Let’s teach your dog to wear a muzzle (and love it). That’s what this blog is all about. We know the thought of muzzles to most dog owners is off-putting. You might actually have some pretty strong feelings about it. We don’t blame you. The biggest two concerns we hear about muzzles are “My dog will/does hate(!) the muzzle” and “People will think my dog is dangerous when he’s really such a sweetheart”.
All of that is true. However, consider this...
Although, the sight of a muzzle might keep people from approaching your dog, it’s possible your dog would actually really prefer that. Biting, when it comes down to it, is the end all of ways in which a dog says “get away from me (or my home, or my human or my bone, etc). The truth is, having a dog who likes wearing a muzzle (yes, you can get them to like wearing it) will be safer for everyone and will make training much easier.
No dog likes having something around their snout controlling them. Muzzles are invasive. Then again, so are leashes, crates, harness and everything we use to keep our dogs physically safe. Just like those other management tools you can get your dog liking a muzzle through preemptive and proactive training games. Make the muzzle more predictable, safe and fun by setting aside 10-20 minutes a day to play training games with the muzzle. We would describe the process here but there is already an awesome blog that has put together: Muzzleupproject.com. They have a superb outline on muzzle training called Muzzle training plans and tips is perfect.
The biggest step for most people is just getting the muzzle. The Muzzle Up Project has some great resources and recommendations for where to get a good muzzle. Tuff Pup Training has always liked Baskerville Muzzles, Bumas Muzzles and Dean and Tyler Muzzles.
You want to make sure the muzzle has a hole for treat delivery so you can use it during training games. You also want the muzzle to be easy to breath in and durable. The style of muzzles recommend above are all basket style muzzles which cover the dog's entire face. Mesh or fabric muzzles that only cover the sides of a dog’s jaw will limited a dog’s ability to pant correctly and take water. We do not recommend these types of muzzles for anything other than a quick vet visit.
Please contact Tuff Pup Training if you have issues finding the right muzzle for your dog.