I have noticed many try to decide which collar would be the best for their dog. There are many options out there from a plain buckle collar to an electronic collar. It can be most confusing so I thought I would share some collar information with you.
It is good for your puppy to learn to wear a collar immediately. This is the first step totolerating to walking on lead. This is also a way for your dog to be easily identified if he can wear an identification tag. Do remember that the collar should be properly sized for safety. If you leave a collar on your dog at all times may I suggest a "breakaway" collar. Some can and do manages to catch themselves. If you are gone for long hours at a time or unable to safely supervise them this is a very good option.
Buckle collars made of made of nylon or leather are nice collars to begin walking your pup with. This offers just enough protection so your pup cant get away if properly fitted.
There are many different training collars available. Remember these collars are only as safe as the hands that are handling them. They should NEVER EVER be left on a dog unless he is walking on lead. Many can be quite dangerous on an unattended dog.

Chain collars - this has a slip effect so the collar can tighten and not slip over the dogs head. This is also used by many obedience trainers as a means for making "pop" corrections to a dog. These should not be used on young pups.

Martingale or Lupine collars - These colllars also have a slip effect but will not tighten beyond a specific point. These are great collars for a more gentle correction approach. These are also great for overweight corgis that can often slip a buckle collar.

Prong collars - I would rarely see the need to use this on corgis. This collar does put pressure at the points around the neck. In my obedience classes I generally recommend them for the larger "bullish" type dogs that were difficult to get their attention. Never would I consider them for a fearful or aggressive type dog. These should never be yanked on, used with a flexi lead or without proper instruction to use them. I have seen many dogs loose at a park wearing one of these or a chain collar. Recipe for disaster!

Gentle Leaders - I have found these useful for some dogs that are heavily distracted. Once again I would not use this on a young pup as they do need time to adjust to walking on lead and learning about the enviornment around them. These can be a great tool in the right hands as like with the prong collar they offer a self correction when a dog is pulling.

I would rarely see a use for an electronic collar unless someone was doing distance work in advanced training. Electronic collars can do far more harm then good unless being used by a kind and experienced trainer.

Harnesses - generally not a favorite of mine. I find that many dogs that use them are encouraged to pull more. One only need to look at how sled dogs are outfitted to pull. If you personally like them and your dog is a good walker already on lead they are fine.

Proper sized collars are also most important. When measuring for a chain collar measure around the largest part of the head and add two inches. When measuring for a regular buckle collar or martingale collar measure the neck and purchase a collar in the size range. Remember pups grow quickly so check the fit frequently. For prong collars and gentle leaders it is best to have an experienced person help you. Both are dangerous and pretty much useless for correction unless fitted properly. For harnesses they must be tried on. There are so many different designs available that trying on is the best way.

Hope you find this helpful in making good choices while purchasing collars.

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Gentle Leaders should never be used for leash corrections of any kind. They work wonderfully when fitted correctly and if the dog is trained to get used to the feeling on their face. If this training is not done the dog might flail around on the end of the leash trying to get it off.

There are Easy Walk harnesses that are great for pullers as well. They clip in the front of the chest instead of over the back. When the dog pulls they are caught off-balance since the leash clips in the front and end up facing you. These tend to be better on dogs that cannot tolerate the Gentle Leader. Never leave a harness on without supervision.

Choke chains can cause collapsed tracheas and other medical problems. Dogs have died of strangulation because a choke chain was left on without supervision. In my experience there is no reason why training should be done in this old-fashioned way anymore. Research in behavior modification has come a long way to show that positive reinforcement and negative punishment work much better than force training. For some reason dogs are still subjected to force training when most other animals are awarded the privilege of using force-free methods (try using a choke chain on a dolphin and see where you get).

Shock collars or e-collars use electric shock to force a dog to comply. The shock, sometimes called e-stimulation, hurts. Go to a pet supply store and try one on yourself. We would never dream of teaching a child anything using a shock collar. Dogs should have the same privilege.

