Holler Holler for a Collar

Every single day at least one lost or found dog comes across my facebook page.  It breaks my heart, not just for the dog, but for the family who is missing their fur baby.

My dogs always have a collar on, even in the house and when we go outside, they have two.

S w 2

Why you ask?

Just in case they slip their collar and get away from me.  I think of it like a security blanket.

The flat buckle collar has three tags on it, their rabies tag, their town registration and a tag with their name, my name and my cell phone number on it.

2 Collars

The small collar is the one they wear in the house all the time.  That’s their just in case they escape from the house collar.

Which has happened, with both of them.

This is a hotly contested topic, some people don’t leave the collars on because they are worried about the dog getting hung up on something.  I’m lucky, both my dogs are pretty mellow during the day, moving from their spot on the couch to a spot on the bed or a spot in front of the sliding door.

But my dog is chipped.

Your dog might be chipped, but if they aren’t wearing a collar and someone finds them, the chip doesn’t help unless the person who finds them has a scanner.

I don’t know if my animal control facility has a scanner, if they don’t that means a trip to a local veterinarian that might be avoided if my name and phone number is on my dog’s tags.

Not a person in sight

A few years back on Christmas Eve I was driving home and I passed by our local reservoir.  I was shocked to see two yellow labs running along dragging their leashes.

I was concerned that someone had slipped, been mugged or hurt and dropped the dog’s leashes.  I was worried because the reservoir is on a busy road, and the dogs could very easily gotten hit by a car.

I pulled over and by using some treats, I coaxed one dog over to my car, the second dog followed.  Luckily the dogs had tags with a phone number on it.

I called the number and the man who answered said, “My wife is walking the dogs.”

I explained that the dogs were alone, and I couldn’t see his wife.  He responded, “I’m on my way.”

He was there within five minutes and told me his wife was on her way and when she walked the dogs she liked to drop the leashes to let them run.

In this instance they took off on her and she couldn’t catch them.

Once the man had his dogs, I headed for home and passed his wife, still making her way to where her husband was, I shouted to her that he had the dogs and they were safe.

The whole event, from start to finish was probably 15 to 20 minutes long.

15 to 20 minutes that her dogs were out of her sight.  Had they not had tags on them, I probably would have called animal control to come and pick them up.

Yes she had about a half an hour of panic, but it could have been a lot longer and it could have been a lot worse.  I think she also learned a valuable lesson that day: most people can’t run faster than their dogs.

I’ve asked this before, but I’ll ask it again, do your dogs wear collars in the house?  Why or why not?

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Comments

  1. Laura Horn says

    yep . . . we leave their collars on ALL of the time. But both Candy and Ginger have managed to lose their tags, MULTIPLE times. We let them run free when we’re up here in TN since they LOVE to run through the woods chasing God only knows what. We feel ok with that because they “check” in every 30-45 minutes. :D I’m in the middle of doing a search for “flat tags” that might slide onto their collars . . . any advice?

  2. says

    No our dogs don’t wear collars in the house. We worry about them getting caught and strangling. Most animal control facilities have scanners and these days most scanners can read most chips. That is our extra protection. In the case that someone might steal my dog, I really do not want to make it easy on them by providing the dog’s name. Unfortunately, there are those stories out there too. Our dogs do wear collars with tags when they are out with us.

  3. Sue says

    G’morning Miss Jodi! Shadow, Ducky, and I wear our collars ALL the time. Mom sez her previous dog, Kissy, wore her collar all the time, too. Callie. // Sue here. When I was growing up, our poodles ALWAYS had their collars on, so I just continued the “family tradition” when I got my own dogs. I just might pick up your lead later and write my own post about it. I hope you won’t mind if I use some of your sentences…I’ll definitely give you a shout-out, but you probably know I would even if I forgot to tell you.

    • Jodi Stone says

      Our collars are loose, and I always think…what if there was a fire in the night, how would I manage the dogs?

      Of course you can use some of my phrases, I know your not pirating me! LOL

  4. says

    We wear our collars from when we go on our first walk in the morning until we head for bed at night…then mom tells us to get naked and we take them off. We aren’t wild in the house, so not worried about getting hung up but they are also loose enough that if we got outside and got caught we could wriggle out of them. Our collars have an info tag and our city license (can’t get a license without proper vaccinations). We each have 2 chips as well, European and American, so hopefully if we would ever get lost we would be found. A new idea is to put a QR tag on the collar so the information is not available unless someone scans it with their phone but right now we only use that on mom’s luggage.

    • Jodi Stone says

      Well thanks for that information Emma! Yes, Sampson’s and Delilah’s are loose too, I refer to them as necklaces because in essence that is what they are. :-)

      QR tag, hmm? I’ve never heard of it, but I’ll check it out.

