I've mentioned here before that my mother was a dog trainer during my childhood in the 1970's. Her school of thought and style for her puppy training and obedience training was to use a slip collar or choke chain.
When I would watch the classes, she was clearly humane towards the dogs but she was also firm in her instruction and expected response. My mother taught dog owners how to properly put a slip collar on their dog. She showed them how to find the proper size collar for their dog. She demonstrated with one of our dogs how to "correct" the dog firmly yet humanely, using the collar's quick release.
Her technique was firm and direct yet never cruel. To my adolescent eyes and ears at times though, it was quite the opposite. However she also struck me as confident and strong, the person you could trust to be a worthy pack leader. Our dogs certainly saw her that way.
Now that I have my own dog for the first time, it is up to me to choose how I train her. And Cleo needs training, no matter how wonderful and perfect I think she already is. We currently use a harness for Cleo. She has such a furry fat neck that it makes a collar of any kind seem cruel. And with her deep chest, the black harness we current use for everyday is like a big hug with soft sherpa fur under her arm pits. She also now has a red one that is strictly for beach days because she always jumps into the ocean or rolls in something stinky.
If it was up to my mom, we would do things differently I'm sure. However, this style works for us. Personally I believe most people and their dogs are better off using collars and harnesses that do not pinch, shock or choke - even briefly.
Starting today, everyone can learn humane dog training options through the Never Shock a Puppy Campaign.
Over the next eight weeks, they hope to raise awareness about humane (pain-free) alternatives to dog collars designed to hurt, startle, punish AND
- deliver helpful information on humane dog training options.
- give away prizes.
- And, raise money to support the Humane Society of Boulder Valley‘s upcoming No-Choke Challenge (slated to begin in November 2010).
To learn more go to Never Shock a Puppy .