Should Your Dog Wear A Collar At Home?

One question that comes up frequently amongst dog owners is, “should your dog wear a collar at home?” Because this is such an emotive topic, there are strong opinions on both sides of the argument.

Should I keep My Dog’s Collar On At Home?

First, let me tell you what we do with Luna, my Cockapoo.

My wife and I are firmly in the camp of not leaving Luna’s collar on all the time. She’s not the kind of dog that would try to escape, and in any case, we are cautious enough to ensure we always lock the garden gate with a padlock. There are only the two of us in the house, so there’s no danger that a child might accidentally leave the gate open.

I’m not speaking for other dog owners who might have a dog that’s the consummate escape artist and looks for every opportunity to bolt out of the house and the garden. For example, one day, our neighbour’s dog managed to get out and paid a visit to our back garden. More by luck, the dog followed me back home as it didn’t have a dog collar for me to get hold of.

Undoubtedly, it would have made matters a lot easier if the dog had been wearing a dog collar because I could have attached one of Luna’s leads and got the dog home a lot quicker, without the risk of the dog running off again.

I think it’s easy to be too judgmental about these things and not appreciate that some owners have a distinctly uncomfortable time with dogs that try to escape at every given opportunity. So, you could say I’m really in neither camp, and I’m a fence-sitter when it comes to should dogs wear collars inside the home all the time. 

Other Dog Owners React To The Question – “Should My Dog Wear A Collar All The Time?”

Against Dog Collars In The House

Darren W. says, “I have four miniature Dachshunds, and none of them wear their collars in the house. I find the dogs are much more comfortable without their collars and can relax. Also, they know it’s time for exercise and walks when I reach for their collars. Imagine wearing a collar yourself all the time. Having it removed must feel like a relief.”

Lisa says, “I stopped putting dog collars on my two Labradors years ago when I started to notice some severe skin problems around the neck of one of the dogs. Not only was the collar irritating, but she began losing hair, and the skin became infected.”

For Dog Collars In The House

Robyn D. says, “I leave my dog’s collar on, it doesn’t irritate his skin, and I prefer to know that if he did get out and ran off, I know his identification tags are on the collar. Even if he ended up in a shelter, the people there no my telephone number and address.”

Derek K. says, “I’m definitely in favour of my Beagle Bertie keeping his collar on when he’s at home. Beagles are notorious for escaping if they see a door open, and Bertie definitely fits into that category. Plus, it’s illegal for a dog to be out in public here in the UK without a collar, name, and address. If he escapes without his collar, there might be a hefty fine to pay, and I want to avoid that happening. I am happy that my dog wears his collar on most of the time”.

Fence-Sitter 

Many dog owners are either fence-sitters on the matter or prefer to adopt both keeping their dog’s collar on and taking it off at other times.

Bill says, “I prefer to leave my dog’s collar on during the day. However, once we’ve turned in for the evening, I take his collar off at night so he’s more comfortable. Plus, I fwouldn’t want him to injure himself by getting the collar snagged on something, and he chokes because we are asleep and don’t hear anything.”

Jane M. says, “I leave my Havanese with her collar on because she’s not happy when I try to take it off. She gets upset when it’s bath time, and I take it off then. I have to give her a treat so we can swap. I’m not worried about her choking because it’s a lovely soft collar, and she sleeps in our bedroom, so we hardly ever leave her alone at night.

Should Puppies Wear Collars All The Time?

There are conflicting opinions on when a new puppy should begin to wear a collar. However, it’s fair to say they should wear a collar if old enough to go outside and meet other dogs and people. Comfortable and well-fitted collars are essential here.

Some collars brands don’t have small neck sizes for smaller puppies, which can be challenging. A too-large collar could get hooked on something and cause a choking hazard, so don’t use one that’s too big. If you worry about doing the right thing with a puppy, speak with a qualified veterinarian and ask for some advice.

However, it’s probably a good idea to begin training your puppy to wear a collar before they are ready to go for their first walk. I always think it’s better to start collar and leash training in the house. 

I wouldn’t leave a collar on a puppy indefinitely. Pups are always into everything going on around them, and it’s far too easy for them to snag the collar on something, and that could end up having severe consequences.  If you are going out for a few hours and you know the pup is safe inside then I think it would be completely comfortable to not have puppies wearing collars inside all day.

Of course, it always comes down to an individual owner’s best judgment. But I can’t see anything wrong with allowing your puppy to get used to having a collar around their neck; they’ll have to get used to one sooner or later.

Final Thoughts

In the end, every dog owner makes their own choices when it comes down to the option of allowing their dog to wear their collar at home or not. Collars can be worn 24/7 as a practical measure if the dog accidentally gets out of the house and runs off.  I’ve heard horror stories from both sides. Ones where the dog’s collar has caught on something at home and the owner has been out the dog has choked. Then again, I’ve heard stories of dogs escaping out of the back door or through a doggy door with no collar on. In the UK all dogs have to be chipped but it’s much easier if they have a collar on with the phone number on.

However, you might prefer your dog to wear a collar when out on walks, but take it off when they return home, which is what I do myself.