Tuesday, 15 October 2019 08:36

Canine Equipment – Tail wagging FAQ’s

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Read our Super-Blog about all things ‘canine equipment’ related! We cover essential topics, including:
How do I stop my dog pulling on the lead? Headcollars Dog Walking Belt What is the best harness for my dog? The Dog Training Lead or Long Line The best lead to use for a reactive or timid dog Is there a lead that is good for arthritic hands? Is there a suitable piece of canine equipment for jogging or running with my dog? Does your dog lose his name tags? Keeping your dog safe in the car Need a secure dog lead? We’ve got that covered too! My dog food guards, what lead should I use? My dog guards things like toys or his space, what lead should I use? What is the safest collar for my dog? What is the correct way to fit a half check dog collar? Safety considerations when using certain canine equipment What length of dog training lead should I choose? When to chose nickel or brass fittings? Best value for money headcollar and lead in one I want a lead that I can choose the length What s the best headcollar for my dog? STOP MY DOG PULLING ON THE LEAD How do I stop my dog from pulling on the lead? Headcollars This has to be the question of the decade, doesn’t it? In the absence of the obvious – ‘train them’, the market for gadgets and devices to help stop your dog from pulling on the lead is the number one seller in the UK. Headcollars, head halters, a figure of 8 lead and rope leads are the most obvious go-to piece of canine equipment. Buying a stop-pulling product for your dog doesn’t necessarily mea it will stop your dog from pulling on the lead, what it does is it creates a tool-kit to enable you to work towards your training goal of a well-trained dog. Stopping your dog from pulling on the lead is about training them to walk to heel, often called walking on a loose lead or leash. It’s about having them by your side with a slack lead. In the Meg Heath store, we have the Simple Leader Headcollar, The Dream Walker Headcollar Lead Combo and the Figure of 8 Lead. All of these are a figure of 8 design with each one suiting a different taste, preference and pocket. Designed by myself, the Simple Leader head collar for dogs has been rigorously tested on my dogs and in my boarding kennels on willing canine subjects! There are some key factors that make this head collar stand out from the rest from what is a pretty saturated pat product market, they are: it is simple to use comfortable for thew dog to wear (wider noseband) easy for the owner to fit affordable customisable (fully padded, brass O ring etc) easy to measure for (just measure the figure of 8 where the headcollar will lie on your dog) easy to get the correct size due to its versatile design and adjustability made of high-quality components hand stitched on an industrial sewing machine lifetime stitching guarantee Simple Leader dog head collar The Dog Walking Belt This is fairly new to the store, but not a new design in the world! The Meg Heath design is a 50mm walking belt, fully adjustable with two mighty D rings and a very sturdy curved side release buckle. In most cases it can be worn in the summer or over a coat in the winter due to its’ versatile adjustment. This dog walking belt offers additional upgrades with purchases available for lead attachments and a Super Leash. The lead attachments mean you can attach any lead to the belt and the Super Leash means you have a full kit. The Super Leash is adjustable and can be easily attached to the walking belt. The benefits of this belt are priceless, they are as follows: ideal for dogs’ who pull on the lead ideal if you have a wrist, arm or shoulder injury ideal to take the jolt out of dogs who wander around and snatch the lead safety guaranteed assuming everything is used and fitted properly, stops you dropping the lead ensures hands-free dog training with easy treat control ideal for walking multiple dogs popular with professional dog walkers ideal for boarding kennels or anyone who walks dogs for a living going jogging with your dog dog walking belt DOG WALKING BELT – SHOP HERE What is the best harness for my dog? Dog harnesses are also a top seller but most professionals will agree that the dog harness isn’t really a device that will always stop pulling on the lead. Think about the sled dog. What do they wear? There are harnesses however that are front-loading and they stop your dog pulling by guiding them around from the front of the chest encouraging them to turn and face you disengaging with the distraction or trigger for problem behaviour People also buy harnesses because they don’t like collars being used on a lead, preferring the body of the dog to take any stress from a harness. Harnesses are also used to put in to practice the technique of ‘double-leading’. Double-leading is a safety method whose focus is having the dog secured to you by two points. This method utilises the dog training lead (police dog style) because it has a trigger hook at each end. Having a trigger hook at each end means you can clip one lead to two pieces of equipment, the harness isn’t the only product that you can do this with. Other suggestions are: headcollar and collar collar and harness harness and headcollar In the Meg Heath Store we have the Marty Harness. A simple, no fuss walking harness for dogs. MARTINGALE DOG HARNESS – SHOP HERE Dog Training Lead also called a long line or tracking lead This is an essential piece of canine equipment for two reasons. They are: on leash exercise with freedom teaching your dog to come back when you call them The dog training lead was actually the