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Basic Recommended Sport Dog Training Tools (Puppies and Adults)

Updated: Oct 30, 2023

Whether you are just getting started in sport dog training, or if you are getting ready to compete, having the right equipment can help your training be as effective as possible. Here is list of the basic equipment recommended for dogs participating in protection sports including: PSA, IGP, Ring Sports, and more.

Puppy Stage:

Puppy Harness


Any appropriately fitting harness that attaches on the back to allow your dog to pull comfortably into the harness. Ideally you want a harness with an attachment point on the back as far back on the harness as possible. You also want to look for a “Y” shape in the front and not something that goes straight across the front of the chest. Here are some examples of appropriate puppy harnesses.

Flat Collar

Flat Collar

An appropriately fitting collar that will not slide off over the head and can be used to choke-off your dog as well as double as an agitation Collar. This collar should be 1.5” - 2” wide. You can get one with a handle, but its not required. I personally prefer them without the handle. This collar should not constrict. This should also have a metal buckle.

SureGrip Training Leash

This is a leash that can be used for daily training, should be comfortable in your hands and can be connected to the flat collar or a constricting collar.

Biothane Longline


This will be used during your protection training as well as can be used while working with your dog for distance exercises like recalls and stays. The sure grip style is great for when your working in protection and back lining your dog, biothane is better if you’d like to let your dog drag the leash on the ground.

Treat Pouch

Treat Pouch / Bait Bag

This is will be a very personal preference choice. You want to have a simple and effective way to carry and dispense food rewards efficiently, quickly, and repetitively, while ideally not getting food in your pockets of your clothes.

Dog Toy

You will have to find what your dog prefers most, and have a few options that your dog really enjoys. Should not squeak, and should not be small enough for your dog to swallow. Ideally you want to find toys that you and your dog can play with together.

Adult Dog:

Fur Saver


The fur saver collar is the only collar that your dog is required to wear during trials. You will condition your dog to associate the fursaver collar with the training environment.

Agitation Collar

Agitation Collar

Your dog will be able to wear the agitation collar or harness during the carjacking scenario and the courage test of your PDC. This will also be used during your protection training at club. Different training scenarios may require a harness instead of an agitation collar.

Agitation Harness

Agitation Harness

The agitation harness allows your dog to comfortably pull into the harness and leash as hard as they can. This should have a “Y” shaped front with an attachment point on the back of the harness. I personally prefer biothane, but they also come in leather.

Long Line

Sure grip is preferred for when your dog develops into an adult because as your dog becomes stronger, they will be harder to hold during protection training. The sure grip material prevents the leash from sliding through your hands.

Bait Bag

Treat Pouch / Bait Bag / Training Vest / Training Apron

You will develop your own training style and preferences over time. You will see people using a variety of training equipment, and you will decide which you prefer. Here are just a few of the options that are out there.

Herm Sprenger Prong Collar

Prong Collar

You will likely end up using a prong collar for your training. Prong collars by Herm Sprenger are the only recommended brand to use during training with your dog. They come in a variety of sizes, but the most common are the 3.0mm and the 2.25mm. The smaller the size, the more aversive the collar. You should always get a prong collar with the swivel D-Ring attachment point.

Viper Bite Roll

You can get tugs, bite rolls, balls on strings, or anything your dog enjoys. Some of the most common reward toys are below.

Ecollar Technologies Remote Collar

Remote Collar

As you progress into the higher levels of training, you will want to learn to work with a remote collar. There are a lot of different brands and models to choose from, and you should ask to try out as many as you can before you purchase one. Here are the most highly recommended brands and models. My personal preference currently is the FOB Educator by E-Collar Technologies.

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