Dogs need to recover peacefully and comfortably, especially after surgery. Wearing a pet cone will not only help their wounds heal, but it will also prevent them from reaching their stitched or wounded body part. Nowadays, the cone of shame has evolved into a more practical and durable collar that meets the needs of all dog breeds no matter their size or ailment. Choosing the right e-collar for your pooch will help him recover without the added discomfort of having an ill-fitted cone around his neck. The best dog cones are those that will make the path to recovery more pleasant and less irritating for your pooch. You can find these top ten cones in our curated list below.
The Best Dog Cone
The Comfy Cone from All Four Paws secured the top spot on our list thanks to its versatile features that provide both comfort and support for your pooch. This pet cone has a backing layer made of foam and padded nylon that can be easily cleaned using soap and water. The nylon makes it resistant to wear and tear and the velcro straps make removing the cone a piece of cake. The Comfy Cone is also reversible, making it the ideal collar for dogs with shoulder or upper back injuries. Choosing the right size for your pooch is made possible thanks to the three different sizing strips that accompany this product. These strips allow you to adjust the cone size for a secure fit. Removable plastic inserts are another great feature that will preserve its overall shape. This extra firm padding can also keep curious paws away from the face in case your pooch has had eye surgery. During dinner time, the Comfy Cone can be folded back so your dog can eat and drink. This soft e-collar comes with a reflective edge for nighttime safety and elastic loops located at the neck so you can fasten it with zero hassle.
Made from foam backed padded nylon
Reversible with velcro straps
Water resistant and easy to clean
Comes with plastic inserts for added structure
Tested and approved by veterinarians
Suitable for dogs, cats and small animals
- BrandAll Four Paws
- Weight7 ounces
The Kong Cloud e-collar is a dog cone alternative to regular plastic vet collars and is available in five different sizes. This inflatable e-collar is ideal for dogs who are recovering from surgery or any other wounds that require time and protection in order to heal. It is also washable and resistant to scratching and biting. Moreover, this donut shaped product will give your pooch a chance to enjoy his meal without blocking his vision and allows for a more relaxed bedtime when compared to plastic Elizabethan collars.
Inflatable collar for post-surgery use
Washable – scratch resistant
Available in 5 different sizes
Suitable for breeds similar in size to Labrador and Golden retriever
Shape and height provides comfort when eating and drinking
- Weight8 ounces
The Noah Recovery Collar from Alfie Pet is a soft dog cone that doubles as an adorable lion costume, adding a touch of humor to the overall healing process. This product was designed with your pooch’s comfort and safety in mind, which is why it has velcro patches so you can loosen or tighten the neck area depending on his size. The lightweight and sleep friendly fabric will let your pooch doze off in his bed without robbing him of his comfort.
Adjustable recovery collar with velcro closure
Lightweight and comfortable
Allows dog to eat, sleep and drink normally
Adorable lion design can be used as costume
Available in 6 different sizes
- Weight3.2 ounces
The inflatable dog cone collar from Sunpangpang is another protective collar that takes the comfort and safety of your pooch into consideration, with adjustable velcro straps and detachable components that allows you to wash the outside cover whenever it gets soiled. The interior is made of environmentally friendly PVC and the outer cover is made of plush fabric. Ideal for rashes and post-surgery wounds, the inflatable collar can be adjusted using a long strap that can be then moved to the back of your pooch’s neck to stop him from biting or scratching it open. This product can be either worn alone or it can be attached to his regular everyday collar.
Inflatable design with PVC interior
Detachable cover with zipper for easy washing
Will not affect your dog’s vision when eating, drinking or playing
Prevents your dog from licking or pawing at his stitches
Can be worn with pet collar
Available in 3 different sizes
- Weight6.4 ounces
The recovery collar from PetBaba is made of transparent plastic and is suitable for small dog breeds due to its equally small diameter. This Elizabethan collar comes with a soft padded neckline and can be adjusted using buttons instead of velcro straps. The transparent pet cone will prevent your pooch from bumping into objects and furniture and can come in handy during home grooming sessions. It can also stop your puppy from playing with his stiches after an operation.
