As a responsible cat owner, you’ve got your new kitten food and water bowls, adequate food, a comfortable cat bed, a litter box, scratching posts and of course toys to keep it entertained. But what about a kitten collar?
It’s common to see dogs wearing a collar for both identification and leash purposes, but for cats, it appears to be different. Not only are cats more panicky when it comes to things around their necks, but a lot of cat owners assume their cat doesn’t need a collar because most of the time it stays inside. Understanding the benefits of cat collars and how to choose the best one can actually help keep your cat safe from harm.
Why Should Your Kitten Wear a Collar?
Should I give my kitten a collar? This is a common question among cat owners. Well, the main reason cats should wear collars is to help identify them if they somehow get away from home. A kitten collar that comes with an ID tag is the fastest and easiest way for a stranger to identify your feline and contact you so you can bring it home safely.
For cats that roam both inside and outside, collars are practically a necessity as they can easily wander out of the back yard or get lost. But cats who stay inside almost all the time can also benefit from a collar. There is always the possibility of your cat getting out the door and wandering away from home. If your cat isn’t wearing a collar with an ID tag, it could be very hard to find it.
Nowadays, you can find a range of kitten collar models with reflective or glow-in-the-dark surfaces. These collars can be useful for an outdoor cat so it can be seen at nighttime as well as to make the cat safer if it is near roads – drivers will be more likely to see them.
The Concern About Collars
Although cat collars are certainly beneficial, they also present potential dangers. Many cat owners decide not to put a collar on their cats because they believe it’s easy for collars to get stuck on something and be strangled. This explains why veterinarians suggest using quick-release or breakaway collars. These collars are ideal for cats, particularly the ones that go outside and like to climb things.
Quick-release and breakaway collars can quick release in case the collar gets stuck on something, such as a tree branch. They are designed in a way that when pressure is put on the collar, it can snap sway, so your cat can be freed. This prevents that cat from choking if the collar gets snagged and won’t come loose. It’s also important to make sure the collar isn’t too tight. Tight collars, as well as those made of low-quality, non-breathable and thick materials, can dig into the skin of the cat, causing pain. Over time, this can even lead to skin infections.
How to Choose a Collar for Your New Kitten or Cat?
There are many options of collars for kittens and cats on the market to choose from. It’s your responsibility to choose one that is the most comfortable and safe for your feline friend to wear on a daily basis.
Besides finding a collar with a quick-release system, you must also pay attention to the collar’s size. Wondering what size collar for a kitten? It shouldn’t be loose that your cat can easily slip out of it but you should be able to slip two fingers in between the collar and your cat’s neck at all the times. This will ensure the collar is loose fitting enough to be comfortable.
Make sure to constantly check the size and fit of the collar as your cat grows. This way your cat won’t end up being uncomfortably trapped in a collar that is too tight. To ensure a proper fit, you’ll probably need to buy multiple new collars or adjust them over the course of your cat’s life.
Every time you get your cat a new collar, make sure you test it at home by putting it on your cat and then supervising it. Never put a new collar on your cat and leave it alone. You want to make sure it cannot manipulate the collar up toward its jaw or escape it.
How to Get a Kitten Used to a Collar?
As a rule of thumb, the sooner you introduce a collar and an ID tag to your kitten, the easier it will be. Like kids, kittens are sponges creating a picture of the world around them. If they’re introduced to collars and tags early on, they will accept it as a normal thing and move on. The earlier the better, but you will need to wait until your kitten is heavy enough to break the safety buckle of the collar that you’ve chosen. So, pay attention to your kitten’s weight before putting a collar on it.