Best dog collar for pulling

Best Dog Collar for a Large Dog That Pulls

Introduction

Large dogs have some special advantages when compared to smaller dogs. For one thing, they tend to be calmer. For another thing, they’re much better guard dogs, as their size alone will often be enough to deter a would-be attacker.

However, some special problems also come with the ownership of a large dog. One is their strength. If you’re a small person with a large dog, your dog may very well be stronger than you. Some dogs, particularly bully breeds, compete in pulling contests where they pull shockingly large amounts of weight.

With this in mind, we will attempt to determine which type of collar is best for a large dog with a pulling problem. To do this, let’s review the following products:

  1. Bestia Maximus Dog Harness
  2. Mighty Paw Leather Training Collar
  3. Diezel Military-Style Dog Collar
  4. StarMark Training Collar
  5. Deyace Prong Collar

Advantages Of An Anti-Pull Collar

Superior Leverage

Dog and his owner walking on a city street

When your dog is pulling at the leash, they’re essentially engaging you in a tug-of-war. To win the game with minimal effort, you need a collar or harness that will provide greater control.

This leverage can take many forms. Some collars might pinch the dog a little bit, while others may choke them. We’ve avoided discussion of choke chains and choke collars because, in our opinion, they’re inhumane. More importantly, they’re unnecessary. By using any of the anti-pull collars that we will describe below, you can keep your walks from becoming a game of tug-of-war.

Superior Durability

The collars on this list are made with the strongest and most stubborn dogs in mind. As such, they’re all made out of tough materials like steel, thick nylon, and leather. Regardless of whether your dog is an extreme case or not, it never hurts to have a collar that will hold up for a long time. A rowdy dog can be very hard on a collar, but these collars are likely to put a stop to that.

You’ll really need this extra leverage if you’re a smaller person walking a bigger dog. On the one hand, large dogs are great for protection; on the other hand, it can be tough to control a big dog. This is why you need the right type of collar.

Self-Correction

Almost all of the collars on our list work by the same basic principle — when a dog pulls against the leash, the collar tightens and when a dog stops pulling, the collar is loosened again. This is a good way to go about things because your dog will feel as though he is disciplining himself. Your dog is unlikely to understand the concept behind the collar, and so it will seem to him like magic. This is good because it creates discouragement of bad behavior in such a way that the dog is unlikely to blame you.

This kind of discipline is ideal for the largest of dogs as you really don’t want to use harsh discipline with big dogs. This becomes even truer if you’re dealing with an oversize breed like a Mastiff or a Great Dane. Dogs like this can seriously injure you if they turn on you. Rescue dogs should also never be corrected harshly, as their traumatic backgrounds can make them more sensitive to discipline than other dogs. When they correct themselves, you don’t have to worry about this.

What To Look For In An Anti-Pull Collar

Supreme Durability

Don’t settle for any excuses when it comes to durability. If you see even a single piece of load-bearing plastic, just say no. A plastic tip on the end of a prong or some other non-stressed part would be acceptable. Specifically, what you need to look out for are those little plastic clasps. For some reason, it can be hard to find dog collars that don’t have plastic clasps or plastic buckles. Maybe that will work for a little terrier, but it won’t work for a big dog.

Look at the band of the collar itself. Remember that any material is weak if it’s not sufficiently thick. If the material is double-layered, it’s even better. Don’t be afraid to look for the excessive in this case. It is important to remember that most collar manufacturers are not catering to people with large and unruly dogs. They’re trying to cater to the majority, and that isn’t you. That means you need to be very picky.

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Control Mechanism

Cute little girl pulling at her stubborn pug

Don’t even consider buying an anti-pull collar if you don’t understand precisely how it works. Failure to do this can result in more than one problem. For one thing, you might fail to notice a critical design flaw because you didn’t understand the design in the first place. Think about exactly how this collar will exercise control over your dog.

In most cases, control is gained by tightening the collar, but you have to understand how it works to find the best way to use it. Consider the range of motion that the collar will have, and exactly how tight it will be. Ask plenty of questions and don’t be afraid of the search engine.

No More Unpleasant Than Necessary

These kinds of collars are always going to be at least slightly unpleasant for the dog. That is the point. By providing just a little bit of mild unpleasantness, a lot of problematic behaviors can be discouraged. You don’t want to make things harder on your dog than necessary.

