Martingale Dog Collars: How to Use Them and 5 Top Picks

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Martingale collars have long been a staple of greyhound folk, but recently they’ve become even more popular among pet owners with dogs of all types. The martingale is a type of collar used to keep dogs on a leash without choking them.

Read on to learn all about martingale collars: what they are, what type of dog they benefit, and how to choose and fit one for your dog.

What is a martingale collar?

Martingale collars, also known as non-slip or non-slip collars, are a type of dog collar that offers more control than a typical flat collar to help prevent dogs from backing away or slipping. They look a lot like a flat collar, but about a third of the length of the collar is actually a smaller loop of fabric with a D-ring attached (see image above). On some martingale collars, the smaller loop is made of chain rather than fabric.

The collar works by tightening when the dog pulls on the leash. The tension in the webbing causes the smaller loop to tighten, which in turn tightens the larger loop, but not too much! Martingale collars are adjustable and should not be tightened beyond the width of the dog’s neck. They provide comfortable security without harming your dog.

What is the difference between martingale collars and choke collars?

On the surface, martingale collars can resemble choke collars in that they contract when the leash is taut. But a well-fitting martingale collar don’t drown a dog. By design, martingale collars can only be adjusted to the dog’s neck size, unlike chain collars, which have no adjustment limit.

Which Breeds Should Wear Martingale Collars?

Martingale collars are sometimes referred to as “greyhound collars” because they were designed for dogs whose heads are narrower than their necks. They are a popular choice for Greyhounds, Whippets, Salukis and other slender-headed breeds.

But martingale collars are not only useful for greyhounds! It’s a good choice for any dog ​​who tends to take their collar off, or for people who want a little more control over the leash without putting their dog in danger. In fact, many rescue groups use martingales as “rescue collars” and place them next to flat collars for added safety on trips.

How to choose and fit a martingale collar for your dog

Martingale collars come in different widths for different dogs. Many dogs will do just fine with a simple 1″ wide martingale collar. But for narrow-headed dogs like greyhounds and their cousins, a wider, more padded martingale offers more security and comfort.

Regardless of what type of martingale collar you choose, it is important to purchase one that fits you well. To find the correct size, measure around the base of your dog’s skull, just behind the ears. This measurement corresponds to the collar when fully tightened or closed. The PetSafe brand martingale collar size chart is a good example. Choose the smallest collar that fits your dog comfortably.

Once you find the right martingale collar size, you need to adjust the fit for your dog. First, slip the collar over your dog’s neck and pull it up to the point just behind the ears. Then pull the small loop and look at the metal sliders on each side. According to British collar maker Doggy Boho, a well-fitting martingale collar has about two fingers between the two sides to ensure proper fit when pulled.

How to wear a martingale collar safely

Martingale collars are best for safely walking dogs that might otherwise slip out of a traditional collar. They are not intended as walking aids for drag dogs. Eventually, if your dog keeps pulling, he’ll end up with a constantly tight collar, which isn’t very comfortable. For puppies who pull on the leash, it may be more helpful to work on slack-leash walking techniques or to study non-pulling harnesses.

Professional dog trainers recommend only wearing martingale collars on walks and removing them at home. Although martingale collars are safe, the loose design and dangling ring have a higher chance of snagging on objects. For this reason, dogs should always be supervised when wearing martingale collars.

With 21 colors to choose from, there’s sure to be a Blueberry Pet martingale collar to match your dog’s style. You can even personalize the collar’s nylon band with your pet’s name and contact information.

Cranberry Martingale Dog Collar

Blueberry Pet Essentials Martingale Dog Collar

You can choose from 21 colors and have the option to engrave your pet’s name with this martingale collar.

Buy from Amazon

This martingale collar is made of nylon material and features a locking buckle and reflective stitching for added safety. As a bonus, this brand donates a collar to a dog shelter for every collar sold.

Neck Martingale Max and Neo

Max and Neo Martingale Dog Collar

The maker of this premium nylon martingale collar donates a collar to a rescued dog with every purchase.

Buy from Amazon

Available in four colors and a range of sizes, this PetSafe Collar is an affordable martingale option made from durable nylon.

PetSafe Martingale Dog Collar

This martingale collar comes in a variety of colors and is a bargain at a great price.

This adjustable martingale collar is made from durable materials and comes in a variety of colors and sizes. You can also order a custom size if required.

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