Which no-pull dog collars are best?
One of the basics of dog training involves safe and obedient walking. Dogs should walk in stride with their owner and be ready to respond to any commands while drowning out distractions. A no-pull collar can help teach a dog to walk properly and keep them safe in the process.
A no-pull collar is an important investment for those with puppies, recently adopted rescues as well as larger and more aggressive dogs. This PetSafe Gentle Leader is the top pick that can prevent reactive behavior while leashed. Finding the best no-pull collar involves understanding the needs of your dog as well as knowing what works and what doesn’t
What to know before you buy a no-pull dog collar
There are two main types of safe and effective no-pull collars. A common option is the Martingale collar, which features a secondary loop that restricts when the dog pulls. This restriction is determined by the owner so that it prevents the dog from pulling but doesn’t cause them any harm. Martingale collars also help prevent dogs from slipping out of the collar and running off.
A gentle leader is another choice. More comprehensive, a gentle leader is a head harness that wraps around the snout of the dog as well as their neck. When the dog starts to pull, its head is gently redirected towards the owner.
A no-pull collar should fit snugly and securely, providing both comfort and safety. To find the right size, measure the circumference of a dog’s neck a couple of inches below the ears. A collar should come with a sizing chart with an appropriate range. When affixing the collar, adjust so that you can fit two fingers between the collar and the dog’s skin. The secondary loop of the Martingale collar should be snug but not so tight that it presses against the dog’s throat.
Prong collars and choke chains belong to a group of products known as aversive collars. These all attempt to instill proper behavior by inflicting some pain on the dog. These apply pressure to the dog’s neck when they pull and unlike Martingale collars, they don’t have a limit to the amount of force that’s inflicted. These can cause serious damage to a dog’s neck.
Additionally, the frequent discomfort and pain can create a negative association with walking so that they view the exercise as a punishment instead of a reward. Bark and shock collars, which try to prevent unwanted behavior, are also considered aversive collars.
What to look for in a quality no-pull dog collar
No-pull collars should be made of nylon, polyester or neoprene for safe and effective use. Nylon and polyester are the most popular options, as they are inexpensive and comfortable. Nylon, however, may develop odors over time and can be hard to wash. Those collars that incorporate neoprene may come at a slightly higher price but offer more breathability and longevity. Some Martingale collars may also feature a chain as the secondary loop.
Design and personalization
No-pull collars are offered in different colors, patterns and designs. It does not influence quality but instead adds some personality to the functionality of the product. Some options may allow you to personalize with an inscription.
Some no-pull collars feature reflective strips that can add some visibility when walking at night. Reflective strips are an added bonus to a collar but require light shining on it to work, so if walking in dark areas, an LED collar or harness is useful to supplement.
Collars are generally secured either through an adjustable strap buckle or a quick-release snap. The buckle, similar to one found on a belt, offers security and durability but takes more time to get on and off. A quick-snap provides convenience but may wear down over time.
How much can YOU expect to spend on a no-pull dog collar
Most no-pull collars cost $10-$15, though the price will vary based on size.
No-pull dog collar FAQ
How does a no-pull collar compare to a harness?
A. Both no-pull collars and harnesses offer control over a dog. Generally, harnesses are more versatile, but they don’t necessarily correct behavior when training. A back-clip harness disperses pressure more evenly around the body instead of around the neck like a collar. However, front-clip harnesses are useful for training as they redirect a dog’s movement. A harness is also useful for travel.
Are there any risks associated with no-pull collars?
A. Martingale collars and head harnesses are relatively safe to use, but owners should always be aware of their dog and their surroundings when in use. Dogs that pull too hard or react aggressively to their environment can still hurt themselves. Consistent pulling can also damage hair or fur around the neck. Martingale collars should be removed when at home, particularly when a dog is left alone.
What’s the best no-pull dog collar to buy?
Top no-pull dog collar
What you need to know: This is a popular head halter from a trusted brand that offers control to the owner and comfort for the dog.
What you’ll love: An effective, quality gentle leader, it prevents pulling by redirecting a dog. It is durable and made of nylon and neoprene. It comes in three designs.
What you should consider: This collar is pricey and may not be effective for large, powerful dogs.
Top no-pull dog collar for the money
What you need to know: Simple yet effective, this Martingale collar is comfortable and easy to use, providing quality value.
What you’ll love: This collar is easy to adjust and affix. It includes a quick-release snap. It comes in various colors at an inexpensive price.
What you should consider: The collar may wear down over time.
Where to buy: Sold by Chewy
Worth checking out
What you need to know: Durable and long-lasting, this Martingale collar focuses on safety and comfort.
What you’ll love: Well-made, this collar can stand up to repeated use. A secondary loop is a chain for more control. It has a thick D-ring. It is sold in various colors and includes reflective strips.
What you should consider: The chain can be uncomfortable in cold weather.
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Anthony Marcusa writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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