Looking to find out how to pick the RIGHT collar for your German Shorthair Pointer? You are not alone.
I remember the early days with Hank. Getting everything ready for his arrival at my home, the endless hours of research, and the preparation before the big day.
And if you’re looking into a GSP puppy of your own, then you’re probably in the same boat I was in back then.
One area that’s important to get right is your GSP puppy collar size, because it’s important from a safety perspective.
Until you’ve managed to train your new bundle of energy properly, their collar is your lifesaver.
You might not be able to tell your GSP puppy to stop if they try to make the great escape out your front door, but holding their collar will stop them.
So, GSP puppy collar size: what do you need to know?
What To Look Out For
The best thing about GSPs is their energy. And the worst thing? You got it: their energy!
The only reason I say that is because when it comes to picking the right collar for your GSP puppy, you have to always think about their energy.
Your GSP puppy has bucket loads of energy, so you need to make sure the collar can hold up to their active lifestyle.
For example, an average puppy might not have the energy to explore all day, but a GSP puppy is far more likely to give it a go.
Of course, when they’re really young, they sleep more than they do when they’re older, but when they’re awake, you’ll know about it because they’ll want to explore their surroundings – especially when you take them outdoors.
That means you need a pretty heavy-duty collar, even when they’re only puppies.
You also need to make sure the collar you pick out can be washed, because if there’s one thing I’ve learned about Hank over the years, it’s that he can get messy and dirty even when there doesn’t seem to be dirt around.
Finding a GSP puppy collar that can be washed easily, then, is a must.
And finally, it’s not something I hear a lot of people talk about, but keep in mind that GSPs are powerful dogs, even as puppies.
That’s not to say they’re dangerous or aggressive or anything like that – they’re big softies at heart – but they do have a lot of lean muscle and are incredibly strong, and their strength starts to show very early on in their life.
So, to round up, before you even worry about your GSP puppy collar size, make sure you make a few things your priority. You need a GSP puppy collar that can:
- Withstand their active lifestyle
- Be washed easily
- Deal with a strong, powerful dog
Look for a GSP puppy collar that’s thick, made of durable material, and easily washed, and you’ll be off to a great start. But what about the size?
What Size Should My GSP Puppy Collar Be?
Just to be clear, I can’t remember the exact size I bought Hank all those years ago now, but what I have done for you is scour the internet to find an answer – I’ve been everywhere from dog forums to collar manufacturers, and I think I have a general answer for you.
Why is it only general? Because every GSP puppy is different!
According to Oscar & Hooch, a leading collar manufacturer, GSP puppies need a small collar from their range.
That is for puppies with an 8-10″ neck, which definitely seems fitting for a GSP puppy.
Without meaning to plug Oscar & Hooch too much, they also have nylon collars which are incredibly durable, with strong buckles that are difficult for dogs to get out of, and all of them are easy to clean.
So if you’re unsure about which GSP puppy collar size to go for, you can always just follow their advice and pick up the small collar from them that they recommend.
However, if you are going to shop elsewhere, then just remember that you’re looking for a puppy collar that’s suitable for a dog with an 8-10″ neck.
Remember, different manufacturers give their collars different sizes, so while the Oscar & Hooch example above says that their collar is small for an 8-10″ neck, others might call that extra small, or extra-EXTRA small.
Just remember to keep an eye on the neck size in inches, rather than the size of the collar, and you’ll be fine.
General Tips For Collar Size
To finish, I thought it’d be useful to give you some general tips for collar sizing, so you know you’ve got the right size for your GSP puppy.
First, as a general rule of thumb, you should always be able to fit at least two fingers between your GSP’s collar and their neck.
This means that it isn’t too tight, and it gives them some wriggle room so they aren’t choked or uncomfortable.
Two fingers is the perfect number to prevent the collar from being too big or slipping over your puppy’s head, too.
So make sure to check this after putting your puppy’s new collar on to keep them comfortable and safe.
Second, making a new hole in your collar isn’t the end of the world. I’ve done it, and most other dog owners will have done it too.
A little DIY hole in your dog’s collar to make it fit perfectly is OK. It won’t compromise the safety of the collar or anything like that, and it’s actually a good idea to do this to make sure the collar is a perfect fit.
This will keep them safer and make them more comfortable than if you gave them a collar that was too tight or too loose.
If the collar you choose is way too big, then obviously send it back and get a refund, but if you can make do with it for now by using a custom hole, then you’ve also got a collar that you can use as your GSP pup gets bigger too.
Remember the following key points before you pick up a GSP puppy collar, and you ought to be fine:
- Get a collar that’s strong, durable, and easy to clean
- Look for one for a puppy with an 8-10″ neck
- Use custom holes if needs be
- Check the tightness by fitting two fingers between your puppy’s neck and their collar
Follow this advice, and I’m certain you’ll find a GSP puppy collar that’s perfect!