Collar Related Stories

This is the section of our website where we will share related stories. Some are informational in nature and others are actual collar stories shared by families who, unfortunately, have experience on this subject. Some have happy endings. Some do not. Collar can and do kill. This danger is real.

Play Biting Caught on Camera

This video shows how quickly play can turn tragic. Scarlet and Akiro are lucky their dad was home to help.

Their full story is below.

Scarlet & Akiro’s Collar Accident Story

Scarlet & Akiro’s video has no sound. This is their story as told by their mom, Carolyn.


I left to go shopping, I asked Lee if he wanted to come. He said he was going to say and work in the office downstairs. Our dogs, 1-year-old Scarlet the brown Belgian Malinois and Akiro our 2-year-old black and white Akita, were playing.

In the beginning of the video you see them already playing together. Akiro's jaw then gets sucks in the small loop of Scarlet's martingale collar and his canine tooth gets stuck around the metal leash hook of Scarlet's collar. You can tell when it happens by Scarlet's tail (her tail is up and wagging when playing then goes between her legs). Lee heard an unusual sound coming from the dogs. When he gets upstairs he hears Scarlet gasping for air and sees Akiro is panicked trying to get his jaw out of the collar choking Scarlet in the process. You can see her hanging upside down from her collar.  

Lee jumps in working to unhook the collar from Akiro's jaw. He gets them unhooked and collapses in exhaustion from everything that happened. I came home then and checked on Scarlet as he checked on Akiro.

I'm just grateful that Lee decided to stay home, because if we had both left to go to the store, we would have come home to a dead dog. 

It shows how quickly something like this can happen. We thought martingale collars were safe because they are mostly nylon, never thinking our dogs jaw would get caught in it while playing. Our dogs play naked now.  



The story of ryder

From our friends at Labradorablebffs


In Loving Memory of Ryder Jackson ❤ 💔

I've struggled since October 24th, 2018 writing this post. I've gone back and forth about writing it.

First let me start by saying I'm absolutely devastated, and shattered by the loss of my beautiful chocolate Ryder, and in the same breath thankful, that Skyrah survived. It's a strange place to be - heartbroken/shattered, and thankful at the same time.


On Wednesday, October 24th, I walked into the house, and walked into a horrific scene. Skyrah, and Ryder some how got tangled. Skyrah had her jaw entangled in Ryder's collar. I screamed, dropped everything, and ran to the dining room. I quickly unbuckled their collars, shook Ryder, "wake up, wake up", and realized he was gone. I quickly grabbed Skyrah and we both went outside on the back porch. I kept petting her, holding her close repeating "it's not your fault", while screaming in horror as to what I found.

In that moment, out of nowhere my friend appeared. I didn't recognize him at first because I was in such a fog, and literally losing my mind. He asked if I needed help, and I thought "what are you doing here?" He wasn't supposed to be here. He told me he was going left for a haircut, and something said go right - to my house. He was at my house within 5 minutes of me walking into this horrific moment. He was such a wonderful help. He helped me call my mom, and Leslie. I am forever grateful for my tribe that helped me through that horrific moment. I could not have gotten through the past week and half without the support of several people. Dr. Womack was so kind in helping Skyrah and getting her checked out. Mark from the Crematorium was so kind. Our church pastor, my team from school, and the prayers help. My heart will be broken for sometime. I'm hoping that sharing his story, will help others, and help heal my heart even just a little.

Ryder lost his life due to "collar strangulation". Approximately 30,000 dogs die every year. There are NO warning labels on collars, companies sell them as "break away or quick release", and no one talks about it. But the quick release is with human help....I hope to change this!

PLEASE REMOVE YOUR DOGS COLLARS - ANY COLLAR - when they are unsupervised for any amount of time. I knew to never leave a dog in a kennel with a collar on - that's dangerous, and they can get hung up on them. Never in a million years, did I think what I walked into could/would happen.

I have immense guilt, and feel as though I failed as a pet parent to keep my sweet boy safe 😕 I'm struggling to get through each day. Skyrah is a lifesaver through all of this tragedy. I learned a horrible lesson in the most horrible of ways.

I cannot, not let people know the dangers of dog collars. Ryder's life will be remembered, and will advocate for the rest of my days many changes I would like to see take place in the pet industry. I'm working on a series of things currently.

There is only ONE dog safe collar on the market "Keep Safe" dog collars, and I am now an ambassador for them. When there is tension of any kind on the collar, they break way like a cat collar. The collar Ryder was wearing was.... I was under the impression it was safe. It is NOT safe. I've reached out to the company numerous times, with zero an effort to educate them, and have some changes take place to make it safer for all dogs.

Ryder was an amazing spirit, and my soul dog. He was a man of comfort, loved everyone he met, and everyone loved him. His favorite store was a local pet boutique, and putting his paws up on the counter for treats. He would wake me in the morning, and never let me oversleep when the alarm went off. He loved spaghetti, cooked carrots, green beans, and sitting on the patio furniture watching the beautiful day. He took every moment in <3 He was an old soul <3 He was present in every aspect of my life. He was my trained service dog. He was loved beyond measure, and every part of my heart is shattered. I miss him with every single breath I take.

