The Jafco Two Strap Clear Vinyl Muzzle was always a muzzle I looked at from the UK and was very envious of.
It was the muzzle I actually wanted to buy when Indie started his journey with reactivity – not that I knew why they were great – I just thought that they looked the least intimidating muzzle option. It was low cost for US residents, but with shipping it became less reachable for me in the UK.
Naturally, when I got stateside, this was a brand I really wanted to investigate. It seemed like a great option for reactive dog parents, or any who might have a dog who needs to wear a muzzle. I sourced it via Pet Expertise.
And my thought, was that this was a perfect alternative for the ‘cloth’ muzzle that’s entirely unsafe, that’s often used because it looks less threatening.
The Jafco muzzle was purchased over at Pet Expertise by me, and was not supplied in return for a review.
But there is more to the Jafco than just a more people-pleasing aesthetic…
What Do The Metrics Mean?
These are all things there important to consider in a well fitted muzzle. If you need a guide on how to accurately fit a muzzle for your dog? This is a wonderful guide!
Value – Not all muzzles are made equal, this metric is to describe how valuable these muzzles are vs others in their price point.
Bite-Proofness – Surprisingly, not all muzzles are biteproof! This is a way to show you how secure the muzzle is if your dog is a bite-risk.
Comfort – Whilst I can’t ask my testers (Aka Indie!) how comfortable it is, I can get an idea of how comfortable it is for him.
Robustness – is the muzzle able to take a hit? Is it brittle? Is your dog likely to chew through it?
Security – Can it be slipped easily? Is it secure? Or is it likely to fail you? High stars means it’s secure!
Weight – Is it heavy? Ideally we want it to be lightweight so that we can intrude upon our dogs in a minimal fashion.
Treat Delivery – It’s important as a part of training that we can deliver treats to our pups!
Mouth Movement – the ability to pant, drink and vomit is critical when looking at muzzles for safety reasons.
Airflow – the ability to breath is … not really an option is it? But some designs can be more restrictive than others.
The Jafco Muzzle is a wonderful, it’s very well made with no sharp edges, an appropriate cover for the nose to ensure it doesn’t rub. It also clean up really really easily. They’re almost entirely plastic, except for the rivets and the buckles. Simply made, and rather elegant, these muzzles are pretty much entirely biteproof (so long as you don’t leave your dog to destroy it).
The Jafco muzzle is aesthetically wonderful, and a fantastic training tool.
Is Your Dog
If you’re looking for a
muzzle for your reactive
dog, this is just your first
step in your journey.
Changes I Made To The Jafco Muzzle For Indie
In essence, the felt pad was quite large for Indie, so it impinged on his eyes. He was visibly squinting when we put it on and he was obviously less than comfortable. Luckily, the pad sticks out from the muzzle, so, I trimmed the felt pad from being perfectly rectangular to being rounded which resolved the issue quite easily.
The Jafco Vinyl Muzzle In Detail
What Do I Love About The Jafco Clear Vinyl Muzzle (Two Strap)
It Facilitates Communication
This is one of the most underestimated parts of a muzzle in my opinion. But this muzzle might be the single best option for inter-dog communication and even communication with us humans.
Dog body language is complex and incredibly important, and the mouth is a large part of that.
You’ll often hear trainers say “Don’t punish a growl” But I always worry that a muzzle that’s not open enough will actually encourage a reactive dog to stop communicating the lower levels of fear because when they try this tactic, it gets consistently ignored by their humans and other dogs.
So, having a mainly open muzzle, or a transparent muzzle where communication is clear? Then our dogs can learn to de-escalate their behaviour, which has to be a good thing!
Then there’s communication with us – if you can learn your dogs cues, then you can read them much easier through a transparent muzzle like this.
It’s flexible but robust
It’s a little like Stretch Armstrong, It bends, it twists, but it always goes back to it’s original shape. Which in turn means that this muzzle is very adaptable for your dogs life. If they want to dig, or to run, slam into their friends of similar, it’s going to be a lot less impactful than a hard, stiff muzzle
It’s well made
You can feel that this has been made with your dog’s safety and comfort in mind. There’s a little extra room by the nose, there is comfortable felt pad at the top of the muzzle to ensure that it doesn’t rub or chafe, and every cut into the vinyl is smooth, every rivet is perfectly flat. The quality of the craftsmanship on this muzzle is entirely apparent.
Pretty much Bite-proof
Unless you’re leaving your dog unattended to destroy this, then this muzzle is truly effective. Indie is a smart dog, and he’s worked out how to hold a ball through muzzles like the baskerville ultra, but this one he doesn’t stand a hope of doing that without it being removed first. And if Indie can’t pick up a ball? These muzzles are pretty darn solid.
Extra Security Option
This comes in a 3 strap option too. So you do have the option to go a little more secure, the third strap works particularly well when you’re considering a dog who might paw at it and slip it down, up or off.
For Indie? The two strap is fine because truthfully, he doesn’t try to remove his muzzle, he’s been nicely conditioned (surprisingly!) to wear one.
What Don’t I Love About The Jafco Clear Vinyl Muzzle
It’s ventilation isn’t great.
It’s not a muzzle I would use on a humid day. You can see their breath fog on the vinyl really quickly, which is a pretty big sign that I’m not happy about.
Whilst Indie has not necessarily shown signs of heatstroke noticably quicker in this muzzle, my instinct says that it’s creating a semi-permeable barrier where air will remain more than be cycled through as cleanly as it might without the muzzle and could make heatstroke a reality quicker than I might like.
It comes up just a smidge small in my opinion? I purchased the size 4 for Indie, who actually has a shorter nose than a lot of German Shepherds – and the size 4 was listed as appropriate for a German shepherd. Yet, it’s probably a size smaller than I would like, and the strap is almost as tight as it goes around his head.
I do wonder if they need more varieties of size.
This particular model doesn’t have the treat delivery hole – this was done deliberately. Partially because the one with the hole looks a little like it belongs in a kinky dungeon (especially in the black vinyl!) and partially because it was out of stock at the time in the size/shape I wanted it.
They do work with squidgy baby-food treats or with primula cheese – but less so with normal dog treats. Which is a shame.
Do I Recommend It
It’s a great muzzle, it’s fantastic for communication, even moderated play with a dog who might be a bite risk – it has a place. I’d always recommend the clear muzzle over the other options.
But like many things, it’s a specific tool, and actually would be pretty good in cold weather. I would, however, avoid this in hot, humid climates. Whilst it looks great and has some wonderful qualities, it’s not my go-to muzzle.
If you want to grab your own Jafco Vinyl Muzzle, you can get them on PetExpertise.com.
This muzzle is ranked in our Best Dog Muzzles list! See how it compares to the other muzzles we’ve tested and find the perfect muzzle for your dog
Author, Ali Smith
Ali Smith is the Positive Puppy Expert, dog trainer and is the founder of Rebarkable. She is passionate about helping puppy parents get things right, right from the start. To help create a puppy capable of being a confident and adaptable family member and keep puppies out of shelters.
Ali has won multiple awards for her dog training, and has had her blog (this blog!) rated as 2021 & 2022 worlds’ best pet blog!