Muzzle - Bad Idea? - Golden Retrievers : Golden Retriever Dog Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-19-2012, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
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Muzzle - Bad Idea?

My golden is very, very clingy. She cannot be without my boyfriend or me for any period of time. I am home every day with her, but I will have some instances where I will need to leave. We have tried leaving her alone, but all she does is bark incessantly. We live in an apartment building so you can see how that is very inconvenient and annoying for our neighbors. I was considering maybe buying a muzzle for her while I am gone. I would only be out of the house for around 2 hours at the most, and I thought perhaps that would keep her from barking while I'm gone. Any thoughts?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-19-2012, 02:35 PM
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I suspect it would scare and panic her... She could probably whine loudly with it on, and that would defeat the purpose.

I'd suggest you search on here and elsewhere for training for separation anxiety. You can train her to relax while you're gone, and there are better tools such as a thundershirt which might help. Good luck. IMO You need to address the SA with training whether or not it involves barking problems.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-19-2012, 02:35 PM
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Very bad idea. You need to work on some separation anxiety methods to make her less anxious. Take baby steps. Give a frozen kong and maybe leave for a minute. If no barking, return and praise. Then go for two minutes, and three and so forth. We had a dog with that problem many years ago. She was given Clomicalm for about 6 months and we worked very hard on these types of exercises. By the end of 6 months she was able to be taken off the drug and she never again had any separation anxiety issues. You can work on it, but a muzzle is not the answer.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-19-2012, 02:39 PM
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Muzzles are not made for this. They do make bark collars though. But I would work on baby steps first also. Start by leaving her in a safe place with plenty of chew toys and leave her for a few minutes. Then maybe 10 minutes and so on until you work your way to a few hours at a time. How old is she?

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-27-2012, 03:14 PM
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If you use a soft muzzle, the dog can easily overheat, since she wouldn't be able to open her mouth to pant. And a basket muzzle would not prevent the barking. Training, sometimes medication, and things like DAP collars can help.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-28-2012, 04:13 PM
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Sounds like everyone is giving up great advance. I say no to the muzzle. If you are questioning it enough to post about it then don't do it.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-28-2012, 05:14 PM
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I also say no to the muzzle. I would immediately work on training to improve the separation anxiety. In the mean time, how about a citronella bark collar? At least then there are no shocks, although it isn't ideal.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 03:12 PM
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Forcing the dog to stop barking does not solve the actual problem of separation anxiety. She could end up really hurting herself if left alone with a muzzle on. You should probably start with basic steps to help with separation anxiety. Don't make it a scene when you leave or enter the room she is in. Pick up your keys and coat throughout the day and put them down somewhere else in the house if she associates those items with you leaving. Slowly progress.

Ideally, this should have started when she was first brought home. But it is never too late to teach her it is okay to be by herself.

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