The Pinch/Prong collar

The Training/Pinch/Prong Collar

The task of making a dog understand what we want from it is best done without the use of force. However, there are times when force is needed and then we aim to use the least force that we can. This is possible with the correct use of a special collar such as this one.

The Pinch collar consists of a band of interlocking sections that have short blunt ends. These prongs are not spikes and do not dig into the dog’s skin. It is criticized more for its looks, yet if fitted correctly; it is possibly a better training collar because it requires less force on the lead to effect a correction. The prongs are designed to produce a pinch and not to puncture but to act more like the way the mother dog corrects her pups. A quick, startling nip in the neck is how she shows displeasure.

This collar is wider, has limited constriction and with the shortness of the stubs, is not likely to injure the dog. Due to the fact that it exerts pressure or pinch all-round the neck, it has been called “power steering” because it takes only a slight “pop” of the wrist to get a proper correction. It is also often referred to as the “hearing aid” collar: a dog properly introduced to it, suddenly understands the expectations of the handler.

The pinch collar is fitted high on the dog’s neck, just behind the ears. It should be tight enough so that the fingers can just get under the prongs. A collar that is too loose will slide down the neck and then can hurt the dog. A simple leather dog collar can also choke and hurt your dog if you are not using it correctly, and the same goes for the pinch/prong collar. “Head collars” are far worse in the sense that the leash is attached to the dog’s jaw, which is a highly sensitive area, and a strong pull can readily cause a cervical injury.

The pinch collar is not used on small, lightweight or friendly dogs. It should also not be used by an uninformed trainer.

Pinch/prong collars used in the right way is perfect for various different types of dog training methods, including:

Training against pulling

Obedience training

Training of deaf dogs

Training against barking at and chasing other animals

Training of adult dogs that have developed bad habits

However, they are not well-suited for helping very aggressive dogs

Corrections are usually communicated to the dog more effectively with less risk of injury because trainers using this collar learn how to administer a correction that does not require force to bring about the desired behaviour in the dog. With this collar a small person with a large unruly dog will be better able to control him. If your dog is a dog fighter this collar may help to break the habit.

In the beginning the dog should wear this training collar at least an hour before training to allow the dog to “forget” about it otherwise he becomes clever and works well only when he wears the collar. This is also known as being “collar-smart.”

The training collar must not be left on an unsupervised dog because it can get hooked on a gate or fence etc. Remove the collar after training and when you leave the dog alone at home.

The collar can also be fitted inside out so that the prongs face away from the dog.

The object of training is communication with your dog through VOICE control and NOT leash control! Beginner trainers are inclined to continue pulling on the leash when they use this collar. This is a big mistake because the collar was designed for a “pop” and release action that will help the dog to understand what the handler wants. It is not to enforce your will on the dog!!!!

The pinch collar is not allowed in shows or obedience competitions and is a reason why many trainers do not want to use it. Some regard it as a clumsy implement and do not like its “springy-clingy” feel on the dog’s neck.

Please read my article: Timing a Correction.”