Last Updated on June, 2023
Choke chains are simple to use, yet; they can be quite confusing to a first-time user.
By the end of this article, you will know to properly use a choke chain to correct your dog’s behavior.
(Note that this post is solely to provide information. We do not endorse the use of choke collars on pets).
First things first, what exactly is a choke collar? And how does it work?
Here are the 3 key points from this article:
- Choke chains are a tool used to control a dog, usually during walks, by constricting around the dog’s neck when pulled too hard on the leash.
- Choke chains must be fitted properly, sitting just behind the dog’s ears, in order for them to be effective.
- Choke chains should only be used during walks and training, and should never be used as a form of punishment.
TLDR: Choke chains are a type of collar used to control a dog, usually during walks. They work by constricting around the dog’s neck when pulled too hard on the leash, causing discomfort and making the dog stop pulling. You will need a choke collar and a leash to get started. To use the collar, assemble it into a “P” shape and fit it just behind your dog’s ears. Attach the leash to the live ring and begin walking. Be sure to keep the leash slack and to correct your dog only when necessary.
Table of Contents
- What is a Choke Collar?
- How Does a Choke Collar Work?
- What You’ll Need to Get Started?
- How to Use a Choke Collar? (Step-By-Step)
- The Do’s and Don’ts of Choke Collars
- To Conclude
What is a Choke Collar?
A choke collar or a choke chain is a tool used to control a dog, especially during walks.
A choke collar is a metal chain with a ring on each end. The chain is made of metal links and is made to tighten around your dog’s neck to control him. After correctly setting it up, you can slide the chain over your dog’s head and fasten it to a leash.
A choke collar is sometimes used by trainers to do ‘corrections’, basically causing pain to the dog every time he misbehaves or tugs on the leash.
How Does a Choke Collar Work?
The purpose of a choke chain is to prevent unwanted behavior during walks.
Choke chains constrict around the dog’s neck when pulled too hard on the leash. When your dog strains on the leash chain or gets over-excited during a walk, the chain will apply pressure. This pressure will cause serious discomfort (it will basically choke your dog), and he will stop pulling at once.
What You’ll Need to Get Started?
- Choke collar
There are many different types of choke chains. You can choose a choke chain depending on the size, link type, material, and chain type. You are free to choose what fits your needs.
The main things to consider are the collar size and the link type.
Collar size: Measure the circumference of your dog’s neck. The chain must be about 2 inches longer than your dog’s neck.
Link-type: Chains with longer links are great for dog breeds with long fur. They prevent your dog’s fur from getting all tangled and messy. Short link chains are for dogs with short fur.
You need to attach a leash to one end of the choke chain.
Yes, that’s all you need. Now let’s get started.
Related: How to leash train a dog that pulls?
How to Use a Choke Collar? (Step-By-Step)
Step 1: Assembling The Collar (Making A “P”)
Hold one end ring in your hand and lower the chain through the ring. The end rings will meet and fasten to form a collar. The ring you looped the chain through is the dead ring, and the ring that you can move back and forth is the live ring.
All you have to do now is pull on one end ring and drag out the chain to make the letter “P.”
That’s it, you have assembled the choke chain!
Do check out this video:
Step 2: Fitting the Choke Collar On Your Dog
Pick a side
You must first decide which side your dog will be walking on, your right side or your left.
The letter “P” loop section should always be over the dog’s head, with the straight part on top of its neck.
If orienting the chain still seems confusing, try slipping the choke chain over your fist. Give a small jerk and release the chain. The chain should momentarily tighten and then slack. The orientation is wrong if the chain doesn’t slack when you release it.
Unlike traditional collars, choke chains do not sit at a dog’s neck. It must fit just behind the dog’s ears. This position is more sensitive, and your dog will respond quickly to mild pressure. If the chain slides to your dog’s chest, it is too big.
Step 3: Attaching The Leash
Now you can attach the leash to the live ring.
If this is the first time your dog is wearing a choke chain, do not attach the leash soon after putting on the chain. Give your dog a few minutes to get used to the feel of the choke chain.
Step 4: Walk time
Congratulations! You managed to assemble and fit the choke collar correctly. Now comes the best part. Walking your dog!
Make sure that the orientation and position of the chain is correct.
Never apply too much pressure.
Do remember to keep your dog on the same side when walking. If you fitted the choke chain for walking your dog on the left side, always keep your dog on the left and vice versa.
The leash must stay slack during walking. A slack leash will allow you to correct your dog when needed. If the leash is always tight, your dog will soon get desensitized to the pressure.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Choke Collars
Now that you know how to use a choke collar properly let’s look at some Do’s and Don’ts.
Chain dog collars are one of the most controversial dog training tools, and not everyone will consider using them.
Yes, we know it’s hard to walk a pulling, stubborn dog, but a choke chain is not the answer. It will hurt your dog and your dog’s behavior won’t improve in the long run.
There are many alternative reward-based training methods to fix behavior problems. You can even train your dog with the help of a professional trainer. Proper training with positive reinforcement can do wonders and you wouldn’t need to use a choke chain after all.
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