Before you put any collar on your dog, you should think about how you would feel if someone forced you to wear that collar. The collar should not cause any real discomfort unless the dog pulls. It should be well-padded on the inside. Any barbs or prongs used should be made of soft material, or at least covered with a soft material. Avoid anything that presses bare steel prongs against your dog’s skin. These are both dangerous and inhumane.

I am shocked at the number of prong collars on the market that do not incorporate rubber covers on the tips of the prongs. Pressing a piece of steel against your dog’s neck isn’t a good idea. A bad fall or an unexpected impact could cause one of those prongs to pierce your dog’s neck, or at least cause some serious bruising. Even with prong collars that are covered, I would advise caution.

Longevity

When you look at any collar that you are thinking about buying, you should think about how good it is likely to look in two years. Look at the materials and the way that they are put together. Think about exactly what would be needed to destroy the collar, and whether or not you think your dog could do so. I am not just trying to help you select any old collar. I want you to have the best collar available, and that means that it has to last. Otherwise, it will simply be a waste of money.

The Size And Temperament Of Your Dog

For most of the collars that we will examine in this article, multiple sizes are available. When you go about ordering one of these things, make sure that the manufacturer knows what size you want. Don’t waste your time returning things and waiting for a replacement.

The weight of the collar should also be considered against the size of your dog. This article is about big dogs, but there is a difference between a large dog and a huge dog. If you are one of those who has an extra-large breed, You will need to get some measuring tape and measure the diameter of your dog’s neck. Otherwise, it will be tough to verify that a particular collar is large enough until you get it home and attempt to put it on the dog. Once again; remember that most dog collar manufacturers haven’t thought a whole lot about your kind of dog owner.

Also, it goes without saying that a less determined dog needs a less hardcore solution. There is no need to go with a harsh solution like a prong collar or a spiked pinch collar if your dog isn’t displaying bad behavioral problems. Use what is necessary and no more.

Anti-Pull Collar Reviews:

Bestia Genuine Leather Maximus Dog Harness. Big Dogs only! Cane Corso, Rottweiler, Dogo Argentino, Presa, Mastiff, Bulldog. 100% Leather. Soft Padded Chest Plate. Handmade in Europe!
5 Reviews
Bestia Genuine Leather Maximus Dog Harness. Big Dogs only! Cane Corso, Rottweiler, Dogo Argentino, Presa, Mastiff, Bulldog. 100% Leather. Soft Padded Chest Plate. Handmade in Europe!
  • 100 % genuine leather
  • Handmade quality and unique design by Bestia
  • Soft padded chest plate for maximum comfort
  • Perfect fit on all big dog breeds
  • Stylish, but sturdy and durable

This is probably the most reliable collar on this list. It should be noted that this is technically not a collar, but I have included it because it takes the place of a collar. For a large dog that pulls, a harness is objectively superior to a collar. For dogs with thick necks, a harness is a necessity if they have pulling issues.

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This entire harness is made from stout leather and thick steel. It has an attractive set of ornaments on the front to give your dog that “royal” look. The chest pad on the front is well-padded, and the whole thing fits even the largest of dogs with ease. This is an anti-pull collar simply because the harness gives you better control and leverage over your dog. It also removes the potential for a thick-necked dog to slip out of their collar.

Anyone who has dealt with rowdy dogs can tell you that a harness is much easier to grab and hold than a collar. Another great thing is that a harness will not choke a dog even if they pull against it very hard. With no strap around their neck, it just isn’t a concern.

Pros:

  • Made of very strong materials
  • Held together mostly with stainless steel rivets
  • Attractive appearance
  • Well-padded

Cons:

  • No tightening mechanism
  • Unnecessary for dogs that aren’t extremely strong
  • Slightly heavy
Mighty Paw Leather Training Collar, Martingale Collar, Stainless Steel Chain - Premium Quality Limited Chain Cinch Collar. (Large, Brown)
235 Reviews
Mighty Paw Leather Training Collar, Martingale Collar, Stainless Steel Chain - Premium Quality Limited Chain Cinch Collar. (Large, Brown)
  • NO MORE LEASH PULLING – Recommended by dog trainers across...
  • SAFE FOR YOUR DOG - Our collar provides gentle and...
  • THE LAST COLLAR YOU’LL EVER NEED – Made with 100%...
  • DOG TRAINER APPROVED – Endorsed by thousands of dog...
  • BORN IN THE USA – Mighty Paw is family-owned and operated...

