All About Martingale Dog Collars

Martingale collars have become very popular amongst dog parents regardless of their breed. It is a collar that keeps dogs safely on a leash without choking them.

What exactly is a martingale collar?

Martingale collars, also known as no-slip collars, are a type of dog collar that provides owners more control than the regular flat collar and prevents dogs from slipping out without the choking effect of a slip collar. About a third of the length of a martingale collar is a smaller loop of fabric with a D-ring attached (refer to the image below). Depending on the manufacturer, the smaller loop can be made from a chain instead of fabric.

The collar is made with two loops and tension on the leash causes the smaller loop to tighten, which in turn pulls the larger loop tighter, thus preventing your dog from escaping. They are adjustable and shouldn’t tighten past the width of your dog’s neck, hence it tightens around the neck but not in a restrictive way. They offer more control without harming your dog.


Martingale collars vs choke collars

We often confuse martingale collars with choke collars as they have the same mechanics (tighten around the dog’s neck) and both possess a stainless steel D-ring loop. Due to the way martingale collars are constructed, the soft fabric only contracts to the size of your dog’s neck and no further. This ensures your dog isn’t choked in the process, unlike a chain choke collar made with a metal chain. Dogs are much less likely to choke when wearing a martingale collar rather than a choke collar.

Are martingale collars suitable for all breeds?

Martingale collars are commonly used on dogs whose heads are narrower than their necks, for instance, Greyhounds and Whippets.

However, martingale collars are a good choice for all dogs who tend to back/slip out of their collar or for owners who want more control of the leash and redirect their dog’s attention to training.


Choosing a martingale collar 

It is very important to purchase a martingale collar that fits well on your dog. If the collar does not fit, it won’t function properly. Measure both the largest and the smallest part of your dog’s neck.

Once you have found the right size martingale collar, you will then slip the collar over your dog’s neck and pull up on the smaller loop and watch the collar tighten. A well-fitted martingale collar should be loose enough so you can pass your two fingers through it when tightened. This will ensure that the collar won’t choke your dog’s windpipe.

Using a martingale collar

Martingale collars are great for training your dog to safely walk on a leash. Dogs that are in training are more likely to pull or slip out of regular collars when they are distracted, so they are a great way to teach your dog not to pull while on a leash. It is recommended to remove them while at home due to the loose D-ring and design. Dogs should always be supervised while wearing the collar as there is a higher chance of getting caught on things.