The next collar we are going discuss is a “slip type” collar commonly referred to as a “dominant dog collar.” Dominant dog collars are specifically intended for use on handler aggressive or dog aggressive dogs and are very good at suppressing inappropriate behavior/aggression. Dominant dog collars are excellent for lowering the drive and taking the fight out of a dog. DO NOT jerk this collar to deliver a correction. The proper way to use the collar is to SLOWLY lift straight up on the collar, until the dog ceases the behavior and settles.
Dominant dog collars are typically made out of nylon cord and have a clip at one end, an o-ring at the other and a floating o-ring that travels between the two. It is very easy to put a dominant dog collar on your dog, simply place the collar around the dog’s neck (preferably high on the neck) and snap one end on to the floating o-ring. Attach your leash to the fixed o-ring and you are good to go. Since a dominant collar is designed to sit high on the neck, it is important to get the correct size.
To measure your dog for a dominant dog collar simply measure around your dog’s neck (high on the neck) just under the chin and just below the back of the head. If you don’t have a cloth tape measure, just use a piece of string, put it around the dog’s neck (make sure it’s not too tight) mark it and then measure the piece of string. Dominant dog collars only come in full sizes and are measured from end to end. So let’s say your dog’s neck measures 18.5 inches, simply round up to the next whole size which would be 19 inches. So the appropriate size would be at least 19 inches, 20 inches if you want a little slack. This brings us to another popular use for dominant dog collars, as a backup collar…
Dominant dog collars make excellent backup collars. A backup collar is a collar that you have on your dog when the main collar fails in one way or another. This is most common when using a prong or pinch collar for dog training. A prong collar, which we will cover more in another post, is a widely used and highly misunderstood dog training collar. But for the purpose of illustrating the usefulness of a dominant collar as a backup collar, I am just going to focus on the tendency of prong collars to come unhooked thus allowing the dog to go free.
Most prong collars are made from individual links that hook together. These links can easily separate from each other either from an improper fitting collar that is too loose, bent links or even just the dog shaking. However if you have your leash connected to the prong collar and a backup dominant dog collar, even if the prong collar comes off, you will still be connected to the backup collar. The important thing to remember when purchasing a dominant dog collar as a backup collar is to allow enough slack to not interfere with the function of the main collar. If we use the example above and the dogs neck is 18.5 inches you would still round up to the next whole size (19 inches) and then add approximately 2 or 3 inches for slack (depending on how much travel your main collar has).