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Choosing the Right Collar for Your Dog

March 15, 2021

Have you recently adopted a new dog? Good for you! One of the first things you’ll need to purchase for your pet is a collar. The question is, how do you know what type to choose? There are certainly a lot of options out there. A local vet offers some suggestions on this below.

The Importance of the Collar

Fido’s collar is crucial to his safety. First of all, it attaches the leash to your dog, giving you control over your pooch’s movements. Without that control, there’s nothing preventing Fido from darting away from you. This could be very dangerous, as your pooch could not only get lost, he could also run into the street or toward another animal. Even the most well-trained dogs may bolt if they get spooked! Your furry pal should always wear a collar and leash while going on walks outdoors, just to be safe.

Collars also provide a place to hang your dog’s ID tags. These could be crucial for getting your pet returned to you in case he runs away or gets lost. Most vets (including us) recommend using both collar tags and a microchip implant in tandem for maximum protection. 

Sizing and Fit

There is a general rule of thumb to follow here. You should easily be able to fit two fingers between your dog’s collar and their neck. If you can’t, it’s too tight! Remember that a collar that fits a puppy will be too small by the time they’ve grown larger. Be sure to check the fit of your dog’s collar frequently to make sure they’re comfortable.

Types of Collars

There are all sorts of different collar types out there. The most common one is the standard flat collar, which is usually made of nylon but could also be crafted from leather or other materials. There are also Martingale collars, also known as limited-slip collars, which are useful for pups with slender necks like Greyhounds and Whippets. Martingale collars will tighten if your pooch gets too close to slipping out of their collar. 

There are also various types of training collars. These might be needed depending on your dog’s behavior. There are choke collars, prong collars, spray collars, shock collars, and more. Be sure to check with your veterinarian or a professional dog trainer before using a collar of this type on your dog. They generally should be for professional use only.

Last but not least there are harnesses. These are good for small dog, brachys, or any pup. Just make sure it fits properly. 

You’re not alone in the search for the perfect collar. Contact your vet’s office for advice on the best choice for your dog.