Product Review: Inflatable E-Collars

Let me start this entry with an apology:  My business, landscape maintenance, where my only employees are me, myself and I, usually ramps up to insanity during the growth season out here on the desert.  This year, a rather brutal winter where we had east coast temperatures for a week, forcing dormancy in plants people usually refuse to allow to rest, has turned what is usually ‘normal’ growth into exponentially explosive growth, very early in the season.  Then add 13 dogs at The Ranch.

What we are left with is one pretty exhausted, aging, landscape maintenance working, Crazy Dog Lady.  It isn’t that there are no stories to tell, it’s that my mind is having great difficulties keeping up with them all AND being able to write them down.  These rapid fire Product Reviews of late have certainly helped in giving me material to write without having to use much brain power.

I do promise that the focus of this blog, the stories of The Dogs of Run A Muck Ranch will be back, in their whimsical entireties, very soon as I acclimate to the high gear of summer day job work.

On to our product review:

“It’s all fun and games until someone

ends up in a cone.”


I have 2 words to say about inflatable e-collars:  GET ONE!

It’s never a case of ‘if’ you will ever find yourself in need of an e-collar, it is just a case of ‘when’.    Spay/neuter surgery, injury, allergies, you name it.  It is a rare dog indeed that goes through life without ever having to be subject to The Cone.

Happy Hector back when he was new to The Ranch, just after his Cherry Eye surgery.
Happy Hector back when he was new to The Ranch, just after his Cherry Eye surgery.

Oh the misery experienced by the dog subjected to The Cone!  He can’t move without bumping into something.  He can only see to the front, what limited side vision he has is determined by how far he can turn his head.  He has to face 90 degrees down to eat or drink.   And there is no way the poor kid can get comfortable.

Show of paws out there:  How many of your kids acted as if The Cone would be their cause of death?  In our home, only Happy Hector, who can’t be made un happy under any circumstances, has ever made it through the ordeal without feeling the need to write out his last will and testament.  Additionally, few and far in between is the human who doesn’t feel as bad or worse just having to look at their fur kid during the time of The Cone.

Vito’s recent emergency surgery had us once again watching the ‘death throws’ of one of our kids, once The Cone was installed.

But then we heard about a magical substitute that we decided to try:  The inflatable e-collar.

The brand available at our local pet store is Century, but I would imagine there are many others.

The difference in Vito’s comfort level, and therefore ours, was immediate and profound.  Vito was able to see in all directions, except for behind his shoulders.  He did not bump into anything.  He could eat and drink in natural postures.  As an added bonus, when he laid down, he had a pretty sweet portable pillow that he seemed quite pleased with.  The ONLY thing Vito could not do, was lay on his back – his preferred sleep position.  Still, he was able to sleep comfortably on his side.


The first collar we bought, the extra small (shh! we don’t tell Vito!), fit his neck, but he was able to get around it to dig at his sutures.  So we exchanged it for the next size up, the small (again, don’t tell Vito, we told him he had extra-large).  Though the collar as a whole was a little loose, Vito couldn’t get it off, and it prevented him from getting at his incision.

We were concerned about the collar’s appearance, and what the other kids, especially the stupid ones – and by stupid ones, I mean Slugger, Morty and their protégé Marcy, would due to it and Vito.  We had visions of the Idiots dragging Vito around the house by the collar.  However, even with a ridiculous looking clown collar on, Vito could still issue a pretty fierce threat, and was able to keep himself,  in the collar, from being mistaken for a toy.   I would say, however,  if you have a more submissive dog in a home with Idiots, you might want to keep an eye on everyone lest the bearer of the collar become the squeaker for a pretty cool interactive toy.


As far as the claim of “Bite Resistant” on the package…  not so much.  When the collar was removed to give Vito a chance to prove he would leave his incision alone, someone made short order of it in a the blink of an eye.  No one is claiming responsibility, but we have our suspicions.   My advice if you live with heathens:  Never leave the collar unattended when not attached to the patient.

We have a collection of e-collars of various sizes in a cupboard that are to be relegated to the dumpster.  Well, I should probably see if any rescues want them first….  As finances permit, we will be purchasing all sizes of the inflatable ones.  As I said, it’s never a case of ‘if’ but ‘when’ someone ends up in a cone, and we are currently 12, possibly 13 times more likely than anyone else to need one at any time.  It’s just a good idea to be ready ahead time.

Note the pillow effect.
Note the pillow effect.

6 thoughts on “Product Review: Inflatable E-Collars

  1. Can’t say I have seen them, but since I am currently in North Adelaide I will have a look if I get time to get into the city. Chienna had a cone and we had to take if off to allow her to feed. I agree it’s not the most comfortable of things for the poor dog, but at the time, there was no other option

    1. It’s like the evolution of braces. First it was an ‘apparatus’ around the head, then railroad tracks in the mouth, now they have that new Invisalign that I hear you don’t even know it’s there. Like I said, we had a plethora of the old school e-collars at the ready for when the next emergency hit. Even with Vito, we thought that was the only option, until someone told me different.

  2. Wow, you are one busy lady and I’m not surprised you are battling to get the brain working on blog stuff. Good luck with everything and hope it calms down to a mild panic soon.
    Those inflatable collars look great. I haven’t seen them here in South Africa but, then again, maybe it’s just because I haven’t looked. I’ll keep my eyes open, though.

  3. Just put a link of this to someone on Facebook. One of her dogs will most likely need an e-collar very soon, he’s already partially blind so I can’t imagine what a traditional collar would do to him

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