Best basic dog collar

Collars, Leashes, and Harnesses

A beagle looks up at its owner.

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Which basic dog collar is best?

While there are many fancy options on the market, the main function of a collar is to keep your dog secure on its walks and hold its tags. Anything beyond these two functions is a bonus, but even among basic collars, there are a lot of options.

Whether you are shopping for a collar for the first time or are a longtime pet owner, the number of choices may be overwhelming. If you are looking for a good, basic dog collar, then the Max and Neo Nylon Reflective Dog Collar is the top choice.

What to know before you buy a basic dog collar

Purpose 

Even with proper precautions, dogs sometimes manage to slip out of the yard or house. If your dog is wearing a collar with tags attached, it is easy for the person who finds your pet to contact you. The collar also alerts any shelters that your dog has an owner. PetMD recommends having your dog microchipped as a backup in case the collar comes off.

Many city ordinances require you to use a leash when walking your pet in a public space. However, if your dog likes to pull, it is better to attach the leash to a harness instead of a collar so your pet is not straining its neck.

Sizing

Using a flexible tape measure, measure the circumference of your dog’s neck at the spot the collar will sit. Dog collars usually come in a certain range of fit. For example, a collar may fit a neck circumference between 12 and 14 inches. If your dog’s neck measurement is 12, 13 or 14 inches, this is the proper size. When putting the collar on your dog, make sure the collar is secure but not tight. The common rule is that you should be able to fit two fingers between the dog’s neck and the collar.

What to look for in a quality basic dog collar

Style

There are many styles of dog collars, but the most basic is the flat style. This style features a band that is flat and rectangular when laid out. The flat band works well for almost any breed of dog, and you can find this style for a dog as large as a Great Dane or as small as a Chihuahua. They come in a variety of shapes, materials and patterns.

Material

Dog collars are made out of many different materials, including nylon, neoprene, faux leather and leather. Any of these options can make a good dog collar, but there are some differences. If you want a collar that handles water well, neoprene is the best option. This material is long-lasting while being comfortable for your dog. Leather or faux leather are attractive, stylish options. Nylon comes in a variety of patterns and is inexpensive but might not be the most durable material.

Fasteners

The two most common types of fasteners on dog collars are buckle and snap fasteners. A buckle fastener works exactly like the fastener on belts used for pants. This type can be more difficult to undo but is very durable. A snap fastener resembles the same kind of fasteners you find on a child’s safety seat on a grocery cart. These fasteners unlatch quickly and easily.

How much you can expect to spend on a basic dog collar

You can find small, nylon dog collars for as little as $5. If you want something more durable, such as neoprene or leather, expect to pay $15-$40 for neoprene and $30-$100 for leather.

Basic dog collar FAQ

When does your dog need to wear a collar?

A. Your dog should always have its collar on when it leaves the house, but wearing it inside is unnecessary unless you think your pet will dash outside when someone goes through the door. Your dog should not wear its collar when locked inside a crate as the collar can get caught on the sides.

How do you know your dog’s collar is comfortable?

A. The best way to ensure your dog’s collar is comfortable is by purchasing the correct size. Beyond that, keep an eye on your dog’s neck after getting it a new collar to ensure the fit or material is not causing any irritation.

What’s the best basic dog collar?

Top basic dog collar

Max and Neo Nylon Reflective Dog Collar

Max and Neo Nylon Reflective Dog Collar

What you need to know: The reflective nylon material is durable and great for low-light visibility.

What you’ll love: This collar is tough yet comfortable. It comes in a wide variety of sizes and colors. The buckle has a locking tab that prevents accidental release.

What you should consider: The colors on this collar tend to bleed.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top basic dog collar for the money

Blueberry Pet Classic Nylon Adjustable Dog Collar

Blueberry Pet Classic Nylon Adjustable Dog Collar

What you need to know: This collar is simple, affordable and long-lasting.

What you’ll love: The high-density webbing of the nylon fabric makes this collar durable. It comes in many different colors and the size is adjustable.

What you should consider: The adjustments on the collar can loosen when using a leash. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Chewy

Worth checking out

Carhartt Fully Adjustable Webbing Collar

Carhartt Fully Adjustable Webbing Collar

What you need to know: This dog collar is reflective and durable. 

What you’ll love: The nylon webbing with duck canvas weave stands up to all your pup’s adventures. The side-release buckle is half metal and half durable plastic. The reflective quality in the nylon helps with visibility at night.

What you should consider: This collar is not a good fit for small dogs.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Chewy

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Morgan Freeman writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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