Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

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pixie's mum
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by pixie's mum » 12 Jun 2012, 19:58

I have used haltis on 3 of my dogs and found it to be a really good aid and following shoulder surgery ( probably caused by a mountain sized rhodesian ridgeback bouncing about ) I couldn't walk them without one.

I have found that as they came out of puppyhood I could do away with the halti and perhaps you will be able to do the same.

They are not cruel and neither are you - and if my new pup needs one I'll use one again. I do live in hope that puppy school and my perseverence will work this time !! :lol:

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by Bid » 12 Jun 2012, 20:02

I don't like them, because almost every dog I have seen wearing them is pawing at it's face and rubbing the ground to get them off, and I think walks should be pleasant for the dog as well as the owner. I wouldn't go so far as to say you were cruel to use one though, and if that is the only way Jessie is going to get a walk then I imagine she would much prefer to wear one than not go out!

A lot of people get one and then give up on the training thinking it has solved the problem, but it hasn't - it has prevented it, so as already mentioned - keep working on the lead walking because it can be done. I am only 5'2" and I walk three standard doodles on my own (admittedly not with a puchchair as well!). We are doing OK but I still have to work on Beamish lunging when we pass a dog (and he is 36kg so when he lunges I know all about it!). It's a work in progress :roll:
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by winnieb » 12 Jun 2012, 21:45

No you are not a cruel owner. I use a gentle leader on all of my doodles or I wouldn't be able to walk them due to a bad back, and 3 kids :roll: :roll:

I had a similar incident a few weeks ago walking through my local country park from an older lady walking a very old german shepherd. I questioned myself too but I think it's a better option than no being able to walk my dogs. My dogs don't seem to be bothered by it and it makes walks pleasant for all of us, well most of the time :oops:
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by jasperaliceuk » 12 Jun 2012, 21:56

As Bid says, the Halti is a tool for managing a pulling dog. Its not cruel and yes, it does draw comments because people think they are muzzles! It prevents pulling but doesn't necessarily teach the dog not to pull. If you keep up with teaching no pull lead walking on a flat collar as well you will find you eventually can dispense with the Halti. I had to use one with my previous dog but it was more because she had a tendency to lunge aggressively if startled and it gave me better control. Teaching a dog not to pull can be a slow process but with consistency and patience you'll succeed in the end!

Just one watchword though, and that is never to use a retractable or long line with the Halti as it can badly damage a dog's neck.


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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by brucey doodle » 12 Jun 2012, 22:26

No way are you a cruel dog owner I've been using a halti for two years and it's a god send my doodle is a standard and very strong and i used to look so out of control when he was using his harness it just seemed to give him more power from the chest like you I'm only small and my vet said about the halti Bruce didn't mind it at all from the first day he had it on but I still get does he bite is that why he's muzzled or I don't like those things they look cruel you learn to ignore people or I reply if it's a muzzle it's not a very good one as his mouth is wide open you can see all his teeth and his tongue is hanging out . I was hoping I could stop using the halti eventually but Bruce has issues when he's on his lead and other dogs approach him but with the halti I have full controll and I feel more confident so you do what works for you and your lovely pooch :D

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by JennMaisy » 12 Jun 2012, 23:00

I use a gentle leader with Maisy. I held off using it as long as I could, but had to give in eventually as her pulling is particularly bad as we get near the nature reserve or the beach. She's fine the rest of the walk. I am short and have Arthritis which means i walk with a stick, so only have one hand to control Maisy, and as soon as there were leaves blowing on the ground, cats, squirrels, foxes running, feathers etc she would launch towards them. I was even pulled into a pile of her poo while i was picking it up!

I had to start using it as she'd pulled me so hard a few times I couldn't actually walk as she'd twisted my knee, so while I doing my best to keep training her, I had to get it out.
She's not massively fond of it, but she still comes back to me at the end of the walk and doesn't have it on while playing. It doesn't feel nice walking along with a dog that looks like its muzzled, but at the end of the day, what gets me more cross than anything is soap box busy bodies who think they have the foggiest idea about what goes on in your world. They have NO idea who you are, why they have it on or anything. If you were that much of a cruel owner your dog wouldn't be out walking and you probably wouldn't spend money on things like that! Silly ignorant people.

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by Florrie! » 12 Jun 2012, 23:08

I have to use a halti on Florrie. When she was much younger, she panicked when out on a walk at a passing car, pulled and ripped the muscles in my shoulder. Since then I've used a halti on her and she's much better. She doesn't bother at hers no pawing or rubbing her face or anything like that, she's accepted wearing it. I try her sometimes without it, but I just can't manage to walk her without her pulling too much. When she wears it she walks really nicely next to me and never once pulls.

Tbh I don't street walk her much due to her anxiety it's too much for her: people, cars, pushchairs, etc. Instead we put her in the car and take her different places where she can go off lead. We do a bit of on lead training and then she goes off lead to have a run.

I don't think it's cruel at all and tbh I wish I'd known about them before as I wouldn't have ongoing pain and slight dislocation of my shoulder now!

