Are Wide Dog Collars More Comfortable For My Dog?

If you’ve been taking your dog out for a stroll lately, you’ve probably noticed an influx of dogs sporting wide collars. This might have gotten you to wonder how is a wide collar different from a standard collar. Is it any better and is it time for you to jump on the collar widening craze as well?

Don’t worry, we’re here to answer all your collar-queries!

Collars are available in a plethora of designs, thicknesses, and lengths, and it’s important to pick the size that best fits your dog’s neck: it should neither be too tight or loose (d’uh!).

What most dog owner’s fail to consider is the width of a collar. Width is actually an equally important factor when choosing the right collar. Dog collar experts and aficionados will tell you it’s an underrated aspect and that they can have a strong influence on your dog’s comfort and even safety!

The different dog collar widths out there.

Dog collars can come in a variety of widths.

A regular collar is usually less than 1 inch wide. A 1-inch-wide collar is considered to be “standard” and ideal for most medium-sized dogs by most manufacturers. This includes most retrievers, pointers, boxers, pit bulls, and dalmatians.

To certify as a wide dog collar, the width must be anywhere from 1-inch to 3 inches. These are of course, for much larger dogs (which we will talk about below).

When choosing collar width, it primarily depends on the dog's build, particularly neck length, as well as size.

What kind of dogs wear wide collars?

Large Dogs

They are most commonly seen on bigger dogs. Large, strong dogs that pull really hard, such as dogs tasked with search-and-rescue, law enforcement investigations, and security, are usually kitted with extra-wide and thick collars.


It’s easy to say that objects that are long and thin typically lack strength in their structure. A similar concept can also be applied to dog breeds with long necks. Long-neck dog breeds have thinner and much more delicate necks. This makes their necks highly susceptible to injuries. Using a wide collar around their necks reduces the chances of tracheal damage and ensures a much more healthy, comfortable, strain-free life. This is why a thick, wide collar works best for long-neck dog breeds.

Wide Necks

Usually, it’s very difficult for a dog to get out of a collar due to their necks being narrower than their head. However, this isn't the case when it comes to breeds like Greyhounds or Whippets. They can be can quite the escape artists with regular-sized collars. It’s because these breeds have necks that are wider in comparison to their heads. This allows them to easily slip out of standard-size collars. A wider collar stays wrapped around their necks much more tightly. It’s a lot harder for your dog to get the collar over their heads and pull a Houdini act. Wide collars even help your dog feel safer.

Why Use a Wide Dog Collar?

Wide Dog Collars Provide Extra Protection and Comfort

The extra-width on wide collars disperses the pressure on a wider surface area and helps larger dogs withstand the pressure being inflicted on it. Due to the tension being evenly distributed throughout the neck area, wider dog collars protect the wearer’s neck from short-term injuries and long-term tracheal damage. Naturally, wider collars also provide much more support to your dog’s neck. You will see a huge difference in your dog’s excitement and energy levels when you put them in a wide collar. The equal distribution of tension around your dog’s neck makes them feel very comfortable as they walk with purpose and ease. The majority of wide and thick collars on the market are well-made and are best-suited to keep your dog securely tethered to the leash.

A narrow collar can damage your dog’s neck. They can be seen to rub raw and leave behind a collar imprint on your canine’s neck. Quite uncomfortable for anything that has skin. This can even lead to bleeding. Wide collars are safer since they don’t dig into your dog’s neck, cutting down chances of skin damage and infections.

For larger dog breeds weighing about 70 pounds or more, it's best to get a wide dog collar that is at least 1 ½ inches in width. This includes Rottweilers, German shepherds, and Saint Bernards, to name a few.

2-inch wide dog collars are recommended for big dogs that are in the 100-pound category. However, they are a must-have if your dog is colossal in size and is in the 150-pound-and-above region.

Wide Dog Collars May Prevent Deadly Accidents

According to many trained vets and animal experts, deaths due to standard-sized collars are rampant among pets. Conventional collars reportedly kill or injure over 26,000 dogs every year! As our adventurous pets spring and sling through tree branches and fences, their slim collars get stuck. This causes your pets to violently pull, tug, and twist, eventually leading them to unknowingly strangle themselves.

Moreover, dogs are highly likely to get their lower jaws hooked on collars causing them to flip out. This can result in broken jaws while fatally injuring and even choking their pet-playmates. A wide collar greatly reduces such accidents from taking place. The extra material doesn’t get snagged on fences and tree branches easily. Also, the width of the collar blocks other dogs from hooking their canine teeth inside it and biting your dog's neck.

Wide Dog Collars are More Durable!

Wider collars tend to be sturdier and longer-lasting. The wider surface area distributes pressure uniformly across the collar, giving it the strength to endure all sorts of pulling and tugging from all directions. They are designed to withstand a lot more high impact compared to their narrower counterparts. This makes them the perfect heavy-duty collar that you can wrap around your dog’s neck every time you head for the woods, or during playtime with other dogs.

You can count on them when playtime gets rough and when your dog and his friends step up their chewing game.

Fun Fact: Collars Can Get Lost Dogs Returned Home Safely!

Did you know that over 10 million cats and dogs are lost or stolen in the U.S. every year? As per The American Humane Association, one in three pets will become lost at some point during their life. Quite an uncomfortable statistic. However, it might relieve you to know that 93 percent of dogs and 75 percent of cats reportedly lost are eventually returned to their homes safely thanks to ID tags attached to their collar. With a standard-sized collar it’s difficult to squeeze in much of your pet’s essential information But with a wider collar you get the leeway to add a lot more of your contact information, your dog’s ID, permit, and vaccination tag. Writings are also clearly visible and don’t get faded easily.

Apart from ensuring security, a wide dog collar also makes a bold fashion statement.

How To Pick The Best Wide Dog Collar: Things You Should Look Out For (Besides The Width)

Durable buckles

Imagine yourself standing in place holding a leash, while your dog bolts towards the nearest cat, leaving behind a trail of dust. Not the best scenario to be in, now is it? If the buckles or clasps aren’t durable, it completely defeats the purpose of a leash. So aim for a collar that has an A-grade and durable clasp/buckle that won’t break away when your dog goes nuts.


Although it can be tough to find a wide collar that also fits perfectly around your dog's neck, it's essential for dogs who are still growing. This allows them to last throughout your pet’s growth and weaning time. So if you have a German Shepherd or any dog breed that grows fast, make sure to look for a wide collar that’s adjustable.

High-quality material

It is important that the fabrics used in the construction of a collar are of the highest quality. This gives your dog a much more comfortable fit and also keeps the collar from wearing out soon.

Machine washable

Let’s face it, if you have a super lively dog that just loves to get dirty and eagerly waits for playtime, you're going to be looking at a dirty collar a lot more than others. Washing it manually with your hands can be tiring and time-consuming. Purchasing a collar that is machine washable will make your life a lot easier.

Dog owners should keep width in mind when shopping for dog collars.

That said, you should be careful to make sure it isn’t too wide. It must appear as if your pooch is wearing the collar and not the other way around!

Wide collars are highly recommended for extra-large dog breeds. They can also be a good fit for slightly-smaller-than-extra-large breeds, such as rottweilers and dobermans. What they’re probably not good for are your chihuahua-sized furballs.

If it’s too big for your dog, it’s going to impede their neck mobility and cause problems like the collar moving up too much when they’re lying down. So don’t get wide collars just for the sake of it! Instead, go for the widest option that fits comfortably on the dog's neck.

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