Fit for a dog: collars of diamonds and gold

A friend posted a diamond dog collar on Facebook today, incensed that there even is such a thing. I don’t mean dog collar in the Victorian sense. Or the punk/biker sense.

I mean a diamond collar designed for a pet that barks. In this case, the collar in question retails for $150,000 and looks like this.

La Jeune Tuilipe diamond dog collarGiven today is National Dog Day, my friend was making the point that money like that – assuming you have it to spend – would be better donated to an animal shelter.

No doubt! And imagine how many animals this one could rescue.

Amour $3.2mil diamond dog collar

That was retailing for $3.2 million a couple years ago but the company that produced it appears to have gone out of business. Hmm. Not enough demand, do you suppose?

On the other hand, I’m sorry. There is something kind of fetching about ornament on a dog, when it suits them. For example, here’s a dog that belongs to friends of mine. His name is Oliver and I’m a little smitten with him, mainly because he makes me laugh. In fact, just looking at this picture makes me laugh.

Oliver the bulldog | photo Cathleen McCarthy | The Jewelry Loupe

Is it wrong of me that I would like to see Oliver wearing this?

1973 dog collar Bonhams $540

American leather dog collar with six gilt metal bulldog heads with faux-jewel eyes, 20th century, sold at Bonham’s in 2008 for $540

Maybe just for special occasions?

Putting custom collars on dogs is not a new thing. Google “Victorian dog collars” and all kinds of crazy things pop up. The search engines don’t know whether to show you those multi-strand pearl chokers that went hand-in-hand with boned corsets or things like this.

Antique dog collars at Maison Dog, London

From The Stately Hound, taken in a shop in London called Maison Dog which specializes in antique dog collars. It would appear that Victorian London, and probably Jazz Age Paris, were full of eccentric dog owners who loved to walk their pups around in bespoke collars. But high-karat dog collars date to antiquity. This one from the British Museum was made and presumably worn 1250BC – 800BC!

Gold collar, c. 1250-800 BC | British Museum

Gold collar, c. 1250-800 BC, Portugal, with three tapering bars incised with geometric ornament and fringed with a dog’s tooth design. Attached are cups of gold, each with an internal spike. (Collection British Museum)

I have a couple dogs in my own life these days. One is a standard poodle, far too regal to be shaved into poodle-style garden sculpture, let alone don a diamond collar. The other, though, is a very small, kind of goofy-looking mystery poodle mix. I’m starting to see how people get into dog ornament.

It starts innocently. In the winter, you have to put a coat on Zoey or she shivers. Then you find it’s kind of amusing to see her waddling down the sidewalk in her little parka. Suddenly, you’re looking at dog sweaters… and dog hats. Dog boots. And yes, the world’s smallest dog collars. If I found a really charming antique collar, I would be sorely tempted.

But, even if I could afford them, I’d like to think I would draw the line at a $150,000 diamond collar. Not for the reasons my friend states though. First of all, I would be wearing the diamond dog collar, thank you! I think I’d have a better chance of pulling it off than Zoey. And honestly, if you have a fortune to spend and your goal is to fund animal shelters, maybe you should be thinking big picture. No reason why you can’t indulge your eccentric passion for dog ornament, get your collection splashed all over the media, then sell it at auction for a small fortune and donate it all to charity. Hey, Lily Safra did it (with her JAR jewels).

But also, I think if you’re going to wear the bling, it should be voluntary. Dog’s choice. Would Zoey want that diamond necklace? I don’t think so. I think she’d prefer something less over-the-top, a little sportier. Something with not so many dangly bits to get in the way when she starts rolling around in the mud, as she likes to do.

Nope, if you’re going to wear a diamond dog collar, you should be ready to work it, and work for it. Which is why I think that particular collar would work better on… Rihanna.

Rihanna in dog collars

Right?? With her punk fashion sense, the Diamonds (in the Sky) pop star was made for that diamond dog collar. Someone should contact her instead of sending their press releases to the animal activists.

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5 comments for “Fit for a dog: collars of diamonds and gold

  1. Linda Neth
    August 27, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    Love this post. I occasionally drape a string of beads or leather around my dog or cat. I always get the look.
    Not interested….

  2. August 27, 2015 at 7:22 pm

    That’s been my experience too, Linda, with cats and dogs. All we can do is try. TRY to expand their sense of style, the little heathens.

  3. August 31, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    I have a cat who is feeling insulted and overlooked. Can a dog really appreciate a gold collar? Cats on the other hand are all about pomp and style. Seriously, I loved this article. Are you going to do diamonds for cats next?

  4. August 31, 2015 at 10:27 pm

    Y’know? You’re right, Leslie. Diamonds and gold for cats makes much more sense. I’ll have to look into this!

  5. SAhrendsen
    September 1, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    My daughters mini dachshund loves to wear her accessories, but she’s a bit of a diva. Fits her personality to a tee. Also, I’m sure Cleopatra’s cats wore nothing but the finest.

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