Things to Look For in a Collar For Aggressive Dogs
When you’re looking for the best collar for an aggressive dog, you should keep the following in mind to ensure you get the right collar for your needs:
Strength and Security
1 of the most important things is to ensure the collar you choose is strong and secure. It’s crucial an aggressive dog can’t escape from their collar during walks, as this could lead to a dangerous situation.
Look for collars made from strong, sturdy material. If the collar has a clasp or buckle, ensure its lockable or very secure and won’t come open while your dog is wearing it. Check the reviews and description for this and avoid ‘quick release’ clasps.
Control For You
It’s vital you have as much control as possible when working with an aggressive dog. Consider how the collar allows for corrections and control, and how well you feel the style of collar would fit your needs.
Some collars will allow you to lead from the nose or put pressure on the back of the dog’s neck for control. Others may tighten gently to allow for quick correction.
Comfort For Your Dog
Control and strength should not take the place of comfort for your dog. The best collars for an aggressive dog will provide comfort as well as control. Look for features like padding, soft material, and a comfortable fit.
Choosing a collar made from high-quality materials will ensure it’s more durable and comfortable for your pup.
Correct Size For Your Dog
Choosing a collar that is the right size for your dog ensures they’re comfortable, as well as making sure they don’t escape. It’s also crucial that the collar fits properly so that your corrections are effective. Measure your dog’s neck carefully and check the size guide.
What Causes Aggression in Dogs
No dog is born aggressive, and an aggressive dog isn’t a ‘bad dog’. Aggression forms due to experiences the dog has within their life. There are so many types of aggression and therefore, many potential causes. The most common causes include:
- Fear: Often a dog is aggressive because they’re frightened. This might be directed towards other dogs because they’ve been attacked in the past. It may be towards humans if they’re a rescue dog and have a traumatic past.
If a dog is put in a situation in which they feel threatened or frightened, such as being cornered, they may react aggressively to try to protect themselves.
- Lack of socialization: Dogs need to be socialized around other dogs and people from an early age. If they lack this socialization, they don’t learn how to act appropriately around others and may become aggressive.
- Possessiveness: Some dogs become possessive over toys and food, which is known as resource guarding. They might even become possessive over people. They feel they need to protect these items or people and might do so by displaying aggression.
- Dominance: Dogs are used to living in packs, within which there is a hierarchy of dominance. If they are unsure of their place in the pack, they may display aggression to fight for dominance (both with other dogs and people in the household).
- Lack of protection shown by owner: As we mentioned, dogs are pack animals, and you should be the pack leader. This means your dog will look to you for rules, guidance on how to behave, and to keep them safe, which is why training is vital. Without training, your dog might not understand how to behave and sometimes this can result in aggression.
If your dog encounters a ‘scary’ situation, such as a strange dog approaching who they are unsure of or a place or person they are worried about, they look to you for protection and guidance. If you don’t provide that protection, they may feel they need to protect themselves and lash out.
- Frustration: If a dog is frustrated because they aren’t getting enough physical or mental stimulation, this can build up and can sometimes lead to aggression.
- Illness or injury: Finally, even the most placid and gentle of dogs can become aggressive if they are unwell or injured. If your dog suddenly starts displaying signs of aggression and it’s out of character, you should always get them checked at your vet to eliminate physical causes.
Other Ways to Deal With Dog Aggression
This all sounds negative but don’t worry, with the right training, socialization, and equipment, aggression can be prevented and dealt with so you and your dog can live a happy life together. As well as collars for control, other equipment can be helpful to keep your dog, other dogs, and people safe.
Muzzles can be useful during training and when out on walks. Harnesses, collars, leads, and lead attachments that are bright colors and state that your dog is nervous or not friendly can let people know they should keep their distance.
While the right equipment can be a helpful tool, the only way to truly tackle aggressive behavior is through training. If you aren’t experienced in training an aggressive dog, it’s always best to do so under the guidance of your vet or a professional dog trainer.
Collar Safety Advice
Always choose a collar of the right size and strength for your dog. Don’t leave your dog’s collar on when they’re in their crate or pen, or during play as this can pose a safety hazard. Avoid prong collars and shock collars, as these can be dangerous especially when used incorrectly.
Can an aggressive dog be ‘cured’?
With the right training, aggression can be greatly reduced so that you and your dog can live a happy life together. In some cases, aggression can be overcome completely.
Do shock collars help with dog aggression?
No, shock collars don’t help with dog aggression. In fact, they can increase aggression because they cause physical and mental distress for your dog, as well as ruining the trust between you which is crucial during training.
The right collar can aid you in training your dog and getting aggression under control, allowing you both to relax and make the most of your life together.