A great article (Sept 2011 Dogs Naturally Magazine) by Dr. Peter Dobias (who spoke with me at the World Small Animal Conference in Prague several years ago) is about the health risks of using collars on dogs. Collars press on the thyroid, many acupuncture meridians, cervical spinal cord and the neck muscles. He has seen the following illness caused by collars – hypothyroidism, Ear inflammation, red eyes, paw licking, foreleg lameness and even whiplash injuries.
The solution is a harness where the leash attaches at the front of the chest since they “distribute the pressure of tugs and jerks throughout the whole body and keep the neck and throat free from pressure.” I found a nice video demonstrating walking with this harness – video. The dog was very well behaved, so please post a comment if you can find videos demonstrating working with real pullers using the harnesses.
To read more, go to his site and scroll down to the second blog.