Muzzle or not for eating dog poo

Discussion in 'Labrador behaviour' started by Inky lab, Dec 6, 2017.

  1. Inky lab

    Inky lab Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I feel rather ashamed for even posting this but feel I need advice. Inky is a voracious dog poo eater, not his own but most other dogs. He is slightly discriminating and will occasionally leave some. I've been reading threads for this and know most people advocate training and distraction. He has pretty good leave it for everything else and will happily engage on walks but suddenly will be off to eat poo I haven't even seen. I know it's not a problem in the behavioural sense but I am concerned for his health. Some days he has runny poo and diarrhoea which seems to correlate to his poo eating habits. ? Some blood today so at vets suggestion on chicken and rice and fortiflora for a week. He has a lovely dog walker 2 days a week when I work and she has suggested a muzzle for off lead walking.
    I'm sure I've seen somebody uses a muzzle for Sky but sorry can't quite remember who it was but any advice welcome including which muzzle to get?
     
  2. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Hi @Inky lab ,don't feel ashamed, you are not alone, we have Labs after all. It is @Atemas who has Sky.

    I do sympathasise, as I have recently hit a problem with my Cassie, up till now other dog poo hasn't been a problem, and I have been lucky enough to have a great area to walk her in, but not long ago my neighbours acquired a rescue dog and exercise him in same woods, and I think she eats his, Suddenly she has had 2 bouts of diarrhoea.....aargh! so annoying.
     
  3. SteffiS

    SteffiS Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Ripple is a massive poo eater. He understands 'leave it' and 'drop' but when it comes to poo he just doesn't take any notice. On the lead I've obviously got control but if he's off the lead he seems to spend his whole time seeking out poo.

    I've never had a dog poo eater before and I've found it quite distressing and it has affected my relationship with him. Luckily, so far, he hasn't had too many stomach problems from it.

    I decided not to use a muzzle as I read that some dogs just push the muzzle into the poo and I could just see Ripple doing that :rolleyes:.

    For the time being I'm going to continue with training and hope that Ripple will lose interest in poo - probably unlikely but I shall persevere.
     
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  4. Atemas

    Atemas Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    We have tried two - both by Ancol. First was a fabric mesh one which was ok but currently using a plastic one which we both think is better it has more of a boxy shape. I think it’s size 8 - it took a bit of deliberating which size but it’s fine. It’s black so doesn’t look immediately obvious on Sky. Yes to start with she pushed it into poo but gave up pretty quick. As I have said on here before, I hate it for lots of reasons - we have had comments, even people saying she must be aggressive - she is the most gentlest, kindest, nicest Lab ever. She was very ill a few years back through what we can only assume was poo eating. It took her a long long time to get back to full health so we felt we couldn’t risk it happening again. Obviously we only use it on her daily off lead walk. She readily accepts it going on but was a bit resistant initially.

    I understand you feeling ashamed - I did but actually the health of my dog is more important than anything else or whatever anyone else thinks. Happy to help more if I can.
     
  5. Granca

    Granca Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Wispa is a poo eater too. Recently, when she had been sick after eating poo in the garden, I tried to take action again. Alhough they have a spending area which is easy to keep cleared, neither dog would ‘perform’ if I stood waiting, nor would Tuppence stay out without Wispa, so I decided to put a muzzle on Wispa. I used a plastic basket-type and let both dogs out into the garden. Tuppence immediately rushed up to Wispa and pulled the muzzle away from her face so it just hung round her neck.

    So I can’t really say whether it works!
     
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  6. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    I have a couple of friends whose dogs are poo eaters and they wear muzzles sometimes, however, the thing is, the muzzles get covered in poo YUK! Another friend just watches his dog carefully, but it is a losing battle. I am sure it could be cured by LAT (look at that), my Lab now looks at running squirrels and rushed back to me for the ball. With a fantastic treat you may be able to train your dog to look at the poo but decide to run back to you for the treat.
     
  7. SteffiS

    SteffiS Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    I challenge you to suggest something that is more fantastic to Ripple than poo :D - I feel as if I've tried everything :rolleyes:.
     
