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Are Martingale Collars Safe?

Martingales are designed specifically for canines with heads that are smaller than their necks. These dog collars gently tighten against the dog’s neck if they pull, back up or spin around. They are typically worn by greyhounds, whippets, and nervous pups. A martingale collar is generally made out of fabric or nylon that creates a circle like the majority of collars but also has a semicircular shape on the back that is formed by an additional section of the same material. The larger sized loop of the collar fits around the dog’s neck and the much smaller loop lies at the back of the neck and has a D-ring which attaches to the lead. When relaxed, the collar fits loosely and keeps your dog comfortable. But, when the canine tries to drag, the second loop tightens the fabric around the canine’s neck for a smooth no-pull effect.

Martingale collars function much the same method as a choke collar yet without metal against the canine’s skin. It also tends to include a soft material or nylon to create the pull rather than a metallic chain. Dogs are a lot less likely to suffocate when wearing a martingale collar vs a choke dog collar. It also reduces lead pulling. Martingale collars are definitely not as effective with bull necked canines as they have less of an impact on the canine. However, compared to choke collars, martingales can be used on more delicate necked dogs like greyhounds but not advised for extremely small dogs.

There are significantly much less critics of this type of collar. The softer fabric and lesser pressure of the martingale against a dogs neck is the reason for such a lesser amount of criticism. However, like with every collar, there is a risk of the dog choking when left unsupervised while wearing a martingale. This increased choking threat results from the fact that if the D-ring on the collar catches on something, the collar will tighten and potentially choke the canine. But, when the collar fits properly and is used only occasionally, the martingale collar can be a very suitable training solution.

To learn more about martingales and other training aids, please visit:

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