Cat won’t tolerate collar

Maruna

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Hi everyone,
I have a 10 month kitten who is relatively small in size. She is just under 3kg despite being almost fully grown and a good weight for her size.
She goes outdoors but doesn’t venture far however I would like her to wear a collar so others are aware she has a home.
We purchased a black velvet collar for her and waited till she was 6 months to fit it on her as it was way too loose before then, even at it tightest. She didn’t enjoy wearing it and would scratch at it with her back paws and while grooming she managed to get it stuck in her jaw which was quite a scare. I removed the bell early on as it bothered her.
We have attempted to put it on her 5 times since then but she has barely lasted a day before it ends up in her jaw again and I’m scared one day her lower canine is gonna fly off too! I assumed it may have been slightly too loose even at 6-7 months.
Surely the tightest fit seems like a good size for her now at almost a year old but I think she ends up loosening it when kicking it with her back paws and then attempts to get out of it but it gets stuck in her mouth.
Please help!!
 

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FeebysOwner

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Hi. You could try a harness instead. Either way, make sure they are 'break away' to ensure she doesn't get caught on something and choke herself or become prey for another animal because she can't run away.

Is there any particular reason you think she needs to go outside? The other thing to consider is buying/building a catio/cat enclosure so that she could go outside but be confined to a particular area and wouldn't then need a collar or harness.
 

Kieka

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First, especially with outdoor access cats, please ensure the collar is a breakaway or quick release type. I can't tell from the photo and you don't mention it but manufacturers do make unsafe cat collars. Of the collar can't break or release if your cat gets snagged on something it's very dangerous. I have witnessed what can happen and it simply isn't worth the danger.

That said, assuming the collar is safe, you can try putting it on as tight as possible (fit a finger or two under it) so that it is more challenging for your cat to get it stuck on their jaw is the first step. The second is try some different collar types, it could be the texture or fit is wrong and your cat needs something different. My boy tolerated Beastie Bands better then traditional collars. But there are different weights and width options out there and it can make a difference.

Assuming you can find one your cat tolerates and you have it fit properly, I'd keep a spare on hand. My cats seemed to lose their collars from time to time, having a backup means they don't go long periods without. My household has three cats and only one wears a collar regularly. He actually seems to be upset when he doesn't have a collar on; it has a dangle tag and it clicks against bowls when he is eating he will literally not eat without the collar on. My girl is scared of collars in general, any weight and she freaks out. The Beastie Bands are really light and she was fine with them for a while. I stopped her collar when she lost one and I couldn't get a new one on her. My boy thinks collars are toys. He will take any off within a day sometimes bringing them home. A few times he's gotten a paw stuck trying to get it off and will hobble three legged to me to help him out (he's very calm until he sees me then he starts yelling).
 

Norachan

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Even the breakaway collars aren't 100% safe. I've had cats get their back claws stuck in them while scratching and the collar didn't break, even though the cat was struggling.

I think either getting her used to a harness and walking her outside or making her a catio would be a much safer idea. A collar will let people know she has a home, but it won't protect her from cars, dogs or other animals. I know people in some countries still allow cats to roam outside, but opinions are shifting on how wise this is.

She'll live much longer and be much safer if you restrict her outdoor access.

:heartshape:
 

Caspers Human

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When I was a kid, I was taught that a dog's collar should be loose enough that you can slip two fingers under the collar without resistance. If it's too loose, it can either slip off or get hung up on something. If it's too tight, it can choke the dog.

For a cat, I suppose one finger's worth of slack should be good enough. Right?

If your cat is getting her collar stuck in her mouth, it's too loose.

Yes, break-away collars are definitely the way to go.
 

di and bob

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It takes quite a while before cats get used to a collar, at LEAST a week. They really fight it at first. One finger slipped under is loose enough, any looser and they will get their foot/jaw in it. You can even make it a little tighter now until they are used to it and then loosen it once they wear it alright. If at all possible, keep your cat inside. I have a LOT of little graves with my outside cats......
 

vince

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I have one that thinks collars are toys. She takes off her "brothers' " collars and I catch her playing with them. She also gets hers around her jaw sometimes and takes it off to play with it. Finally, I just left hers off. They're all chipped and are indoor cats. Besides, they all seem terrified if they accidentally step out on the porch. I don't think they'd disappear if they somehow got outside.
 
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