      You are both very well protected, your mom doesn’t take any chances!

  5. says

    A great post on an important topic! We are strong believers in collars and every dog or cat we have had gets one and wears it all the time. The way I look at it, the information on their collars is the voice they would use if they could to find their way back home if ever they were lost.

  6. says

    I’ve never had a dog have an adverse event from wearing a collar (but one of my cats did once, which I think is more common). Over the years, all of my dogs have gone ‘on the lam’ at some point, and turned up back home without incident (except for the ncident of escaping in the first place!). So I’m a big beleiver in collars, inside and out.

    • Jodi Stone says

      I agree Coralee, I want them safe at all costs. I wouldn’t intentionally let them run loose, but accidents happen and I’d rather be safe than sorry!

  7. says

    I had a bad experience, not with a collar but a harness. My neighbor walked the dogs for me and she had trouble getting the dogs to calm down enough for her to put on the harness. I started leaving it on when I left the house so all she had to do was clip the leash on.
    One night I was petting Henri under his neck and felt something lumpy and dry. I thought it might be food since he eats like it is his last meal! I went to wash him and looked under his neck. He had a long flap of skin loose under his neck. I freaked and called another neighbor. We had to cut the skin off. I got his harness out and sure enough you could see it lined up with the cut. My neighbor blamed the dog walker but I was so freaked out about it I wouldn’t leave anything on them again. But just in case I got a new dog walker!
    I know I should have something on them, they are chipped but like you said, who would know. I like the round collars you have on them, maybe I’ll rethink my decision. Henri likes to shoot out the door if he can!

    That lady was very lucky you found her dogs, I would never let my dogs run off leash unless they were in an enclosed area!

  8. says

    I’m a collar and tag person too, even though Toby and Meadow are both chipped. (Came that way when I adopted them).

    However, one of my cats has a collar allergy that developed only recently and he lost his fur all under his collar. We have tried two materials now and the vet has him “naked” until the hair grows back. I don’t let him out but I’m worried if he gets out that I’ll never find him again. There are so many feral in the area I think he’d just disappear into the woods, and I don’t think anyone around my area is gonna check for a microchip on a cat – but if he had a collar, people would know he had a home. So I’m stressed about this no collar thing, as you can tell. :-)

  9. says

    Oh Jodi, you are not going to be impressed with me, but I cannot tell a lie. My dog STILL does not have a tag with our phone number on it. Even after I wrote several posts two years ago about this very thing. I keep meaning to get one but then I get distracted by all the pretty options and forget. Our cat has a tag but our dog does not.

    In fact, she doesn’t have ANY tags on her collar. She is fully licensed but the dang municpal tags are so cheap they keep falling off and I am too cheap/lazy to keep replacing them. Her rabies tag is probably in the same place as her city one, in the middle of the woods somewhere.

    Shameful, isn’t it? I know I am totally going to learn my lesson the hard way if I don’t get it together and yet I just haven’t made getting a tag a priority. She is micro-chipped, does that count for something?

  10. says

    My dogs wear collars inside and outside. I’ve tried all types of collars but I like the leather buckle collars best. Some of those clicky type plastic latches aren’t very strong. Kelly has flat tags but Brooks has the dangling kind, but they both have contact info. I don’t worry about leaving the collars on in the house because I work from home and can supervise and also because they are both senior dogs and not running around a lot. But if someone has really active dogs that play together a lot, they might not want to leave the collars on unsupervised because I’ve read several stories about one dog getting a paw or even his jaw stuck in the other dog’s collar.
    P.S. Your name was drawn as a winner of the My Dog Says I’m a Great Cook! book on Peggy’s Peg Place! Congratulations. Please send me your snail mail addy to peggyfrezon (at) gmail. Thx!

  11. says

    I was bawled out unmercifully by a fellow blogger for leaving my dogs’ collars on all the time, but the chances of them getting out by someone leaving a door or gate open is much greater than their chances of getting choked. The first has happened more than once, the second, never.

  12. says

    We use a martingale type collar for Cali when we walk her, which has her tag on it, but we take it off when she is in the house. She has never tried to run out of the house (ever!) so we have never worried about her trying to bolt. When she was a puppy, we let her out in the back yard and when my hubby went to let her in she was no where to be found. We both panicked and started to run out the front door to look for her, and there she was sitting on the front porch!! She’s a good girl :)

    I do get very frustrated when I see loose dogs with collars on WITH NO TAGS. What is the point? As a dog walker I came across loose dogs weekly and most of them did not have tags so it always meant a trip to the vet to get scanned.

  13. says

    Blueberry only wears a collar when we go out. At home I let her walk around “naked”. She’s not a “door bolter” so I don’t worry about her getting out. And yes, she’s chipped too. Most places these days have scanners.

