Cat owners are being urged by the RSPCA to stop buying novelty collars for their cat after a rise in the number of lethal injuries.
The RSPCA have reported that there is a trend to buy more unusual looking collars for their cats such as those with rhinestones et cetera. Some of these collars are unsafe. This trend is threatening the safety of domestic cats. Knowledgeable and concerned cat caretakers are aware of the dangers of unsafe collars which are those that are closed with a buckle as opposed to a safely faster that snaps and releases when put under pressure. However, less experienced caretakers/guardians are less aware of this danger; hence this post to flag it up again.
When a collar has a buckle if the cat tries to release himself from the collar they can end up forcing the collar into their neck, digging into the flesh and causing serious injury. Also unsafe collars can act a nose and the cat can be hanged under certain unfortunate and unusual circumstances – these collars can kill. Apparently, the trend for flashy unsafe collars has resulted in the RSPCA seeing more cats with serious injuries caused by collars.
“Many owners may not be aware of the dangers involved, so we asked them to seek advice and do their research before putting a collar on their much loved pet. Our advice is to only use collars which snap open without human help. Buckles and elasticated collars can be very dangerous if cats get themselves stuck.” (RSPCA spokeswoman)
Alice Porter who is a cat behaviour and welfare expert at the RSPCA told The Daily Telegraph that there is no legal requirement for cats to wear collars. For dogs it is different.
It seems that some cat owners believe that their cat needs a collar in order to allow them to identify their cat and provide a telephone number if they are lost. Some owners simply like to dress up their cat with a flashy accessory. Some other cat owners like to place a bell on a collar to protect birds from predation. The fact of the matter is that cats are better off without collars and the best way to identify a cat is through micro-chipping despite the very slight health risk involved.
Photo credit: Malingering on Flickr.