Dog collars are an important accessory for almost every dog out there. A dog collar serves several different purposes.
First, it allows you to have a way to identify your dog separate from a microchip should he get loose and still be wearing his collar. A collar also generally has a place to place rabies tags and other important information as well - such as whether or not your dog has any severe allergies or health issues similar to a med-alert bracelet.
Choosing the right dog collar for your best friend isn't simply a matter of style. While the style may be one of your selection criteria, it probably shouldn't be the first or most important. Above all, an appropriately fitted dog collar should be comfortable for your pooch to wear around. It should not chafe or scrape or otherwise cut into the skin in any way. If it does, the collar either doesn't fit appropriately or isn't made of the right materials.
If you are buying dog collars for a puppy, you should consider ones that are easily expanded. Puppies are growing at an accelerated pace and what may fit them this week, may be entirely too tight next month when the puppy has almost doubled in size. Make sure with puppies to check the fit of their collars frequently. If you do not, the puppy can actually grow around the collar, requiring it to be surgically removed as the skin and hair grows over it. If you are rescuing an animal, a collar that has grown into the skin is a sign of neglect.
When considering options for toy dogs, it is generally better to go with a harness rather than a dog collar. Collars on very small dogs can pose a health hazard and are responsible for too many crushed tracheas every year. A harness, on the other hand will provide a much safer option for walking your small dog. If you must use a collar on a small dog, make sure that it is not too tight and that it will break away easily if the dog puts too much pressure on it.
These are just some things to consider when purchasing new dog collars. While you should also have a microchip added in case your dog should break free, if they are still wearing a collar make sure you have some form of identification tag added to the collar. Fit the collar correctly and make sure there is enough give in a small dog collar that it will break away should your dog apply too much pressure to it. Replacing puppy collars frequently as they grow will help keep your puppy healthy and happy.