Lightweight PVC recovery collar
Suitable for puppies and kittens
Convenient button closure
Padded inner liner for added comfort
- Weight1.6 ounces
The Vivifying pet cone was especially designed for small dogs such as miniature poodles and corgis. Therefore, it has a 3 inch diameter and a depth of around 4 inches. You can adjust the size of this collar using any of the three snaps that line the flannel rims. These double snaps make the collar more secure around your dog’s neck. The transparent section of the cone is made of premium PVC and the soft flannel at the rims allows your pooch to recover comfortably. In addition, the lightweight material will not weigh down your pooch or put any added strain on his neck and shoulders.
Small pet cone with adjustable snaps closure
Suitable for puppies and small dog breeds
Made of soft flannel and lightweight PVC
- Weight0.2 ounces
The Remedy + Recovery e-collar comes from Cardinal Pet Care, a Los Angeles based company that was founded in 1948. Their dog head cone is padded and has plastic snaps that can be used to modify its size. The edges were designed to prevent the collar from leaving marks on your walls on furniture. Moreover, the see-through cone can stop your pooch from licking off his prescribed medication while giving him freedom to move without bumping into furniture or walls. This product is also made of lightweight material and is available in five different sizes.
Safe lightweight e-collar
Padded no mark edges
Available in 5 different sizes
Plastic snaps allow for adjustable sizing
- BrandRemedy + Recovery
- Weight0.64 ounces
The adjustable recovery dog cone from Fancy Baby gives your pooch room to heal without the added discomfort of having a rigid structure around his head thanks to its soft yet protective design. The edges are far from stiff, allowing your dog to lay his head comfortably in any position. The rims surrounding the neck are padded and made of velvet. You can easily remove the cone using the simple yet functional buttons that you can unsnap in a matter of seconds. This snap closure will prevent your pooch from removing his collar. When it comes to hygiene, this product is washable and will not scratch your furniture. The transparent PVC material is also an added bonus and will not restrict your dog’s peripheral vision.
Transparent recovery cone
Adjustable button closure
Soft fabric edge for added comfort
Available in 3 different sizes
- BrandFancy baby
- Weight4.8 ounces
The ZenPet ProCone pet e-collar combines great form with function to create a sturdy yet comfortable dog lampshade for your recovering pooch. Both canvas and plastic were used in the design in order not to sacrifice visibility for the sake of a more durable product. Therefore, the collar itself has plastic windows that your pooch can use in order to find his way over to his bed or dog bowl. The fabric is resistant to scratching and biting, which can come in handy if your pooch is suffering from allergies or surgery wounds. The cone can also be attached to his regular everyday collar using elastic loops and its size can be easily adjusted using simple hook and loop straps. This vet recommended product is available in four different sizes.
Canvas cone design with plastic windows
Scratch and bite resistant
Can be attached to regular dog collar
Flexible and comfortable
- Weight1.6 ounces
The final pet cone on our list is the Onson Bark Collar and it is both inflatable and easy to adjust. You can use an air valve in order to inflate it, and once your pooch is fully healed, you can deflate it and fold it away for future use. The tightness level can be adjusted using velcro straps and nylon ropes that will help secure the cone in place. The outer cover is made of a soft and washable fabric and is accompanied by a zipper so you can easily remove it and clean it. Moreover, this inflatable e-collar was designed knowing that your pooch might try to paw or scratch at his wound and so the collar is scratch and bite resistant. This product is suitable for small, medium and large dog breeds.
Inflatable dog cone for rashes and post-surgery care
Washable outer cover
Scratch and bite resistant
Easy to inflate
Velcro straps for easy size adjustment
- Weight5.8 ounces
Best Dog Cone Buying Guide & FAQ
What to Look For in an E-Collar
Choosing the right cone shape for your pooch matters a great deal since his comfort and recovery are both at stake. If you choose the wrong shape, you might end up with an unhappy and uncomfortable dog who will do his utmost best to get rid of his e-collar and will probably end up hurting himself in the process. Some inflatable collars offer comfort on a silver platter thanks to their donut shape. They closely resemble travel pillows that provide neck support during car and airplane rides. This particular shape can be incredibly beneficial for dogs who are required to wear this collar for long periods of time. Choosing the right shape depends on the size of your pooch and the location of his wound, rash, or stiches. For example, short nosed dogs are better off using the inflatable collar while cone-shaped collars are more suited for dogs with longer necks.
