A Guide to Leashes and Collars
Choosing a Leash and Collar for Your Dog
Dogs come in all shapes, sizes, and temperaments, and each have their own unique needs. When it comes time to pick out a leash and collar for your pup, there are many things you should consider.
The size of your dog's collar is extremely important. Incorrect sizing could lead to neck damage, irritation, and other injuries. Use a flexible measuring tape to measure the circumference of where your dog’s collar will sit.
When the collar is on, you should be able to fit two fingers between it and their neck. This will add ½” to 2” to your measurement.
Use this final measurement to find the perfect-sized collar!
Types of Leashes and Collars
When you step into the pet aisle at the store, you may become overwhelmed by the number of options available for your dog. Let’s break down some of the more common selections and which pups they’re right for.
Classic Leash and Collar
One of the most popular options is a classic leash and collar. If your dog is well behaved, easy-going, and does not have breathing problems, this is a great choice for them.
These collars combine nylon and a small section of a light chain to create a training collar that is comfortable and safe. When pulled on, the collar will tighten slightly, letting your dog know to slow down or come closer. These collars are a good choice for dogs with narrow heads like greyhounds and whippets.
If you choose to use a martingale collar, be sure to do so safely. This means finding the correct size, not pulling on the leash yourself to tighten it, and using commands like “heel” or “slow” if your pup begins to pull away from you, triggering the tightening.
A harness fits comfortably around your dog’s shoulders and front legs to create a secure attachment to the leash without restricting the neck. They can be especially beneficial to short-nose breeds and dogs with slim necks.
Harnesses allow you to have better control of your dog while out and about, but they are not the most comfortable for them to wear 24/7.
Talk to Your Vet
When you’re at the pet store, don’t simply pull any leash and collar off the shelf! Take our tips into consideration to ensure your pup is wearing the proper gear. If you’re still unsure, contact your vet for advice.