First and foremost, I would highly advise you use a dog harness instead of a collar! Most of you might already be convinced to do so. Some of you, however, might insist on using the collar instead. Let me help you find the top dog collar for the decade, at least.
Collars to AVOID
If you seek out collars like this, you are actively doing harm to your doggo and yourself. Avoid these dog collars like the plague
Shock collars are a means of negative reinforcement, which robust scientific evidence is showing is much less effective at controlling a doggo’s behavior than positive reinforcement. They cause fear and stress in the mind of the doggo, even when the stupid human isn’t using them. They are all punishment, no reward. It’s literally how they work.
Since they create fear, stress, and other negative emotions in your doggo’s mind, they end up making the doggo develop all sort of bad habits. For example, the poor pooch may not want to go outside to go poo or pee ever again, because they will end up associating the act of doing so, or getting ready to go do so, with facing the debilitating shock. They might end up hostile to total strangers, despite said strangers’ actual intentions, or towards anyone wanting to give them attention at all, even. The doggo might even start biting people, out of fear alone.
Worse, it could have unintendended consequence of making your doggo hate you. Think about it: all you’re doing is shocking them when they do something you don’t like. It’s analogous to something you might have experienced in your childhood: with someone who’s sworn to take care of you hitting you (aka spanking) or berating you when you when you do something they don’t like. Think of what that would end up doing to YOU. That’s exactly what shock collars are doing to your DOG.
Even worse, the electricity somewhat paralyzes your doggo’s neck muscles, raising potential animal welfare concerns. This is due to the fact that most people who get shock collars for their doggo-in-distress, end up overusing them, waaay more than, and at a much higher intensity than, what the instructions actually call for. Dog trainers know these devices inside and out, but if you’re reading it, chances are YOU ARE NOT A DOG TRAINER. Even they, when they use it, use it low frequency.
If you’re going to use a pinch collar, you might as well not even have a doggo, because of the obvious animal abuse you’ll be necessarily putting your poor doggo through. Literally, there’s blunt spikes on the inside of the collar. Obviously, these can dig their way into your doggo’s neck, bypassing their coat, and do damage.
Even worse, if the collar is not properly fitted, the blunt spikes can move to the front (right under the doggo’s snoot), and puncture the doggo’s trachea, potentially killing them. Why they heck would you want anything close to that for your doggo?!
Yet another outright horrible excuse for a dog collar/leash. Seriously, how are these things even allowed on the market!? In the very name itself you can see this product is going to harm your poor pupper a lot more than help it. Even worse: by the Humane Society, you are very likely to unintentionally choke your dog with this, if not just strain its neck, because there’s no way to control how much it tightens around your poor doggo’s neck. Why the heck would you even want to do so intentionally!?!?!
What a great collar might look like
OK, so there’s a lot of bad dog collars out there, including some that I didn’t bring up (e.g. “Halti collars” and, dare I go there? “Gentle leaders”), but where are the good collars, and what do those look like? Read on to find out.
They short answer: the good collars look a lot like your typical dog collar. The long answer: it looks like one of the following:
- flat collar – This is a plain old run-of-the-mill collar. It either buckles on or has snap-on quick-release. It should fit such that you can slip only two fingers between your doggo’s neck and the collar itself. Not too loose, not too tight.
- martingale collar – This collar is for pointy-snoot doggos (such as greyhounds and whippets) as well as Hound-inis. (See what I did there?) This collar has a normal component to it, akin to that of the flat collar, but has either a short section of chain/other material appended to it, through a metal ring.
By Pets Adviser from Brooklyn, USA – 2014 Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=39129153
- GPS collar – This is flat dog collar with a very important feature: a GPS tracker! This is must-have for if your doggo were to ever get lost, run off, get dognapped, or if you just want to know where your fur baby is. This is best worn pretty much at all times, so that the GPS tracker will be on your pooch as much as possible
No matter which of these you decide to go through with, you should make sure you have a short lead leash to go with it. This way, you have your doggo close to you, minimizing risk of it getting tangled with something else (including another doggo). If you carry treats to feed your doggo with, even better. Your pup will stay to you like glue!
MASBRILL Light Up Dog Collar
This doggo collar was love at first sight!
Just look at this thing! IT LIGHTS UP!!!!! Even better, it comes in your choice of blue, green, orange, or red, is USB rechargable (charger included), is waterproof, and is adjustable, in every sense of the word! It boasts three display modes as well!!
This hooman is, an avid cyclist who bikes pretty much anywhere he has to go (with little exception), including at nighttime. As such, I have a high-lumen (I forgot exactly how many lumens) rechargable head lamp on my person at least half the time, which is also adjustible in mode and waterproof! Now, if I ever get around to getting my own doggo (I want to be able to take care of the fur kid as much as possible and don’t want to have to leave that fur baby by themselves for 9 hours a day), I’m getting the doggo this device, in harness form!
Amazon average review rating: 4.6 out of 5
Price : $19.99
Max and Neo Steel Chain Martingale Dog Collar
The collar depicted is heckin smol, but don’t be let down: you can get it in any size from extra small (10 to 12 inches neck size to large (19 to 24.5 inches neck size).
Martingale collars are supposed to collapse to just the length of your doggo’s neck, so be careful here. Be careful about measuring the size of your doggo’s neck, and when your doggo is wearing it, do not pull on it. Given that fact, I’d say there’s learning curve to this type of product, giving it a 3.5 out of 5 stars in my book, compared to all others.
By getting this leash, you are also helping out dog rescues as well!
Amazon average review rating: 4.6 out of 5
Price : $15.99
A Good Leash to Go With It
Tuff Mutt Dual Handle Rope Leash
This is hands down a great leash.
It is the short-lead leash that we talked about prior. In fact, it is just 5 feet long.
For its short reach, depending on what you actually get, it can be quite strong. It boasts to be able to handle a half ton of force! There are mixed, but mostly positive, reviews about this.
Even better is the fact that this leash also glows in the heckin dark making it the perfect complement to the MASBRILL Light Up Dog Collar!
Amazon average review rating: 4.5 out of 5
Price : $24.99
A lot of bad, some REALLY good
When looking at the breadth of doggo collars out there, I saw a LOT of bad, and some outright ugly, options. On the other hand, I found quite a few good, and some GREAT options for dog collars. including one that made me do a heckin head tilt and excite!
Did any of these make your head tilt? Know of any dog collars that should have made this article? Let us know in the comments.