Animal Charity Says Dogs are ‘Scared and Confused’ by Owners’ Face Masks

The Dogs Trust has released a guide for owners on how to work with their dogs if they have to wear face masks CREDIT: RUSSELL SACH

An animal charity has urged dog owners to be considerate of their pooches when wearing masks in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Dogs Trust has warned that dogs can become “concerned” by owners suddenly adopting the use of face masks which obscure half the face.

It has suggested dog owners should avoid taking their pets on public transport for the foreseeable future amid government advice to wear face coverings to help prevent the spread of the deadly Covid-19 virus.

Experts believe that dogs rely on human facial expressions to interpret emotions and commands and there are concerns the animals will not be able to adapt to a new mask-wearing society.

Dr Jenna Kiddie, head of behaviour at Dogs Trust, told The Telegraph: “As face masks become an increasingly common sight in our daily lives, we should make sure our dogs are also able to take this in their stride.

“Without being able to see full faces, a dog is less able to interpret human emotion or our intentions.”

The pet experts also advised dog owners to be cautious of coronavirus being spread inadvertently via the animals.

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SOURCE: The Daily Star, Seamus Duff