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Types of Cat Collars

person holding Supakit leather breakaway buckle in azure blue

The collar market is full of many types, styles and colours of cat collars, but what are the differences? Let’s take a look at the various types of cat collars, so that you can make the perfect choice for your cat

Main Types of Cat Collars

Breakaway Collars

Breakaway collars are considered the safest collar option for cats. These collars, sometimes known as quick-release, unclip under tension, releasing your cat from its collar if they become entangled. They do this via a specially designed buckle, which slides open if the weight of your cat’s body pulls down on their collar.

Related: How Do Breakaway Cat Collars Work?

Flea Collars

Flea collars are available in different materials and can operate in various ways. Some collars will deposit a flea-eradicating substance that spreads throughout the cat’s skin, which destroys a flea upon contact. Others emit a gas which works as a repellent. Flea collars can be an alternative to administering a back of the neck monthly treatment.

ID Tag Collars

ID tag collars can be any type of cat collar with an ID tag attached to it. This ID tag is used to help identify your cat if they become lost. They’re also a nice way to personalise your cat’s collar.

Related: What Info Should Be on Your Cat’s ID Tag?

Buckle Style Collars

Buckle collars (like that of a belt) pose a potential danger to cats as they do not release under tension. Although they are secure, they are not considered safe. These collars can potentially trap, entangle or choke a cat if it becomes caught.

Reflective Collars

Reflective collars are good for visibility. These collars also usually come in bright colours which allow the cat to be more visible in low light or darkness, especially when light is shone on them.

Elastic Collars

Elastic collars are designed to stretch to allow a cat to get out of its collar in a dangerous situation, however, elastic collars do pose their threats. This elasticity can cause the cat’s mouth, arm or leg to also become caught in the collar when it expands leading to further injury.

GPS Collars

GPS collars allow you to track your cat’s activity and whereabouts, which can be useful in locating them if they get lost. Tracking is either done using an app on your phone, or using a special sensor that came with the collar.

Cone Collars

Cone collars (also known as Elizabethan collars or e-collars) are usually worn by a cat following a medical procedure or health concern. They are designed to limit your cat’s movement, and protect a wound or injury from becoming further irritated, or damaged through licking, pawing or scratching.

Cone collars are most commonly made from plastic however, there are also soft-material, inflatable options that are often more comfortable for a cat to wear.

Cat Calming/Pheromone Collars

Calming cat collars (also known as pheromone collars) use synthetic hormones in the collar that mimic the cat’s mother, which is supposed to help calm them down.

How To Choose the Right Cat Collar

To choose the right cat collar, it may be helpful to consider the needs of your cat and the safety that different collar styles provide. It’s best to avoid making collar decisions based solely on what ‘looks nice’. Breakaway buckle collars are considered the safest option overall however, your collar choice may vary if your cat needs another benefit, such as flea protection.

Shop all cat collars here

Different Materials for Cat Collars

Much like style, there are different materials used for cat collars and each possesses its own pros and cons. Material is an important element to consider when choosing a cat collar. As cats have a fine-tuned sense of smell, natural fibres or materials such as hemp, cotton or leather are preferred by cats. Synthetic fibres and materials such as nylon, polyester and plastic can be easier to clean, have strong fray-resisting properties and have more colour options but they may not be the most comfortable for your cat.

At Supakit, our collars are made from premium-quality natural materials that smell ‘right’ to your cat. Our leather collars are made inside and out with butter-soft leather, making them super gentle on the skin and fur. They are designed with cat comfort in mind. Our vegan-friendly cork alternative is again natural smelling, luxuriously lightweight and comfortable with the bonus of being waterproof.

We’ve compared the Best Cat Collars here.

How To Choose the Right Size of Cat Collar

To choose the right size of cat collar, consider the adjustability of the collar and check if it is available in different size options (you may need to measure your cat’s neck). For comfort and safety, your cat’s collar should fit snug to its neck. At Supakit, our collars have adjustable bands so that they can grow (or shrink!) with your cat. We suggest that one fingertip should fit snugly between the collar and your cat’s neck (with the fur flattened). By hugging the neck, the collar is less likely to snag on obstacles or obstructions.

Related: How Tight Should a Cat Collar Be?

Which Type of Collar Is Best for an Outdoor Cat?

The best type of collar for an outdoor cat is a breakaway buckle collar that can keep them safe outside. Cats are curious creatures that love to explore, and sometimes this leads them into small spaces, inaccessible to humans, and up trees. If your cat gets stuck or entangled because of its collar, a breakaway buckle collar ensures that the collar will break open under your cat’s body weight, allowing them to get out of their collar and the situation safely.

What Type of Collar is Safest for Cats?

Breakaway buckle collars are considered the safest type of collars for cats, and are recommended by leading veterinary and animal care associations. They allow your cat to break free from their collar if they are ever caught, and do not carry the risks that an elastic collar can of further entangling your cat.

Related: Best Kitten Collars


To find the best collar for your cat, it is important to consider comfort and overall safety. We hope this article has explained the different collar types and guided you in finding the perfect one for your cat’s needs.

Read next: Cat Collar Stuck in Mouth

Leili Farzaneh

Leili Farzaneh

Leili Farzaneh is the co-founder of Supakit and accredited Animal Behaviour Technician (Member of the Association of Pet Behaviour Counsellors). She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from...

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