Thursday, July 7, 2011

About a Leash

I've discussed G's winter fashions before, but I never really got into the leash side of her closet. I could probably fund a small country with the amount of money I've spent trying to get just the right collar/leash set so that I had the utmost control and G had the utmost style.

When she was a 4-pounder, G started out with a standard, over the back harness. I knew I wasn't going to use the harness for training purposes, but I wasn't about to put a neck collar on a beanie baby. Once G hit ten pounds, I moved her to a teeny-tiny black martingale collar (her sister L had the same one - action shot of the two of them playing below):

I liked the Martingale collars and for the most part I stuck with them through her early and mid-puppyhood. Around a year old though, G went through her teenage, rebellious phase and I tried some other options: a crazy harness that looped over and around (honestly, I don't even know what it was called, but it was touted as no pull - to this day, I know for a fact it would still take me 20 minutes to get the darn thing on her), the Cesar Millan collar (eh), and ultimately the Gentle Leader head collar a la L in this picture:

For the most part, I also really like the Gentle Leader. It gave me more control and was pretty easy to use. The down sides were a) people constantly asking me why my dog was muzzled, b) where the snout strap went across her face, she lost hair - so even when she wasn't wearing the collar, a ghostly reminder was always there and c) even after almost a year of wearing, invariably every time i put it on, there would be a brief session where she tried to take it off.

Finally, I caved and went back to martingale around 2 years old (see above shot). That being said, now that she was fully grown and filled out, G's ability to pull toward an object was noticeable stronger with a simple martingale. Finally, I bit the bullet and purchased a Gentle Leader harness:

For G, this is a miracle contraption. Not only does the light tan harness (and matching leash, duh) complement her coat perfectly, I get the maximum amount of control I need without yanking her neck around all the time (I'm a baby about dragging my baby).

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