Boxer dog mix wearing a bandana

The Best Dog Bandanas Australia - Standing Out From The Pack

Our #1 Pick

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The Best Value for Money

OFPUPPY Dog Bandana Collar

  • Versatile
  • Easy to wear 
  • Durable materials
  • Classic design

Bandanas are the epitome of 90s style. From the Backstreet Boys to Fresh Prince, to TLC to the Spice Girls, bandanas were a moment in history that I often wish we could go back to.

And when deciding how to best dress your dog without making them uncomfortable, dog bandanas are an easy option. There are stylish. They impart lots of personality. But they don’t get in the way of your dog’s day-to-day activities.

In some ways, a dog bandana could even be useful to your pup which we will explore. Consider this the ultimate guide to dog bandanas. Good reasons why your dog should wear one (other than pure vanity), whether bandanas replace dog collars, what the different types of dog bandana are and how to find a great bandana if you want one.


Should Dogs Wear Bandanas?

I mean… should anyone wear bandanas? I jest of course. Bandanas are cool and bandanas look cool on dogs. That said, out of all doggy clothing, I would argue that this is the most justified and seamless to introduce to your dog’s wardrobe. Here’s why:

Anti-anxiety pheromones 

Perhaps you are going through major changes in your household, like moving or a new baby. Maybe your dog routinely suffers from separation anxiety. (1)

If you have an anxious pup at home, there are several ways you can help them out. One of the prime ways veterinarians and owners swear by is pheromone treatment. 

These bottled pheromones tap into your dog’s instincts, to produce a calming effect. The most popular and accessible pheromone products on the market mimic the natural chemical mothers’ release to nursing puppies.

“Studies show that it may help with general anxiety, as well as stress caused by vet visits, travel, fireworks and other loud noises, separation anxiety, and can even help calm dogs in shelters. A study done in 2005 showed that puppies in a training class that were fitted with pheromone collars were later found to have less behavioural problems and were more sociable than puppies not given the collar.” - PetMD (2)

It’s best not to apply pheromones straight to a dog’s skin so where do you put this? On the bandana! Many owners use bandanas to apply a couple of drops of pheromones to keep their dog calm in stressful situations.

Keeping cool

When the summer months arrive and the sun beats down, the humble dog bandana shows its usefulness again. It is essentially a built-in cape for your dog or puppy that doesn’t hinder their play. Having the back of the neck shaded and covered can help prevent sunburns. Most bandanas are made of very lightweight material or breathable cotton so they are easy to wear during the warmer seasons.

Keeping warm

Conversely, in the colder months, bandanas of heavier material are like mini scarves. They cover your dog’s neck in warming material providing an extra layer of warmth as they head out on wintery days. If you want a bandana for winter, you’ll need to look out for heavier materials like acrylic or woven polyester.

Identifiers

You most likely have a dog collar, but a bandana can help identify your dog too. If you have a service dog or Emotional Support Animal, sometimes it is helpful to have a bandana with the words clearly printed on them. There are dog tags specifically for that purpose, but a person would need to be very close to your dog to read the tag. The bandana is much clearer and easier to read from afar.

They look cool

This is an entirely selfish reason of course. No dog shivers at the thought of wearing an ugly Christmas jumper because it would clash with the colour of their fur. That said, bandanas are an easy injection of style that is lightweight and easy to wear for dogs.   Dressing up dogs can be a huge problem in the dog-owning community. It’s cute to dress up your dog in theory but it can lead to many issues. 

“The RSPCA warned that while taking pictures of animals in their natural state is fine, dressing them up and forcing them into unnatural scenarios can be problematic, to the point where the animal welfare charity has been prompted to develop guidelines on how to do it safely.” - ABC News (3)

Novelty clothing can be uncomfortable and restrictive, but bandanas are barely noticed by your dog. The perfect solution to having a cute dress-up moment, without upsetting your dog.


Dog Collars vs Bandanas

I hope I am managing to convert you to the dog bandana club slowly. As bandanas can be used as identifiers, do you need a collar with them?

Yes, you do. While bandanas are good identifiers to a degree, they are far more fallible than collars are. They get dirtier more easily. They can fall off and get lost. A collar can withstand far more than a simple piece of cloth ever could.