Cones can be hard and made of sturdy plastic or they can be soft and flexible. Soft collars are most likely inflatable and those are ideal for upper body injuries. These collars often have a washable outer cover and are less intimidating to wear than the average Elizabethan collar. Hard plastic cones are more rigid but they offer the best protection for dogs who are bothered by their post-surgery stitches and want nothing more than to lick their wounds. Other collars are made of padded nylon that can be extremely comfortable and water resistant. Transparent cones are also available in case your pooch becomes anxious and increasingly agitated in his opaque collar.
Imagine having to rush your dog to the vet because he had somehow managed to undo his stitches. This scenario is not farfetched, especially if your pooch becomes restless and ends up breaking his protective collar. Nowadays, quality pet cones are available to prevent unnecessary and costly vet visits. These cones are made of durable PVC and are usually scratch and bite resistant. This combination will prevent dogs from slamming their heads into furniture in an effort to damage their cone. Padded edges also help keep your walls and chairs free from any markings.
Closure systems matter since they help keep the collar in place. Therefore, many pet cone manufacturers have done their best to provide different options such as buttons, strings and even velcro straps to facilitate this process. A comfortable fit is what matters most when choosing a dog cone collar for your pooch, which is why adjustable closure systems exist. Velcro straps or patches are one example of such a system and they offer an easy and efficient way to adjust these recovery collars. However, dirt and debris might stop them from working in the long run. Button fasteners are another great alternative to velcro and are more secure, especially if you have a flexible puppy or a smart pooch who can pull a Houdini and escape the confines of his cone.
Different Types of Dog Recovery Cones
Lampshade collars are one of the oldest models available on the market and they were designed to prevent dogs from chewing or licking the affected area no matter its location. These collars are usually made of plastic that is more rigid than flexible and they were designed to surround the dog’s face, blocking their peripheral vision in the process. This recovery cone is highly effective but it is also considered uncomfortable due to its height and unyielding structure. Dogs will find it hard to find their way around the house while wearing this particular collar. Their lack of vision can be dangerous since they become more prone to bumping into walls and furniture.
Flexible pet cones are made of more pliable material such as thin plastic or cardboard. Manufacturers will sometimes add a padded layer on top to make this collar more comfortable to wear, especially if the recuperating dog needs to spend more time in bed. This extra dose of comfort can make a world of difference to pets who need rest in order to heal. The extra padding will also protect both your walls and your pooch from harm. Wearing a flexible collar, however, may grant your dog enough wiggle room to reach his stitches, so they can be less effective when compared to the hard plastic recovery cones.
These e-collars are similar in shape to the neck pillows people usually use whenever they want to sleep in cars and airplanes. What sets them apart from other dog cones is that they are inflatable. This feature will prevent your pooch from moving his head back and therefore, his snout becomes unable to access most of his body. Each inflatable collar comes with a durable outer cover that is often easy to wash. One or more straps are used to secure this collar around the neck. This type of recovery cone is different from the other models due to its highly comfortable design and its donut shape that gives your pooch more freedom to eat and sleep. Moreover, wearing it will stop your pooch from walking into walls and being generally unhappy with his cone of shame.
When Is a Dog Cone Necessary?
- Post-Surgery Care
Post-surgery care is not just about giving your dog medicine and tending to his wounds, but it is also about shielding his stitches from harmful bacteria and infection. E-collars were designed to take care of this task for you, thus preventing your pooch from agitating or infecting his wound by accident. Vets recommend a dog neck brace especially after spaying or neutering.
- Skin Disorders
Skin disorders in dogs can be triggered by certain behavioral problems. These behavioral issues can cause dogs to spend hours chewing or licking a chosen spot on their legs. This usually leads to an infected wound that requires treatment in the shape of antibiotics or even surgery in order to remove the disease-ridden tissue. Elizabethan collars act as a physical barrier that prevents the dog from accessing this affected area.
