One of the touchiest topics regarding pet accessories is the muzzle. What is its function? Does Rex have to wear it or is it just a useless contraption to make him suffer? There are many sides to the argument, so let’s see if we can clear up some doubts.
The laws governing the use of a muzzle
The law that governs taking your dog for a walk calls for you to be able to ensure the safety of others, to prevent harming people or things, and as such you have to have a muzzle with you, although it does not necessarily have to be worn by the dog. Having a muzzle with you – be it stiff plastic or a soft one – is of the utmost importance in high risk situations like, for example, if the dog has an aggressive nature when it comes to people or other animals it may come across during the outing.
Dogs and aggressive behaviour: does a muzzle really work?
Muzzles were designed to stop dogs from biting. Mind you, a dog that bites needs to be trained not to do so and it is important to point out that muzzles do not resolve the problem entirely. A dog attacks another dog or a person when it feels threatened or is frightened. So, if you deprive it of its natural defensive mechanism by putting on the muzzle it can sometimes make matters worse, increase the level of fear. In fact, when the muzzled dog comes across someone it sees as the enemy, its attack instinct actually increases.
A muzzle doesn’t make the dog less aggressive. While it may resolve the symptom, it does not address the cause. To solve the underlying behavioural issue, consult a professional dog trainer who uses positive reinforcement techniques.
What type of muzzle works best?
There are some public areas where dogs must wear a muzzle, so it’s a good idea to get your dog used to wearing one. There are cage-like muzzles or softer nylon strap muzzles, more popular these days and certainly more comfortable for the dog. The muzzles Ferplast makes are crafted with high quality materials and designed for use by both long and short nosed dogs. Ferplast’s Safe model is made of nylon and has a soft inner pudding that makes it easier to wear. It is also very easy to adjust thanks to the clasp and Velcro strap system. One of its more appealing features is that it is open at the front so that the dog can drink water, but not bite!