Bandanas and collars work in tandem with one another, rather than replacing each other.


What Are The Different Types of Dog Bandana

Classic bandanas

The classic bandana is the type you’ll see with a paisley pattern. The ones that remind you of music videos in the 90s and early 2000s. Typically they’ll have a paisley pattern but styles vary widely depending on what you are after. When we get into the review section, you’ll see just how much variation there is out there. Any design you want to be printed on a bandana can be possible. Our reviews are only scratching the surface!

Bandana dog collars

This is the hybrid between dog collars and bandanas. Essentially these are classic flat dog collars with an extra piece of fabric attached to use as a bandana. Typically, the cloth can be folded into a bow tie shape for a bit of style variation. Bandana collars are great because you get the best of both worlds. It’s a two in one deal. The con here, however, is that bandanas need cleaning more often than flat collars do, so bandana-collars are more maintenance overall.

Personalised dog bandanas

If you have a special employed dog like an ESA (Emotional Support Animal) or service dog, there are custom dog bandanas on the market specifically for them. Likewise, it is possible to find retailers that you can print personalised messages onto the bandana, including your dog’s name.


What To Look For In A Good Dog Bandana

Size

Because of their nature as a foldable cloth that you can shape multiple different ways, bandanas, in general, are quite large and you can reshape them to suit smaller dogs. Of course, there are small dog and puppy bandanas on the market too.

The great thing about having a larger size of bandana is that you can shape it to suit your dog. They tend to be very forgiving in terms of sizing in general.

Durability

It’s worth saying that most bandanas are made of polyester or cotton, so they won’t be weatherproof, mudproof or sweatproof in any way. However, you want a product that won’t unravel on the first outing. The best measure of durability is customer feedback. Pay close attention to customer reviews to get the real scoop about the quality of the fabric.

Washability

Bandanas will definitely get grubby quite quickly. As they are made of porous and absorbing materials like polyester and cotton, they will suck up the dirt of the day. Mud, water, slobber, sweat - it’s all in the mix. Therefore, you want a product that is possible to clean easily and frequently. Machine washable bandanas are the best. If the bandanas are made of a finer material like wool or acrylic, they may need to be washed by hand and dried naturally.

Some bandanas will cope in the dryer but it’s not advised. Particularly with really cheap bandanas. It shouldn’t take long for cotton or polyester bandanas to air dry.

Ease of wear

The beauty of bandanas is that they are so easy for dogs to wear without being irritated by them. The sizing certainly comes into play here but also the way it is worn. If you have a highly active pup, you may prefer the bandana-collar style as then the bandana won’t fly off while they are playing. If your dog is more relaxed, a classic tie-on bandana will probably be fine.

In any and all cases, you want the fabric to be lightweight and non-irritating.

Design

This is the fun bit! The design is where you can show your personality and that of your lovable canine to the world. Perhaps you have a fancy Chihuahua with a regal disposition - a luxury tartan print would be perfect. Maybe you like the classic paisley style in an assortment of colours. Whatever style you can dream of surely exists. You can also get multipacks of bandanas with various styles to mix up your dog’s wardrobe whenever you feel like it.


Best Bandanas For Dogs Reviewed

Now we have fully dissected the ins and outs of dog bandanas, let’s talk about the best options on the market for you and your pup. Below we have a wide range of colours, styles, shapes and sizes. There is a “best overall” but really, it depends on you and your dog’s style which will suit them best. Happy shopping!

#1: Best Overall: OFPUPPY Dog Bandana Collar

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  • Versatile
  • Easy to wear 
  • Durable materials
  • Classic design

Picture a classic bandana. Do you see the paisley pattern? The simple colours? The easy triangular shape?

That’s what you get with the Ofpuppy bandana collar pack! This bundle of cute bandana-collars is versatile and very budget-friendly. They give that classic bandana look without the fuss of tying it onto your dog.

As it is a collar style, you simply clip on the collar as you normally would and the bandana comes attached. You can always detach the bandana from the main collar whenever it gets grubby.

The fabric of the cloth itself is a blend of heavy-duty polyester and cotton. This combination is super durable, withstanding all kinds of wear and tear, rough and tumble.

The durable, nylon woven collars are suitable for dogs of neck girths of 23cm - 44cm. That is an impressive range that suits a wide breadth of dog breeds. We love to see it.

