RIVERSIDE, Calif. – Two dogs that were brought to Riverside County Animal Services suffered serious neck injuries and required treatment for what are commonly referred to as “embedded collars.”
The ministry said the dogs’ conditions provide an opportunity to educate the public about the dangers of objects tied around animals’ necks for long periods of time.
Dr. Sara Strongin, the county’s chief veterinarian, said it’s very important that a pet’s collar is sized and fitted correctly as the animal grows.
“A collar applied to fast-growing puppies and kittens should be monitored frequently, and a larger collar may be needed when your pet outgrows the former,” Strongin said. “You want the collar to be tight enough that it doesn’t fall off, but loose enough that it doesn’t put too much pressure on the skin.”
Strongin suggested that a pet owner should be able to fit two fingers between the collar and the dog’s neck.
The two injured dogs were brought to the shelter last week. One, a one-year-old Chihuahua mix, arrived at the shelter in a box as a stray. The other, a 2-year-old female German Shepherd, was picked up as a stray by Officer Adam Haisten in an unincorporated area near Perris.
Licensed vet tech Tonya Buenrostro discovered why the Chihuahua smelled rotten and was in pain: A headband was tied around his neck and became embedded.
Dr. Itzel Vizcarra and Buenrostro treated the Chihuahua’s injury and the dog was cared for in the treatment/receiving area for several days.
On Thursday, the puppy was adopted.
When Officer Haisten picked up the German Shepherd mix, he had a chain wrapped around his neck, causing a built-in collar as well. sergeant. Kellsey Hoesman helped him by breaking the chain with bolt cutters. Dr. Vizcarra treated the dog with the help of Pam Gates, a licensed veterinary technician.
“While these injuries are quite shocking and traumatic upon presentation, our team is very experienced in treating this condition and they provide excellent care,” Strongin said. “Once the offending object is removed, the wound is cleaned and the infection treated. They tend to heal quite well, although there may be permanent scarring.”