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So it has been decided on another thread that muzzle training is a good idea...So what kind does everyone use and how do I decide what size to get?
 

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So it has been decided on another thread that muzzle training is a good idea...So what kind does everyone use and how do I decide what size to get?
What kind of training are you talking about? A muzzle is not appropriate, nor necessary, for all dogs. The only time I use one is on our male when he goes to the vet - he hates being there and it is a precaution against her being bitten. I have had a lot of dogs over the years, and he is the only one I have ever needed to muzzle. I just use the standard cloth type, because it is only for a short time......you will have to measure around your dog's muzzle to get the correct size. I use a size Large for an adult GSD male weighing 95 lbs. It needs to be snug enough so that the dog can't get it off......
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I use a plastic basket muzzle. I like it because the dog can still pant, drink water, and recieve treats for being good. I believe Shenzi has a size 6 but I'm not positive on that. Petco sells basket muzzles.
 

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I like metal basket muzzles and I really like Leerburg. My dog needed to have some dental work done and I needed to keep him from messing with his mouth (ANOTHER reason that muzzles are a great idea). A basket muzzle allows the dog to pant, drink, take treats (especially spray cheese in a can, which is great for training), and he can make verbal noises if he feels threatened. If he's trained to use it when you're calm, when he's calm and you're training it like you would any other skill (lots of treats, lots of patience, using a clicker), he won't be "traumatized" as some -- who don't use muzzles, I noticed -- seem to think.

Leerburg helped me fit my dog's muzzle exactly, when I called them. He's a smaller dog, so he ended up wearing a female pit bull size which is something I never would have ordered on my own, even with measurements. They were just so helpful.

I LOVE having a muzzle trained GSD. I know that if there's an emergency in my area (something like Hurricane Katrina, but even something smaller) , I can put a muzzle on him super easily and that will make it far more likely that authorities will let me take him anywhere because he is muzzled and he's CALM while he is muzzled. I muzzle-trained him for a specific medical (dental) need. But I'll muzzle train all my dogs (especially my big dogs) from here on out.

Check out Leerburg.com and do call them for help buying the right muzzle for your needs. They sell a variety of them and the ones they sell are for working dogs (so the dogs can breathe in them). They're not as inexpensive as those you'll find in pet stores, but the muzzle will last you the life of your dog (plus, probably, your next dog...) :)
 

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Nothing wrong with teaching a dog to become familiar with a muzzle. Just keep in mind the vet is going to use the tight nylon version to prevent the dog from opening his mouth if it's needed and not a basket muzzle.

You can still get bitten with a basket muzzle which I've seen first hand lure coursing with my greyhounds. They can either rub it off or get teeth through the holes. I saw plenty of dogs able to pick up the lure at the end and they still had their muzzle on.
 

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A dog in a muzzle can also seriously injure a human or another dog by muzzle- punching the heck out of them with that hard plastic or wire basket. I didn't presume that the OP was abdicating all handling and supervision once they put on the muzzle. It's a tool, not a panacea. The dog still needs to still be properly leashed, still needs to be trained, and under control. Just one piece of equipment. That's all it is.

I've observed that not all "wire basket" muzzles are created equally. We choose the tools that are most suitable to our dogs.
 

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Zoe is muzzled for vet appointments and nail trimmings- she hasn't bit but growls and bares teeth so for safety thats the precaution we take. She gets the tight nylon muzzle only because it is for short infrequent periods and not everyday use:) Leerburg is great and worth the extra money for something that will hold up over time. Just measure well!!
 

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Leerburg has some very nice muzzles, and we have one of the wire basket ones (german shepherd style) - however, as stated, if you are muzzle training your dog for emergency use or use at a VET, you need to train them with the cheap nylon muzzles that every vet in the country uses. You can pick them up at any major petstore. Take your dog in and try them on. I think our nylon one is a size 3, and it fits 99% of medium to large (GSD's) dogs that we foster, etc.

This is what you need: (or something like it, not necessarily this brand)
http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produ...zhKXg2d|pcrid|3777785271&cmpid=PPC-_-G-_-3928
 

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I am muzzle training Madix for "just in case" we ever need it. I also ordered from Leerburg, the clear Jafco muzzle - so I can see what he's doing and he can pant, receive treats etc. So far doesn't bother him much (he's used to a Halti already...). I followed the size charts and it was exactly true to size :)
 

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however, as stated, if you are muzzle training your dog for emergency use or use at a VET, you need to train them with the cheap nylon muzzles that every vet in the country uses.

My vet said that she was fine with me using my own muzzle if I ever needed to (we're also practicing wearing it in to be weighed at the vet and then leaving so he doesn't associate the muzzle just with the vet or things being unpleasant). I keep it in my truck for emergency uses as well.
 
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