How to Make a Paracord Dog Collar Using the Seesaw Knot




About: I love to make things & work with my hands. I mostly make stuff for dogs and sometimes I dabble with recipes, too. Right now I'm in the process of setting up a DIY blog for pet lovers.

I just love using paracord! it`s lightweight, sturdy & virtually indestructable! This ìble will show you how to make a `manly`collar for your dog using paracord and the seesaw knot. This knotting technique can also be used to make a dog leash, bracelet, belt or anything else that you see fit.

You can see other cool tutorials like this one, on my blog, Bloggie Stylish

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Step 1: Tools & Supplies

You’ll need a few basic tools to make this project. A C-clamp, hemostat clamps, scissors, a lighter, a flexible measuring tape, a 3/4″ plastic snap and D-ring and paracord.

Parachute cord shrinks by 10% when it gets wet, so it is essential to preshrink it.To preshrink the cord, soak it in hot water for 5 minutes and then hang it to dry. You can also dry the paracord in a dryer, if you wish. Just put it in a pillowcase, knot closed and dry for 20 minutes or so.

First, you have to measure your dog’s neck. Choose a place on the neck where you would like the collar to sit & measure snugly with the flexible measuring tape. Then add an inch or two for the dog’s comfort.

To determine how much paracord you will need for your project, take the neck measurement and multiply by four. Jersey’s neck measurement was 18″ X 4 = 72″. So I will need TWO strands of paracord that are EACH 72″ long.


Step 2: Putting the Cords and D-ring on the Snap

Fold your cords in half and run each of them through the end of the snap that has the single slot. Now run the D-ring through the cords and place close to the snap. you will now run the loose ends of the cord through the loops of cord that are sticking out of bottom of the snap. Pull the cords tight so that the loops are tight

Step 3: Clamping the Snap

Clamp the snap down onto a steady surface like a table. This will keep the snap steady and you will be able to put tension on the cords when you are knotting.

Step 4: The First Knot

To make the seesaw knot, we will be knotting alternating half-hitch knots. Take the first colour of cords, bring it behind the second set of cords and through the loop that you have just created. Gently tighten up your knot. Don’t tighten too much or your knot work will begin to twist.

Step 5: The Second Knot

You will now take the second colour of cords and make a half-hitch in the OPPOSITE direction.

Step 6: The Third Knot

Take the first colour of cord and make a knot in the same direction as you did with knot 1. Keep knotting in alternate directions until you make a knotted cord two inches less than your final measurement. Don’t forget to take the snap into account when taking your measurement. I stopped knotting at 16″

Step 7: Attaching the Loose Cords to the Snap

Run your loose cords through the double slotted end of the cord and leave a one inch length of cord from the end of your knotting work

Step 8: Finishing the Cord Ends Part One

Take two cords of different colours, run then around the front and through the top of the loop that you have created on the back side of the collar. The second picture is how the front of the collar looks

Lay the cords that did not make the knot flat against the backside of the collar. Tighten the knot as much as it will go

Step 9: Finishing the Cord Ends Part Two

This is where your hemostat clamp comes in handy. If you don’t have a hemostat, that’s okay. This knotting work isn’t really tight, so a pair of needle nose pliers will work just fine. Find where the turquoise cord passes under a blue cord. Pass the hemostat underneath the blue cord, grasp the turquoise cord with the hemostats and pull through. Repeat this with the blue cord. Do this "back knotting" one more time . Now stretch the collar out with your handsto let the cords `settle` and trim the cords as close as you can to the collar.

Step 10: Melting the Cord Ends

*NOTE* hot plastic isn’t fun and can burn you pretty bad! Use caution when melting the cord ends!!

You will notice in this picture that the turquoise set of cords are melted and the blue cords are cut and ready to be melted. Take your lighter and place the flame as close as you can to the cut cords. You really need them to get nice and melty. When the cord ends turn brown and get bubbly, take the flat side of your scissors and press the hot cord onto the collar. You might have to have another pass with the lighter if the cords haven’t fused properly. When both ends are melted, they’ll look like the second picture

Step 11: Put It on Your Dog!

I know, Jersey looks like a hostage victim, but doesn`t she look awesome! I think that she was trying to blink SOS at Sean with her eyes when I was taking the pic :)  Enjoy your spanky new collar and if it gets dirty or smelly, just toss it in the washing machine and dry in the dryer.

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    20 Discussions


    2 years ago

    U need to be able to do this colar and lease and able to hook tags for a service dog but also completely eithout metal. Its easier in airports without metal. .can anyone help?

    2 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    Go on e-bay. They have all the parts you need in plastic.


    5 years ago

    Great instructions. I have a question though: I wanted to make a 22" collar, I measured out 88" of cord, but my collar only turned out to be 12". Any suggestions?


    6 years ago on Step 3

    Alternatively, you can clamp it to a door, so the cord(s) fall straight (and untwist) when you aren't working with them, so the knots will lay straighter.


    9 years ago on Step 9

    since you wait until the last step to burn the ends, tightly winding some scotch tape around the ends should work. i use this of my shoes when the aglets wear off...

    1 reply

    I know your post is like 3 years old, but if you don't know this you need to know it...

    Play with heat shrink tubing... Works awesome for rope ends and aglet replacements!


    8 years ago on Step 11

    is that slap hard enough to hold the dog ? i have APBT and he is pulling like bull.

    1 reply

    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    If it's made out of paracord, (one length of paracord can hold 550 lbs. [In weight] ) But then again any knot in any length of cord or rope deduces it's strength by 50%


    8 years ago on Step 11

    whouldint it choke her in the rain


    9 years ago on Step 10

    I prefer a ''stick'' lighter to melt cords, as I find I am less likely to burn my fingers.  I mean the kind you can light a candle with.


    9 years ago on Step 3

    I cheat and skip this step...I am barefoot most of the time anyhow, so I run a large loop thru the other side and hook it over my big toe.....Start off sitting 'indian style' and then extend your leg as you need to. This way I can work anywhere I want.  This is the method I used as a kid when I used to make lanyards and friendship bracelets..


    9 years ago on Introduction

    Love all your instructables, and your blog, almost as much as I love your pictures of Jersey. :)  I think the pathos of dog photo faces is inversely related to their degree of spoilage.  (Which means Jersey is a testament to what a nice life he has!)  Please keep up your great ideas!