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Don't use a Muzzle to Stop Barking

This article will relate to our other article discussing when and when not to use these grooming/textil muzzles. Still, this time we are approaching from a different angle.

Muzzling is a topic that will need a lot more education until they are used appropriately in our society. I am not surprised that an average dog owner doesn't know much about muzzles before needing one for the first time because it is not easy to find good educational articles on the topic. I am amazed, though, that pet store employees and companies selling muzzles continue spreading dangerous misinformation making it even harder for a new dog owner to understand how they should be used.

Most of the muzzles we see have so much random information on their product site and the packaging. I can imagine this making sense from the SEO perspective since putting every relevant keyword in the description makes the product pop up in every search around muzzles, but if you stop to think about them, they don't make sense. To focus on one example, this product below promises to allow panting, but it also promises to stop barking. How? One doesn't need to be an expert in dogs to figure out that if a dog can open their mouth, they can also bark.

Don't use a Muzzle to Stop Barking | Dog Gear Review

This is nothing unusual; if you do a quick Google search, you will find many articles recommending no-bark muzzles while also quickly adding that dogs can still freely pant in these muzzles. While a muzzle allowing a half pant might make barking less comfortable, it will not change the behavior.

The answer is straightforward: if you want to use a muzzle to stop barking, you need to shut the dog's mouth tightly with the muzzle. The problem here is that dogs need to pant to cool down, which is not possible with a closed mouth. They can also start vomiting and suffocate with their mouth closed. They can also not drink and can get stuck on something and strangle themself if you leave them unattended with a muzzle on. These are the main reasons why using a tight muzzle is not recommended for longer than a few minutes.

If you want your dog to be comfortable and safe in the muzzle, it needs to provide pant room which leads us back to a dog barking while wearing a muzzle.

I know we all would love to find easy solutions for our problems, but buying a muzzle will not stop barking. We recommend reaching out to a good trainer in your area to explore the reasons behind barking and address the cause of the problem instead of working around the symptoms.

Additional resources

If you want to learn more about muzzles, you can join amazing groups on Facebook, like Muzzle Up, Pup! and Muzzle Training and Tips or follow The Muzzle Up Project.

Check out another article!