How do you measure a dog for a half check collar? Here’s the Answer

If you are unfamiliar with a martingale collar or half-check collar, please read our articles, Martingale Dog Collars: Types & Uses and Martingale Collar Safety & Use.

A martingale collar should fit like a regular collar when on your dog. The size ranges we cite on our website is the range of the collar (smallest to largest) and you should choose a size that your dogs neck size will fit within. If you dont have a tape rule to measure, Or, CLICK HERE for a downloadable/printable yardstick.

Fitting a half check dog collar

This is the part that causes the most confusion. I get chills when I see ill-fitted half check dog collars because I know they are generally fitted too tight with disasterous consequences.

When the collar is on the dog, the 2 rings on the chain that are connected to the collar should almost touch. Some say they should touch, but the reason I say almost touch is so you know you have it fitted tight enough.

If the rings touch and the collar is already too loose, the collar may come off.

If the rings are too far apart when tension from the lead closes the collar together, then it will choke your dog.

Step 1 – Place the collar on your dog.

Step 2 – Adjust it to the right size making sure the two rings almost touch.

Step 3 – Take hold of the ring where you would clip the lead to and close the collar rings together high on the dogs’ neck.

Step 4 – Are the rings almost touching, say with about 1cm gap? Good, then you should now have the collar fitted correctly.

Step 5 – Make sure the above applies to all parts of the dogs neck if it is smaller at the top and larger at the bottom.

How to measure & determine the size you need for a Buckle Martingale or Buckle Half-Check collar:

  • Measure your dogs neck size (middle of his/her neck where the collar will sit). Because this collar buckles on, you do not need a head size.
  • Add 1 to 1.5″ for smaller dogs (under 13″), and 2″ to your neck measurement for larger dogs (neck size over 13″) For example, if your dogs neck measures 17″, add 2″ to that (equalling 19″ ). That would put your dog in our Large (12 – 20″) or X-Large (13″ – 24″).
  • NOTE: If you are ordering a custom collar, be mindful of the width of the collar and how it will fit on your dog. While you may order any width youd like, the wider the collar, the heavier and bigger the hardware will be. Especially with the chain loop martingales. The narrower the collar, the thinner and weaker the hardware will be. For best results, order the width that corresponds to our in-stock sizes:

  • 5/8″ wide for x-small, small collars;
  • 3/4″ wide for medium collars
  • 1″ for large, x-large collars.
  • How To Size Martingale Dog Collars