Ultimate Guide to Collars for Small Dogs

Ultimate Guide to Collars for Small Dogs

You may find that small dogs have more sensitive necks and even more demands for collars. Whether you choose a bark collar for small dogs or any other type of collar, you have to consider numerous factors.

Traditional collars may not be suitable for your small pet. Apart from that, the age of your dog also matters. Young dogs have greater risks of getting injured by an unsuitable collar.


Ultimate Guide to Collars for Small Dogs


Things to Consider Before Buying a Collar

A collar that is suitable for your pet maybe even more important than the vitamins you feed it every day. This tool can easily change a dog’s behavior, save it from a wide range of problems, and help you to understand your pet better. This is why you have to follow the next tips while picking a collar for your small dog.

Material for collar

You need to consider the material of the collar your dog will wear constantly. While the collar must be firm, it can’t be choking or cause any allergies. It must have flexibility and softness to grant comfort to your pet. Many experienced dog owners prefer natural leather over more affordable nylon.

Leather is thicker than nylon and is more suitable for pups. You may choose a different design, size, decoration, or color. Besides, your dog will appreciate the water-proof collar that does not have to dry for hours.

Perfect size

You have to find the collar that will suit your dog. It must not strangle your pet or slip over its neck. Both options are highly uncomfortable and unacceptable. Think about all the movements your dog is doing during the day. To avoid this problem, you need to measure your dog’s neck. There are two different and simple ways to do it:

  • Use the measuring tape of fabric. All you need to do is wrap it around the dog’s neck. Try not to pull too tight;
  • Use the ruler and a simple string. This is a less comfortable way, but still working if you don’t have a measuring tape nearby. Just wrap a string around your dog’s neck. If you don’t have it, use a scarf or any other fabric. Now measure its length with the ruler.

The best way to make sure that you have the right measures is to take them two times. If the result is the same, you can write it down and use it as a standard for your dog. If you are not sure how many places you need to leave between your dog’s neck and the collar, there is a rule for this. You need to be able to fit two of your fingers behind the collar. You can put fingers behind the measuring tape as well to make sure that the collar will not be too tight.


Width is similarly important in the collar of a small dog. Since a small dog has a small neck, you have to consider the ratio of width to length, choosing not too thick and not a too short item. The thin collar can create pressure on a dog’s neck. Things to consider:

  • Think about the breed. Small dogs usually need 5/8 inches wide collars minimum. This is a standard for Chihuahuas. Meanwhile, Mastiffs that are bigger than Chihuahuas may require 2 inches wide collars;
  • Find out your dogs’ weight. Small dogs of 15 pounds and less usually have necks of 8-14 inches and can be satisfied with the collar between 5/8 inches and 1 inch wide;
  • Think about your dog’s personality. If it loves to pull and tug the leash, the width can be closer to 1 inch;
  • Dogs that are up to 30 pounds usually have necks of 12-16 inches. Such dogs usually require collars of 1 inch-1.5 inches width.

Types of collars

There are different types you have to consider before you buy anything. Each type has specific extra features which you may need. The most popular types:

  • Standard dog collars. They are well spread, yet, maybe unsuitable for your small dog. Their benefit is that you can find such collars everywhere for an affordable price;
  • Basic collars are usually made of nylon and rarely from leather with metal and plastic buckles. Usually, basic collars are worn during the whole day and night;
  • LED collars. They are perfect for walking since you will not lose your dog out of sight at night. Besides, your dog will be visible for drivers;
  • Waterproof collars. You need to have such a collar in case you live in a wet climate. It is perfect for outside activities since you don’t have to worry about every puddle your dog can find. It also must be protected from bacteria and simple to clean. You can even wash your dog in such a collar;
  • Training collars. Make sure that such a collar is safe for your dog. Training collars were made to teach dogs proper behavior. There are several variants, including martingale dog collars that slightly tighten when the dog pulls too hard. Dog choke chains may be inappropriate for your small dog, but if it is highly aggressive, you can try this option too. Prong dog collars must be used only after your vet recommends one, and it must not harm your dog;
  • Bark collars. Such collars can lower down the noise your dog makes while barking. It is popular in overcrowded regions, where people have to co-exist close with the dogs. Some barking collars contain sprays that are effective in preventing inappropriate behavior of your dog.

Take Your Time

Don’t rush while choosing a collar for your small pet. There are lots of models on the market, and you have to understand which one will be the most suitable for your dog. You have to take measures and think about the daily activities of your dog.

Pay attention to the basics, like width, length, material. Only after that, you can think about whether you want a collar with decorations. If you have tried several types of collars, share your experience in the comments below. Which one is your top choice?

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