Does my dog need a collar? New puppy parents ask a lot of questions and the answer is simple: yes! Every dog should have a collar. They are not only required for attaching straps, licenses, IDs and vaccination tags, but can also be useful during training.
However, not all dog collars are created equal and some are downright inhumane. In addition, the different types of collars are suitable for various purposes, dog sizes and life stages.
So what’s the best collar for your pup? We have tested tons and created a list of superlatives. Our pet product review team considered several factors during the testing process, including price, ease of use, effectiveness, style, and durability.
Materials for dog collars
Necklaces are available in a variety of materials, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
Dog collar materials: neoprene
Better known as a “wetsuit material”, neoprene is a soft rubber material reinforced with nylon. It is strong, very durable and stretches well. Water-loving dog breeds, such as American Spaniel, Bearded Spaniel, Irish Spaniel, Portuguese Spaniel, Newfoundland and Labrador, work best with neoprene dog collars. They are also ideal for puppies and dogs with skin allergies.
Unfortunately, not many companies make neoprene dog collars, so the selection is limited. Plus, they can be a little bulkier than pure nylon options and a little cheaper.
Dog Collar Materials: Nylon
Nylon necklaces are the most common and come in a wide variety of styles and colors. The material is ideal for everyday use, both outdoors and indoors.
Dogs with skin irritation issues can have problems with nylon collars. In these cases, a neoprene one can work better. Plus, they can suck up the sky after a while and are difficult to clean. But they’re generally less expensive, so replacing them isn’t a big investment.
Dog collar materials: biothane
Biothane is another collar material that is good for dogs that don’t use water. The non-toxic substance is obtained by coating a polyester base with polyvinyl or polyurethane. A great alternative to other options, biothane is flexible, softer than many other dog collar materials, and less expensive.
Additionally, biotane is as hard as snot and lasts a long time, making it a good choice for aggressive neck-biting dogs. Budget-wise, they are a good option, as you won’t have to buy them that many times.
The only downside to biothane necklaces is that they can be hard to find.
Dog collar materials: leather
Leather is the Bentley of tie materials – it’s high quality, lasts for years and looks great. But leather is also the most expensive option. However, for people on a tight budget, they are durable, stylish, and easy to clean. Plus, because they’re made from a natural material, they’re best for dogs with certain skin allergies.
Leather collars come in two types: flat and rolled. Use the latter for canines with thick hair that gets tangled easily. If you are concerned about durability, make sure the collar is long-grained, unregenerated leather. The latter disintegrates at a much faster rate than the former.
Like nylon, the skin can start to smell after a while, which can be a consideration for people with sensitive olfactory systems.
Dog collar materials: chain
Chain necklaces should only be used by professionals in controlled environments. Also, they should never be left unattended in a dog because the risk of self-strangulation is high, especially in the colder months when the metal is less flexible.
Chain necklaces are not an everyday option. Not only are they impractical because they don’t work properly with most straps, they are also dangerous in most circumstances.