I couldn't force myself to put the lampshade on my dog after neuter surgery. At first it seemed that he wasn't going to disturb his "area". As soon as a good scab formed (2-3 days), I found that he had licked it off at night. That day, when leaving the house I put the e collar (lampshade) on him that came home with him after the surgery. I couldn't give him his usual "departure kong" and he could barely navigate himself into his crate. He bumped into walls and couldn't even get a drink. I spent that morning calling vets and pet stores (unsuccessfully) for an alternative. I found a no-bite collar online that looked better - basically a 4-inch-wide collar that could be shipped overnight for $30 (about double the cost of the collar). Then I started thinking about covering up the area not controlling where his mouth (and head) went. I went and bought some female "heat" panties. They worked like a charm ($15)!! There is velcro in the back to adjust them- he never even tried to get them off! The ones I got are actually quite masculine (denim and flannel) with a cotton piece where his stitches are. I am surprised this isn't more common. He still looks sort of pathetic but not nearly as bad and he seems much happier- it has been 2 days now and we now have good healing. I felt compelled to pass on this info....
I would be concerned about 2 things. One, wouldn't the diapers rub and irritate the area. An I also think that the wound would not breath as it would being exposed to air to dry out as usual causing a possible "greenhouse effect" (a damp area allowing perfect for bacterial growth). Hopefully these things don't occur, but that is just my opinion.
yea, i went through the same ordeal with louie. he drove me nuts with the lampshade collar and it broke my heart the way he acted with it on. I also used the diaper alternative but had to keep a very close eye on the stitches for infection because they do have to breathe.
there IS one last type of collar - we used it on our pit bull who had to have several surgeries and ecollars were more of a pain in the butt than usual. It's actually an inflatable collar, kind of like a small inner tube floatie. It's got belt loops that you can thread your dog's collar through.
it worked like a charm, bibi barely noticed she had it on. Ther was, however one problem - our other dogs thought it was some kind of toy and louie actually bit the thing and it popped!
Now, louie is 80lbs of stupid, and that inflatable collar was pretty tough so it was my fault for not realizing the potential problem. I would have kept louie away from bibi and/or sprayed some bitter spray on the collar to keep the other dogs from messing with it.
so - inflatable collar is another option, just watch out for your other dogs...