Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Two Pieces of Equipment Every Dog Owner Should Have

I'm often asked what's the best collar and leash to buy for a Pit Bull. Every dog is different, so there is no one "best" collar for every dog, but there is one collar and leash style that every dog owner should possess.

Martingale Collar

A strong, quality martingale collar is an essential piece of equipment for just about every dog owner. A martingale collar is a collar with a chain or fabric/leather loop that constricts a little so that the dog cannot back out of the collar. (See: Wikipedia for martingale photo and full description). This collar is wonderfullly functional when used by itself for dogs that walk well on leash or as a back up to a training collar, training harness, or head halter. When fitted properly, the martingale should just barely slip over the dog's head, which will prevent the dog from being able to back out of the collar because the collar will tighten when tension is applied to the leash. The collar does not, however, choke the dog in the same way as a traditional slip collar. Martingales, like most collars, should not be left on unsupervised dogs.

European Training Leash

This lead has a clasp on each end (rather than on only one end, as with most traditional leashes). It also has one or more stationary or floating D rings along the length. Alternative names for this leash are police leash and six-way leash. (See an example of a European training leash online). This is the must-have piece of equipment for every dog owner. It is a versatile and secure leash that will allow you to attach one end to a primary collar or harness and the other end to a backup collar. You can also loop it around your body for a hands-free set-up or even use it as a temporary tether when out and about with your dog.

We talk about these pieces of equipment and others in our Pit Bull Owner's Guide, a short E-Book that covers a broad range of topics, from equipment to homeowners' insurance and beware of dog signs. Order it online. Your purchase helps us to continue our work !

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