What’s the first thing that you think of when looking for a dog collar? Is it the color, like orange or blue? Is it the look: something cool or cute? Are you focused on utility or wanting something to express your dog’s personality?
Those questions alone are the top of the iceberg when it comes to choose a collar for your dog. Yet there’s something more important to consider beforehand. It’s the size of the dog collar. We can get caught up in the options and imaging our dog with that new collar. Knowing what size your dog needs will ensure that the collar not only looks good, but feels good too!
Measure Your Dog’s Neck
The easiest way for you to measure your dog’s neck is to use a flexible measuring tape. Yes, the one tailors use at clothing shops. You can find them at your local fabric or arts & crafts store.
Don’t have a measuring tape? No worries. You can use a shoelace or some kind o string to wrap around your dog’s neck. Then measure that with a ruler or tape measure to get the right size. With this information, you can pick collars based on your dog’s neck size. Once you find a dog collar you like, use their size chart to match your dog’s neck for the right size.
Use the Two-Finger Rule
What's the recommended space between a dog's collar and neck? The perfect amount of space should be two fingers wide. Your two fingers should fit between this space. If they do not, then it’s too tight. This guidance is often referred to as the “two-finger rule.”
Keep in mind that as your dog’s weight changes, you may need to adjust the collar or get one that fits better.
Does the Width of the Collar Matter?
The width of the collar is as important as getting the size right. Wide collars are made for large dogs, while thin collars are made for small dogs. A wide collar on a small dog can be heavy and uncomfortable. A think collar on a large dog can be dangerous and cause breathing issues.
You may also want a wide collar if your dog is active or a heavy puller.
How Do I Know if My Dog’s Collar is Too Tight?
A dog collar that is too tight can cause serious health hazards for your dog, such as:
- Reduced blood flow to the brain
- Loss of skin or fur, which can lead to infections
- Restricting the dog’s airways
- Chafed skin
Can a Dog’s Collar Be Too Loose?
In the same way a tight collar can lead to problems, a loose collar can cause issues as well. Here are some of the concerns.
- The collar can get caught onto something, which can harm your dog.
- The dog may be able to remove the collar and run off where it’s not safe.
- A loose collar makes it harder to be in control of your dog.
Measuring Makes Right-Sizing Easy
Whether you are new to buying a dog collar or have some experience, remember to measure you dog’s neck first. Use the two-finger rule for space between the neck and collar. Determine the best width for your dog. Consider these things when selecting a dog collar. Your dog will thank you with lots of licks and kisses.