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  8. Snowshoe

    Snowshoe Registered Users

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    My input: We met a poor, poor man with a dog who eats other dogs's poop. I felt SO sorry for that man. It was a large off leash area, the snow was about two feet deep and he did not have proper boots on. His dog would smell a fresh offering and bolt through the snow to eat it and the poor man would desperately try to beat him to the spot, unsuccessfully every time that I saw. A muzzle on the dog would have helped tremendously. It would have been difficult to keep the dog leashed but I guess he could have. He was there with a friend and must not have realized what it was like, for him to be dressed in such bad footwear.
     
  9. Jazzmynn

    Jazzmynn Registered Users

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    My concern with muzzles is the area where you’re walking off lead, and if recall is 100% proof.

    Ariel and I walk in a very dense, wooded area, the only place near my home where I can unclip her for a good walk/run. We go there almost daily. Although she’s doing well with her recall, I would never consider muzzling her...if she ever ran off and wouldn’t come back, her jaw is basically wired shut, she’s now unable to eat to survive and is totally defenceless against attackers. Personally, I’d rather pick up sick and diarrhea. Again, i think it it boils down to areas you’re able to walk in. Just my 2 cents. :)
     
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  10. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    Friend whose Lab eats poo is never sick or has diarrhoea, but does if she eats bits of rotten sheep and the odd bits of animal the fox leaves behind :)
     
  11. Inky lab

    Inky lab Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Thank you all for your input. I have been training Inky to leave poo and if it's by the path I'm fairly successful but not when he dashes off to where I can't even see it. I've decided to try the muzzle and continue training him to leave it. Who knows, maybe in 6 months I'll be able to report that we no longer need it and he leaves poo alone!
     
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  12. SteffiS

    SteffiS Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    When Ripple has had a bad tummy I can usually link it to drinking from puddles - OH is especially bad for letting him do this.
     
  13. Pilatelover

    Pilatelover Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    We meet a lady on our walk with two labs both wearing muzzles. They are lovely girls, the first time we saw them the owner shouted don’t worry they aren’t vicious as they came bum wiggling, waggy tailed over to me in a way that only Labradors can do. I laughed and shouted are they poo eaters. She said eaters of everything especially mud. I’m so ashamed what else can I do. This was a while ago now and last week they had their muzzles off. There can be light at the end of the tunnel. :)
     
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  14. SwampDonkey

    SwampDonkey Registered Users

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    That's what Moo is like she can eat anything never bothers her.
     
  15. Lil' Alex

    Lil' Alex Registered Users

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    Luna wears a muzzle when she is off lead down on the beach as she eats dead mussels and crabs, shells etc which cost over £500 in vet bills once! I use the Baskerville muzzle size 7. Luna is a cheeky minx and can eat things through the muzzle if she tries hard enough but honestly it has saved a lot of money in visits to the vet.

    This type of muzzle will allow your dog to pant, bark, drink etc and although eating naughty things is reduced, with some dogs it will curb the habit completely.

    I make sure Luna only wears the muzzle for short periods i.e. on for 5-10 minutes, followed by a bit of obedience training to channel her focus and energy into the tasty treats in my pocket! Then I will pop it back on her and she can have some free play but I know she won't get into any mischief and eat things she shouldn't!

    I find myself repeating to other dog owners "Ignore the muzzle, she's friendly, she just eats everything!!!" and most people are happy with this or already assume that she is friendly and just eats things she shouldn't.

    Don't feel ashamed using a muzzle. At the end of the day it is a useful tool to help reduce these unwanted behaviours and as along as you introduce it to Inky slowly and positively i.e Lots and Lots of treats (you can even smother it in peanut butter and let him lick it off when wearing it!) he will soon love wearing it. As soon as Luna sees her muzzle she knows she's going to be let off the lead, so that in itself is a reward!

    Hope this helps and good luck!
     
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  16. Inky lab

    Inky lab Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    After all these responses, I'm feeling less of a failure, believe me I have tried training with mega treats.
    Thank you so much for the reassurance that he will get used to it. At the moment I am at the stage of putting a piece of chicken in it and he's very happy to put his nose in it!
    I really like the idea that he'll like it on as it means off lead time, what a positive way to look at it, I'll aim for that.
     
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