Everyone has a collar of one type or another for their dog. When deciding the type of collar it is important to know why you need it. Some people buy a collar specifically for decorative purposes, such as a rhinestone embellished collar while some like the plain no frills type. Then there is the choice of all those in between. In general, a collar is mostly used for walking and training purposes but also to hang their name or license tags on it. The most common type is the leather or link collar as either of them can provide the most stability when walking or training your dog.
Choke collars, choke chains or slip chains are a length of chain with rings at both ends so that the collar can be formed into a loop. The loop that is connected to the leash goes on top of the dog's neck. This is the way it should be put on so that when you pull on the leash the collar will tighten but when you relax the leash the collar will loosen. The quick jerks of the leash, allowing the collar to tighten and loosen, is what you will do to train.
The collars can also be made of nylon rope. It has the same use as the regular choke collar but simply with a length of nylon with a small length of chain. The same techniques of training can be used with this collar as the choke collar but this may be a little more comfortable. This collar would not allow fur to get caught as much as the original collar.
Prong collars are a series of chain links with curved blunted open ends turned towards the dog's neck. The pronged collar is designed to be snug and ride high on your dog's neck. Correction should be given with a slower "pull and release" so that the collar has a pinching action, not a jerking action. The collar is designed to replicate the action of an alpha dogs teeth against the neck. It looks very intimidating but the prong collar does not pinch.
The prong collar is placed on the dog's neck, just like the regular choke collar.
Head halters, also sold under the brand names Halti or Gentle Leader or Snoot Loop, made of a soft nylon the collar fits comfortably around your dog's face without restricting the mouth. The collar works on the principle that where a dogs head goes his body will follow. By gently guiding a dog's head in the direction you want him to go the dog's body will follow.
The way the head collar works is when the dog attempts to lunge forward or attack, his jaws are closed by the slip ring. When he is relaxed or friendly, he can pant easily. Some controversial collars are called Shock collars (or training collars, remote training collars, e-collars, electronic collars and hunting collars). These are electronic (battery operated) training aids that are made to deliver an electrical signal, vibration, tone, through contact points attached to a dog collar. These types of collars are used to train the dog to not bark or to stop some derogatory behavior in your dog.
There are Quick Release collars that look similar to buckle collars, but have a safety mechanism installed that allows the dog to break free of the collar if excessive force is applied. While these collars are not always practical for use on a dog that you are trying to keep in one place they are useful in situations where a regular collar could get snagged and strangle the dog. This is definitely the type of collar you would use only in certain situations.
We all know about the wonderful (I was being sarcastic) Elizabethan collars that are those cone shaped collars that are used to prevent the dog from scratching a wound on its head or neck or licking a wound or infection on its body. Some people believe that these are just simply cruel and other still think it is the best way to keep their pet form re-injuring and area. Make sure to do your homework on the specific type of collar for your needs and those of your pet.