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Martingale Collar Safety & Use

by on June 15, 2018 - Leave a Comment

Martingale collar safety is an important aspect of its use. Martingale collars are an excellent safety collar for dogs that slip out of regular collars. They are also an excellent tool for training and control. But they can pose a danger to your dog when not used properly. If you are new to martingale collar safety & use, please read and learn! There are many different styles of martingale dog collars, and if you have been advised to purchase one, please take a look at the different martingale styles available. We have written a comprehensive article on martingale types, of which you can learn more about.

Martingale Collar Safety Rule #1

martingale collar fitting properlyMake sure your martingale is fitted properly.  Proper fit for any collar is important, but more so with a martingale. To get the proper fit, adjust the collar down to fit around the neck snugly (but not tight), just like a regular snap-on collar. When you attach the leash and pull, the two metal hardware pieces that form the martingale loop should not touch, as illustrated in our photo. If those two metal pieces touch each other, your dog may be able to slip out of it.
when a martingale in improperly fittedAlso, some martingales are designed poorly, and the loop of the martingale can be oversized – making it difficult to get the proper fit. Look carefully at the loop size in comparison to the rest of the collar when shopping for a martingale. The Artful Canine  designs its martingales to fit properly, with a loop that it proportionate to the collar size.

Martingale Collar Safety Rule #2

Never leave a puppy or new dog unattended in a martingale collar. When you bring your new pup/rescue home, you’ll need a little time to get to know each other. He/she will likely bit a little nervous about its new surroundings, and each dog reacts in different ways. Some chew, some piddle, some hide, some try to escape … you get the idea. A martingale is intended for use on a leash. When you leave it on the dog without tension of a leash, the weight of the hardware on the loop will move to the front of the dog (gravity) and your dog can then gets its teeth/mouth on the loops. They may chew through it, the loop can get hooked on something, or worse, your dog can get its teeth/jaw stuck in it.

Martingale Collar Safety Rule #3

Don’t allow your dog to go outdoors off-leash in a martingale collar. If your dog goes into brush, or worse, tries to link a chain link fence, the collar loop can get caught and potentially choke them.

Martingale Collar Safety Rule #4

Do not put your dog in a kennel/crate with his/her martingale collar on. Similar to Rule #2 and #3, your dog can potentially chew on the loop when it is hanging in the front. If the cage edges are not welded, the collar loop could get caught and you risk your dog panicking.

Martingale Collar Safety Rule #5

Discontinue use if your dog does not respond to training or use after a predetermined period.  While martingale collars work for most dog owners (with proper use), you may find that your dog is not responding to training. The constant pressure against your dogs neck could result in damage to your dogs trachea (windpipe), especially if they are a small or older dog. This can happen with any type of collar, contrary to what you may have heard. Consult with a professional trainer who is experienced with leash training and the alternate tools that are available.

Don’t let all the dangers of a martingale collar scare you from their use. These collars were invented to keep your dog safe. The same things described above could happen with a regular collar as well. Consult a reputable trainer if you need help. They can help you with your initial use of a martingale color, and make you feel confident in its use.

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