ADJUSTING THE SNOOT LOOP

The Snoot Loop comes in a variety of styles and sizes (see size chart). Each size is fully adjustable so it can comfortably fit your dog, but YOU have to adjust it correctly so it fits YOUR dog. Read these instructions carefully. It may take you 5 or 10 minutes and several tries to get it right. Do NOT try to adjust the Snoot Loop while it is on your dog. First, adjust the Snoot Loop for an approximate fit, try it on your dog, then take it off and adjust again as many times as necessary until it fits correctly and comfortably.

I. Nose Loop The nose loop is adjusted by tying a knot just above the leash ring, or a bit higher if necessary (Fig.1a, 1b).

If a knot makes the nose loop too tight for your dog, use the next larger size halter, or slightly shorten the nose loop with a fold (Fig. 2) and then stitch the fold securely.

The nose loop should be adjusted long enough so that your dog can eat, drink, chew a bone, carry a toy, and yawn (Fig. 3). It should NOT be so long the dog can paw the lower portion of the nose loop into its mouth. If the dog gets the nose loop into its mouth and chews it, the Snoot Loop can be quickly destroyed.

II. Side straps The length of the side straps on the large, medium and small halters is adjusted with metal sliders. The side straps should be long enough to keep the nose loop away from the dog's eyes, but short enough to prevent the nose loop from being pulled over the tip of the dog's nose.

After you have adjusted the side straps correctly, tuck the forward facing free end of the side strap back under the rear bar of the slider (on each side) to lock the side strap length into place (Fig. 4a. b.).

The side straps on the petite halters are adjusted by tying a knot on the far side of the holes in the neck loop. To prevent the knots from working loose over time, put a second knot tightly behind the first knot.

III. Neck Loop The neck loop should be adjusted so that it fits FIRMLY just behind the dog's ears. When fitted correctly, it will be tighter than a regular collar. If your dog has long hair, be sure you do not catch any hairs in the snap buckle. If the neck loop is too loose, the dog will be able to pull the nose loop over the nose. For the petite and small Snoot Loop, you should be able to fit only one or two fingers (side by side) under the neck loop. For the medium and large Snoot Loop, if you can fit two fingers on top of each other, the neck loop is too loose.

IV. Center Strap The center strap on halters for brachycephalic dogs is fastened around the neck loop and adjusted with a slider for medium and small sizes and with a knot for the petite sizes.

GETTING YOUR DOG ADJUSTED TO THE SNOOT LOOP
Some dogs will accept a halter immediately with little or no resistance. Other dogs will paw at the halter and try to get it off before accepting it. Take the time to get your dog comfortable and happy with the Snoot Loop. At first, the loop over the nose feels strange — just as a collar did the first time it was worn. However, if fitted correctly, there is no discomfort with the Snoot Loop and your dog should be able to eat, drink, chew, and play while wearing it.

Distraction and positive associations: Anything you can do to distract your dog after putting on the halter for the first time will help your dog accept it. Use favorite food treats or toys, or take your dog for a walk where there are many interesting sights and smells. Encourage your dog to walk at a brisk pace and allow it to sniff and explore. Soon the Snoot Loop will be no more distracting than a collar. Establishing positive associations with the Snoot Loop is best accomplished by several brief trials of putting on the halter, providing the positive event, and removing the halter for 10 or 20 minutes before beginning again. If your dog tries to pull off the halter, it will usually grab the leash with its paws and pull, thereby tightening the nose loop. Most dogs quickly learn to stop pulling on the leash and to accept the halter.

Using the Snoot Loop with an extendible/retractable leash is helpful because your dog then has more room to sniff, explore, and play, but you still have control.

Restraint: If your dog PULLS to get ahead while walking, simply stop and hold the leash firmly in place so that forward movement is impossible. The moment your dog stops pulling, release the pressure and allow your dog to move forward again. For JUMPING UP or BEGGING, simply apply light pressure on the leash to prevent these behaviors, and release only when the dog stays down.

Some dogs struggle the first time the nose loop tightens as you use the halter for restraint. You should NEVER jerk or use the halter in the way choke collars are used for “corrections” in typical obedience training methods. If your dog struggles when the loop tightens around the nose and perhaps shakes its head from side to side, hold the leash firmly. If there is slack on the leash, shorten it so your hand is closer to where the leash snaps on the halter (closer to your dog’s chin). Pull upward slightly, pointing the nose in the air, holding steady until your dog relaxes, then IMMEDIATELY release the pressure, praise your dog (for relaxing) and resume walking. This should be done calmly, with no reprimands, scolding, or loud commands.

BARKING AND GROWLING
To stop or prevent barking and growling, act at the moment your dog begins the undesirable behavior. Apply a firm, steady pressure forward (Fig. 5) or upward (Fig. 6) to close the dog's mouth and inhibit barking and growling. Maintain a firm pressure (just enough to keep your dog's mouth closed, NOT enough to lift the front feet off the ground) until your dog visibly relaxes. Then IMMEDIATELY begin to release the pressure and praise, pet or give your dog a treat. You are reinforcing the relaxed behavior, not the barking and growling that preceded it.

For your dog to learn not to bark and growl, all you have to do is repeatedly and consistently associate the stimulus (cause) of the barking/growling (a person, another dog, noise, etc.) with relaxed non-barking/non-growling behavior until less pressure is needed on the Snoot Loop. Eventually, the Snoot Loop is no longer necessary for your dog to be quiet and friendly.

IF you tried this method and it did not work, and definitely if the dog is likely to BITE or in any way INJURE a person or another animal, DO NOT USE THE SNOOT LOOP WITHOUT THE SUPERVISION OF A CERTIFIED APPLIED ANIMAL BEHAVIORIST, A VETERINARIAN BOARD CERTIFIED IN APPLIED ANIMAL BEHAVIOR OR AN EXPERIENCED TRAINER FAMILIAR WITH USING HALTERS FOR AGGRESSIVE DOGS.



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