If you stop and think about all the places you take your dog in a month and consider all the dangers that surround you during those outings, it’s quite daunting!
Imagine now, the same scenarios with your dog getting away from you. What are the chances of it getting hit by a car, knocking someone over or disappearing off in the distance never to be seen again? For many of us, the only things preventing such heart-breaking scenarios are the collar around our dog’s neck and the lead attached to it.
With the ever present potential for disaster in mind, it is only common sense that you take great care when choosing which collar and lead to use!
Here are some helpful tips for choosing your lead and collar wisely. There are so many to choose from so you should be able to find something that suits your fashion taste AND is also safe.
The fit of the collar is very important. There is no point having a well-made collar if it has been put on so loosely that the dog can pull out of it. As dogs change shape during their life, especially when they are growing, testing the fit of your dog’s collar should be done on a regular basis. For some dogs, the fragile nature of their neck (or the opposite, no neck) means that a collar may not be the ideal tool out-and-about.
Some breeds such as Beagles are also very prone to spinal issues and it is often recommended that they only use a harness.
If you are not sure whether your dog is a breed more suited to a collar alternative, check with your vet or your breeder.
Making sure your dog has been trained to walk well on the lead is also important. A dog pulling hard on the lead is potentially going to cause damage to its neck. Every dog can learn to walk on the lead without pulling. If you need help in this area, get in touch with a local trainer.
Make sure the ring on your dog’s collar (or harness) is strongly secured. A strong dog could pull the ring out of the collar if it has not been well made. And always make sure you clip your lead onto the correct ring. It is very easy, especially with a very fluffy dog to clip the lead onto tag rings by mistake.
Regularly check your collar for damage. Dogs get up to all sorts of fun off lead and while you weren’t watching your dog may have caused some damage to the collar. If you don’t check the collar you might find out at the wrong time!
Quick release clips are better than buckles. Most commonly used collars and harnesses these days use strong plastic squeeze release fastenings. These are better than buckles in situations when your dog might have got its collar caught on something and you need to release it to save it from choking.
Pay attention to your lead. If you have a dog that chews the lead, you need to pay extra attention to this. If a decent pull will break your chewed lead, it is a disaster waiting to happen. And if your lead isn’t comfortable to hold tightly when your dog does pull, it’s not a good lead.
Don’t use a retractable lead.
Remember, the collar and lead you use on your dog could be the difference between life and death for one of the most important creatures in your life.
It is worth paying attention to detail!
DogHQ Limited, www.doghq.co.nz 09 44 22 365 www.facebook.com/doghq