Recently, I posted a question about my puppy biting it's foot. One of the answers said allergies are common in Pitbulls. My puppy itches at her collar quite often. She has a red spot on her neck that resembles a rash. It's only on one part of her neck, and not all the way around where the collar rests. I can't tell if it is just small cuts she may have caused while itching herself or an actual rash. Once the collar is off her, she typically does not itch there. She also likes to itch at her harness we use to walk her occasionally (which is 100% polyester).


neck rash

You can see she scratches at the collar a lot. Can dogs be allergic to these kinds of materials? The collar is like a fake leather with little metal studs. Her collar before was like a strap that clipped together which she also itched at. Is it possible she just dislikes collars?

She does not have fleas.

2 Answers 2


Yep! Collars can cause these kinds of irritations, most commonly I see it in dogs that go in the water a lot and get their collars wet. The moisture from the collar can cause yeasty irritations on the skin. Leather also tends to keep moisture in better than nylon.

I would remove the collar and wait for the area to heal, once healed try a different kind of material. If you notice that it's persistent with different materials I wouldn't make her wear one.

For walks I recommend a gentle leader or a body harness - both these options are great for dogs who pull a lot, it doesn't harm their esophagus/trachea and corrects their pulling behavior. For the body harness make sure it clips from the front, the ones that clip on the back won't correct pulling.

If your worried about her getting lost and needing identification ask your veterinarian to implant a microchip. These chips will have information on the pet that is lost and help return them to you, chips can be scanned at animal shelters and vet hospitals.

  • She doesn't go in water besides when we bathed her, in which case, we remove the collar first. For now, I'll leave her collar-less. Our harness is a body harness as well, but it clips in the back. I'm not too concerned with the pulling from her but maybe when she out grows this harness I will look for one with a clip in the front. How does the clip position matter though?
    – Timmy Jim
    Feb 6, 2017 at 19:45
  • 1
    When they pull while it's clipped in the front it turns their body to you, when it's in the back they just keep going forward. If she doesn't pull it won't matter where it's clipped, I always assume they pull :P Feb 6, 2017 at 19:48

I think it's safe to assume that most things that humans can be allergic to, a dog can be allergic to as well. There are people that have contact allergies with certain types of metal, like nickel is a common one. There are also people that are allergic to their shoes, for instance, possibly due to chemicals used to treat the materials in the shoe. Therefore, I believe it is possible that your dog is in fact allergic to the collar. I recommend trying collars made out of different materials and see if that helps. You might also try a harness type instead, at least temporarily, if you're concerned the collar might rub the raw area.

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