Because this is a touchy subject we ask you to understand that this is our philosophy only; we are not trying to persuade anyone or say we are right. We have been asked to make vegan or vegetarian collars many times and rather than shy away from the obviously controversial topic we have opted to remain open about our philosophy.
As the owner and founder of Karma Collars, I was personally a strict vegan for 7 years and many of my friends still are. In fact, I still don't eat beef, funny huh? The reason I decided not to offer vegan collars, and also a major reason I stopped being vegan, was because of the heavy reliance on synthetic petroleum and/or plastic based "alternative" materials. We do not offer vegan collars or any faux leather collars because we are committed to offering plastic free products. In our experience, most affordable "leather alternatives" are often made from non-renewable resources, which take a lot of energy/processing to make, and do NOT biodegrade - thus making them extremely bad for the environment.
All of our leather comes from the American food industry; it is a byproduct and would otherwise be "trash" if we did not use it to make products that last a lifetime. It is my belief that using a natural byproduct, as our main material, is a more conservation-minded choice than using new, man-made materials made of heavily processed plastics.
By making products that last for years and years we are doing our part to keep a bunch of cheap junk out of the landfills, especially a bunch of synthetic dog collars that will never biodegrade. We think a lot about how many dog collars a dog goes through in his/her life and how most of those are made from nylon/plastic/etc. - that is why we have made a conscious choice to make leather products that last a lifetime. Not everyone will agree with our philosophy, and with every choice we make there are obvious pros, cons, and counterpoints. Our decision to make high quality leather dog gear is intentional and we don't apologize for it. We believe that the intentions, craftsmanship, and overall message of our company contributes far more good to the world than bad, and we feel pretty darn good about that!