A note about The Cuddlywumps Chronicles

This blog is written and maintained by Miss Cuddlywumps, a fluffy-tailed calico cat who is both classically educated and familiar with mysteries. She receives creative input from the Real Cats and clerical assistance from She of Little Talent (old SoLT, a.k.a. Roby Sweet). Comments or complaints should be addressed to Miss C rather than to old SoLt (Ms. Sweet). Ms. Sweet accepts no responsibility for Miss C's opinions.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Review of After Surgery Wear E-Collar Alternative for Cats

A message from Miss C: I am turning the blog over to old SoLT today for a product review. Try not to be too disappointed with the low quality of her writing (really, it’s barely intelligible, but I think you can make it out if you concentrate).

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 Searching for an alternative to the dreaded Cone of Shame

Real Cat Paisley in e-collar
Real Cat Paisley did not like the cone at all, and she was
having a hard time getting used to it.
When Real Cat Paisley had minor surgery recently, we were so worried about the surgery results that we barely thought about her having to wear an e-collar (a.k.a. the Cone of Shame) until her stitches were removed. Well, the surgery turned out fine, but the cone was another matter. Paisley had a hard time eating and drinking with it on (she kept banging the cone into the food dish and water fountain, and she couldn’t really reach the food/water). I started taking the cone off at mealtimes, but I still worried that she wasn’t able to get enough water throughout the day. She also kept running into doorframes and furniture and knocking over … everything. Plus, she just wasn’t “Paisley.” Where was the tortitude?

We thought we had a Suitical recovery suit that we had tried on Webster a couple years ago, but after looking everywhere for it and not finding it, we gave up and decided to buy something new. (There was nothing wrong with the Suitical. We just wanted something more colorful for Paisley.) Searching “e-collar alternative for cats” on Amazon brought us to a recovery gown from After Surgery Wear.

It takes two to put a recovery gown on a cat

Real Cat Paisley on cat tree wearing recovery gown
Real Cat Paisley was able to jump and
play normally in the gown.
I was home alone when the gown arrived, and I immediately started trying to put it on Paisley. This was before I read the part of the instructions that say it’s best to do this while the cat is still under anesthesia! Paisley was fairly patient, but it was hard to get her legs through the holes and tie the ties before she just walked out of it. Plus, as I realized later, I was putting it on backwards (oops!), so even once I got it all tied up, Paisley was able to wiggle out of it. Tip: The gown doesn’t work if you put it on backwards!

After reinforcements arrived, we made another attempt, and with some effort, we got Paisley in the gown, whereupon Paisley tried to walk and … fell over. Tip: The ties don’t have to be super tight! Loosening the ties helped, but it still took some time for her to get comfortable enough to walk normally. Her gait was a bit stiff the whole time she wore the gown (about a week and a half), but overall she was able to get around just fine—she could run and play normally and jumped onto chairs and the cat tree with no problem.

Paisley’s life was much more comfortable without the cone. She was able to eat and drink, wash her face, play, use the litter box … plus, she was much cuter in the gown than in the cone! The gown’s online description says the fabric allows for air flow so the wound can heal, but I still undid a couple of ties every two days or so to check Paisley’s incision. It healed up nicely and without any problem at all.

Experience the excitement of putting a little gown on a cat in this trailer!

Pros and cons of the e-collar alternative gown

Real Cats Webster and Paisley together on the pet bed
Real Cat Webster needed a day or so to adjust to Paisley being
in the gown. The first day, he didn't really want to eat next
to her. But soon  they were best buds again.

  • Allows for normal or near-normal mobility and activity.
  • Keeps abdominal wounds covered so the cat can’t lick them and nothing can get in them.
  • Sizing is easy. We got a small, which should fit any average-sized cat. 
  • Allows normal litter box use. (Obviously Paisley is a female, but I’m pretty sure it will work okay for male cats too. Male dogs are another matter; you have to undo a couple of the back ties so the dog can “go.”)
  • Machine washable.
  • Really cute!
  • Offers endless opportunity to make dumb jokes about “those darn drafty hospital gowns.”


  • It took two people to get the gown on our cat. 
  • Makes it a little harder to keep a close eye on the pet’s wound.
  • Cats that don’t like to have “stuff” on them would probably “freeze” in the gown. Whether this is better or worse than the cone would depend on the individual cat.

For Paisley, this gown was absolutely perfect, and so much better than that dumb old cone. It made everyone’s life a little easier while her incision site healed, and she was so much happier in it. Plus, the cuteness was almost unbearable.



  1. I'm glad you were able to find an alternative to the cone, plus the gown is just so cute. :)

  2. I think it's a fabulous alternative to the cone and definitely something to keep in mind in case it's ever needed. She was so ridiculously adorable in it. Miss C, old SoLT did a pawsome job with the review!

  3. I probably wouldn't survive trying to put a gown on one of my cats. On the other hand none of them have ever had a problem with popping cones off within an hour or so.

  4. Knocking wood...lucky for us, we haven't had a need for cone or gown since Angel was spayed almost 13 years ago, but one never knows, right? I love this little outfit, and try really hard to remember it for the future!

  5. Paisley looks so cute in her gown. I am glad it worked out.