Otherwise known as the e-collar or ‘cone of shame’…
I’ve never come across a dog that particularly likes wearing this plastic monstrosity they issue you with at the Vets, but some can be more accommodating to our strange human ways than others. You’re packed off home after paying an eye-watering bill, enough drugs to medicate a horse and this essential item traditionally known as an Elizabethan collar to stop your dog licking his wound.
Happy that your dog is on the mend from whatever operation or stitches he’s had, you ‘try it out’ in advance of him needing to wear it when you can’t watch him 24/7. If he’s never seen it before, he may be intrigued and its all just a fun game until you try to attach the thing round his neck.
Ears go back, eyes look down, tail is rammed between his legs. You don’t have to be Cesar Millan to know that this is one unhappy puppy in front of you right now. “He’ll get used to it” you chime, to make yourself feel better more than anything. Then he starts to walk. Anything and everything that isn’t nailed down at head height gets the full force of a dog who’s just had his balance, spatial awareness, eyesight and common sense handicapped by a plastic sheet (try not to giggle too loudly at this point, his pride is dented enough).
One swift whack of the paw and it’s over his head and on the floor. Your dog will find this hilarious and taunt you as the victor in this particular battle. So what’s the alternative? Not a lot as I have found recently. There are blow up collars, similar to those neck pillows people take on aeroplanes and manufactured by Kong. Might be worth a look if you can find a UK stockist. When I couldn’t get one in time, we simply called on my partners parents to babysit Lupo, watching him to prevent him irritating a healing dog bite.
Not ideal and we missed him terribly more than anything. But the genius’ that are my future in-laws came up with a brilliant solution. My partners granddad had a bad back last year that led him to wearing a neck brace. Padded, plastic and a simple velcro fastening, turns out it was all we needed. He may look like he’s claiming compensation for whiplash, but we are pretty damn chuffed with this discovery.