reason for me starting the business back in 2006. A dog trainer at the time, I was holding classes, private lessons and residential training at my kennels. Teaching your dog to come back when you call them also called the recall, is one of the top techniques many people struggle with. My technique relies heavily on the use of this product. You can read my blog on this topic. It is essential because: it physically stops your dog from running away, not only is this a safety aspect but it is essential for recall training when running off is practiced (and ignoring you), it is reinforced We have training leads from 5 up to 50 metres. Options to customise your lead with brass fittings (nickel are standard), width options (16, 19 or 25mm – 16mm is a special order), a padded handle for your comfort and the clever double-up option which means if you buy a 20 metre dog training lead, you can halve the length and use it as a 10 metre dog training lead. The 30, 40 and 50 metre dog training lead are more suitable for large areas where exercising your dog is your main goal. Dog training lead LONG DOG TRAINING LEADS – SHOP HERE What is the best dog lead to use with a rescue dog, a new dog or a reactive, frightened or timid dog? Here we discuss the Halti type lead & Safety Lead. With a background also in dog rescue for 10 years, providing leads that provided safety for the dog and handler was important to me. The dog training lead (police dog style) had already been designed by Roger Mugford called the Halti Lead. This lead is invaluable when as mentioned above, the technique of double-leading is used. Many people also make this design. Ours is slightly different using a continuous piece of webbing so that if any stitching were to break at the rings, then your dog will still be safe. If the safety of your dog is paramount for you, then use of this type of lead is important. If you have a dog who if for any reason being off lead would be a disaster, then you must always double lead your dog. Our Headcollar Dog Safety Lead is a lead with two trigger hooks at the same end a few inches apart. Its’ use is intended for attaching to a headcollar and a collar, on the proviso that if one fails your dog is still safely attached to you. Head Collar Safety Lead HEADCOLLAR SAFETY LEAD – SHOP HERE Is there a dog lead that is good for use with arthritic or otherwise limited use or disbaled hands? Yes, there is. A customer came to me one day with a specific request. She was due to have an operation on her hand but was also arthritic. I came up with a design that did not rely on the actual hand holding on to the lead, it tightened around the wrist with a comfortable fleece padded loop and was limited to only tighten so much. The dog end featured a carabiner that was large and simple. It meant even her limited mobility could still clip the lead to the dogs’ collar. Alternatively, all of our leads have the optionn to upgrade to a padded handle. Dog Lead for arthritis CALL TO CHAT ABOUT A CUSTOM ORDER Is there a piece of equipment suitable for jogging or running with my dog? The dog walking belt is a Meg Heath creation, nothing new, but I wanted to be able to make a well crafted, UK made belt. It has several uses, they are: going jogging with your dog professional dog walkers walking multiple dogs walking dogs who pull on the lead My dog loses his name tags all the time! We have a collar for that too! It is called the Double Tag dog collar. It features two rings, one for your dogs tag and one for your lead. So if you are sick of clipping your lead to the split ring on your dogs tag and it comes flying off, then this is the collar for you. Double Tag Dog Collar DOUBLE TAG DOG COLLAR – SHOP HERE I want to keep my dog safe in the car when I open the doors or the boot Our best product and biggest seller – the Car Boot Restraint Lead. Created in 2009, design registered in 2016, the car boot lead was one of the first of its’ kind keeping dogs’ securely in cars. Their use is two-fold: they enable you to open the doors or the boot without your dog jumping out if god forbid you had an accident, and the security of your car was compromised, your dog will not run off if he is secured in your car What are the car boot restraints features and why not just use a dog lead tied somewhere in your car? Well, obviously making an attempt to secure your dog into your car is great but as with everything, there are better ways to achieve this. My boot lead is an optimum length, adjustable, made from a substantial webbing and components, tested by me since 2009 and loved by customers. Its’ length is an adjustable 50-75 cm. It is fitted with a ‘tri slide’ the same as is fitted to dog collars to adjust them. A trigger hook at each end and the essential feature that makes the Meg Heath car boot restraint the only one of its’ kind – an O ring that enables you to attach to the cars’ headrest too. No other product does that, this is why mine is design protected. The lead is fitted by attaching one trigger hook to your dogs’ harness and one to a strong anchor point in your car. The length of this product is designed to be short to prevent your dog from jumping out of the car but long enough to allow your dog to be comfortable while travelling in a vehicle. Car boot lead KEEP MY DOG SAFE IN THE CAR – SHOP HERE Carabiner Car Boot restraint lead This is a variation on the above. It features a swivel carabiner at one end and a trigger hook at the other. You can interchange which end you use where. Use the carabiner for either your dogs’ car harness or for the anchor point. Carabiner Car Boot Lead CARABINER CAR BOOT LEAD – SHOP HERE I need a secure dog lead? Enter the