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Tracking Collar Systems

Many hunters invest in tracking collar systems as a way to protect their valuable hunting dogs. In order to be able to enjoy the hunt, a tracking collar puts the hunter’s mind at easy by knowing where their dog is at all times. Hunting involves a lot of risk for hunting dogs and hunters alike. In order to guarantee the safety of their dog, hunters rely on a these collars.

Every tracking collar system consists of two components – the transmitter and the receiver. The dog wears the transmitter which is attached to the collar. The transmitter is lightweight and has no effect on your dog. An antenna is usually attached to the transmitter in order for it to send signals to the receiver. The receiver is generally a handheld remote which receives the signal from the transmitter in order to find the location of your dog.

There are two types of tracking collars – radio frequency nd GPS. A radio frequency collar sends signals to the receiver through radio frequencies. The receiver will usually need to be adjusted since it can tune into multiple channels and receive other signals. The downside to a radio frequency collar is that they can become weaker when obstacles, such as trees, buildings and other areas, get in the way of the signal. A radio frequency collar will usually have lights on the receiver that will let you know when you are close to your dog and which way to go to find it. A GPS tracking collar, on the other hand, sends signals via satellite transmissions. A GPS collar tells exactly how far away your dog is. Many owners find the exact distance listed by GPS tracking collars very convenient.

The range, or amount of distance the collar can be detected over, is usually stated on the tracking collar system box. The distance the range refers to is only over a flat, unobstructed terrain. Manufacturers only quote the range under ideal circumstances with a transmitter that has been fully charged. One should always test the range of their tracking collar instead of relying on what the box might say.

When choosing tracking collar systems, it is always a good idea to make sure the receiver does not make any noises. Noises can easily scare away your prey or confuse your dog. It is also recommended to try out the tracking system before you take your dog hunting. Hunters should be familiar with all aspects of the system in order to ensure they are able to find their dog and kill on the day of the hunt. Hunters are suggested to try out the transmitter by placing it in a location that can easily be tracked while finding said location with the receiver before ever using the system with your dog.

A dog is as important to a hunter as a rifle and ammo which is why they go to great lengths in order to ensure their dog

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The Right Collar for Your Dog

Every dog should wear a collar with an ID tag. But with the hundreds of collars available today, what collar is right for your dog?

Collar Size

First, your dog’s collar should be size appropriate. It may seem cute to put a great big studded collar on your little Yorkie, but it is generally unhealthy to require a small pooch to carry around a heavy, cumbersome collar all day. This can lead to back and neck problems, and a very unhappy pup.

When sizing your pooch for a collar, measure while your dog is standing. Measure the circumference of the dog’s neck where a collar would naturally lie. Insert 2 fingers between the dog’s neck and the measuring tape. This is the length of collar your pup needs. Remember that most collars are adjustable, so when in doubt, go a size up. Puppies grow faster than seems imaginable. Check your puppy’s collar every day to make sure it has not grown too tight.

Nylon Collars

Nylon collars are washable and durable. They are available in tons of colors and styles. They usually feature a D ring and a quick release buckle. Nylon collars are perfect for dogs who like to get dirty, or dogs who spend a lot of time in the water. They are also one of the most affordable collar options, which is helpful if you cant seem to keep your dog from eating his collar.

Leather Collars

Leather collars are probably the most durable and classic style of collar. They are very strong and great for big, strong dogs. If you have an especially big, especially strong dog, try a braided leather collar; they are one of the strongest varieties of collar available.

Rolled leather collars are made especially for long-haired breeds. This kind of collar settles into long hair and prevents the matting that can result from a flat collar. Rolled collars are not preferable for short-haired, or flat coated breeds, as they usually leave a line on your dog’s neck.

Choke Collars

Choke collars are for training purposes only. They should not be your dog’s everyday collar, he should never be left unattended in a choke collar, and he should never be put on a tie-out in a choke collar. This kind of collar can be hugely beneficial to stop pulling when you walk and for other corrective measures, but they should be used with care. To size your dog for a choke collar, measure his neck as described above, and add two and a half to three inches.

When you put a choke collar on your dog, it should form a P when you look at it head on. If it looks like a 9 instead, it is on backwards and will not release properly. This can lead to choking and tracheal damage.

Another form of temporary training collar is the pronged collar. These collars have blunt metal prongs that face in towards the dog’s neck. These are used to prevent pulling in large, strong dogs. Pronged collars should be used carefully. If you are considering purchasing a pronged collar for your dog, talk to a dog trainer or your vet about the proper way to use it so you do not hurt your dog.


Harnesses are perfect for dogs who pull, small dogs, puppies, and dogs with delicate necks. Instead of pulling back on the dog’s neck, the pull is distributed across the dog’s chest, which is much safer. Many vets recommend that puppy owners use only harnesses until their munchkins get older.

Head Collars

Halter-style head collars like the Gentle Leader and the Halti are engineered to place your dog’s attention on you. Rather than pulling back on the neck of the dog like most collars, which causes them to instinctively pull back, these collars pull the dog’s entire head in your direction with even the slightest correction. Instead of a power struggle, your dog’s attention is placed on you.

Although this style of harness goes across your dog’s nose, head collars are not muzzles, and do not serve the purpose of muzzles in any way. In a head collar, your dog will still be able to eat, drink, pant, bark, and bite.

Don’t be disturbed if your dog looks miserable in a head collar. Many dogs will struggle dramatically to remove it, but in time they get used to it and begin to recognize the head collar as an indication that it is time for a fun walk.

Reflective and Light-up Collars

If you often walk your dog in the dark, or like to take your dog camping, reflective collars and light up collars are extremely helpful. Some collars have strips of reflective tape sewn on, and others have LED lights installed. This is a fantastic safety feature, which will also help protect you when you are walking at night with your dog.

Basically, as long as your dog has a durable, safe, and properly sized collar, he has what he needs. The rest is a matter of style, taste, and preference.

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