PINCH OR PRONG COLLAR DOG TRAINING
Sherry L. Shivley, Journalist Award Winner
Mention using a Prong or Herm Sprenger collar and the uninitiated have visions of puncture wounds circling a dog’s neck instead of Tough Love kindness.
HOLD ON! Here are the facts
about the proper use and type of Herm Sprenger pinch collar used on dogs.
Hermann Sprenger started a factory in Iserlohn Germany making everything from
boat fittings to Sporting Dog equipment.
The Sprenger name became famous among horse owners for their spurs which were
Today they are still known for their bits, spurs, snaffles
and buckles seen in Olympic competition. Floundering after the War and the
deaths of the original Founders, Herbert Sprenger traveled the world taking
orders for chains of all lengths- including dog equipment for shows and trials
which were then becoming very popular.
Purchasing a welder that could weld the rings on chain quickly increased
productivity and they were able to send more chain collars to customers cheaply.
The reason Herm Sprenger collars are used by so many professional trainers can
be seen by the ground points on the prongs. They are rounded, so the prongs put
pressure on the neck, and will not cause injury. The opponents of prong collars
do not realize that flat nylon collars can inure the trachea, causing it to
collapse and the dog will die.
Proper use of the prong collar can correct behavior while preventing injury to
First let’s do a proper fitting - I chose the Snap Collar. Be sure you get a Herm Sprenger brand because they have blunt prongs whereas most other brands have
sharp points that can and will inure your dog.
The collar should fit just behind your dog’s ears, snug but not choking. I
removed 2 links to adjust the collar to fit my Boxer.
My reason for getting one for Boomer was that I had shoulder surgery recently
and being a large puppy he pulled. Since Covid there were no close or frequent
classes to socialize him, causing him to be a bit dog aggressive. To prevent
injury to my shoulder and his trachea, I purchased the Herm Sprenger to train
him until he understood manners.
Once we were walking, if he stayed in the Heel position, I gave him a treat and
a “Good Boy.” If he deviated from Heel… chasing a leaf or stopping to look at a
rock, we would either do a circle or figure 8, bringing his puppy mind back to
me and him getting a treat for “Heel.”
He does awesome with the collar, which is a reminder not to pull. He is a
different dog, and one I will soon be able to trust with just a chain collar.
Herm Springers are a tool-just like a leash, brush, or balance pad.
In the wrong hands any tool can injure. In the right hands they teach, reward,
and make polite, well- mannered dogs that are safe to walk among other dogs or
A Good Dog is a Happy Dog. Perhaps if more owners had used the proper tools,
fewer dogs would be sent to shelters and euthanized.
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