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Cone of Shame

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No one likes the cone of shame. note 

"I do not like the Cone of Shame."
Dug, Up

Tropey, stop biting that! You're going to pull out the stitches! I mean it! C'mere you!

...much better!

In veterinary practice, the Elizabethan Collar (known colloquially as an "e-collar," "lampshade," or "cone of shame") has the purpose of promoting healing of a wound or lesion by preventing the animal from messing with it. It's effective enough. However, there is one big problem with this device...

It looks absolutely ridiculous.

In Real Life, these often take the form of a large white plastic cone, though a variety of alternatives to this design are on the market (the last one even calls the standard Elizabethan collar the "cone of shame"). But the typical 'funnel' type is preferred in fiction because it's... well, funny. Not only does it make the wearer look pathetic and reduces their peripheral vision, it opens the door for slapstick gags like bouncing off chairs, getting stuck in the pet door, or simply battering their owners' shins. If the show features talking pets or funny animals, expect this to pop up at least once.


Occasionally used in conjunction with Animals Fear Neutering.

And yes, actual veterinary professionals have started calling it "the cone of shame" since the movie Up popularized the term (although its official name is the "Elizabethan collar").

Not to be confused with Dunce Cap. If you are looking for actual Elizabethan collars (i.e. those worn by nobility in the 16th century), see Regal Ruff.


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  • In an Audi commercial that aired during Superbowl 2014, one of the "Doberhuahuas" wears one. Since it has a big head on a small body, it topples forward, landing on the cone and staying stuck.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Pokémon Sun and Moon SM007 has Litten end up in a Cone of Shame after a fight with an Alolan Persian. In-Universe, it is referred to as a "Heliolisk Collar" (Heliolisk being a lizard-like Pokemon with an expandable frill on its neck). When it tries to escape still wearing the cone, it's foiled by a fence which has bars the cone cannot fit through.

    Comic Strips 
  • Get Fuzzy uses this a few times. It's called "cone of shame" by name.
  • In Zits, Pierce wears one to try to cut down his mobile phone usage.
  • In Dilbert, Wally arrives at work wearing one, having injured himself pressing two buttons at once on his TV remote.
  • Mother Goose and Grimm:
    • Worn by Grimmy in some stories of. At times, he's tried to keep people from recognizing him with it by wearing a black cloak, only for him to be mistaken for a nun.
    • Chewbacca wears one in another strip.
      Han Solo: Stop complaining, the vet said to keep your collar on and don't ride with your head out the window anymore.
  • Off the Mark: One strip features a dog who wears a cone on his butt. He doesn't want to talk about it.
  • In Liberty Meadows Oscar wears one briefly after being neutered. Though when he first came out of anaesthesia Leslie couldn't find any so he improvised. And Dean gets a collar too after making fun of him in front of Brandy, to stop him from smoking.
  • A strip for Garfield has Odie dream about the rest of the main cast wearing one and being inconvenienced by the cones they're wearing.

    Fan Works 
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic
    • A piece of fan-art sums up best one of the risks with this trope:
      Rarity: [to Fluttershy] Which do you think will heal first: Opal's injuries or the one she will no doubt be giving me for making her wear that dreadful cone?
    • In the story "The Cone of Shame", Rainbow Dash is forced to wear one despite not being a pet, since she can't help reflexively pawing at her stitches.
  • One Inuyasha fanfiction has Inu-Yasha getting ear mites and being forced to wear a cone collar. With illustration.

    Films — Animation 
  • Up is the Trope Namer.
    • The quote comes from when Dug is forced to wear it as punishment for losing the bird he was ordered to capture.
    • Eventually, Alpha gets a loudspeaker funnel stuffed onto his head that causes him to look like he's wearing one too. Subsequently he loses control of the pack.
  • On Monsters, Inc., monsters who undergo decontamination by the CDA end up wearing one.
  • Grandsanta's reindeer in Arthur Christmas wears one.
  • In the Lascars movie, the judge's dog wears a cone about as big as itself.
  • Madagascar: The first time we see Melman the Giraffe, he's wearing a cone and claims to be sick. It's just the first sign that he's a big hypochondriac.
  • The Secret Life of Pets 2:
    • A promotional poster for the film depicts the lead character, the dog Max, wearing one of these and a sign reading "Don't laugh."
    • In the film itself, Max wears a cone for his compulsive scratching caused by all the stress of worrying about Liam. He finds it uncomfortable and makes things difficult for him, like keeping him from reaching Busy Bee from under the table. Rooster eventually takes it off for him, saying that he's "cured." Neither Katie nor Chuck seem to notice or care. Then again, the scratching tic that required him to wear it in the first place is soon cured for real.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In One Crazy Summer, Squid Calamari's deformed dog, who wears the Cone of Shame, ends up having puppies wearing the same thing.
  • In Underdog, Shoeshine is forced to wear one in order to prevent people from recognizing him as the title superhero.
  • A deleted scene from Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them shows one of the heads of a runespoor, a three-headed snake, wearing one of these.
    Newt: You know exactly why you're wearing it. You stop biting the others and it'll come off.

