i love martingale collars. for dogs that walk nicely they are easy to use, safe and comfortable. however, just like any other piece of equipment, safety precautions need to be taken when using them. here are my top three ~
1) because of the third ring, the martingale can be a serious choking hazard. that dangling ring can get caught on furniture, crates, etc. and can asphyxiate your dog in moments. the collars should only be used for walking, and should always be removed immediately after their walk.
2) if you have multiple dogs who play/wrestle, or your dog goes to doggy daycare, dog parks/beaches, or has puppy play dates, the collar should always be removed before starting play. during play they can link together and make it impossible for the dogs to separate. again, causing asphyxiation.
3) martingale collars are only for dogs that have been taught how to walk nicely and do not pull. if they do pull, the pressure on the neck can lead to injury and discomfort. we also never want to do corrections and pull up on the dogs leash/collar if they do pull. this is not a compassionate training technique, and can hurt your dog emotionally and physically. martingales are not meant to be a training device, simply a safety collar (so your dog doesn't back out of the collar). if your dog pulls, opt for a no-pull harness, such as the easy walk or freedom harness.
martingales can be very useful, but be careful and take the necessary precautions to keep your dog safe while wearing them.