    You’d think I’d make her wear one all the time because of an incident that happened with my other dogs. Someone broke into my home while I was at work and left the front door wide open the entire time (just wanna say “thanks” sarcastically to my neighbors that saw that and did nothing) and one of my dogs bolted and my faithful cattle dog mix stayed in the back yard and didn’t leave the house (or if she did, she came right back in). The dog that bolted I got back because I checked out lost dog sites on line as soon as I got home and he ended up being at someone’s house just a couple miles from me and I got him back within the hour.

  14. Frankie Furter and Ernie says

    WE are both CHIPPED… butt even though she knows the danger of doing it… MOM insists that we ALWAYS wear our Collars. they have ALL of our impawtant contact info on the tags… JUST IN CASE!!!

  15. says

    Mine don’t. And one of the reasons is that a FB friend’s dog just died, from a collar related accident. The two dogs were playing, and one of the dog’s lower teeth became stuck in the other dog’s collar. In a panic the stuck dog began thrashing and ended up strangling the other dog. I like to think I would be able to save both dogs if this ever happened while I was there. But if this happened while I wasn’t home…

    We do put collars on them, with ID tags, when we go out though. (for walks, to the park, or to the vet)

  16. says

    Cupcake wears her collar inside and outside, all day long. I take it off when we go to bed, and hang it on the bedroom doorknob, God forbid we need to go out in a hurry. It goes back on as soon as we get up. It gives me a heart attack when I get the Home Again Lost Pet bulletins that say, “Not Wearing a Collar”. These pets are all microchipped, but just like in your story, having a collar is just SO much easier. Also, I feel that someone would be more likely to approach a lost animal if it has a collar.

  17. says

    Hi Jodi…No Gizmo does not wear a collar in the house…None of my dogs ever had…it’s just a personal preference with me I guess…Outside of course Giz does wear his collar with his rabies tab and a small cylinder that has our contact info. Recently the tags came off in the woods…three weeks later someone found them, called me and returned them…that was quite a surprise given the distance we’d hiked that day in rough terrain…Not long ago I found a tiny senior pup shivering on my lawn, obviously lost…Lucky he did have a tag with an address (no phone) and it was only about a block away, so I picked him up and carried him home…His mom didn’t know he’d run out till I knocked…

  18. says

    Gwynn has an id chip, and he keeps his collar on most of the time. I’ll admit, I slack off sometimes, though – I take it off to groom him, and don’t always put it on again right away.
    I can attest to the irritation of finding a dog with no ID on him. I knocked on some doors in the neighbourhood, even had a leash donated to the cause of finding his home, and established that my nearest vet (who might have had a scanner) was closed. Luckily, I talked with enough people that the owner got on my trail and found me and her pet, but it could have been a whole lot simpler if i’d been able to phone her, or even phone toronto animal services and get them to contact her.

  19. says

    Silas absolutely wears his collar 24/7. It’s nice and light, and like your guys he doesn’t run around too much when we’re gone. I also struggle to think of anything that he *could* get dangerously caught on in our house. He’s skittish about small spaces, and most of our furniture is pretty streamlined.

    That said, his everyday collar is just his name and my phone number embroidered on. No bulky tags or anything.

  20. says

    My dogs do not wear collars.

    Aesthetically, my dogs are show dogs, and collars leave a dent in their coat that is undesirable.

    My dogs are rough mouth players, and I have heard too many stories of dogs that have been strangled from collars getting caught in the mouth of their playmate.

    If I ever get to the point that my dogs do start wearing collars, I would be using the ‘KeepSafe’ collars that have a latch that opens when a lot of pressure is applied – to prevent strangulation.

  21. says

    Aladdin does not wear a collar, hardly ever. I think it’s because I come from a show background and that little divot the collar makes in the fur super bothers me. But Aladdin wouldn’t run from us.

    Julio was busy carrying in stuff when his family was visiting one time and accidentally left Aladdin outside. No collar, no tags, nothing. What did Aladdin do? Sat by his favorite tree (the tree that is right in front of our steps watching people as they walked by, until half and hour later dad realized Aladdin was no where to be found. We joke that we couldn’t get Aladdin to run away, even if we tried.

    My other dogs in the past, have worn collars because they were bolters, but our show dogs never wore collars.

  22. says

    I’m with you, Jodi. Collars on in the house. We call these their everyday clothes and they’re worn loose on purpose (rowdy retrievers, you know). Another collar when leashed. All have tags and the one includes our vet’s phone number. And our dogs are micro-chipped.

  23. says

    Great topic Jodi,

    My Mum’s always wondering what’s the right thing to do, now I have my collar on during the day and off at night…

    We’ve found so many Dogs and most of them have had a collar on with a phone number and we’ve been able to get them home – yay!

    Have a fun weekend,

    Your pal Snoopy :)

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