The pack comes with 4 bandana collars that you can use interchangeably or with your multiple dogs at home. There are four different colours: black, red, blue and pink.

The cherry on the cake is the rope toy that the manufacturer gives you for free. It may not be the best rope toy for serious chewers and large dogs, but it will certainly keep a puppy happy for hours!

All in all, this set is cost-effective, stylish and versatile - what more could you want!

Pros

Cons

  • Versatile
  • None
  • Easy to wear 
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  • Durable materials
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  • Classic design
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#2: Budget-friendly Pick: Frienda 10 Piece Puppy Bandana Set

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  • Unique designs
  • Soft, breathable fabric
  • Good sizing
  • Simple to put on

The ultimate budget-friendly pick in this category is the Frienda bundle. This pack comes with ten - yes 1-0 - bandanas of different styles and patterns.

Moving away from the more traditional paisley styles, the Frienda set is all about tropical fruit and leaf patterns. Style your dog with watermelons, pineapples and flamingoes for a super flamboyant look.

These summery bandanas are comfortable to wear in a simple bib-like style. They are made of imperishable cotton flannel material that feels premium to the touch. Lightweight and itch-free, these bandanas will suit any dog.

As for sizing, the bandanas measure 62 x 43 x 43 cm. This is great for most small to medium dogs. Large and extra-large dogs may struggle here.

For a brighter more unique style with excellent value for money, we highly recommend the Frienda 10 piece set.

Pros

Cons

  • Unique designs
  • Not suitable for extra-large or extra-small dogs
  • Soft, breathable fabric
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  • Good sizing
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  • Simple to put on
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#3: Best Luxury Dog Bandanas: ARING PET Dog Bandana

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  • Wide size range
  • 6 beautiful designs
  • 100% cotton
  • Easy to clean

Onto the more premium quality bandanas out there. We love the Aring Pet range. Aring Pet does fabulous high-quality products for dogs and this selection of bandanas are no different.

There are six styles to choose from: dusky grey polka dot, light blue flamingo, tropical leaf, navy plaid, black with roses and dusky grey with stars. There is something for everyone here.

Adding onto the style, the sizing is just as universal and wide-ranging. The Small size measures 58cm × 40.6cm × 40.6cm. This will suit most small to medium dogs. The large and extra-large breeds are covered by the Large model. This measures 76.2cm × 53.3cm × 53.3cm.

For this price point, you expect quality. 100% cotton fabric is used for durability, softness and ease of cleanliness. You’ll have no problem putting these in the washing machine on a gentle, cold cycle.

Best of all, Aring Pet has a manufacturer’s guarantee in case you aren’t satisfied with the product.

Overall, beauty comes at a price but this is the cream of the crop!

Pros

Cons

  • Wide size range
  • Mixed reviews
  • 6 beautiful designs
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  • 100% cotton
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  • Easy to clean
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#4: Best Bandana Collars: Gyapet Bandana Collar for Small Dogs

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  • Durable
  • Comes with two collars
  • Great designs

The Gyapet bandana-collar sets are rather fabulous. Though the Ofpuppy range is classic and budget-friendly, the Gyapet range takes it a step beyond, with cool designs and more of a high-end look.

The set comes with two collars. One with a bandana and one with a bowtie - both in the same pattern.

The collar itself is PU leather and the fabric is polyester and cotton blend. Both durable materials that should last the test of time.

There are 11 designs in total, ranging from floral prints to camo.

In terms of sizing, these are the perfect bandana-collars for puppies or small dogs. Medium and large dogs are better off with other models.

As for the price point, it’s is quite reasonable considering you get two different collars included in the pack.

The only con here is the attached bandana. Though that could be seen as a pro as the bandana won’t get lost easily, it can’t be removed for cleaning. This means you need to take off the entire collar to clean the fabric bandana regularly. It also means you can’t wash this in the machine. Hand wash only I’m afraid.

If you can look past the inconvenience and enjoy the fabulous patterns, this is a great option for your puppy!

Pros

Cons

  • Durable
  • Only suitable for puppies and small dogs
  • Comes with two collars
  • The bandana cannot be detached
  • Great designs
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#5: Best Novelty: Fuzzyard Bel Air Bandana

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  • Cool design
  • Reversible design
  • Good price point

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s the Fresh Prince of Bel Air.

