon and the strap that goes behind the front legs and under them is velvet. Which reminds of the other thing to watch for with the Gentle Leader which is that it doesn't rub the fur off their muzzle.

thanks …............................................

Yes, I,ve had problems with the Gentle Leader chafing but then mine kept trying to get out of it. It certainly seems to work for Kwame so it obviously suits him.
so pleased that you have found solutions for Kwame's problems. Kudos to you Shelley.
The harness Ivoss reccomends looks great and I've taken note of the link for use if necessary.

Helena, we still have a long way to go with Kwame but i feel more relaxed about him now. The support from people has helped along with the advice. It was such a relief not to go to classes with him on saturday, i felt like a load had been lifted off my shoulders. I guess i felt we should keep going because Malaika has done so well with them. It took a while to become apparent that the enviroment was wrong for him.
Kwame and Malaika do try to avoid having the leaders on and occasionaly on the walk will try to wipe them off on our legs 😉 however i feel they are worth persevering with as the effect is so dramatic and our walks are transformed.
I am keeping the harness in mind though if neccasary, it's good to know there are options.

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