How To Put on a Choke Chain | Outdoor Life

Gun Dogs

The resource for hunting dog enthusiasts.

How To Put on a Choke Chain

Properly used, a choke chain can administer a well-timed correction that helps a dog understand his transgression. Like any tool, misused it can, at best, give an ill-timed correction that confuses the dog and, at worst, inflict severe injury. It's all in how the collar is put on the dog and then used. We'll cover how to properly use a choke chain in another blog, for now lets go over how to put a choke chain on a dog.
First you need the proper size collar for your dog. You don't want one that's too large and hangs so far down the dog can slip out of it. Nor do you want one so small it's difficult to slip over the head and ears. Try several sizes on until you find the right fit for your pup.

The proper way to put a choke chain on your dog is to make the letter "P" out of the chain. The straight part of the letter "P" should always be on top of the dog's neck with the loop part over its head. The straight part leads directly from the top of the dog's neck to the leash. Used in this manner, the choke chain can slide easily and allows you to administer a quick correction that lasts only an instant. If you were to put the choker on upside down, which often happens, the timing of your correction loses effectiveness as the chain stays tightened, which tells the dog everything he's doing at that time deserves correction. You want to be able to snap the collar and deliver a correction that lasts just a fraction of a second; the chain should tighten, pinch quickly and then release.

Regardless of which side you teach pup to heel on, remember to always keep the straight part of the letter "P" on top of the dog's neck so that when there's no tension on the lead and collar, it hangs loosely.