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Inflatable, split Elizabethan collar

Image Number 4 for United States Patent #6659046.

An Elizabethan collar is circular in shape having an outer periphery. A central aperture forms an opening for the animal's head. The collar is inflatable, either having a valve filling the collar or a circular bladder placed within the collar and having a valve extending through the cover of the collar for access by the user. In addition to being inflatable, a foam layer may be provided in the collar or the collar may be permanently preinflated without a valve. With the provision of a valve, the foam can be compressed and the valve closed. With the valve closed, the foam will not re-expand until the user opens the valve. This allows the collar to assume a compact configuration when not in use. The collar can be split from the inner periphery formed by the central aperture to the outer periphery of the collar. The two edges formed by the split are joined to one another. The split allows the collar to be put around the animal's neck without sliding the collar over the animal's head. The collar is secured to the animal by a shawl having a drawstring.

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