View Full Version : Martingale vs. regular collar style

11th July 2008, 08:11 PM
Ollie is a puller while on lead, so I bought the Easy Walk harness that works amazingly well. However, I tried him with his regular collar the other day and he was right back to pulling. The harness is not the easiest thing to use and I would like to eventually have him on a regular collar or harness again.

My question; has anyone used a Martingale-style collar? Is the purpose to correct pulling? Is it like a choke? (I would never use a choke!) If anyone has had success with these types of collars, please speak up!


12th July 2008, 12:56 AM
Generally it's not adviseable to use ANY collar that puts additional pressure on the neck. There are neurologists who believe there is a risk of causing, or worsening, syrinxes in cavaliers which are walked on collars and martingale collars are worse than normal collars for constricting and pinching the neck. Vets I work with and neurologists I have spoken to all recommend *always* using a harness on small breeds and on cavaliers because of trachea and neck damage risk, as well as issues with syringomyelia. There is evidence from studies that dogs walked on collars have vertebral damage (for example, see article on the sense-ible harness website). keep in mind that research samples of cavaliers indicate that at least 50% will eventually have SM and syrinxes and over 90% have the skull malformation that usually forces part of their brain out the foramen magnum (neck vertebrae) into the neck are so you really do not want ANY pressure in the neck area if possible.

If your dog pulls, the way to resolve this is by attending a good training class and training the dog to walk on a loose lead, on a harness. :)

12th July 2008, 01:07 AM

Harnesses in many cases are better than collars because they do not put pressure on the throat (windpipe) which can be problematic for small dogs.


The effect on intraocular pressure (IOP) from dogs pulling against a collar or a harness was
evaluated in 51 eyes of 26 dogs. The force each dog generated while pulling against a collar
or a harness was measured. Intraocular pressure measurements were obtained during appli-
cation of corresponding pressures via collars or harnesses. Intraocular pressure increased
significantly from baseline when pressure was applied via a collar but not via a harness.
Based on the results of the study, dogs with weak or thin corneas, glaucoma, or conditions
for which an increase in IOPcould be harmful should wear a harness instead of a collar,
especially during exercise or activity.

The study I noted in the post previous was on the Larz site not Sens-ible:

Alarming facts from a recent survey :

63% of the dogs examined had neck and spinal injuries.
78% of the dogs with aggression or over activity problems had neck and spinal injuries.
Of the dogs with neck injuries, 91% had experienced hard jerks on a leash or had strained against their leashes.

The study concludes that leash corrections, the dog forging ahead or a tethered pet hitting the end of a solid line may inflict spinal injury