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What are Cat Collars?

Cat collars hold ID tags identifying the cat and owner and are most needed in outdoor cats that may roam too far from home.
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  • Written By: S. Mithra
  • Edited By: Lindsay D.
  • Last Modified Date: 10 November 2014
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Cat collars are helpful, safe, and decorative bands that clip around a cat's neck. Unlike dog collars, which are used for training and walking on a leash, cat collars are designed to hold identification tags in case your cat gets lost or injured. Of course, they are also fashion luxuries when sparkling with rhinestones or flanked by lush velvet.

Cat collars are usually equipped with a special breakaway mechanism that releases the entire collar should your cat get caught on a tree branch, fence spike, or any other protrusion. Since cats can climb, scurry, and crawl just about anywhere, it's essential that their collar has a safety release to keep them from accidentally strangling themselves. A proper fit means you can just fit two of your fingers between the collar and your cat's neck.

The most important function of standard cat collars is holding identification tags. These will tell people your cat's name, your name, address, phone number, and even your veterinarian's location, in case an injury should occur. Especially for outdoor cats, who often wander far from home and don't return for dinner, it's important for them to carry ID tags. Even indoor cats can escape from an open window and could be returned if they were wearing a collar.

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Owners concerned about their cats' returning with offerings of killed birds, mice, or other animals can buy cat collars with bells or alarms. These attachments alert other animals that a stealthy predator may be stalking them, so they have a chance to run away. This could be a simple silver bell or a motion-sensor sound system. Another useful feature you may find on cat collars are stripes or spots of reflective material, similar to a cyclist's clothing. At night, this makes your cat visible to an approaching car to prevent them from getting struck.

Funny and apropos designs can be woven into the nylon bands of cat collars as well. Some humorous favorites are fish bones, paw prints, leopard spots and tiger stripes, and skittering mice. More sophisticated pictures might be hearts, flowers, moon and stars, twining vines, or sunbursts. Leather collars can be dyed different colors or burned with other designs.

Extremely ornamental cat collars have been created by animal loving artists as customized fashion statements for your pet. These personalized collars may be dotted with pink rhinestones, studded with miniature silver spikes, or embroidered with a pet's name in metallic floss. These are as much a work of art as they are a functional collar. For the special cat that receives their food in a crystal dish and sleeps on a silk cushion, this would be the perfect gift.

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Discuss this Article

wander
Post 3

Choosing the perfect cat collar can be a lot of fun and it makes a great gift for your pet. There are many wonderful sites online that offer custom work. They will let you choose every aspect of your cat's collar.

If you really want to pamper your kitty, I suggest trying one of these services and having them make something unique.

manykitties2
Post 2

@zoid - You may want to try and find an embroidered cat collar. They do away with the need for a tag by stitching the information right onto a fabric collar. This may be a lot more comfortable for your pet.

zoid
Post 1

I really want my cat to wear a collar, but he seems to be allergic to the metal that holds the tag. He scratches and scratches at it until his fur is pulled out. Are there collars with tags that aren't metal?

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