  • Timmy the Dog had to wear one of these in the Famous Five adventure Five on a Secret Trail.
  • The protagonist of A Dog's Purpose is put into one several times during his several lives. He finds it very embarrassing.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Stephen Colbert does this on The Colbert Report while recovering from a broken wrist. He attempts to pour drugs into his mouth.
  • Stephen Colbert again in The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. During the 2016 presidential campaign, he complains that Donald Trump's constant reversals are making him suffer for whiplash, demonstrating it first with a neck brace, and then with a cone of shame.
    Stephen Colbert: Doctor says I have to wear this till election's over, so I, hu... so I don't claw my eyes out.
  • Played for Laughs during a MythBusters build — after cutting down a large metal funnel, the leftover piece (which looked just like one of these cones) was plopped on Scottie's head.
    Scottie: I can't gnaw on my arm!
  • One of the new interns in Scrubs tries putting one of these on a mentally ill patient to stop him biting the bandages on his hands. She is told to stop it. She did this because she considered it more humane than tying the man down, which she eventually resorts too.
  • The Cone of Shame makes an appearance in the third season of Frasier, after Eddie gets into a dogfight.
    Martin: Aw, look at him! He's humiliated!
    Daphne: True. Although I've noticed that if you put him on top of the telly, Channel 5 comes in clear as a bell.note 
  • In "The Cone Ranger" on Cutthroat Kitchen, the final challenge is to make ice cream cones and one of the sabotages involves making the opposing chef wear this. It sells for only $500 because the other chef is determined to leave with $25,000, even though he's already been sabotaged by having to mix his ice cream in traffic cones. He, Kyle, wins and becomes the first ever to leave with $25,000!
  • In the Henry Danger and The Thundermans Crossover "Danger & Thunder", Piper gets "Text Neck" from staring down at her phone for too long, requiring her to wear a cone around her head. Since she can't text with it on, she gets Jasper to do it. Unfortunately, when she asks him to invite a boy named Steven to a party being hosted by her friend Emily, Jasper sends an invite to "Booger Steven" instead of "Super Cute Steven" by mistake, which causes all of Piper's friends to hate her.
  • In Sabrina the Teenage Witch, after one of his attempts to get kissed by someone that loves him in order to get back to normal, Salem is given a collar. He complains that it makes him look like a Victrola... which only prompts Hilda and Zelda to cast a spell on him to make him play music while his mouth is open.

  • Faith No More have a song called "Cone of Shame" in reference to this trope.
  • The dog in the video for The Offspring's "Hit That" ends up in one of these, presumably after being neutered.

    Puppet Shows 
  • Rowlf wears one in his first appearance in The Muppets (Episode 3 "Bear Left Then Bear Right"). Since he has hands, he's later shown having removed it so he can bite his stitches.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Exploding Kittens expansion introduces changing the direction of play...and includes a full size cone with arrows to depict turn rotation, called the Exploding Kittens Cone of Shame. The first player to lose track of whose turn it is has to wear the Cone for the rest of the game.

    Video Games 
  • One of the joke gifts available as DLC for Dragon Age: Origins is one of these. It's the only thing that will lower the Mabari hound's approval rating for the Warden, and lowers his morale when equipped.
  • One of the items sold at the Kimbara Outback medical center in Animal Jam is a cone. Though in this case, it's worn as a cosmetic accessory.
  • Rock of Ages has the sequel's Sphinx boss. Getting in a couple of hits to the face breaks off the boss's nose, causing Cleopatra to slap a cone onto it, to its dismay. This actually works against you by acting as a shield of sorts, blocking attacks from all but the very front and giving the sphinx a few new moves to work with.
  • Relius Clover of Blazblue will subject Jubei to wearing one of these in his Astral Heat. It should be noted that Jubei is not only an anthropomorphic house cat but also Famed in Story as possibly the strongest warrior in the entire world.
  • Runescape: When the Player Character infiltrates the Decadent Court of Meiyerditch's Vampire Monarchy, they can advise one noblewoman to punish an underperforming werewolf lackey with humiliation rather than death. When the werewolf is seen next, it's wearing a cone of shame — with silver barbs.

