Dogs react differently when it comes to the moment where their collars are taken off. Some get very excited, while others tend to freak out. But what caused these responses, and how could one cause have different outcomes associated with it?
So, why do dogs get excited when their collars get taken off?
There are many reasons why a dog could get excited the moment their collar gets taken off. It could be because of positive association, or because the collar was too tight on them, or your dog could be just reflecting and mimicking your own excitement.
To learn more about why your dog gets excited when you take their collars off, or why get anxious and freak out, then continue reading this blog post.
Why do dogs get excited when their collars get taken off
The reasons why your dog gets excited when you take their collar can be divided into three different categories. These three categories are:
- Due to positive association
- Because the collar is too tight
- Because they are mimicking your excitement
Due to positive association
When you take off your dog’s collar so they can run freely in their favorite park, your dog links these acts together and begin viewing your act of taking off their collar with freedom.
Linking the act of you taking their collar off with an activity that they enjoy doing is considered to be what is known as positive association.
That is why they get so excited when you take their collar off. They have already connected the dots, and they understand that this act is often followed by doing whatever activity they enjoy.
Because the collar is too tight
If your dog’s collar is too tight on them, they are going to be very excited when you take it off.
That is why you should always look for the reason why your dog is displaying strong emotions when things that should not evoke such prominent responses occur even if their response is a positive one.
I will talk about why your dog’s collar should not be too tight or too loose later on in this post, but if you are interested in learning how to measure your dog’s collar precisely and how to get them a collar that fits them perfectly, then click here.
Because they are mimicking your excitement
Dogs often reflect your emotions, that is why it is usually recommended that you don’t act as if you are worried or scared when you are with them at the Vet because it is going to make them feel afraid as well.
So if you are always praising your dog and speaking in a very happy/ exciting tone, then this could be the reason why your dog gets excited when you take off their collar.
Why do dogs get anxious when their collars get taken off
There are many reasons why your dog might get anxious when you take their collar off. Three of these reasons are:
- Due to negative association
- Because they are injured
- Because they hate having their neck touched
Due to negative association
We have talked about positive association earlier in this post, but what is negative association?
An example of a negative association is when your dog connects your actions of taking off their collars with an activity that they dislike doing or experiencing that takes place after you take their collar off.
Let us say you rarely take off your dog’s collar and that you mostly do it before you bath them; let us also assume that your dog hates bathing.
Your dog has now associated something that they hate ( bathing) with your act of taking off their collar. This could be one of the reasons why your dog gets anxious and starts acting weird when you take their collar off.
If that is the case, you should try switching this negative association with a positive association by giving them treats after you take your dog’s collar off.
Because they are injured
If your dog has a scratch on their neck or any other form of injury on their neck, then the act of taking their collars off could be painful for them.
A collar that is too tight could injure your dog as well, so you should try to figure out what is the cause of these scratches and injuries that are on your dog’s neck. Of course, take your dog to the Vet so they could get their injuries treated.
If you can’t find any scratches or injuries on them and you are sure that your dog’s collar fits them perfectly, then stop putting their collar on for a few days and try just to touch their necks.
If they still get angry when you do that, then they are probably getting anxious whenever you touch their neck.
Because they hate having their neck touched
The reason why your dog gets anxious when you take off their collar might have nothing to do with the collar itself; it is just because they hate having their necks touched.
This intolerance to such physical contact could either be due to their personality or because they weren’t trained to socialize with others when they were puppies.
There are training techniques that you can use to get your dog used to get touched, but we can discuss that topic in another post.
How tight should your dog’s collar be?
Your dog’s collar should not be too tight or too loose; it should fit them perfectly.
If it does not fit them properly, your dog will end up getting hurt. Here are the reasons why.
Your dog’s collar should not be too tight
If your dog’s collar is too tight, then it is going irritate your dog’s neck. It could also be the reason why they are losing a lot of hair, which causes your dog’s neck to be more prone to getting infected.
Also, tight collars can cut into your four-legged best friend’s neck.
Your dog’s collar should not be too loose
Some people are scared of hurting their dogs, so they leave their collars to be too loose. Though I see where they are coming from, making your dog’s collar too loose puts them in danger nevertheless.
Let us say that you are going to take your pooch on a walk and you attach their leash to the loose collar that is around their neck. As you walk on the side of the street, and a squirrel or a cat crosses you. In most cases, your dog will become very excited, and they will chase that creature they just saw.
If you try to pull the leash to stop them, your pooch’s head will slip out of the collar.
If the small creature that your dog is chasing crosses the street, your dog will go after them and might get hit by a car and get injured. That is why it is very important to ensure that your dog’s collar fits them properly.
Your dog’s collar should fit them perfectly
Now that you know how important it is to get your dog a collar that fits them perfectly, make sure that you measure your dog’s neck accurately with a measuring tape.
A collar that fits your dog’s neck perfectly should be snug yet safe. You can use the two-finger rule to make sure that the collar fits them perfectly. All you have to do is put the collar on and try to insert two of your fingers between the collar and your dog’s neck.
If you can do that and you can’t insert one more finger, then congratulations on getting your dog a collar the fits them perfectly.
How to train your pooch to walk without a leash?
- First, train your dog to walk right next to you with a leash.
- Next, teach them basic commands such as, “Stay!, “Sit!” and “Come!”.
- Then, train them to respond to these commands in new secured places.
- After that, try to maintain control over your pooch by implementing” Double Control” tactics.
- Finally, remember always to practice positive reinforcement and to reward your dog for even the smallest achievements.
To learn about this topic in more details, then make sure you read my How to Train A Dog to Walk without A Leash (Top 5 Tips)blog post.
How tight should your dog’s collar be?
Your dog’s collar should not be too tight or too loose; it should fit them perfectly. If it does not fit them properly, they will end up getting hurt. To ensure that your dog’s collar is not too tight, you’ll have to use the two-finger rule.
But the answer is more complicated than that, so make sure you read myHow Tight Should A Dog Collar Be blog post.
That’s it for today’s post. You should now know why your dog gets excited when you take their collar off.
You should also be able to identify why your dog acts so strangely when you take their collar off and have an idea about what you need to do if their response is coming from a place of fear or anxiousness.