First of all, I don’t call them CHOKE chains. I call them slip collars. And that’s not some cool ploy with words to get them over it. I don’t use them for the choking potential, I use them for their LOOSENING potential!
See, to me, the best reward you can give a dog, is freedom, and comfort. And a loose slip collar, is the most comfortable collar there is!
Seriously…. Think about it. When a dog has learned to be fluent in leash communication, they can have a collar that just flops, and dangles. Hell, I make special wide, soft, martingale collars for dogs that aren’t fluent to help keep them from irritating their skin as they learn. And I make them with a chain action specifically to find a similar releasing action… Hell, the name of my collars are Kaiho Collars, because that means “release” , or “liberation” in Japanese. But, as awesome as those are…… when they are TRULY fluent….. I’d prefer a simple chain, because a big ass martingale isn’t rewarding ENOUGH!
That’s the reason I don’t use flat collars. Because there’s no reward at all! They’re just flat uncomfortable. (Pun intended)
Here’s my analogy:
Flat collars are like neck ties! Sure, a neck tie in a suit isn’t choking, but you damn sure know it’s there. It is the opposite of comfortable. And as soon as you can…… You open that bad boy up.
Well you’re dog cant do that in a flat collar. Nothing they do can loosen it. Not one damn thing they do can give that sense of relief. And that’s the problem. I don’t use flat collars because, I don’t want to make my dog feel that way.
Now, you will get 2 objections as people try to shoot holes in your theory. People don’t take kindly to you pooping on their paradigm. They don’t really want to realize that choke chains are more rewarding and kind, and flat collars are kind of restrictive, and uncomfortable. Not everyone wants to take the red pill (Matrix reference).
These objections are:
1. Flat collars can be made loose so they don’t feel as restrictive as you’re making them sound.
My response: Listen, if your flat collar is that loose, your dog is probably going to slip it and be gone. A flat collar worn that loose, is irresponsible. Now, if you buckle it tight enough to not slip off…. You’re back in the non-comfort zone.
2: Well, that sounds great, but when you’re dog isn’t listening to the leash, it’s not slipping open. It’s slipping tight. It’s choking them. I don’t even clip my leash to his flat collar, because he chokes himself on it. I use a Halti/No Pull Harness/Etc…
My response: Here’s an idea. How bout, you train your dog to listen to the leash. At what point do we stop defaulting to crazy apparatus to wrench their muzzles sideways and harnesses to pull them in weird angles, and just teach the dog what we’re asking her to do? Rather than use a flat collar to mitigate the dog’s resistance to the leash…. Lets put on a slip, and gently teach the dog, HOW to loosen that collar. How, to find freedom and comfort.
There you have it. The explanation that has convinced several Purely Positive (don’t get me started on that term) people to switch to slip collars!
Take the red pill.
Give your dog the gift, of comfort a slip collar can give.