    Web Animation 

    Web Comics 

    Web Videos 
  • In Super Therapy!, Catwoman wears one in the teaser preceding her dedicated episode. She explains that she got into another fight with Batman.

    Western Animation 
  • Family Guy:
    • The episode "Brian Sings and Swings" has Brian wearing one after being hit by Peter's car. He passes out after Peter fills it up with kibble and then turns it to mush with water.
    • Quagmire has to wear one around his crotch to ease his sexual urges.
    • A Cutaway Gag has Brian wear one of these after he got neutered. Stewie uses it as a mock basketball hoop.
      Brian: God, I feel like biting my crotch.
  • In an episode of Martha Speaks, the main character has to wear one of these to prevent her from scratching her ear mites. She hates it, as it makes things "sound funny", and scares away Baby Jake.
  • The Simpsons: When Mr. Burns' slant oil drill ruins Bart's treehouse (with him & Santa's Little Helper inside), SLH is reduced to wearing one of these while in a doggie-wheelchair. Grampa mistakes him for a lamp.
  • Cleo gets to wear one in the Clifford the Big Red Dog episode "Cleo Gets a Cone".
  • T.U.F.F. Puppy: Dudley has to wear one so he won't scratch at the horrible red rash on his butt.
  • In The Secret Files of The Spy Dogs it is revealed that the device was designed by dogs themselves — it is used by the communication teams for voice amplification.
  • Lucky in 101 Dalmatians: The Series has to wear a cone after falling from a high tree branch and getting stitches. Cue humiliation from the other dogs (especially Mooch, who dared him in the first place). At the end of the episode, Lucky decides it's not so bad, compared to the doggie-wheelchair Mooch is put in after getting Laser-Guided Karma from daring Lucky again.
  • Phineas and Ferb: Even platypuses aren't immune. Perry has to wear one for most of the morning, which is so big that it keeps him from entering his lair, and subsequently, from thwarting Doofenschmirtz.
  • King of the Hill: Dale gets one of these after going berserk from head lice, even falling on the ground and scratching his head like a dog in a circle.
    Hank: Dang it, Dale, don't make me get the plastic cone again.
  • In an episode of The Powerpuff Girls, Bubbles is reduced to having to wear one of these after being stung in the throat by a bee.
  • In the PAW Patrol episode 'Pups Save Skye', when Marshall tells Skye she only hurt her paw, Skye asks, "Can you please take off the cone of shame now?"
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
  • In Tupu, Shoobz's bulldog Dandruff wears a Cone of Shame at all time to prevent him from scratching himself and gnawing at his fur.
  • In the CatDog episode "Cone Dog", Dog gets one of these, and Cat discovers that he can hear people at a distance due to it. He uses this ability to outsmart Winslow at first, but is soon blackmailing everyone in Nearburg about their secrets, and then getting Drunk with Power and becoming emperor of Nearburg, then the world, using the citizens of Nearburg as slaves to build his empire under the threat of revealing their secrets. All the while, Dog is put into cones of ever-increasing size, and by the end of the episode, the cone around his neck is gigantic. He eventually gets out of the cone when he can take no more and joins the people of Nearburg in an uprising against Cat (which involves revealing their secrets - they all wear pink bunny suits. Yes, it's a bizarre episode).
  • In Father of the Pride Hunter wore one all the time. Why isn't explained aside from one throwaway line in the unaired pilot about a rash.
  • The Mickey Mouse (2013) short "Coned!" has Pluto being forced to wear one as well as Mickey attempting to make Pluto feel better about it by wearing one himself.
  • In Bojack Horseman, Mr. Peanutbutter wears one at the beginning of season 2, due to drunkenly punching a mirror thinking it was another dog. He has an additional problem other than the cone making him look ridiculous; because he's anthromorphic, and doesnt walk on all fours like a normal dog, the cone blocks off pretty much his whole field of vision, leaving him with what little he can see over the top edge of the cone.
  • In "Take Your Pet to the Vet" on Doc McStuffins, a dog in the vet's office can be seen wearing one of these. Additionally, in "Liv Long and Pawsper," Doc puts Luna's Robot Dog rover, Liv, in one of these after he starts scratching when she glues his antenna back on. She also mentions that her friend Emmy's dog had wear one once for a few days.
  • In "I Want My Plaster" on Little Princess, Scruff is seen in the cone of shame after hurting his foot. Puss takes it as an opportunity for an amusing game, throwing various colored balls inside the cone. At the end of the episode, he gets a cone too after he and Princess have an accident.
  • On ToddWorld, Todd's friend Sophie places Benny in this in "Itchy Itch" after both he and Todd get the titular itchy itch from itchy itch plants, a Fantastic Flora version of poison ivy.


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