Pronged collars are not safe. They can pop open and fall apart when you least expect it. Your dog is not safe on a pronged collar. My dogs are not safe when your dog is on a pronged collar. There is a lot of judgment on people who use pronged collars. I don’t judge you for using a pronged collar. I love you for being a fellow dog lover. I know that most people who use pronged collars are trying to control a dog who is very strong and simply don’t know what else to do. I’m not here to bash on you or your dog. I’m here to share my story in the hopes that it saves you and others from the pain and suffering me and my dog family have just gone though.
Here is my story. Please learn from me and my story before other dogs and people are injured.
On Sunday December 3rd 2017 at about 2pm I was walking my dogs. I have 4 dogs and I pride myself on being really safe on walks, we always cross the street when we see another dog coming, I keep them all on short leashes and harnesses so that each dog is under control, I never talk on my phone while walking, I really focus on getting my dogs around the block and home safe.
We passed a woman who was walking a large black dog. Her dog was clearly interested in my dogs and my dogs got excited as well, normal dog walk behavior so me and my pack just paused on the other side of a large SUV (outta sight, outta mind) and waited for them to pass and a moment or two later we continued our path. On the next block we passed the woman and her dog again and this time there were no SUVs or vehicles to hide behind so we just continued on our path. We were two doors down from my home so I figured we’d just get inside quick.
As we were passing this woman and her dog the dogs pronged collar popped open and her dog charged us.
He was much larger than all of my dogs. He grabbed one of my small dogs and shook her and threw her down. Then he grabbed another small dog and did the same, then he went back to the first one again. He was killing my little dog family in front of me and there was nothing I could do to stop it or help (though trust me, I tried). My larger dog Joe jumped in to defend his small pack members and now the two larger dogs were locked at the throat. The entire incident took 41 seconds from start to finish and in the end three of my dogs had life threatening injuries. I looked down and tiny 10 pound Molly had bubbles of air and blood coming out of her chest, I knew her lung was punctured. My 18 pound Gertie was ripped open and you could see her stomach and bowels. Joe’s throat was punctured deep near the jugular.
I had no idea how her dog got free at the time and to be honest that’s just not what I was thinking about. I knew I had to act fast if I wanted my dogs to live and the best chance of that is to get them to a professional as soon as possible. I was in shock but I knew what had to be done. My kind neighbors helped me get my dogs into the car and rode with me to the vet. The entire car ride to the vet I was praying that my dogs would somehow survive. “Please God don’t take my dog family from me. Please keep my babies alive. Please help them God. It’s Christmas. All I want for Christmas is for my dogs to be okay.” All three dogs had to go into immediate surgery and we weren’t sure if they’d survive but they did. It was a Christmas miracle.
The owner of the other dog is a really nice woman who has two rescue dogs. She was only walking one dog at the time. We have since become friends and she’s a lot like me. She was and is horrified, traumatized, and she called me immediately to apologize and pay for everything. Her dog had never gotten free before. He had never attacked another dog before. She described him as a lover. He loves humans and acts like a lap dog and general furry love bug BUT he also has a strong prey drive, thus the pronged collar. I know a lot of dogs with strong prey drives. All kinds of dogs of all sizes and breeds. This is not unusual for a dog. I’m a dog foster mom who has fostered at least 30 dogs over the years and this is fairly typical dog behavior. I don’t blame the dog and I don’t blame the owner. Her dog didn’t bite any humans, he showed no aggression toward the humans who were trying to break up the fight, he was really going for the smallest dogs. That damn prey drive.
I spoke to our neighbors who have security cameras and luckily the cameras caught it all. You can clearly see them (the woman and her dog) walking along and then suddenly the collar pop open, flies up and hits her in the chest and then her dog is just free and running at us. She looks horrified. She reacted quickly and ran across the street to control her dog immediately and using her body she wrestled her large muscular rescue mutt to the ground and held him in a bear hug till we could get away. I could see the terror on her face and I’m sure she saw the pain and anguish in mine. She thought her dog was under control, she thought she was doing the right thing, she had no idea why this happened, she said she had the pronged collar on the table and was just staring at it all day. How did this happen? How could this happen?
I googled pronged collars and it seems that it’s not unusual for them to pop open. Even when properly fitted and with proper training, people claim the pronged collars pop open over and over again online. Here are some comment threads I found online regarding the pronged collars popping open:
The problem with pronged collars is that they are used on the most aggressive dogs. Nobody wants to use them, they are used by dog owners who are having problems controlling their dogs. They don’t know what else to do. They think they are doing the right thing. They think this collar helps make their dogs safe to walk, but the truth is that pronged collars are ticking time bombs that can pop open at any moment and sadly I have seen first hand the life threatening and potentially ending damage that can be caused when one of these pronged collars pops open and I have it all on security camera from three different angles and in full color as well (via my neighbors security cameras).
I am not mad at my neighbor or her dog, I’m mad a the makers of these prong collars who make people with aggressive dogs feel like they are being safe, but really they are just horrible, vicious, violent dog attacks waiting to happen. Your dog is not safe on a pronged collar. My dogs are not safe when your dog is on a pronged collar.
If you or someone you know uses a pronged collar please tell them, please share my story with them. They need to have a second collar and leash attached to their dog at all times and possibly a muzzle as well. All of this pain, trauma and violence could have been avoided with a back up leash and collar along with a simple muzzle.
This is serious stuff and every day I’m dealing with dogs who are in so much pain, dealing out meds and doing everything I can to help them heal physically and emotionally. I had to get stitches. Three humans had to get stitches and antibiotics after the attack. Three dogs near death. It’s a lot of pain to be dealing with as we go into the holidays and Christmas.