Since 2014, Patton Avenue Pet Company has offered a prong collar trade-in program at our stores – offering $10 off any harness or head halter when a customer turned in their dog’s prong collar! After 6+ years of this program we finally emptied our collection bins, and counted over 130 prong and choke collars that have been traded in through this program!
We at Patton Avenue Pet Company believe in positive reinforcement training. There is a plethora of evidence that using no-pull harnesses or head halters are just as effective for training as prong collars, without causing any unintended negative associations, or physical pain or damage!
Asheville’s own Heather Polechio of Mindful Mutz Training & Behavior Consulting llc(CPDT-KA, CTC, FPPE, Licensed Educator and Nationally Certificated Professional Dog Trainer & Behavior Counselor) elaborates on this further:
“Prong Collars work by causing some discomfort when our dogs pull. Therefore, the idea or theory is that when the dog feels this pain or discomfort it will cause him to stop pulling. Because our dogs are constantly making associations throughout their experiences, what many well-intentioned owners do not realize is that their dog may potentially be forming unintended negative emotional baggage that can be associated with the discomfort of the prongs pushing into the dogs neck.
For example, if every time a dog enthusiastically pulls towards another dog to say hi, but this is continually paired with the discomfort of the prong “correction”, he may begin to associate the sight of other dogs with discomfort. This is where the use of prong collars can be very risky to your dogs’ emotional & social health.
Fortunately, now due to a much broader understanding of how our dogs learn, there are many excellent alternatives to the use of the prong collar. No-Pull Harnesses are a great alternative, allowing for the same results (no pulling!), but without the risk factor of the dog developing emotional baggage.”
Stop by any of our stores if you’d like to trade in YOUR dog’s prong collar for a new harness!