Dog Chains – A brief Introduction
Dog chains are used for training larger dogs and for showing any size of dog. They come in a huge variety of designs, from delicate dog chains which resemble fine jewellery for the show ring through to rather heavier duty chains designed to put the owners of larger, poorly behaved dogs back in control.
Dog chains have been used to train dogs for many years with great success. Although full chokes have become unpopular with some dog trainers, when used properly they are still effective and suitable for some breeds. Furthermore a variety of half checks are also available some examples are the all chain half check, part leather half check, all fabric half check and the part fabric half check. All of these can be highly effective and are still one of the most commonly used training methods. Considered kinder than the full choke chain, half-check collars produce a similar clicking sound as the dog is checked but do not place the same strain on the dog's neck.
The dog rapidly learns to connect the clicking sound made by the chain as it is pulled back by the trainer with the idea that it must stop pulling on the lead. As it hears the sound of the chain clicking, it will slow down in order to avoid being corrected. The beauty of these collars is that the dog trainer cannot cause undue distress to the dog and even the most inexperienced handler can quickly gain control over the animal.
Do remember, however, that these collars, whilst highly effective, it is not always recommended to use on some younger dogs. In this case it would be suitable to seek advice from a knowledgeable dog trainer in your breed. Furthermore it is unadvised to leave a half or full check on your dog when it is unsupervised in the house, garden or off the lead outdoors. We would recommend a buckle collar or clip on collar for these circumcises.
Small dogs or well behaved dogs should not need to wear them and will be fine with a plain leather dog collar or fabric dog collar, although for added control we would recommend a harness as the force of the pulling is directed away from the neck and distributed around the stronger body area.
Showing on a chain can be suitable for the majority of dog breeds, a range of styles and colours are available. A snake chain is one option, styled with the links very close together which helps to prevent the catching of the coat, very strong for just show work on even larger breeds, available in black, silver and gold. The length of the chain also varies depending on how the breed is to be shown, not always in relation to the size of the dogs neck, for example a very popular chain for showing a Doberman is a rather long medium weight solid brass chain. The solid brass dog chains also come in 4 weights and 10 sizes to suit other breeds perfectly.
Smaller and light breeds often opt for either a jeweller’s link chain or all chain half check, either a single or double row.
Incidentally, for the majority of dog breeds, you may also wish to try raised dog bowls for feeding. Larger breeds such as Great Danes, Rottweilers or Dobermans may suffer back and neck strain when eating from ground level bowls especially. There is also evidence that raised dog bowls can reduce problems with bloating and gastric torsion because the dog swallows less air as it eats and can digest its food easier. Slowing down the speed at which your dog’s eating will also improve digestion and reduce the chance of bloat. There are several products that can slow your dog from eating too fast including the slow feeder dog bowl.
You can find out more about the range of collars, bowls and training aids available here on our site.