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Why Does My Dog Growl When I Take His Collar Off – 5 Reasons!

Most dogs get used to getting their collars and harnesses getting taken on and off relatively quickly. However, some instances where taking off a dog’s collar make them anxious, which could cause them to growl. It is normal for dog owners to be perplexed by this behavior and ask themselves: why does my dog growl when I take his collar off? 

Dogs growl when their collar is being taken off because the action is hurting them or is making them anxious. The neck is a very sensitive area, and a tight collar can cause pain or straining of the muscles. In addition to physical discomfort, the action can make dogs nervous.

In this article, we will be listing all of the common reasons why some dogs growl when their collar is being taken off. We will also be answering some other commonly asked questions about dog collars and giving you some additional things to consider about putting a collar on your dog safely. 

Reasons Dogs Growl When You Take Off Their Collar

There are five main reasons why dogs growl when someone is removing their collar. Usually, dogs do this either because taking their collar off hurts or is making them anxious. However, there are a few other possible causes that you should consider as well. Here are the reasons dogs growl when you take off their collar. 

Taking The Collar Off Hurts 

Your dog could be growling when you take off his collar simply because it is hurting him. To rule out this being the cause, you should look at your collar to make sure there are no broken and protruding pieces.

You should also make sure that your dog’s collar fits properly and is not too tight. In addition, you should look for signs of injury and hair-pulling on and around your dog’s neck.

Luckily, this cause of your dog’s growling when you take his collar off has a simple solution. All you need to do is get your dog a new collar or harness. It is essential to get a collar that will fit your dog correctly, is safe to use, and is a good fit for your dog’s breed. 

Your Dog Could Be Overstimulated

Sometimes dogs growl when they get very excited and overstimulated, which is not necessarily a sign of aggressive behavior.

If you notice that your dog growls only when you try to take his collar off during times like these, this is likely the cause. All you need to do to reduce growling caused by overstimulation is to wait for a while until your dog has calmed down a bit. 

The Action Of Taking Your Dog’s Collar Off Makes Him Nervous

The neck is a very sensitive area for dogs, so it is natural for them to become anxious when touching it.

This is especially true for dogs who are not used to this touching from people. If you believe that this causes your dog’s growling, slowly desensitizing them to your touch is key to reducing this nervous behavior. 

To properly desensitize your dog to you taking off his collar, you should start by touching an area near his neck that he is comfortable with, such as his chest or back.

Next, slowly move up to his neck. It is essential that with every touch, you give your dog a piece of his favorite treat. Please do this in short increments every day, and over time your dog will get used to you taking off his collar. 

Your Dog Could Be Going Off Some Past Experiences 

Sometimes dogs get anxious in specific situations because they have had similar negative experiences in the past. Someone may have handled him a bit too rough around the neck in the past.

Just like the previous cause for growling, desensitizing your dog to this action slowly over time will make your dog more comfortable. 

Your Dog Isn’t Used To You Taking His Collar Off Yet

Sometimes puppies can growl when they are confused and not used to something quite yet, so your puppy could be growling when you take their collar off simply for this reason.

Although it is vital to desensitize your puppy to your touch still to make things easier, later on, this process is usually not as lengthy as the desensitization process for older dogs. 

Do Collars Bother Dogs

Dogs should get used to their collars over time, especially if they have to wear them often. However, a collar that is damaged, uncomfortable, or too tight does bother dogs.

As a result, it is essential to find your dog a comfortable collar and fits appropriately. We explain how you can find out if your dog’s collar fits properly later in this article. 

Do Dogs Like Their Collars Taken Off

Although some dogs may be more comfortable with their collar off, your dog should get used to wearing a collar, especially if it is fitted correctly. 

Why Won’t My Dog Let Me Take His Collar Off

Usually, a dog will not let you take his collar off if the collar is causing him pain or scared of you taking the collar off of him. A collar that is intact and appropriately fitted should not cause your dog any pain, so if this is the case for your dog’s collar, then it is likely that this behavior is caused by anxiety. 

Why Does My Dog Get Mad When I Take His Collar Off

Acting “mad” in dogs is usually a sign of nervousness. This nervousness could be caused by pain from the collar or fear of the action of taking his collar off. 

How Do You Remove A Tight Dog Collar

If the collar is too tight to unclip or unbuckle, then you should cut it off either with scissors, tin slip, or bolt cutter, depending on the collar’s material. 

Other Factors

There are some other things that you should consider when it comes to your dog growling when you take his collar off. This is what a well-fitted dog collar should look like on your dog. 

Small dogs should have a collar with about 1 inch of space, and medium or large dogs should have a collar with about two inches of space. Of course, the collar should not be frayed or broken. In addition, make sure that nothing is poking inward towards your dog’s neck and that nothing is pulling your dog’s hair.