Anyone that fills out an application form to bring their dog to the Ranch, for any kind of visit, will have seen that we are insistent that the dog wears a well fitted collar.
Despite this being made clear on the form, you have no idea how many people send their dogs to me with collars that are too small, collars that are way too big and slip over their head, or collars that fall apart the minute any strain is put upon them.
There is a perception with some owners that the collar is like a kind of window dressing for the dog, a vehicle for all kinds of sweet embroidery and Swarovski crystals being paraded around to draw gasps of admiration from passers by.
The collar is worn by law so that the dog can be identified should it get away from the owner, hence the legal requirement for tags in most counties, and is also there as a means of restraint.
I know no one likes to think that they might have to restrain their dog in any situation by having to grab the collar but the truth is, we have all been there at some point in our lives with our dogs; even though we might rather that the dog would just come to call every time.
Life’s not like that, is it folks?
About three weeks ago, I was taking in a dog for daycare, and as the owner got him out of her car, he slipped his collar and ran off up the road. Other than the obvious advice to not chase the dog as she was inclined to do (they love a good game of chase…you have more chance of your dog returning if you turn and run in the opposite direction, or opening the car door and saying ‘you wanna go for a ride?’) I did explain to her that the collar wasn’t a big help.
So, whats the best kind of collar for a dog to wear? How do you have a collar on thats tight enough for the dog to not slip out of it, and loose enough that hes not trussed up like a Thanksgiving Turkey?
The answer is a Martingale collar. Martingales are double loop collars that fit comfortably and loosely around the neck so that the dog hardly knows hes wearing it, and then, when a leash is attached, it tightens to neck size and cannot be slipped out of. The best of both worlds, and we love ’em here at the ranch.
Theyre pretty cheap at the big box stores like Petsmart and Petco (normally under ten bucks) and its the best choice for daycare and boarding establishments. No one likes to see a dog with a collar thats too tight, it leads to stress, which leads to snappiness, and a perfectly good dog with no issues can become very ornery with a tight collar on. Boarding establishments are always advised never to remove collars from dogs staying with them for safety reasons, however we hate having uncomfortable dogs in our midst…the Martingale solves the problem. The dog can’t slip out backwards and run off, plus hes really unaware of the collar the rest of the time. I have Freddie and the crew in Wiggles Wags and Whiskers Martingale collars that look beautiful (hand made with velvet lining) but are also safe and comfortable. People who cant stand to not have the bling effect will be amply rewarded for looking on their website…the collars are gorgeous, and we’ll order them for you at a discount from website prices.
And what happened to the dog that ran off? Sadly they never found him…just kidding! He saw the car door open, heard her ask if he wanted to go for a ride and hightailed it back to the car to go for a ride with his Momma.
Stay safe out there.