This is an example of a Martingale collar. This type of collar can tighten when the dog pulls against it, but only slightly. This is a good way to get your dog’s attention without choking them. One might call this a half-choke collar since it does tighten around their neck but without restricting their ability to breathe.

Mighty Paw makes an excellent version of Martingale collar. There is no plastic and no obvious weak points. Everything is made of leather and steel, and both are sufficiently thick. This one can tighten down a little more than most Martingales that I have seen, but this is probably necessary for a large dog that pulls. You would have a tough time choking a mastiff even if you tried.

There are far too many Martingales on the market that use plastic clasps, but this isn’t one of them. Everything about this collar looks like it will hold up for years to come. Remember, leather needs to be oiled once in a while, or it will eventually rot. Another little problem is that the buckle could use one more clasping mechanism to keep the tail from sticking out. This is a small complaint, so take it as such.

Pros:

  • Very durable construction
  • Pinches without choking
  • Tightens a little more than other brands
  • Many professional endorsements
  • Proven design

Cons:

  • May not be enough for the most stubborn dogs
  • Leather can rot if it isn’t oiled from time to time
  • Buckle could use an extra mechanism to secure it
DOG COLLAR WITH CONTROL HANDLE QUICK RELEASE METAL BUCKLE HEAVY DUTY MILITARY STYLE 2' WIDTH NYLON WITH USA FLAG GREAT FOR HANDLING AND TRAINING LARGE CANINE MALE OR FEMALE K9 (TAN NEW BUCKLE)
326 Reviews
DOG COLLAR WITH CONTROL HANDLE QUICK RELEASE METAL BUCKLE HEAVY DUTY MILITARY STYLE 2" WIDTH NYLON WITH USA FLAG GREAT FOR HANDLING AND TRAINING LARGE CANINE MALE OR FEMALE K9 (TAN NEW BUCKLE)
  • DOG COLLARS FOR LARGE DOGS - EXTRA LARGE DOG COLLAR...
  • 2 IN. DOG COLLAR WIDE THICK NYLON TACTICAL DOG HARNESS WITH...
  • TACTICAL DOG COLLAR WITH HANDLE POLICE MILITARY K9 STYLE...
  • HEAVY DUTY DOG COLLAR LARGE DOG HARNESS WITH TACTICAL METAL...
  • DOG TRAINING COLLAR - GERMAN SHEPHERD COLLAR, PITBULL...

This collar is based on those that are sometimes used for military dogs. When it comes to durability, this model takes it to a whole new level. It’s made of extremely thick nylon with high-strength velcro all around. Velcro may not seem like a good idea for something like this, but most buyers have reported good results.

The handiest feature of this collar (no pun intended) is the handle. This allows you to get direct control of your dog when they begin to get out of hand. You can keep the leash in one hand and grab the handle with the other, giving you two points of contact with which to steer the dog away from trouble.

One of the good things about this collar is that it can be adjusted to a perfect fit. Because of the velcro, you don’t have to make extra holes in a collar or anything like that. This is good in the comfort department as it’s fairly well-padded on the inside and doesn’t seem like it would be uncomfortable.

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This collar does require a little muscle. Small people with big dogs might not get a whole lot of help from this one.

Pros:

  • Very strong
  • Allows for very precise size adjustment
  • Handle for extra control
  • Thick padding on the inside

Cons:

  • Velcro might eventually wear out
  • Not suited for individuals who are physically weak
  • Overlap of the collar creates a potential digging point
Sale
StarMark Training Collar, Large, Black
1,383 Reviews
StarMark Training Collar, Large, Black
  • Quality and performance driven products for your pet
  • Tested for safety and health
  • Provide a better quality of living for your pet with...
  • Helps train your dog gently and effectively
  • High-strength link design fits together in watchband pattern
  • 20-inch circumference fits larger dogs
  • Links can be removed or added (additional links sold...
  • Created by certified experts at Triple Crown Dog Academy,...
  • Helps train your dog gently and effectively
  • High-strength link design fits together in watchband pattern

We touched on this product in another article. It is a pinch collar that is made up of small plastic links. The whole thing looks kind of like the chain on a chainsaw. As scary as this may look, the spikes are made of plastic and are only meant to cause discomfort rather than pain. The plastic is flexible enough that it can bend rather than dig into your dog’s flesh.

