Muzzles, Harnesses, and Leashes

Great dog owners want to provide the best care they can. They spend resources on healthy food, comfortable cozies, and leashes for walking. But many as the question, “When should I use a harness or a muzzle?”

Harnesses are often recommended for smaller dogs. This takes the pressure off their smaller necks and distributes it to their torso. Most of the time, this will prevent neck injuries when you have a sudden stop or need to pull them away from danger.

Muzzles come in several prominent styles including Basket, Soft, and Nylon.

The Basket Muzzle often looks more confining for dogs. However, if your dog has a strong bite that could prevent a nylon strap from being effective, you may want to give it a go. The “Soft” or fabric muzzle looks less aggressive to most people but does tend to restrict breathing a little more. The nylon style is the least restrictive, but also may provide the easiest escape for aggressive dogs.

Some have questioned if muzzling your dog is humane or not. Here are some considerations:

  • If your dog is prone to attack other dogs, having them muzzled is more humane than not.
  • Dogs that show aggression towards humans can easily hurt a neighbor or child when they’re out on a walk. Preventing attacks is an important part of being a responsible owner.
  • Dogs that seem bothered by muzzles may need to be walked away from nearby animals and people if you want them to experience more freedom.

Bottom line: If walking your dog seems risky for other pets, animals, and people, muzzling your dog can allow a level of safety that will make everyone feel better.

As your dog reaches full growth, don’t cut corners on your leash and walking aides. How you care for your dog and your neighborhood on daily walks sets a tone for the kind of pet owner you are. Be the best dog owner you can be and protect yourself from preventable problems.


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