Keeping dogs safe … and trainingWritten by admin on September 28th, 2012
By Deb Young
Once upon a time, there were fewer cars and more open space. Nowadays, though, we have relatively few places where we can safely and legally walk our dogs off leash.
So its time to choose the best equipment for your dog, for safety and training.
For many dogs, a versatile harness is a great alternative to a collar as they can eliminate pressure from your dogs neck — preventing possible trachea and neck injury.
From a training perspective, dog harnesses are useful for teaching your pup not to pull as the pressure from a harness is more evenly distributed around your dog’s body.
Finally, some crafty dogs are occasionally able to slip their heads out of their collar, but since a harness fits around the whole body, pup is less likely to accidentally escape.
Even if you wind up using a harness or a halter for leash walks, your dog should still always wear a collar with her ID tags.
When choosing a collar for your dog, choose a fabric or leather collar, go for wide rather than narrow. Even a well-trained dog may hit the end of the leash hard when a squirrel leaps out in front of her, for instance. And many behavior problems involve lunging and barking.
The force of the lunge is more concentrated with a narrow collar, so it hurts more and even risks bruising your dog’s trachea.
Some people like special breakaway collars that open if you pull at them hard enough; the idea is that your dog can’t get hung up somehow. My perception of risk runs the other way–I worry more about my dog getting loose in a fire or accident and running panicked with no visible ID.
ID could be your pets ticket back home. Even animals living inside can on occasion escape into the wide world. Both dogs and cats need ID!!
Micro Chipping is good too, but an external tag is essential, it could mean the difference of your neighbor returning your pet to you or turning him into the animal shelter.
If you have a fenced in yard, it might not be enough to keep your dog completely safe during the day while you’re gone.
Even a fenced yard can’t stop a hawk or other bird of prey.
Please be aware that many dogs have been taken from backyards in the past few years. I still maintain that dogs should not be left completely unattended.
But, an outdoor dog kennel is your safest bet to let your dog play while you are out doing yard work or relaxing in yard.
The kennel is definitely an investment, because they can run anywhere from $150 to $300. But on a happier note, it’s portable so you can take it with you wherever you go, so the cost over the years doesn’t come out to much.
I don’t think shock collars or electric fences are good options either! Electronic containment systems aren’t guaranteed to work for your dog and of course is the power goes out, they won’t work at all!
And shock collars are just wrong! Have you ever seen an alpha dog poke a submissive dog with a cattle prod? Of course not, they use dog methods to correct, and that’s what dogs understand!
Be kind to your pet and show them with love… remember you are their world.
Owning a pet is a lifetime commitment. Commit to keeping them safe!