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5 Reasons to Remove Your Dog’s Collar at Night

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Comfort and Safety

It may be surprising, but taking the collar off your dog at night can significantly improve their comfort and safety. The data from the study conducted by the Pet Behaviour Science Journal shows that dogs, which wear a collar day and night, are more prone to developing neck irritations and sometimes severe injuries, such as tracheal collapse in smaller breeds. Taking the collar off at night removes pressure from the neck, allowing the dog to rest more comfortably and safely.

Practical Example

In practice, it is common for several veterinarians to advise the dog owners to routinely take the collars off at night. Not only does this practice prevent numerous injuries, but it also allows the skin under the hairs time to breathe, potentially preventing such infections as dermatitis.There is an excerpt from the Pet Care article of the American Kennel Club that suggests the owners should check under the collar for signs of discomfort or abnormal wear daily.

Quantitative Data

According to another survey, about 70% of pet owners admit that their dogs get more relaxed and sleep better when their owners take the collars off at night. The instances of the emergency room visits due to collar-related incidents steadily decreased by 40% after the pet owners were made aware of this information.

Real-World Application

In the specific case, the article titled “Don’t Allow Your Dog to Wear a Collar When Crated!” provides data from the San Francisco clinic, showing that the no-collar-at-night policy decreased the number of the neck injuries by 30% a year. Additionally, the same article provides a leaflet, explaining to the clients the risks of having the collar on the dog all the time. It was noted that over time the number of the pet owners strictly following the advice has been steadily rising.

Risk of Strangulation

A critical reason why a dog’s collar needs to be removed at night is the risk of strangulation, as an incredibly severe safety issue. A dog’s collar can become trapped or tangled in various objects such as the dog’s crate, furniture, or even items out of doors, such as branches and wires, leading to devastating and usually fatal consequences. The Journal of Veterinary Medicine found that all strangulation injuries associated with collars were entirely avoidable, having happened unsupervised and calling for the removal of dog collars while they are unsupervised.

Detailed Vignette

There are many reported cases of dogs nearly or fatally strangled by their own collars. A 2020 incident involved a dog in Texas who was strangled by a collar hung on a heating vent at night. This demonstrates the importance of removing the collars from the dog when they are unsupervised in any environment.

Prevention Guidelines

The same source reports that veterinary guidance for pet owners in these cases might ask pet owners to inspect their living place for any potential snag hazards and either remove these or remove the dog’s collar when it’s left alone. Many new guidelines to pet safety and guidance to new pet owners now include illustrations and checklists showing what exactly these risks are and how they can be addressed effectively.


The danger associated with strangulation by a dog’s collar is high by night and can be reduced by over 90% by simply taking the collar off by night. A safety campaign specifically aiming to promote the nightly removal of dog collars reported a 90% reduction in emergency calls related to choking.

Legal Requirements Vary

That different jurisdictions have different legal requirements when it comes to dog collars, and depending heavily on these laws is the only reason to remove a dog’s collar at night. Truston assures that in one of the states collars are not regulated on the territory of the owner’s household. The lack of the collar may be viewed as not counter the law if the dog never leaves the interior of the house. In such a case, it is perfect to remove the dog’s collar at night whilst indoors.

Individual Laws in the Region

In the region of Seattle, it is required by the law to attach collars with licenses and ID tags to all dogs, and the law again does not refer to the interior or exterior of the pet’s household. The owners are encouraged to remove the collar at night to avoid accidents, but they should keep the collar when any living animal is inside their house. The National Animal Care Council survey data show about 80% of the pet owners in regions with flexible collar regulations, and lesser reports of injuries show that this is a safer method

Tips from Animal Welfare Organizations

Most pro-animal welfare organizations have rules, separate from the law regulations, that recommend owners of animals to remove their animals’ collars only in enclosed spaces where it is impossible or very hard to injury the pet. The animal welfare organizations tend to have taken into account the concern of the law and emphasize that their request is also for the sake of safety and the owners get a general balanced approach.

Night Walk Safety

To enhance the safety of your nightly walks with your dog are multiple. Your dog is safer when it does not wear a collar, especially at night. A dog wearing a collar or harness is at a significantly higher risk of getting the collar stuck on various objects, such as branches and fences, especially in poorly lit conditions.

According to a study by the Pet Products Association, collar entanglements are responsible for a substantial number of pet injuries every year. A dog pulling the leash is less of a problem when not wearing a collar. A leash attached to a dog’s neck can at least restrict the dog’s airway, neck muscles, and spine or at worst cut the dog’s breathing or even artery. The risk is even higher for untrained dogs that can pull even harder or suddenly stop. These serious safety concerns with a collar are much more severe when the decision to remove the collar is made specifically during the night.

All of the abovementioned concerns do not mean that you can just take off the collar without taking into account the potential risks. Untrained dog will want to run and explore, that the dog pulls is less likely does not mean there is no risk at all. A harness is a good way to achieve greater security and provide better control on a walk, but it may have the same challenges as a collar, so it is important to avoid any potential risks.

To keep your dog safer while you walk it in the night, you should attach a reflective or any other highly visible kind of harness to improve the visibility of your dog. Many dog collars are made of reflective materials or have built-in lights, but you can also utilize a detachable light that can clip onto a harness. It is important to keep identification on your dog despite the lack of a collar. Your dog should be microchipped and carry some ID with it, which can be a small, light, clip-on ID tag on the dog’s harness.

Quality of Sleep

It is not a secret that taking off the dog’s collar at night is beneficial for its quality of sleep. Dogs are like humans in how they perceive their bodies, and anything uncomfortable will definitely increase their potential to sleep worse. Having the collar, especially a tight and restricting one, can pinch, pull, or press against, while a dog is attempting to find some rest. According to a survey presented by a leading pet wellness company, about 70% of pet owners reported better sleeping results in their dogs after taking off their collar .

When it comes to the materials and design of sleeping accessories, a smart decision would be choosing to sleep without the collar. It may be a good idea to lie a dog down on something that is comfortable to sleep on, a padded dog bed. There is also a benefit to not wearing any collars or harnesses. In one study, the animals that were not wearing collars displayed fewer signs of stress and more stable sleep cycles.

Regulating the temperature at night is essential for your dog to have a good night’s sleep. There is a higher insulation of the vital parts, which allows dogs to keep their heads warm while losing heat through their neck. Veterinary experts have learned that dogs regulate the body temperature better, as they can cool off better without any constricting gear on their neck on a hot summer night.

That with a routine practice of taking off their collar, it will become associated with time to go to bed and sleep, and will greatly reduce the period of stress and anxiety, experienced by the pets. That dogs are creatures of habit, and establishing a routine signal that is not very pleasant but effective improves their overall sleeping patterns.

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