Food allergies or environmental triggers such as mold and pollen can cause your dog to scratch his skin, resulting in inflamed hot spots. These hot spots will require both treatment and protection against further damage and this is where the e-collar can come in handy. Protective cones will help your pooch heal while you try and determine the culprit behind this allergy problem.
DIY Dog Cones
- Egg Crate Collar
Foam egg crates will put both your creativity and sewing skills to the test. All you need is a thick wool cloth, velcro straps, threads and scissors to get the job done. Tape measure your dog first and use those measurements to cut a corresponding piece of egg crate that matches his size. Cut a similar piece of wool cloth to cover the egg crate with and then use the needle to sew a few velcro strips onto your DIY collar. The strips can then be used to secure this creative collar around your dog’s neck.
- Towel Collar
Using everyday items from your home to make your very own version of a pet cone is a great idea and can come to the rescue during emergencies or if your pooch breaks his cone by accident. Something as simple as a bathroom towel can be used to create an instant protective cone to stop your pooch from playing with his stiches. All you need to do is fold up a clean towel, taking into account the size of your dog, before wrapping it around his neck. Secure it in place by tying a belt or a string around it. DIY towel collars are comfortable and are capable of keeping your dogs snout away from his back and hind legs.
- Petite Paper Collar
Experimenting with paper plates to create a small pet cone for your equally petite pooch is also a DIY project worth exploring. You can use leftover birthday plates to make this collar. All you need is a pair of scissors and a few strings. The first step involves cutting the center to create a hollow circle and punching a series of holes into the paper. You can then thread the string through the small holes before slipping the paper plate over your dog’s head. Secure the DIY cone by tying the strings to the regular everyday collar worn by your pooch. You can use the same technique to make a protective collar out of cardboard as well.
Tips For Helping Your Dog Wear an Elizabethan Collar
- The journey towards recovery can be ten times easier if you guide your dog through it. This means helping him navigate his way around the house and making sure that he does not get stuck in doorways or tumble down the staircase while wearing his cone.
- Removing sharp edged furniture out of the way and maintaining clutter free floors will keep your dog from hurting himself especially if he was forced to wear a vision inhibiting collar for two weeks or more.
- Praise your pooch whenever he listens to your commands while wearing his collar.
- Keep an eye on your dog during mealtimes and make sure that he is able to eat and drink freely with this collar on. If he is having trouble reaching his food, then you can temporarily remove the collar. Once your pooch finishes his meal, you can refasten the collar around his neck.
Best Dog Cone FAQ:
Q: Can my dog eat and drink with a cone on?
A: Eating and drinking should not be a problem as long as you provide your pooch with the right sized collar and dishes during his recovery period. Replacing his deep sided dishes with shallow bowls that are smaller than his cone will help him drink and eat with ease. You can also try elevating the dishes a few inches off the floor and keeping them away from the wall.
Q: How do I select the correct cone size?
A: Selecting the correct cone size for your dog is done by measuring from the base of his neck where his collar sits comfortably, to the tip of his nose. The dog’s nose must be inside the cone in order for it to be protective. You will also need to measure him around the neck to determine the circumference. You can follow the manufacturer’s guide for measurements.
Q: How long does my dog need to wear a cone after being spayed or neutered?
A: Dogs typically need around two weeks to heal from this operation. Consulting your vet before removing the collar is recommended.
Q: Can I trim my dog’s cone?
A: Yes. Trimming is possible but make sure you do not go overboard with the scissors. Over trimming can result in a shortened collar with zero protective features.
Our Top Pick
All Four Paws have been in the business of providing recovery and health aids for pets since 1997 and it shows in their original and versatile Comfy Cone. Design-wise, the cone is made of foam backed and padded nylon that is flexible enough to allow you pooch to pass through doorways with ease. The durable fabric is water resistant and repellant with elastic loops at the neck to thread slim leashes or gauze strips through. The edges of the cone reflect the light and are easy to fold back so they do not get in the way during mealtimes. The cone itself is reversible and can be worn around the chest and shoulders. All of the above features make it the number one cone for pet owners who want nothing more than to watch their dogs recover from their operation or injury quickly and comfortably.