I also acknowledge how incredibly terrifying this must have been for both of my dogs, and how it has affected Skyrah too. She sustained some injuries to her jaw, jowels, and under her mouth. She's healing, and physically will be fine in the near future. She's lucky to be alive.

PLEASE Tell your dog owner friends, to remove their collars from their dogs when they are home alone. The collars (unless they are a true breakaway collar) can get hung up on anything. The carpet, a knob, furniture, walking by a kennel, you name was a total freak should have never happened. I'm heartbroken beyond any loss we have sustained thus far....and it's going to take a long time for me to move forward from this. I'm thankful for every dog hair he shed, every moment he was a part of our lives, and the blessings he brought to my life (and my families everyday).

Fly high angel boy. I love you so much ❤ 💔💔💔

Ryder WILL be remembered. I'm in the process of creating a page for him, and Skyrah, a logo, a business plan, a mission, and changing labeling laws for dog collars...and creating a dog safe collar in his name. I have no idea how to do some of this, but I WILL figure it out. His life will be remembered.

All of our dogs are microchipped for identification, and the chips are updated as things change. I recommend this for all pets (My horse was also microchipped). The Humane Society's require collars/tags on dogs for identification. Goal is to have them provide a warning label on the dangers of collars, (and) tags.

NEVER Kennel/crate your dog with a collar on, remove during play, and when left home alone unattended. There are to many dangers. If a collar is necessary, we recommend a Breakaway collar that releases when tension is applied.


The Story of Ruby

From our friends at Staffie Central UK

This is difficult to write but we need to let you know.

Our dearest Ruby, who we've had the pleasure of knowing these past 5 months, is sadly no longer with us. We will not share the horrible details but she unfortunately passed away yesterday through a horrific accident.

Major is heartbroken and deeply depressed, as are we all. We are really trying to come to terms with dealing with this tragedy yet being without her is killing us. Many of you know the pain of losing a precious companion and will understand what we are dealing with.

Ruby was 2 years old. She had a hard start to life but a very happy 5 months with us. She was a feisty little beauty who had a mind of her own yet was the most loving and comforting little girl we've ever met. Her cuddles were infectious and her nibble kisses were to die for. The pitter patter of her little paws on the wooden flooring as we walked into the house, the little nigs she had at Major because she wanted all the love. The fact that as she was the first face you'd see in the morning and the last you you'd see at night kills us inside.

She will be eternally missed and now rests in peace in our garden where we will shall lay a plaque in memory of her.


We were in touch with Ruby's family and they shared with us that Ruby lost her life at home in a collar accident. Major’s tooth got caught in Ruby’s collar, the dogs struggled and Ruby strangled to death. When they returned home, what they found was described has horrendous. Ruby was gone, the victim of a collar accident. Ruby's family has started a campaign in the UK to bring awareness to this danger. #collarsOFF

Thank you for sharing your story. RIP Ruby.


The Story of Cal-e

From our friends at Cale's Story



From Cal-e's mom: On January 8th I left for work a little rushed as I was running late for a meeting, but I had taken a few moments that morning to snuggle the dogs and especially Cal-e who hovered over me and nuzzled her head into my chest. I put my three dogs (Sheriff, Cal-e, and Booker) and a foster dog (Chance) in the dog room. It's a room that extends from the front of the house to the back and includes a window to look out the front and plenty of room to stretch their legs during the day.

I arrived home about 5:40 p.m. that night and I sat in the driveway waiting for the garage door to open. Normally the dogs run to the window, bounce off, and greet me at the door into the garage. That night no one came. I knew something was wrong and worried that they had got into the house.

As I got out of the car, I could hear a dog screaming. I rushed to open the door. I could see Sheriff and Chance (in the crate) and they were o.k. Cal-e and Booker were laying behind the door and Booker was struggling. What happened from there is a blur. They were connected and Booker's mouth was under Cal-e's collar. (THEY HAD BEEN PLAYING DURING THE DAY AND BOOKER'S MOUTH WAS CAUGHT UNDER HER COLLAR). I worked to disconnect Cal-e's collar and at one point stood up to get scissors from the kitchen, but couldn't manage to unlock the door with my keys.

I got back down to get Cal-e's collar unhooked and then I unhooked Booker's collar. This is when I realized Cal-e wasn't alive. She had been strangled. I stood up screaming and turned back to do CPR. I got back down on the floor to realize that my dog daughter was cold, stiff, and long gone. She was laying in a pool of blood and urine. The floor was scratched up where she struggled for her life.

I was alone with four dogs and no help. I worked to get the door open with my keys. I called the vet, then a rescue friend, and then the vet and I got a person this time. I begged them to stay open. I wrapped and loaded up Cal-e. Sheriff loaded himself. Booker was injured and had ran across the house and was on my bed covered in blood. I loaded Booker. I left Chance in the crate. I drove to the vet with blood on my hands and clothes.

I've lived this story over and over a hundred times.


