Q: What’s worse than having to force your pet to wear an Elizabethan collar?

A: Your vet’s having to rely on your commitment to the E-collar for the success of his/her patient’s condition.

That’s why vets often like to offer no-excuse regimens via mandatory E-collar to help keep pets away from the site of contention.

But there are owners who downright refuse to place a lampshade collar around Fluffy’s neck. That’s when we need to come up with more creative approaches. To that end, here are my favorite E-collar (lesion avoidance) alternatives.

1-The Bite-Not Collar

OK so if an E-collar satellite dish seems bothersome the giganto-neck brace option is not going to appeal to you. Nonetheless, it works well for some pets. At the very least they won’t likely be using it as a weapon or as a household breakables liability.

2-The circular, blow-up pillow

You know those pillows you get at the airport for curling around your neck while on a vicious red-eye? Picture that: a blow-up, neck circling device which keeps creatures from turning full-circle. I’ve got at least two Dachshund patients whose movements are sufficiently restricted by this device to render it recommendable.

3-The paper collar

If heavy-duty plastic is frustratingly (and painfully) firm, try a soft collar. Some pets do well with these firm-paper alternatives.

4-Full body armor

Yeah, some pets need E-collars but they still manage to reach the spot. When all else fails, body armor is the next step. Dobermans, in particular, seem more likely to require these thin, neoprene-like suits to keep them away from their sucking spots and incision sites.

5-Boxer shorts and baby onesies

Usually, these garments are not enough on their own—but it’s worth a try. Added to a bite-not collar or a more traditional E-collar they tend to yield results for some of the more avid lickers among us.

Please tell us if you have other ideas. We’re all waiting with bated breath.