Updated: Jul 25
An iconic part of a pup's look, they are worn on the face/head and are called masks or faces by some.
Many pups' first gear is a pup hood or mask. However, not all pups like to wear a hood or mask. Why?
They don't feel right
They impede communication
They don't fit
They are expensive
They are not accessible
They feel most like a pup without a hood or mask
You can get your hood from brick-and-mortar shops, online retailers, buy it from a friend, or make one yourself!
They can be pricey, ranging from US$30-400+. Custom-designed and crafted ones are usually at a premium cost.
You may want to start with a low cost one first or borrow a friend's to see what they are like before you commit the funds to buy your own.
Trying them on may help you determine what type you like. There are a lots of different types of hoods, masks and muzzles.
Hoods - cover the entire face and head completely
Masks - go over the face or around the head but leave some of the head exposed
Head Harness/Muzzles - attaches to the head with straps/belts and may fit like a muzzle would fit a biological dog's snout/mouth.
Depending on your head size, shape, and temperature, some styles ma be more comfortable than others. You should always go with what makes you most conformable and happy.
Low cost hoods from online retail giants often are made of lower grade materials and can have toxic smells and off-gas harmful chemicals. If you do not feel well while wearing it, limit your wear or consider replacing it with something of higher quality.
Most well established artisans or manufacturers will be transparent about the materials they use and will tell you how to care for your hood, mask, harness, or muzzle.
Once You Have Your Hood
Take care of your hood, mask, harness, or muzzle. They are investments that can last a long time if cared for according to manufacturer's guidance.
Store your hood, mask, harness, or muzzle on a mannequin head or stuffed with a small pillow, towel, or clothing to help hold its shape. A balled up sock can do a great job keeping the snout in good shape.
Wear your hood with pride. Wearing your hood is one of the best wats to access puppy headspace and feel the most like a pup.
Wear your hood wherever and however you want. Many pups wear their hoods at home, in public, to bars, or pup events. You can wear your hood alone, with other pups, with a handler, or not at all. Wear it every day or just when you feel like it. Do it your way!
For many pups, hoods are parts of our bodies.
Safety is essential. Be careful wearing your hood, as some can impede your senses. Your safety comes first, so make decisions about wearing it that care for your safety and wellbeing.
Consent with hoods is also something to be mindful of. Your hood is your hood. Others do not have blanket permission to touch, use, wear, or take your hood. If you give permission to others, that's fine. But you can also revoke permission or refuse is as you wish and feel comfortable.
It's rare, but it is possible to be harassed or targeted while wearing your hood. Consider where you are, who else might be there, and what your plans might be if you need help. Most people I've met while wearing my hood were positive, supportive or indifferent.
Social Media Post to Share with Friends.
Want to share this information with someone on social media? Check out Cooper's "Pup Hoods" post on Instagram @supportpupcooper. Check out his Pup Posts highlights to find all the pup posts easily.
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