The Good, The Bad and The Ugly


When walking your dog, keep your pooch in mind, put yourself in their paws and think how you would like to be walked, with a rope dangling around your neck or with a nice fitted harness?


Why a harness?




Medical conditions created by the pressure of a collar

Collapsed trachea

Change in heart rate

– Displaced neck vertebrae

Back pain

– Decrease intraocular pressure of the eyes

Increase of cortisol level in the brain = Stress = Reactivity

Possible damage of thyroid gland leading to Hypothyroidism


Difficulty drinking and eating



Flat collars are not recommended for walking as if your dog bolts he may seriously injured his wind pipe. Collars should be reserve for identification. Also never grab your dog by the collar, it is a sure way to damage his trachea leading him to gasp for air. You may also get injured in the process in case of redirected aggression.



So what about electric, prong  or chokes  collars?


Aversive training is dangerous for our dogs on many levels:

On a neurobiological view the association of pain and fear are VERY detrimental not only to your dog’s learning but also to his physiological homeostasis. Many so called professionals will advocate for the use of the cruel device. As a colleague once said: “if a hammer is the only tool in your tool box, then every problem you encounter is a nail.” Its application leads to more aggression and anxiety as the dog is terrified, very stressed and in pain.. The temptation and social pressure often give in to common sense, putting our furry companion’s welfare in danger.

They unfortunately do not work in the long run. Many times after being traumatized the dogs become very reactive, and a simple reactivity to a fearful stimulus has now become a long, tedious and stressful rehabilitation period. Here is an article written by world known board certified vet behaviorist, Dr.Karen Overall:


Imagine you were in a non English speaking country and  you had a choice between a benevolent teacher that gave you candy every time you succeeded, or the cruel teacher that shocked you every time you made  mistake. Which one would you choose????

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