Prong collars or good dog collars are made of metal or plastic and have points that press into the dogs neck. Like choke chains, prong collars can cause medical injuries. Specifically the prongs can piece the dog's skin and also collapse tracheas. The pain or discomfort involved when using a prong collar can also become associated with different things like other dogs, new people, etc. if they feel the prong anytime these things approach them. This can cause a negative association and create problems in a dog where there were none before.
I personally found Easy Walk harness somewhat useless. It only works if my puppy runs. Then it turns him around, but he doesn't seem to mind and runs anyways. If he pulls, nothing is happening.
Prong collars are safer than chokers. They look rough, but all they do is pinch skin unlike choke collars that CHOKE and may damage trachea. I wouldn't use any of them on a corgi. It's not that hard to manage a small and lightweight dog, so why go to extremes? My dad's boxer wears prong collar when we're outside, it works great for her, being a strong and overly excited dog.
I don't know why Sam doesn't like harness so much. If my puppy is so excited that he pulls it really doesn't matter what he's wearing, he'll still be pulling like a madman. I feel harness is safer though because he won't choke himself and it won't slip off.
I'm sorry but I must disagree with your comment on 'choke chains'. Properly used they are wonderful training tools and are not in any way 'force training'.
Then there are the idiots who keep them on their dogs full time...THEY are the problems.
I have to agree.

It's my opinion that no dog should be left unattended with any collar for any length of time. Mine only wear their collars for walking outside and nothing else.

With a dog as small as a Corgi, a nylon slip lead may be all that is necessary instead of an actual chain, but still.... I learned when riding horses that a mild spur, used properly, can be infinitely kinder than constantly nagging a horse with your leg (and thus deadening him to the aids). After some time of struggling with my male balking when he thought there were better directions we could choose on a walk, I put a slip lead on him a few times and greatly reduced the problem, and thus eliminated my need to haul at him to get him to move forward (a thirty-five pound dog who plants his feet is surprisingly hard to move).

My female was trained on a slip lead for the show ring, and you put one on her and instantly have finger-tip control over her location and speed. The collar rarely tightens more than a regular buckle would.

For chronic pullers there are usually better solutions than a choke, as many will ignore the tightening and strangle themselves breathless.

And there is no such thing as 100% "positive" training. There are times when your dog will find what it wants to do infinitely more rewarding than whatever it is you require of him and whatever rewards you are offering, and a correction of some sort is required. Ignoring behavior works when the dog is trying to solicit your attention. Ignoring behavior that the dog ENJOYS will only serve to increase the behavior.

I never thought to remove the collar when I leave Sully home alone. She is so laid-back and quiet that no one, myself included, ever expects her to get into any serious trouble, but it would be easy enough for her or any corgi to get hung up on something, literally, and not be able to free herself. She does try to pull still at times during walks but I never considered any type of corrective collar. I just stop every time she pulls, which is minimally effective but no miracle cure for sure. I am glad to have the subject covered. I used a harness collar at one point because I thought it was easier on the neck, but I am back to a plain old collar and occasional treats when she walks beside me as expected. A neighboring dog, a HUGE German Shepherd uses a gentle leader. When he is close to me it looks like he could easily take my arm off. Not sure how they work and he is pretty well trained, but he did growl at me once. I prefer to keep my distance, regardless of what collar he is wearing.

One last thought, about those "shock collars."

For people who do distance work (like hunters) they are sometimes the only feasible solution. It is very difficult to get your dog to comply from 100 yards away.

They really have no place in the hands of an amateur, but there are circumstances when they can be useful. I lack the skill to use one myself, but I know a lot of bird dog people get good results. To be used correctly, they should be on the mildest setting that gets results. The exception would be aversion training, such as is done for rattlesnakes.
"If you leave a collar on your dog at all times may I suggest a "breakaway" collar. Some can and do manages to catch themselves. If you are gone for long hours at a time or unable to safely supervise them this is a very good option.

What is a "breakaway" collar? Also, what do you mean by "some can and do manage to catch themselves"?

Our Butter came with a choke collar on; he had always worn one. I never realized how dangerous they were until I took the advice of someone on this site, who recommended putting your foot on a dog's leash to keep them from moving. I don't think they ever thought of a choke collar being attached to the leash (it never occurred to me!). So one day after swimming, I was hosing Butter off and put my foot on the leash to keep him in place. It wasn't until I released him that I saw the damage...he could hardly breathe, was gasping for air and retching. It was very scary.

We got rid of the choke collar immediately. Now we just use a nylon collar to walk him. I take it off of him as soon as we are home. My husband leaves it on and I try to remember to take it off if we leave him at home. I am now concerned that he may hook it on something and choke when we are not there.