If Cal-e had been wearing a safety breakaway collar, Cal-e would be here today. If Cal-e had not been wearing a collar, Cal-e would be here today.



More Collar Stories

Corey T. Foy Lumino-Dafnis

After my two German Shepherds became tangled while wearing collars the only time my dogs wear one now is when they go for a walk. I have all my dogs chipped just in case they ever get lost so no need for a collar with name tags.

They were both outside playing when Cheyenne grabbed Milly's collar. Her bottom jaw became caught in the collar and my other girl Milly flipped around. The collar became so tight Milly couldn't breathe. Thank God my husband was outside and I was in the kitchen window watching them play. We had a hard time getting them apart. Milly passed out and went limp we were then able to flipped her and free Cheyenne. Milly started breathing and was ok so was Cheyenne. I just laid in the snow hugging Milly and crying. I thought I lost her. 4 weeks later her vet and his staff killed her during a spay surgery. I've owned many pets throughout the years and they always wore collars with their name tags. I had never had anything like that happen until it happened to Milly and Cheyenne. It only takes that one time. If my husband and I had not seen it happen Milly for sure would have died that day, Cheyenne would have had a broken jaw or worse. Neither of them had Breakaway collars on. My pets will never wear collars again... 

Kris Commeans

I had no idea this was ever an issue...until last year. My two were outside playing and I heard a scuffle that sounded serious...not the normal. They were  under some trees and I had to crawl to them while they fought...or so it appeared. I could quickly tell that one dogs jaw was twisted in the collar of the other. Thank God I had the easy release kind of collars. One dog about broke her jaw and the other collapsed in my arms as I freed her since she couldn't breathe. If I hadn't heard the scuffle or didn't have the easy release collar things could have ended much differently. There was blood everywhere and I was checking them over for a minute when I realized I cut myself getting under the tree and it was! So scary. I've been sharing my story trying to warn dog owners of the dangers. Sorry your story didn't end as well. The heartache must have been overwhelming 

Erinn V.

One afternoon our 2 dogs were playing in the family room. Olive, our Bull Mastiff, got her canine tooth tangled in the "O" ring of our German Shepherd, Pickles', collar. Pickles panicked and began to struggle. Thinking he was playing, Olive began to "spin" over his body tightening Pickles' collar around his neck with each turn. Three times his 130 lb. body went limp in my arms as I struggled to push the quick release button on his collar, to no avail-- the collar was so tight it was jammed. Finally out of desperation and fear, I shoved my arm against Olive's chest and her tooth slid off the "O" ring. I am so grateful I was home that day to help our handsome boy. I can't imagine the devastation my family would have felt had we lost him. Since that day our pets PLAY NAKED.  They are micro-chipped so the only time they wear a collar is when they take a walk. Thank you for bringing awareness to this important cause! Your Gracie will live on because of your efforts!  

Laura Jean Caprio

I almost lost one of my dogs the same way. Fortunately I was there to pry them apart. My poor boy was screaming a heart wrenching cry and his tongue was turning blue when I got to him. I could barely get my finger in between his throat and collar. I truly do not know how I got them apart but thank God I did. It was an absolutely horrible experience. I actually tore my thumb joint apart and had to have surgery to repair it with a metal pin. I will never be in that situation again. My dogs go naked!! 

Brittnie Baker - Ella's Story

When I was diagnosed with cancer, my foster mamas bought me a new collar - it’s black with pink “awareness” ribbons all over it. I wore it all the time and, to be honest, I looked pretty good in it! It’s a thicker collar than what my foster mamas usually get their pups, but they didn’t think much of the really big “D ring” on it. One day, foster mama came home from work, but I didn’t run to greet her. She said it was really odd that I didn’t move from my spot on the couch when I saw her and I just stared at her with sad eyes. First she thought I just didn’t feel well that day, but when she got closer, she saw that I had somehow hooked my dewclaw onto the D ring and it was stuck! I don’t remember how long I sat there, with my claw hanging from my neck, waiting for her to get home to free me. Foster mamas were so upset about it... can you imagine if I had gotten my collar stuck on something else, or if I struggled so hard to get free that I restricted my airway? Things could have been MUCH worse! Thankfully I was fine, but they promised me it would never happen again. Since then, I always play naked and only wear my collar when I leave the house with my family.  

Erica Gennaro

I am one of those people who doesn't leave a pups collar on while they are home. Oliver only had his collar on during walks or in the back yard. My moms chihuahua almost died when his tags got caught in the heating vents. The tags turned sideways in the slats and when he got up to go to another room the collar somehow tightened around his neck while he was stuck. If my stepdad wasn't home when it happened, he would have died. 

Anita Dawson

Stella had the habit of leading Elbee around by the collar. We thought that was cute because Elbee was much bigger than Stella. One day Stella's jaw became entangled in Elbee's collar. They were both yelping. I managed to free Stella, with blood flying. It was actually my blood because I was accidentally bit in the process - my arm, but nothing serious. If I hadn't been right there, Elbee could have been strangled. We play naked now.