This product breaks out the usual rule about the use of plastic. However, this plastic is a high-strength polymer that fits together very securely. I wouldn’t recommend this for an extra-large dog, as they might break it. However, a larger dog will probably refrain from pulling too hard against this leash in the first place.

One reason that this collar is well-suited for the larger breeds is the fact that you can buy extra links and enlarge the chain as long as desired. This means that there are no limits on how large the chain can be. I do have some durability concerns with this thing, and that’s why it isn’t higher on the list.

Pros:

  • Provides sufficient discomfort without pain
  • Can be enlarged with extra links
  • Designed with large dogs in mind
  • Very inexpensive
  • Looks like a flat collar to the casual observer

Cons:

  • Not sufficiently strong for the largest of dogs
  • Could possibly hurt the dog if you pull too hard

This is a classic example of a prong collar. This model was chosen for the rubber tips on the ends of the prongs. You should never use a prong collar that doesn’t have these rubber tips. Those little pieces of steel may not be sharp, but they can still potentially puncture a dog’s neck if something were to push the dog’s neck against them. It’s also nice that this one comes with extra tips if you happen to lose a few.

This one has a steel snap-clasp in front, which is kind of rare. A mixture of steel and nylon is probably the best combination for maximum strength in a dog collar, and that’s what you have in this model. Prong collars might not be a good choice for the long-haired breeds because their hair will tend to get caught in the chain.

Remember that a prong collar is a somewhat extreme option that won’t be required for the majority of dogs. The best way to use a prong collar is to use it as a short-term training aid. The idea is simple: force the dog to do what you want, and eventually, they will form a habit and do it without the force. Dogs are creatures of habit, and you can use this fact to your advantage.

Pros:

  • Effective at discouraging all pulling
  • Rubber tips (and extra tips)
  • No plastic clasps
  • 6-month warranty
  • Extra prongs can be added to increase length

Cons:

  • A little harsh, and thus not always necessary
  • Not good for long-haired dogs
  • Warranty isn’t very long

Conclusion

Overall, this contest is a two-way tie. This is because there are many different types of dog owners, and all of them have slightly different needs. In this case, the physical strength of the owner plays a big role in what kind of collar will be needed.

If you’re a person who is strong and in good health, the best option is the Bestia harness.

Bestia Genuine Leather Maximus Dog Harness. Big Dogs only! Cane Corso, Rottweiler, Dogo Argentino, Presa, Mastiff, Bulldog. 100% Leather. Soft Padded Chest Plate. Handmade in Europe!
5 Reviews
Bestia Genuine Leather Maximus Dog Harness. Big Dogs only! Cane Corso, Rottweiler, Dogo Argentino, Presa, Mastiff, Bulldog. 100% Leather. Soft Padded Chest Plate. Handmade in Europe!
  • 100 % genuine leather
  • Handmade quality and unique design by Bestia
  • Soft padded chest plate for maximum comfort
  • Perfect fit on all big dog breeds
  • Stylish, but sturdy and durable

As long as you have the muscle to control your dog, this harness will give you maximum leverage to do exactly that. Big dogs need a seriously tough piece of gear to resist their incredible strength, and leverage from the collar is your only hope.

If you don’t think you’re very strong, consider the Mighty Paw Martingale collar.

Mighty Paw Leather Training Collar, Martingale Collar, Stainless Steel Chain - Premium Quality Limited Chain Cinch Collar. (Large, Brown)
235 Reviews
Mighty Paw Leather Training Collar, Martingale Collar, Stainless Steel Chain - Premium Quality Limited Chain Cinch Collar. (Large, Brown)
  • NO MORE LEASH PULLING – Recommended by dog trainers across...
  • SAFE FOR YOUR DOG - Our collar provides gentle and...
  • THE LAST COLLAR YOU’LL EVER NEED – Made with 100%...
  • DOG TRAINER APPROVED – Endorsed by thousands of dog...
  • BORN IN THE USA – Mighty Paw is family-owned and operated...

This collar will provide you with just enough pinch to discourage your dog from yanking you all over the neighborhood. I think the length of the pinch is perfect for large dogs, as their thick necks give you more room to draw the collar.

Last update on 2019-12-13

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