Can you add a handle to a Rigid Collar?
We do not add handles to our working dog collars—this means that we will not a handle to a 1.75″ Soft Collar, 1.5″ Rigid Collar, 2″ Rigid Collar, or 3″ Rigid Collar.
Of course everyone has their own options on gear and how it should function; just keep in mind our equipment is made primarily for law enforcement, so that is how we build and view gear…
A handle itself is not bad, however we view them as a superfluous addition that poses more hazards than the one problem it solves. Obviously you use a handle to hold the dog. However, one of the biggest issues with the handle is that it creates a snag point for dogs working in close quarters (tracking, detection, etc) and could even get caught on a fence creating a choking hazard. Another main issue is that, during a bite, the handle provides something for a suspect to grab and potentially control the dog.
From a practical standpoint, any collar can be viewed as one large handle and the entire body of the collar can be grabbed to hold the dog back. This also removes the issue that, if the collar shifts, you have to use fine motor skills to relocate and set the handle back into a “comfortable position”. On a good collar you can grab anywhere and hold. We know that can be challenging if you have smaller hands, but all of the above issues still apply.
Granted this may not apply to every working dog, however that is our reasoning on handles and why we include them on the Adventure (civilian) Series, but not on the Operator or Defender Series.