It’s an undeniable fact: no matter how sweet your dog’s kisses are, when he starts licking at a boo-boo, it can lead to infection, slow healing, and even result in ripped sutures. Instead of trusting him not to lick, take away the temptation with a cone. Sometimes called the “cone of shame,” there’s really nothing shameful about it.
Our Whiskey visited a garden supply store wearing his cone and got so much attention from people feeling sorry for the poor puppy, it had to have made him feel better (he loves socializing to begin with).
Take a look at these options for cones and cone alternatives. Pick one, adjust it for a snug but comfy fit, and offer treats to make up for the inconvenience. The key is not only to find what works for your dog, but to keep it on until he really doesn’t need it anymore. If you remove it while he’s eating a meal, be sure to stay close by and put it back on the moment he finishes. One or two licks and you and the pooch may end up back at the vet’s office.
This is the standard cone, made better. It has padding around the edges (both for pup’s neck comfort and to prevent your legs from getting scratch, as he bangs into you while walking around wearing it) and it has easy to use snaps. No strings, no puzzle-like threading of hard plastic tabs. Just an easy to use cone, affordably priced. We also like that it’s clear so your dog can see through it.
KONG Cloud E-Collar
This inflatable donut-style collar from KONG is great…if your dog won’t reach around it and lick. If her boo-boo is on an extremity, it probably won’t be enough to keep her from reaching. We tried this when one of our dog’s had a ripped claw on his back foot. He was able to bring the foot up to his mouth, around the collar. But for comfort, this style can’t be beat.
All Four Paws Comfy Cone
For a very comfy cone, this one scores high. It’s soft and flexible and won’t interfere with your dog as he sleeps in any position. Made of fabric and foam, it’s like a cushiony cloud surrounding her head. The solid black interior gives your dog a little “quiet space” while wearing the cone, which can be relaxing for a stressed dog. It does require you to thread your dog’s collar through the loops to keep it securely on (making sure your dog’s collar fits just right is an important first step, or the cone and the collar can be removed by your dog).
Suitical Recovery Suit
If your dog’s boo-boo site is on his trunk and not on his legs, the Suitical is an excellent alternative to a cone. This body suit covers a dog’s body while still allowing the injury/surgical site to receive the benefit of air circulation (so important in the healing process). Even though the outside is a colorful print, the inside is light colored, so you can easily see if the wound is leaking. It does require you to open up the back end when you go for a walk, so that your dog can relieve him/herself. But the included hold-up strap makes this easier to do.
BooBoo Loon Protective Pet Collar
Another type of inflatable, the BooBoo Loon is probably super comfy and easy for dogs to wear. It looks like a swimming device, and sits comfortably low on the dog’s neck. However, this may not be enough to keep your dog from licking an injury on the tips of his extremities. If the injury is appropriate for the use of this cone, we bet your dog will not mind wearing this one at all.