An Elizabethan collar, E-Collar, or pet cone, (sometimes humorously called a pet lamp-shade or cone of shame) is a protective medical device worn by an animal, usually a cat or dog. Shaped like a truncated cone, its purpose is to prevent the animal from biting or licking at its body or scratching at its head or neck while wounds or injuries heal.
The device is generally attached to the pet's usual collar with strings or tabs passed through holes punched in the sides of the plastic. The neck of the collar should be short enough to let the animal eat and drink. Although most pets adjust to them quite well, others will not eat or drink with the collar in place and the collar is temporarily removed for meals.
While purpose-made collars can be purchased from veterinarians or pet stores, they can also be made from plastic and cardboard or by using plastic flowerpots, wastebaskets, buckets or lampshades. Modern collars might involve soft fabric trim along the edges to increase comfort and velcro surfaces for ease of attachment removal.
Elizabethan collar in popular culture
The Elizabethan collar plays a role in the Pixar film Up, where it is used as a public humiliation device for dogs and is called the "Cone of Shame". The phrase has since entered the general lexicon as a slang term for Elizabethan collars.
Types of collars
Horse "neck cradle"
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