I think they're excellent to help with training and I would rather put one on Florrie and have control of her than not. A lady near us has an adult german shepard, it was her late husbands dog and doesn't like her walking him. She obviously hasn't got a choice but to walk him and she cannot control him at all. He lunges at people, dogs, cats etc, he will bolt across roads dragging her behind him and is just generally a nightmare when out. The lady stopped me one day and asked about Florrie's halti, she's got one now and the dog walks completly differently. She can control him now which means she's able to focus on helping him with his problems when out walking. She has a dog trainer who walks with her too and they are both really making a difference with the dog.


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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by MacDoodle » 13 Jun 2012, 00:07

Your certainly not cruel, Casper was on a Halti. He was a huge 55kg dog and was so strong that it was an essential he was not on it long until he learned not to pull. Then we had lovely pleasant walks which were so much calmer.

I will have to get one for Kodi, or a harness as he is a live wire. He pulls and jumps.
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by lgri8211 » 13 Jun 2012, 07:50

Thank you everyone for the replies yesterday i appreciate it. You have all made me feel much better about using it! As several of you have advised we will continue training on an evening/weekend without the halti when my partner is there to see im not dragged over and dislocate my shoulders!!

I don't know the trouble these doodles cause!!!

I'm going to try and upload some new pics of Jessie now!

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by jefferson » 13 Jun 2012, 08:16

i wonder if that silly women is related to the other silly woman who lives near me :lol: at the end of the day you are just trying to make your life and your dogs life more pleasant and some people should just learn to keep their sticky beaks out of other peoples business. i know someone who has 3 massive airdales and there is no way she would be able to walk them without a halti. you carry on doing what you're doing,which is the best thing for you and your family.

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by Liz! » 13 Jun 2012, 09:27

Honestly, some people! But on the other hand, you have to be pleased in one way, she does have dogs' interests at heart, and obviously isn't cruel to animals!

I know JUST what hard pulling can do to you as Lola is TINY and managed to pull my ulna out of place in my arm when she was a puppy, with her constant pull forwards! goodness knows how bad it would be with a big doodle.

I tried a halti, and many things like it, but she just walked on her hind legs down the road and got her front paws under it and pulled it off.

So i had to find another way, and with 2 young children I suspect it would be too time intensive - i walked everywhere with her but as soon as she pulled i stopped dead, and only when the lead was slack did I move forward. Also, having the lead very slack helps - pulling is an automatic reaction to having something round the neck restraining you. I also got a harness that attached at the front of her chest - then if she did pull, all that happened was she turned to face me. I find this is VERY effective, and it worked for us.

if you worry about people worrying about the harness round the face, you could try one of these alternative types that fasten in front!
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by tillytubbie » 13 Jun 2012, 15:19

Of course you are not cruel! What ever gives you the most control over your dog should be commended!

I really would ignore this woman. I can see both sides though. I have seen dogs do great damage to their necks because they lunged while on a halti - and had their necks jerked back. But then again I know people who's dogs lives were enriched dramatically because they were able to take their dog everywhere without pulling!

I use a choke chain on Tilly. Am I cruel?

She walks without any pulling. Could it damage her? Yes. Do I use it correctly? Yes.

It is totally personal preference as to what you use with your dog. Whatever works best for you and whatever you use correctly!
Nothing will be right for everyone :wink:

Goodluck with the training - you'll crack it eventually! :)
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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by Barneyboy » 13 Jun 2012, 17:06

It doesn't have to be a big dog to injure you - my old Sprollie, all 13kgs of her, was such an enthusiastic puller when she was younger, I actually slipped a disc trying to walk her!!!

Halti's can be great, but be careful they don't interfere with your dogs natural behaviour, especially when meeting and greeting other dogs.

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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by chris'n'ron » 13 Jun 2012, 17:38

[quote="tillytubbie"] I use a choke chain on Tilly. Am I cruel?

She walks without any pulling. Could it damage her? Yes. Do I use it correctly? Yes.


There was a thread on here some time ago about the use of choke/check chains and I was one of the few who had chosen to use one at one time. It was the only thing we found helped us to control our very large male labrador. Again correct usage is of utmost importance. Put it on upside down it will tighten and choke. Correctly used the chain will hang loose. Our Lab didn't mind it in the least and indeed used to willingly slip his nose in it himself. I agree, use whatever is easiest and safest for you and your dog. At the end of the day you need to be in confident conrol and the dogs needs to feel safe and happy. :) I might add this time around it was the Halti that worked well for us as I mentioned above.


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Re: Am i a cruel dog owner?? ;o(

Post by Bid » 13 Jun 2012, 18:18

tillytubbie wrote: I use a choke chain on Tilly. Am I cruel?

She walks without any pulling. Could it damage her? Yes. Do I use it correctly? Yes
I don't think it is fair to compare the use of a head collar with a choke chain tbh. My answer would be no, it is not cruel to use a halti, but I couldn't honestly give the same response regarding a choke chain, even used correctly.
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