Collar

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A fursuiter with a collar and leash. A collar may be decorative and alluring, or indicate ownership (Shown: Artie, used with permission).[1]

A collar[2] is a relatively tight-fitting band, in the furry fandom usually made of fur, metal, leather, or nylon, that is worn and secured around the neck. It is a common accessory in the furry community.

A collar may be worn from reasons ranging from the solely decorative, through association with a spirit animal fursona for example, to a deep and public signifier of a committed relationship. This latter status may also indicate ownership or dominant/submissive status associated with a BDSM or power exchange relationship.[3]

Contents

[edit] History of collars and anthropomorphism

Anthropomorphic Anubis walks on two legs (left), yet wore a gold collar (right, highlighted circle).

Anthropomorphic animals wearing collars date back at least 3,000 years. An early example is Anubis, a dog/jackal with powers related to the underworld. Despite being an animal that walks on two legs, and by no means a pet, Anubis is portrayed as wearing a gold collar[4] as shown.

His most common form is a crouching desert dog/jackal with his ears pricked up and tail hanging, wearing a collar of magical force. The dog’s black coar is symbolic of the discoloration of the corpse after its treatment during the mummification process. To prevent animals from scavenging on the corpses of the dead in the shallow graves of the late Predynastic period, Anubis in his canine manifestation was taken as a protector of the dead, with his collar providing magic and strength.

Collars were also used with farm and pet animals in ancient Mediterranean cultures for marking farm animals.[5] By the peak of ancient Egyptian civilization, collaring and leashing was standard in dog training, and collars by themselves had been in used since the pre-dynastic era. The cat and dog collars of the day were oftentimes works of art in themselves.

[edit] Current social significance

Collars have varying degrees of significance in the furry community, from mere decoration to the statement of ownership and a committed relationship.

In the simplest form, collars are a furry accessory, worn with or without other furry clothing, fursuits, or gear. Many furs will wear collars at furry gatherings as a sign of their participation in the fandom or as an indicator of their fursona animal, and remove them when in the presence of mundanes (non-furs), such as when at work or with family.

Receiving a collar holds special significance in the fandom, and is usually not done frivolously. The presentation of a collar bears equal significance to the presentation of pins or rings in the non-furry world. It can signify that a relationship is committed (whether open or closed), in which case the collaring is often mutual. In can also signify ownership, as a pet or submissive mate, in power or BDSM play (see BDSM -- collar, link to be added).

In the relationship sense of use, wearing a collar is a signal to others that the fur is "owned" or is in a relationship, and that the wearer has been formally collared. It may also be a potently tangible symbol of the relationship itself. A locking collar, which may be physically long enough to be removed, is usually a statement that the collar is NOT to be removed by the wearer without permission of the giver, who often holds the key. This is often a way for furries who are apart to maintain a physical measure of their commitment or relationship.

[edit] Appearance

A collar made for furries. This decorated leather collar has chrome dragon's claws on a blue leather collar made to fit a fursuiter's neck. Photo by MeekoBlue, used with Permission

Collars can be light and weighty only in significance, to locked, uncomfortable, sharp, and heavy in physical form. Increasingly couples may adopt collars that can be mistaken as ordinary non-furry necklaces or jewelry, which then can be worn discreetly in public. Such items are often referred to as everyday collars.

Collars are often used as accessories with fursuits, as shown in the image at the top of this page.

Collars common are found in furry art, both as decoration and as symbols of dominance/submission.

Collars often have places to which leads/leashes can be attached. While this can be common among furfriends, the potential for misunderstandings from the non-furry community has led to rules that you must not be led on a leash in public at furry conventions (the so-called "hold your own leash" rules). This rule is illustrated in the image at the top of this article.

[edit] Footnotes

[edit] References

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collar_(BDSM) 2. http://eyesonancientegypt.tumblr.com/post/35981861114/anubis-the-egyptian-god-anubis-is-represented-as

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