Popular Types of Harnesses and Collars


Standard Dog Collar

Probably still the most popular of all here, the standard (flat) collar is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a dog collar. There is nothing wrong with the standard collar, but that is exactly what it is- standard. While a standard collar works well walking many dogs some dogs may require using training strategies, or collars and harnesses designed to help you with correcting any bad leash manners your dog may have.

The Company of Animals HALTI Collar

Prong Collar

© Can Stock Photo / jasony00

Prong collars are usually made of metal chain links with rounded ‘prongs’ that will tighten around a dog’s neck when the dog pulls on his leash or the handler jerks. Properly designed prong collars will only tighten to a certain point, unlike the ‘Slip Collar’ below. Though they might look intimidating or painful, prong collars are actually extremely useful tool. They aren’t inhumane when used correctly, and can actually promote safety in large, powerful and/or difficult to control dogs.

The handler will always need to pay close attention to their pet’s prong collar, ensuring a snug fit slightly below the dog’s chin. It should never be worn loosely, and the prongs must never be allowed to depress the dog’s trachea. First time users should be sure to properly follow the directions and educate themselves before use. We do not recommend this type to be used on small or delicate dogs

Top Paw® Training Prong Dog Collar

Slip Collar

Earning the unfortunate nickname ‘choke chain’, slip collars are useful in the right hands and can cause serious injury in the wrong hands. Ideally, the slip collar is meant to tighten when a dog pulls on his lead, immediately loosening when the dog stops pulling. The owner or walker needs to be able to ensure the dog will stop pulling or serious injuries can be caused to the dog’s trachea.

These are useful training tools, but like the prong collar above should be used correctly and shouldn’t be used with smaller or delicate dog dogs.

SportDOG Training Slip Dog Collar

Martingale Collar

Martingale collars offer a unique ‘two loop’ design, a bit different than the other two above. The design allows for a wider, traditionally sized collar to be worn, as opposed to a rope or chain thin collar. The first loop is adjustable, hanging around the dog’s neck. The second loop is meant for control when a leash is attached.

It will tighten when the dog pulls like the two above, but the Martingale collar will offer even pressure, staying snug. Martingale collars won’t choke your dog, and are much better for your pup’s delicate trachea. The martingale collar is designed to help with training and from preventing dogs with necks larger than their heads from slipping out. We highly recommend the Martingale collar over a conventional collar.

Original Designs Martingale Training Collar

Easy Walk Harness

By far one of the best training tools for moderately to difficult to walk dogs. An Easy Walk Harness is meant to ‘gently’ discourage your pet from pulling on his leash. When your dog pulls, the harness helps ‘steer’ him to the side, redirecting his attention toward you- the handler. The Easy Walk Harness rests across your dog’s chest, instead of tightening around his throat, so there is no choking. Most harnesses, this one especially, also offer more control than the typical collar.

Redirection is a very popular training tactic used by professional dog trainers when dealing with leash reactive dogs! When a dog reacts (usually to other dogs) by lunging, jumping, snapping or jerking, the handler will try to divert the dogs attention toward themselves- becoming the most ‘interesting’ thing around. Of course, this isn’t always as easy as it sounds, some dogs requiring much more careful work than others. Unfortunately, the average dog owner isn’t a seasoned professional. Tools like the Easy Walk Harness provide a lot of help in this area!

PetSafe Easy Walk Black Dog Harness

Nose Leader (Head Halter)

Gentle Leaders can seem silly or odd looking to some, fitting around your dog’s nose and being lead from directly under his chin. Though it might seem like it to onlookers, this isn’t a type of muzzle; your dog still has control of his mouth and can pant regularly.

Gentle Leaders are meant to force a dog in the direction of the leash when he pulls. This isn’t at all painful, but it is ‘undesirable’. The dog isn’t going to want to pull if it forces him to turn direction every time.

There are two types of nose leaders, one has an extra safety lead that connects to the dogs regular collar and one does not. We highly recommend the one with the safety catch just in case your dog manages to get the nose leader off.

HALTI Optifit Head Collar for Dogs – Stops Pulling on the Leash

Standard Harness

Countless types, sizes and colors of dog harnesses exist out there on the market today, as the harness is becoming more and more popular. Some harnesses even have ‘suitcase’ like handles, so you can simply pick up your dog if needed!

Most harnesses offer great control, and never apply pressure on the trachea like a collar will. Harnesses are much better for small, delicate dogs and are all round a much better option than a conventional dog collar for all dogs.

EzyDog Chest Plate Dog Harness Purple