Perhaps not the most obvious novelty bandana, like batman, superman, or spiderman, but who wants to be basic. This Fresh Prince of Bel Air bandana has a 90s cool factor that cannot be replicated.

This is a reversible bandana with two original patterns printed on each side. Unleash your creativity in folding the bandana in different ways to show one or both sides at once.

It is made of polyester with pressed metal studs that should hold up to a gentle wash cycle or hand washing.

In terms of sizing, you have two options to choose from. The Small/Medium measures 18cm x 12.5cm. The Medium/Large measures 23cm x 14.5cm. This isn’t a particularly wide range. You may struggle with extra-large dogs.

If it’s the right fit, this is a very retro bandana with a good price point.

To end this review, I want to fully appreciate the ingenious writer who wrote the description of this bandana. It reads:

“Now this is a story all about how your dog's life got flipped turned upside down. If you'd like to take a minute just sit right there and we'll tell you how cool your dog will be wearing the Bow Tie of Bel Air.

Yes, I did that from memory. Yes, you should be impressed.”

I am very impressed - brava.

Pros

Cons

  • Cool design
  • Large size is not very large
  • Reversible design
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  • Good price point
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The Final Verdict: Best Dog Bandanas Australia

For the classic bandana look, the Ofpuppy pack is pretty fabulous. The bandana collar style will stay clipped to your dog so you don’t have to worry about how to tie on the bandana or the fear it may get lost. The colours are vibrant and the pattern is timeless.

For a more elevated, luxury look, we love the Aring Pet Bandana. It is super stylish and made of premium quality 100% cotton. The fact it comes in such a wide size range is also pretty fabulous! No dog left behind.

FAQ

How do you tie a bandana on a dog?

You tie on a bandana around your dog’s neck. There are a few variations of how you can do this. You can tie it with the bulk of the fabric towards the front of your dog’s chest like a bib. Alternatively, you can tie it with the fabric falling on their back like a cape.

Within those two main ways of tying, you can fold the bandana in cool ways to create interesting shapes. As long as the bandana isn’t tied too tight or the shape too bulky, you can get creative here.

Bandana-collars are clipped on like regular collars. To fit the collar correctly you need to follow the rule of two. You should be able to slip two of your fingers in between the collar and your dog’s neck comfortably and snuggly. If you can’t get your fingers in at all, it is too tight. If you can fit your whole hand in, it is too loose.

What size of dog bandana do you need?

First, identify your dog’s collar size.

“You will want to use a cloth measuring tape to figure out the circumference of their neck.

Generally speaking, to get the collar size from this measurement, add 1 inch for small breeds (that weigh less than 10 pounds), 2 inches for medium-sized dogs and 3 inches for large breeds (that weigh over 80 pounds). These additional inches ensure that the collar will not be too tight on your pet, which can cause pain or injury.” writes Jet Perreault for Petful. (4)

After determining the collar size, bear in mind that bandanas require extra fabric to tie it on properly or even create a cool shape. So I would add an extra 2-4 inches to the determined collar size to get the minimum bandana length. Remember that it is always best to have too much fabric than too little!

References:
  1. Horwitz, D & Landsberg, G. “Separation Anxiety in Dogs”.  VCA Animal Hospitals. Retrieved March 21, 2021.  https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/separation-anxiety-in-dogs
  2. Eckstein, S. “Pet Behavior Problems: Can Pheromones Help?”. PetMD. Retrieved March 21, 2021. https://pets.webmd.com/features/pet-pheromone-products-for-behavior-problems#2
  3. Fisher, A. May 28, 2018. “Don't dress up dogs and cats for Facebook, Instagram: RSPCA” ABC News. Retrieved March 21, 2021. https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-28/dressing-up-animals-for-social-media-cute-or-cruel/9796902
  4. Perreault, J. September 26, 2013. “How to Choose the Correct Collar Size for Your Dog”. Petful. Retrieved March 21, 2021. https://www.petful.com/pet-products/choose-right-size-dog-collar/
Olivia De Santos

Olivia is a professional writer and animal lover. She loves spending time with her Podengo and Flat Coated Retriever, and writing pieces to help people to be better dog owners

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