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22 March 2010 @ 05:47 pm
research question  

I turn to Livejournal, which Knows All, in search of an answer to a research question:

Is it possible to put a sleeper hold on a canine? I’m looking at a model of a German Shepherd’s circulatory system, and it looks like the moral equivalent of a cartoid artery is further back in the throat than a human’s is, so I’m wondering if it’s possible to subdue a dog with a sleeper hold without compromising its air passage.

Corollary to that, of course, is how long it takes, assuming it’s possible. Somebody who knows what he’s doing can knock a human out in about ten seconds with a sleeper hold, but it’s a big damned quite-exposed vein in a human, and I’m not sure it’s as big or exposed in a dog. A big dog, in this case…

(x-posted from the essential kit)
Current Mood: curiouscurious
Trent the Uncatchableknappenp on March 22nd, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC)
I'm told by a vet student that:
"If it's really possible in humans, then I would expect it to be possible in dogs. Their main artery supply is virtually identical to a human, and just as accessible from the surface. We actually use it as the primary site for drawing blood because of its accessibility. But all that said... I don't know anything about sleeper holds."
kitmizkit on March 22nd, 2010 06:18 pm (UTC)
It is in fact entirely possible in a human, so that's very useful to know! Thank you to your vet student friend!
cainle_bean on March 22nd, 2010 05:33 pm (UTC)
That is one I would love to ask my vet friends. Once I got past the strange looks it would start a VERY interesting discussion I am sure.

I have an appt to see my local vet this week, he seems to be pretty knowing about many things =p
kitmizkit on March 22nd, 2010 06:19 pm (UTC)
If you want to ask (heck, hardly strange looks at all, it's research for a book!) that would be *awesome*.
grumpymartiangrumpymartian on March 22nd, 2010 07:19 pm (UTC)
I haven't ever tried to apply an actual sleeper hold, but I have actually tried to hold my dog (German Shepherd/Labrador) back from doing something by wrapping my arms around his neck. His first reaction was to try and scoot backward and slip my arms. He did not try break my grasp by pushing against it. He would try to change direction often (usually going to the side and back) and was able to slip my arms relatively quickly though he couldn't get very far away and I was able to grab him again. It would take a lot of strength, grip, and stamina to hold a large dog in that position for very long. My dog weighs about 2/3rds what I do and he's able to move my dead weight short distances (less than a foot) while pulling or struggling.
kitmizkit on March 22nd, 2010 08:00 pm (UTC)
That is very, very useful. Thank you!
grumpymartiangrumpymartian on March 22nd, 2010 08:23 pm (UTC)
Glad to help. :)

If the dog has a collar it is much easier. It takes a lot less strength when you can use your fingers to grasp. The above incident happened post-bath when he didn't have a collar.
Sionainn: ear radar zoesionainn on March 22nd, 2010 10:43 pm (UTC)
Dittoed. My German Shepherd/Husky is 85 pounds of whirling dervish to try and hold down if she is fixed on prey or determined to protect me from dangers (such as neighbor's annoying chihuahua). Sliding back out of the grip, side to side pulling, and back legs clawing are quite efficienct at removing any human handholds on her.
Jeff Linderjslinder on March 22nd, 2010 08:04 pm (UTC)
I called a buddy in Animal Control. While it may be technically possible, it's very difficult (in fact in training its listed as one of those things you really don't want to try). You would need luck and a huge amount of strength to both immobilize the dog and apply pressure to the right point without actually choking the animal. Also, they apparently (he has never tried it so could not give specifics) take a LOT longer to conk out from low blood pressure than a human.

kitmizkit on March 22nd, 2010 08:06 pm (UTC)
*dances gleefully* Thank you thank you thank you! So very helpful!
Jeff Linderjslinder on March 22nd, 2010 08:16 pm (UTC)
Clarification, their training refers to aggressive or rabid dogs. On an older/calmer/non security trained dog it might be a bit easier. That said, he'd still go with a snare or sedatives if absolutely necessary.

(He actually called me back to make sure I put that in)
Mspiritdance on March 22nd, 2010 08:51 pm (UTC)
My two bits (as a not-currently practicing vet): I'd agree very strongly with jslinder - it might be technically possible, but not practical in reality. The dog's neck anatomy, while very similar to our own, is a bit more compressed laterally (side-to-side) and deeper front-to-back, making it way easier to put pressure on the trachea (theirs is MUCH more flexible than ours). And if you've compressed the trachea, the dog is going to put up a heck of a lot more fight trying to get away.

And look at the relative size of the neck for an equal weight: the neck on the average 100 lb dog is bigger around the neck on the average 100 lb human.

There's a reason for the various restraints (including chemical) developed for handling large aggressive dogs :)
Flitterbyflit on March 23rd, 2010 02:32 pm (UTC)
I've had to subdue a much smaller dog (about 40-45lbs) and the only practical way to do it was to sweep his legs out from under him: tip him sideways and then hold him down using his shoulder and hips. They just don't have as much leverage without their feet under them (point the legs away so they can't use them to get leverage on you.) It won't render the dog unconscious of course, but it was a safe way (for both me and dog) to get him down and still. At the time the dog was probably about half my weight. I have no idea how to safely make a dog unconscious without using drugs. :)