Can a Dog Wear a Bell? [Answered]

Placing a bell on your dog’s collar can be very harmful to your dog’s hearing and should be avoided at all costs. Dogs have excellent hearing, and bells can lead to hearing loss, so it is best to find alternative methods and avoid placing things that make noise on your dog’s collar. 

Generally, you should never place anything that makes noise on your dog’s collar, so if you were trying to attach a bell to your dog’s collar so you can use it for locating purposes, worry not. There are plenty of alternatives you can use instead that are animal-friendly and guaranteed to be safe for you and your canine companion! 

The ears of your furry friend are much more sensitive than you can imagine, and you never want to be the reason for your best friend’s discomfort! Although your dog is sure to give you signs of discomfort like barking, biting, or excessive tugging at their newly bell-covered collar, that is not always the case, so skip the bells altogether and stay safe! 

Why Your Dog Cannot Wear a Bell 

So, can a dog wear a bell? Unfortunately, no. There are a few reasons that dogs cannot wear bells around their necks, like how it can harm their hearing or cause discomfort, which can lead them to become resentful toward their owners. Still, many people choose to put bells on their dog’s collars because they enjoy the way it looks and like being able to locate their dogs by sound

Unfortunately, placing a bell on your dog’s collar can be damaging and for multiple reasons, too, which is why you should consider these reasons why you should never let your dog wear a bell around their neck! 

A Dog Wearing a Bell Can Damage their Hearing 

Placing a bell on your dog’s collar can be very harmful to their hearing. This is because dogs have impeccable hearing, much better than humans do. Many people argue that their dogs have adjusted to their bells or have learned to tune out the sound of their bells, but it is more likely that the dog has lost or damaged their hearing as a result of the bell rather than been an exception. 

This is most common for people who have raised their dogs from puppies and have allowed them to wear bells the whole time. Their ears tend to be damaged or underdeveloped because of it. 

Dogs that Wear a Bell Experience Noise Anxiety 

Hearing loud noises is often intimidating for dogs which is why placing a bell around your dog’s neck can push them over their stress threshold and change their attitude. When dogs are hearing loud noises, they tend to run away from them.

Placing a bell around your dog’s neck prevents them from escaping and can lead to many alternative routes of escapism such as an underactive lifestyle to reduce the amount of noise from their bell, self-inflicting injury as they try to remove the bell, or cope for what they view as a punishment, and much more. 

To avoid the effects of noise anxiety, do not put a bell on your dog. 

A Dog who Wears a Bell Can Get Annoyed 

Aside from everything else, the sound of a bell around your dog’s neck can just plain annoy them! Your poor, furry friend may end up aggravated by the sound of the bell, and this may eventually affect their temperament. Your once friendly and loving companion may become aggressive and resentful. 

To avoid possible conflict between you and your canine companion, it is best to avoid placing bells on their collar altogether. That way, you know that they will not have to endure any trauma that may come along with it. 

Alternatives to Having your Dog Wear a Bell 

Instead of wearing a bell around their neck, there are plenty of alternatives you can choose for your best bud! Whether you want to spruce up your dog’s collar, find an alternative way to track them, or another way of notifying you that your devious dog is digging through the trash again, these are some of the best suggestions to replace the need for a belled collar:

Buy your dog a new collar or outfit 

Admit it, every pup needs a new look sometimes, so instead of making your dog wear a bell, give them a brand-new collar or outfit to wear! Visit your commercial retailer, check out online stores, or support local businesses to find something that represents your dog’s unique style and personality! 

If your dog is one of the few patient pooches out there, you may even buy them an adorable new outfit! There are thousands of dog outfits to choose from, which range in every size dog from teacup all the way to extra-large! 

Chipping your dog

Chipping your dog is suggested for all animal owners regardless of whether you let them outdoors or not. Chipping your pet is painless and can be done within minutes.  

This process guarantees that you can locate your precious pup if they ever break free from your watchful eye (and trust me, it happens!). Knowing there is an additional eye on your dog lets you rest easy at night. No more frantic, worried searches through the neighborhood when you can just look on the map for their location! 


Understanding that dog bells are harmful to your dog’s hearing is important for every dog owner because it ensures that your dog will live a happy and healthy life. One of the most common ways people try to locate their dogs is by using bells, and they forget that this can be damaging to their hearing. Dogs wearing bells often suffer from hearing loss, and their owners do not even realize it, especially if they raise them from puppies!  

As a dog owner, it is your duty to take proper preventative measures and choose alternative locating and aesthetic options that do not endanger your dog’s wellbeing. A dog can wear a bell, however, it is very dangerous, and you never want to do that to your furry friend!


  • Brad

    Hi I'm Brad, the founder of Having been a vet of 6 years I work alongside our team to provide valuable insight into your dog's health. I have a frenchie myself named Senzu who is my pride and joy!