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Why muzzle a dog?

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It’s quite often a misconception that when you see a dog wearing a muzzle that it must be an aggressive animal. We walk several dogs ourselves that wear a muzzle but it doesn’t always mean that the dog is aggressive, there are many reasons that he or she could be wearing one.

We take a look at several of those reasons why a muzzle might be used:

  • Aggression is, of course, one reason to use one. Dogs can become aggressive to other dogs and humans. The most sensible and responsible option is to fit a muzzle if there is a slight feeling that they could turn aggressive. If the dog is prone to aggressive behaviour seeking professional help is a good idea.
  • Sometimes the dog can become agitated and nervous and their natural reaction is retreat and protect themselves which could result in aggressive tendancies. Involving the services of a professional dog trainer would be a good idea to allow the dog to work through the reasons for their behaviour problems and hopefully resolve them.
  • Dog owners many need to muzzle a dog if they have recently undergone an operation or maybe you’re using a treatment like flea drops. It’s the easiest way to stop them licking themselves and causing illness or infection.
  • Another reason for a muzzle, and one that is quite common, is to stop them eating things whilst out walking. The amount of dogs that will try eating old food, berries they shouldn’t or, dare I say it, other dogs poo (fox poo is the worst). It’s not pleasant so a muzzle can be a wise idea especially if eating the unknown makes them ill,
  • Some dogs may need to be muzzled when visiting places like the vets or groomers. Just like us, they don’t like the unknown and visiting the vets for example can be a frightening experience so a muzzle might be needed as their natural instinct is to defend themselves.

Whatever the reason for fitting a muzzle, don’t feel like you’re being a cruel owner. Sometimes it can be the most sensible option. Just make sure it’s well fitting and comfortable for the dog.

And if you’re out walking and see a dog with a muzzle on, don’t assume it’s because of aggression. It is wise to be cautious, maybe give a wide berth but it might not be for the reason you first think of.

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