So, I would be interested in these breakaway collars if I knew more about them. Thanks Sam!
As I mentioned the collars are only as safe as the hands that use them. Used properly most collars do have a good place in dog training. You can well bet a dog pulling on a buckle hard can choke as much. This is related to the pressure on the trachea and not the material that is used.
As for the danger of the chain collars I can give you two instances. One is a dog that got a tag stuck in an air conditioning vent that was on the floor. As would most dogs he struggled to pull free. The collar continued to tighten as he struggled. Luckily this boy was caught before permenant injury was done. Many times these collars are not measured properly and much of the chain hangs making the possibility even greater. This was an incident very close to home. My sister had two Akitas that were the guardians of their small farm. In play one dog got his bottom jaw twisted in the chain collar of the other. As he struggled to free himself he cut the airway off from the dog that he was stuck with. You can only imagine the complete and utter horror as my sister returned home to find a very frantic dog stuck to the dead one. A lesson I will never forget.
Do a google search for breakaway collars. You will find many companies that manufacture them.
I had this exact thing happen to LaVerne and Shirley only they were wearing nylon collars. LaVerne had gotten ahold of Shirleys collar while playing and got her lower jaw stuck. As she struggled to free herself she flipped onto her back, twisting the collar into a figure 8 and creating a choke-hold on Shirl. Thankfully I was just in the other room and walked in to the livingroom to find Shirley struggling to breathe and LaVerne struggling to free herself from Shirleys collar. Both were so tightly stuck neither was able to make a sound to alert me. It took me what seemed like a long time to free them but Im sure it was only seconds. We consider ourselves incredibly lucky. I've always left their collars on except to sleep at night and had I been away from the house I know I would have come home to at least one dead dog and very possibly two. Now the only time they have their collars on is when we leave the house and as soon as we hit the door back home......its off with the collars. Lesson learned.
This same situation with the figure 8 happened last week with my Kari and Jackson. Scariest thing ever but all are ok. What happend to Jackson's collar though was that Kari got her jaw stuck inside the adjustable part of the collar, tightening it even more around Jackson as she pulled away. Feels like it took forever to find the buckle. Jackson doesn't wear his collar except to go outside and he's getting a new one for xmas.
Pumpkin's trainer suggested a Martingale collar to help her walk better. It is very gentle and doesn't choke her, but she doesn't wear it unless she's on leash. She has a big problem with walking near traffic, noise of any sort and even people. Today, for example, we were at a flea market and in the woods far behind us, a noise, like a rifle shot, sounded. (The French like to hunt anything that moves). That was it for her, she dragged me back to the car, she was so afraid. Her fear can't be dealt with at the moment she pulls so hard I'm sometimes afraid she'll damage her trachea. It's just how she is around noise. At least the Martingale collar is gentle, she's on her 5th one.
Climber's perspective on leash gear:

You're asking the dog to haul that weight on its neck a lot, so make the hardware as light as possible. It has to hold a dog, not a car. Leashes and collars are safety gear. Consider each link in the load train; the fewer, the better. Inspect regularly for wear. Knots reduce the strength of rope; single or double fisherman's knot is the strongest and won't loosen or noose. Figure-8 easiest to untie after loading.
I do not trust plastic buckles. Plastic ages and breaks. Nylon webbing is stronger and lighter than leather. Check stitching on webbing. Have your phone # on the tag.

We use modified Martingale collars. Handy because they slip on and off easily over the head but unlikely to slip off when loaded. Our dogs are chipped and don't wear collars indoors.
To save weight and rattling, I removed the chains, replacing them with thin Perlon knotted with a single fisherman's knot. Perlon is light nylon rope with the load-bearing innner core protected by a kernmantle sheath, so it's resistant to wear but still must be inspected frequently. I think the sound of the chain rattling through the D-rings is supposed to provide an auditory cue to the dog, so this is sacrificed. Very quiet.

Once I got the length established, I removed the plastic adjustment buckle and excess webbing and stitched the collar -- smoother, lighter, one less piece pf plastic to break.

I use very small lightweight carabiners knotted with an overhand loop or figure-8 on a light but strong braided nylon leash. This stuff might burn skin, but not a problem so far. Perlon or flat webbing might be better. Tie a big hand loop, and put an overhand slip knot in it to cinch your wrist [photo]. When dog is off-leash, stow leash with rubber band for a quick-draw.

We've 2 dogs, so 2 different-colored leashes help detangling. Might be useful to have 1 flat and 1 round so they can be distinguished by feel.

We also have a chest harness that I use only for safety to belay the dogs on dangerous stream crossings or steep exposed snow. It has a plastic bayonet buckle but this is not part of the load train; you clip in to 2 D-rings, much like a climber's harness. I'm not entirely happy with it because it ties in above the shoulders, not at the front of the chest, and might pull the dog off its feet or its head underwater in a current. Doesn't work for walking; rubs a sore on the breastbone.

In the backcountry, I flag the collar gaily with day-glo hot-pink survey tape. Festive.

NOTE: a friend witnessed a fatality. Somebody tied their dog while they climbed a couple of roped pitches. The dog, left alone at the base, chewed through its leash and fell to its death.


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