Prospective members of the Craigieburn Dog Obedience Group are advised that this Club recommends the use of the “Conditioned Response Method” of training, which is accomplished by the use of a correction collar (choker chain). Whilst you may have heard that this method can be cruel or inappropriate, we would question the bona fides of this.
If the correction collar is used properly, it can be a very effective means to train a dog. Of course, if it is used incorrectly, then it can become an ineffective tool, and can harm the dog (not severely but uncomfortable for the dog) if the collar is held tightly all the time during training. The correction collar is used as a quick check and immediately loosened so to just give the dog a small correction to make him take notice. If the collar is used incorrectly (ie. tight continually) the collar may mark the neck of the dog due to this method.
You at all times hold the lead in both hands (or one hand for the advanced trained dogs) and ensure that there is a distinct “J” between you (the handler) and dog. The correction is given when the dog moves away from the “heel” position and handler. If that is the case, you step up to the dog, at his height at the wither (shoulder blades) get close to the dog’s neck holding the lead and give the collar a quick jerk across your body then release after you have given him the correct command eg. “heel” or “leave” etc. Never try to correct the dog by pulling the collar upwards from the dog’s neck. This is a sure way of removing some of the dog’s fur around his neck.
Further to this, you should not allow the dog to continually wear the correction collar when at home. It should only be used when the dog is being trained, and under supervision.
Of course, if you choose not to have a correction collar for your dog’s training, then use whatever collar you wish. We can only recommend that you use a correction collar also we recommend you use a webbing leash as nylon leads and chain leashes can hurt the handler’s hands, but again that is your choice. Remember that different size dogs wear correction collars that are suitable for their size and breed. Small dogs should wear light gauge collars and larger breeds wear the heavier gauge collars. We will endeavour to show the correct way to use the correction collars, but we cannot accept responsibility should the handlers choose not to follow our instruction.
Our instructors have trained dogs themselves and have knowledge on how to train dogs. We also have a requirement to have “Working with Children” checks.
Happy training, and always enjoy training your dogs! Teamwork is your dog and you.