Collar hating

If you've seen my post int the member's introduction forums, then you've seen pictures of my Charlie with a little red harness on.

Well Charlie out grew the harness a couple of weeks ago, so I went out to the dollar store to pick up a collar to use while he continues to grow.
He had been used to the harness and would walk on it without a fight. However, he absolutely hates the collar. I tried to take him on a short walk around the neighborhood, but didn't get past the driveway. He squirmed and jumped around, and everything else he could to get away from the collar. He'll also try to turn his head and nip at a hand if someone tried to pull him down from somewhere by the collar. He'll wear the collar without a problem durring the day, he just hates when it's lightly pulled at.

Any tips on how to get him used to his collar?
Or do you think that getting him a harness for walks would be better?

He'll be getting his rabies shot tomorrow, then I'll be getting him signed up for behavior classes at the SPCA. I'd like to be able to bring him to classes without him trowing a huge fit over having to have a collar pulled.

This is really a way to get loose leash walking but I think it will work for you and getting him used to walking on a collar and leash. It is a clicker training method but if you don't have a clicker you can just use the word "yes" instead of a click.

Get some treats, cut up nice and small, maybe the size of a pea. Put Charlie's collar and leash on and start by just clicking for him being near you with the snap of the leash hanging down. I usually start with click treat, count 1, click treat, count 1,2, click treat, count 1,2,3 click treat and just build up to about a 15 or 20 count of just staying near enough to you that there is no tension on the leash. Body position doesn't matter, just that the leash is loose and the snap hangs down. After that try taking a step if Charlie comes with you and the leash stays loose then click treat and take another step. In this method, Charlie learns that being near you is really good and there isn't the tension on the leash for him to fight against.

Takes time… My personal opinions on a harness is that it restricts their front movement to much for my taste. I have seen many dogs after being in a harness have problems with their shoulders later in life...... I will not use one ever... (well ok... if there was a reason I couldn't get a collar on... like an injury...)

I don't like the harnesses much either. If I can't get him to deal with a collar I'll get him a harness, but it'll only be used on walks and when he's out with me. At home I'd keep it of him.

I'll definetly try the clicker training way. Hopefully it'll work.
Thanks.

It is the walking part that can alter the shoulder movement…. but give it some time with the collar... or you might want to try the head halters/gentle leaders instead.

You can also just simply desensitize him to having someone touch his collar. Have tasty treats; reach for his collar; put treat in his mouth. Do this over and over…gradually apply more pressure by pulling, or tugging on collar; and continue to treat.

Make sure he has either a limited slip collar, or a martingale so that if he pitches a thrashing fit he can't slip out of his collar.

@Quercus:

You can also just simply desensitize him to having someone touch his collar. Have tasty treats; reach for his collar; put treat in his mouth. Do this over and over…gradually apply more pressure by pulling, or tugging on collar; and continue to treat.

Make sure he has either a limited slip collar, or a martingale so that if he pitches a thrashing fit he can't slip out of his collar.

I was going to say the same thing and also have him drag the leash around, it puts a light tug on the collar.

Some dogs take longer to get used to the collar and leash than others

I'll try both ideas. He'll eventually get used to walking with a collar. I find it a bit odd though. When he wrestles with my two lab mixes, which are two and three times his size, one of them will grab his collar and try to swing him and pin him with it. He never throws a fit over that.

He is just using his stubborn Basenji card with the collar. I sometimes have to chase Sahara for me to put her collar on, she will do anything for a chase. Weird dogs, but we love them anyways. haha!!!!:D

I suggest using the Gentle Leader Head Collar it changed my Basenji Bentley's attitude on a leash almost instantly. He is much better now.

I suggest using the Gentle Leader Head Collar it changed my Basenji Bentley's attitude on a leash almost instantly. He is much better now.

Just a thought-

when my B was a pup, we had a grocery store collar on her. It was very pretty, but snapped when she spooked at something silly. She took off in a strange city, no collar, no tags, no microchip. She was found cold, filthy, and gimpy 4 days later.

Since then, I refuse to use cheap collars on my dogs. I don't (usually) splurge on the expensive designer ones, I simply make sure that it is sturdy and the dogs aren't going anywhere. Specifically, I'm quite fond of Premier, Hamilton, and EarthDog collars. Better safe than sorry!

I agree that a good quality collar is a must. I too have had collars break, they were the lower end collars sold at pet stores like Petco and Petsmart.

My dogs' flat buckle collars are made by Bison, they are sold at Petco and have a website, http://www.bisondesigns.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=BD&Product_Code=34&Category_Code=Collars_Leads

For martingales, I really like All Hounds Apparel. They are more expensive but are garunteed for life and I have sent in the chewed pieces and recieved a replacement collar for free. http://allhoundsapparel.com/custom/list.asp?c=18147

My pups usually can wear their "adult" sized collars by the time they are old enough for their rabies shots. They often look big on them but the fit is correct. For the Bisons that would be the 10-16 inch size and for All Hounds I believe it is the 9-13 inch size.
attachment_p_27329_0_sophiehead.jpg

I definetly plan to get him a better collar, but I don't think this one will break for the 2-3 weeks that I use it on him. My 45 lb. lab/hound mix has grabbed Charlie's collar numerous times and pulled and tugged during their play fighting.
I'm also unsure of what size he would need as an adult, since I've never been around a full grown Basenji.
His neck is so tiny right now that a 9 inch collar would be huge on him.

I'll deninetly try all those methods and let everyone know how my little dork does.

Have you measured his neck? You might be surprised. The picture I attached to my last message was Sophie at 3 months old in her Bison collar that fits necks 10-16 inches.

I'll measure his neck later today. Here's a question though. Can a Basenji wear a regular collar or is a martingale collar better? I know some dogs can easily slip out of a normal collar, but Charlie hasn't been able to slip his head out of the regular collar I have on him now.

You might try to put something thinner and lighter on his neck to make him less senative.
Like some thin rope or thick ribbon, let him wear this 24/7 around the house…until he is used to having something on his neck.

Martingales and limited slip collars help to prevent a dog from slipping its leash, particularly if the dog doesn't like wearing the collar. Martingales should not be left on them when they are not being walked since they can get caught on things.

I've worked with him on the leash a little bit. I think his main problem is that he doesn't want to be tugged on in the house. He'd rather go off and wrestle with the labs or beg for food from anyone whos in the kitchen.

I took him on a walk last night and he did really well. The only times he tugged was when I tried getting him out the front door while holding the screen door open and holding my lab back from getting out. He also slightly tugged when I tried getting him to get out of the street and walk in wet grass.

He does stop a lot during the walks, but I think it's just nervousness from the new sounds he hears.

@JasonWheeler:

I suggest using the Gentle Leader Head Collar it changed my Basenji Bentley's attitude on a leash almost instantly. He is much better now.

I had to go to a Gentle Lead for Hollie. It was the ONLY thing that kept her from pulling. She pulled with the harness, she pulled with just a collar… but now we have fixed that problem!!! She doesn't like the Lead on her nose, but I LOVE IT!! 🙂

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