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¿Collar o arnés para tu perro?

¿Collar o arnés para tu perro?

Los expertos coinciden: si hay que elegir uno, es más seguro que tu perro use un arnés antes que un collar. Da más control durante los paseos y no ejerce presión en su cuello si, pongamos por caso, tu perrita se lanza como una loca a saludar a otra amiga peluda. No importa el tipo de collar que utilices: "Cada vez que el perro tire de la correa estarás haciendo presión en la zona de la tráquea", explica la veterinaria y etóloga Sandra Portals. 

Estos tirones pueden dañar las vías respiratorias de tu camarada. Unas veces le provocan tos. Otras, una infección más grave de la tráquea (traqueítis). Incluso con un tirón ligero, tu perro puede hacerse daño en el cuello, según concluye una investigación publicada en abril en la revista científica Veterinary Record.

En otras palabras: para un perro que tira, no hay collar bueno. "Y solo deberíamos usarlos para enganchar sus chapas identificativas; nunca para intentar mantenerlos controlados durante el paseo", zanja Anne Carter, coordinadora de este estudio. Incluso si es pequeñito, y carece de tanta fuerza para empujar, necesita un arnés. 

El motivo lo explica el veterinario Pedro Pablo Mayo: "Los perros pequeños son incluso más propensos a sufrir problemas respiratorios y colapsos en la tráquea, sobre todo razas como el yorkshire o el maltés". Puesto que los collares estrujan el cuello, "es más fácil que les provoquen tos o que el collar dañe sus vías respiratorias", incide Mayo. 

La regla general es esta: si tu colega tira de la correa, sea grande o pequeño, utiliza arnés. En caso contrario, puedes recurrir al collar, "aunque con los perros de menos de diez kilos siempre aconsejo arnés", dice Mayo. Así, ante la duda, escoge arnés, coinciden los expertos consultados. Además, existen arneses especiales para perros que tiran mucho.

Son los llamados antitirones, que se enganchan por delante, en la zona del pecho de tu amigo. No son la panacea, porque cuando tira mucho, se le cruzan las patas y se desequilibra, y hasta puede caerse. Pero al menos tu amigo no se ahoga. Y, según la etóloga, "pueden resultar una ayuda mientras el perro aprende a no tirar". Porque eso es de lo que se trata: de que aprenda a andar sin tirones. 

Es inevitable: un perro joven que quiere explorarlo todo, tirará. Si es el caso de tu perrete, no te agobies; en su lugar, échale temple. "Es como un niño pequeño que va descontrolado porque todo le resulta nuevo", anota Portals. Ya lo sabes, ármate de paciencia. Con tiempo, cariño y un poco de entrenamiento, se le pasará. 

Ahora bien, si tu compi está hecho una patata en casa, se aburre, y no ha hecho nada más en todo el día que dormitar en tu cama, no te extrañes que salga a la calle escopetado. Para evitarlo, mantén su mente ocupada mientras esté en casa. Puedes usar los rompecabezas y otros juegos mentales perrunos. O esconder bolitas por el salón. Esta estimulación ayudará a que cuando salga a la calle se sienta más tranquilo y relajado. 

En este vídeo (en inglés) se explican muy bien todos los pasos. Y plantéate recurrir a un experto acreditado en comportamiento canino para que os ayude. 

Hay más: si tu camarada de fatigas no está acostumbrado al arnés, preséntaselo con chuches, para crear una asociación positiva. Enséñale el arnés antes de mostrarle las galletas, para asegurarte de que entiende que el arnés precede a las chuches, y no al revés. Y sigue dándole sus premios mientras se lo pones. 

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