carabiner dog lead. This leash is a normal dog lead but it has a carabiner fitted to the dog end. Our carabiners are the swivel types with a locking gate. This lead also comes as a carabiner dog training lead, so a carabiner at each end with 3 O rings spaced at intervals to make a truly multifunctional lead. carabiner training lead Carabiner Training Lead CARABINER DOG TRAINING LEAD – SHOP HERE More about the swivel carabiner… These are load tested up to 450kg (I’ve seen the video of the actual test done specifically for me when I questioned its’ strength). They are brand laser engraved with ‘Meg Heath’, have a swivel joint to your lead doesn’t get tangled and a spring-loaded, swivel locking gate, ideal for quickly clipping on to collars. Which lead would be suitable for a dog who guards food or possessions? The house line or trailing line is just the answer for this dilemma. It is a light lead with no handle that can be left on a dog to trail around after them. So designed, it means you can interact with a volatile dog who might be guarding something by leading them away to distract them and maybe reward them for something else. These leads are also popular with dog training clubs and dog trainers, professional dog walkers etc as they are affordable in bulk purchases. House Lead HOUSE LEAD – SHOP HERE What is the safest collar for my dog? Have you heard of the Half Check Dog Collar or the half choke (not a very nice name but called this all the same)? It is essentially a collar that tightens when pressure is applied. Its’ size reduction around the dogs’ neck is restricted and cannot hurt your dog unless misused (like with anything). This is one piece of canine equipment that must be fitted correctly. These collars are fitted incorrectly all of the time. Half Check Dog Collar Half check dog collar EXTRA SAFE DOG COLLAR – SHOP HERE What is the correct way to fit a half check or half choke dog collar? This is really worth sharing as so many people get this wrong at the expense of our dogs’ welfare. When the collar is on your dog, the two rings highlighted below MUST touch. Think about it, if they don’t and essentially have further to travel before the rings join, then the collar will go smaller than your dogs’ actually neck size. You are going to strangle your dog! There have been times when a customer has said their dogs’ collar is too big but it just needed fitting correctly. Safety Considerations Length of longer training leads As with any leads, they can be misused. I think a longer lead has more scope for abuse and accidents. Chose the right length that you need and only use the longer ones for large areas and beach use. Don’t let them run through your hands or round the back of your ankles – you will get a burn. So, what length is the best length? 5 – 10 metres is good for recall training, so chose the length depending on the size of your dog 10-20 metres is still good for recall training, but for larger dogs anything above 20 metres is only suitable when you can hold your dog and stay stood up with all limbs intact the longer lengths are better suited for safe on lead excercise What NOT to do with long leads: don’t let a longer lead trail if your dog is likely to run off, they only have to go round something like a tree or a bush once and your dog is effectively trapped don’t allow a dog to run full speed to the end of a lead, you will lose an arm! don’t ever attach them to headcollars and it’s really not a great idea to use with collars either. If you want to do the best thing, always attach a longer lead to a well-fitted supportive soft harness. When to chose nickel or brass fittings Sometimes this is personal preference. Nickel can look really nice on some colours. Brass will always be my choice for the following reasons. It won’t ever seize. It looks nicer with more colours, for example brown, black, bottle green and navy blue. The brass hardware I use is all the best quality, so, for example, the rings are solid brass harness rings and the trigger hooks are also solid brass. I have brass triggers on a custom lead I made to lift the cover on my septic tank, they’ve been there since 2006 and they still work as good as the day I made it. What is the best value for money headcollar and lead? This has to be the figure of 8 lead. It does as it says, follows a figure 8 over the top of your dogs’ muzzle, crosses over under the chin then follows the natural path up to and behind the dogs’ ears, where one loop goes through a ring and then goes to the lead section. This is a really popular lead, not only because they are cheap as chips but easy to use and people say they are really effective as a lead to help stop your dog from pulling. The Slip Lead is also very similar and can be used as a figure of 8 easily. FIGURE OF 8 HEADCOLLAR LEAD – SHOP HERE I want a lead that i can chose the length Ah, the Double Up dog lead. Designed in such a way that it can be used at full or half length. So, for example, if you buy the 2 metre lead, it can also be used at 1 metre. Similar to the dog training lead police dog style but with 2 different lengths. Dream Walker Head Collar Lead Combo …and finally, the favourite new kid on the block that has begun to outsell the Simple Leader. The Dream Walker Headcollar Lead Combo. Take control of your dog and benefit fro the following features: a headcollar and lead in 1 integrated lead ensuring safety and double leading if you chose an optional safety clip for further safety a padded noseband for unrivalled comfort for your dog hard-wearing webbing in 19mm range of colours fully customisable as with most of my products
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