Each Muzzle Monday post provides an opportunity to celebrate owners and their pets who use muzzles, share their "why we muzzle" stories as well as work to breakdown the stigma that "a muzzled dog is a bad dog".
This week, we are honored to share Zola's Muzzle Monday Story!
Zola is an almost 5 year old Harlequin Great Dane from California.
Zola's story helps show us the importance of using a muzzle for safety while recovering from a dog attack as well as while out in public for everyone's comfort and safety.
Why does Zola use a muzzle?
"Zola was super friendly till we encountered some aggressive dogs at our dog park. After that, she started having trust issues with any strange dog or person she encountered. She barked in fear at any stranger and even tackled strange dogs." Dog reactivity can be caused by numerous things , however in Zola's case, it was caused by a negative encounter when younger at a local off leash dog park.
What convinced you to start Muzzle training Zola?
"After some convincing from our friends, we started muzzle training her to allow her to still do fun things without the fear of her biting anyone. We realized dog parks are not the best scene for her, but with her muzzle, she is able to be off-leash at our disc golf park, the dog beach, and any other off-leash dog-friendly area." The difference that the support of family and friends can provide when making the decision to muzzle train for any purpose, but especially reactivity where a bite is possible, can make all the difference! The fear of judgement and a potential bite can be enough to deter owners not to muzzle train their dogs, however Zola's owners did not let that stop them from helping their pup live her best life!
Were you worried about the stigma of having a dog who wears a muzzle?
"We were worried about the stigma of a muzzle, but our friends reminded us that it doesn’t matter what other people think.
All that matters is everyone is safe, including Zola!
We wouldn’t want her labeled as a biter by animal control or have her hurt anyone. Muzzle training her allowed us to keep giving her the best life possible."
Because Zola's owners decided to push past the stigma of muzzles, they have been able to provide her the freedom to explore, be off leash with dogs she is comfortable with as well as have guests come to the house all while knowing that EVERYONE, including Zola, is safe.
Thank you so much for sharing your story with us as well as the Muzzle Supporting community!
Without you sharing your story, we wouldn't be able to do any of this!