Dog collars have been in use for centuries, according to England’s Dog Collar Museum. At first they had menacing-looking long spikes to help protect valuable guard dogs. Then, as the relationship between humans and dogs evolved into owner and pet, dog collars became increasingly decorative.
This charming French example has a nicely oiled leather rounded edge with a good-sized brass buckle and brass stay that holds the end of the collar in place. It also has a large rounded brass plate inscribed in heavy lettering, “CANONNE THIEULEUX, VIESLY NORD.” The first two words may be a name, and the second two may refer to the town Viesly in northern France (Department of Nord), near Belgium. The engraving wraps nearly all around and is nicely spaced and easy to read.
There are a few holes after the buckle which would have allowed the owner to adjust the collar on his or her pet. There also is one hole on the other side that goes all the way through the thick leather; I surmise that was where a ring would have originally been for the leash.
It is in excellent condition, except for the missing ring, considering its age and purpose. The leather has acquired a rich patina and the brass has a soft glow to it. Until the dog found its freedom and ran off with its leash with the ring, this collar was well cared for.
It is hooked on first hole, which makes the collar smaller than if it were on any other hole. In this position, it measures 3-3/4” in diameter. The width of the leather with the brass attachment is almost ½”.
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