There is probably nothing in the world that your dog likes more than going out for a walk with you. It is part of the daily routine when we have a dog in our family. And to do it safely, you need a good harness and a leash, which prevents the dog from escaping and does not allow him to pull a lot on his owners on walks.
Dogs require leaving the house to relieve themselves, to stretch their legs, discharge their energy, and to socialize with other dogs. But you have to take care that they do not hit the road, get lost or can fight with another animal. For this, a harness attached to a strap is the most common option that exists now.
The most important
- When we choose a dog harness for our dog we must take into account that it fits his body, size and needs, and also to our comfort.
- For our dog, outings are one of the most beautiful moments of the day, but wearing a harness tied will make it a pleasant moment for us and for other people and dogs that walk near us.
- As owners of a dog, we are required to carry a dog on a leash in most public areas and when traveling by car. A harness, unlike a collar, distributes the weight along the body of the animal and a possible tug can damage it less.
The best dog harnesses on the market: our favorites
In this section you will see a compilation of the five most popular dog harnesses on the market. In addition, we have summarized and highlighted what its main characteristics are so that you can compare them. In this way, it will be easier for you to choose which is the most suitable for you and your pet.
- The Best Reflective Dog Harness
- The most original dog harness
- The best anti-pull harness for dogs
- The most affordable dog harness
- The most functional dog harness
The Best Reflective Dog Harness
This harness has been designed so that the pressure caused by pulling the animal is distributed evenly throughout the body. This will prevent a possible collision or suffocation of the dog. It has two metal rings: one on the chest to train, as it controls its pulls; and another on his back to walk or drive.
It comes with parts that are reflective to make the animal visible at night. And it is available in four different sizes. Buyers highlight that it is a very resistant harness, even for dogs of great weight, strength and size. It is inserted through the head of our pet and tied with buckles, which makes it comfortable to put on.
The most original dog harness
This popular harness stands out for being customizable, as it has velcro patches that can be interchanged to put the word you want. The IDC-Powerharness also works as a visibility vest, integrating a gray line on the chest strap and the edges of the harness to see the dog even from a distance and in the dark.
It is used for home, hunting or rescue dogs. The harness has side bags, where it is recommended to put identification documents, vaccination papers or our pet’s treats. The part that covers the dog is breathable, while the cover of the garment is waterproof. It comes in many sizes and colors.
The best anti-pull harness for dogs
This harness is available in four sizes, has an ergonomic design for easy donning and doffing, and adjustable straps. It is made of Oxford material, resistant to wear and tear, with an inner lining of breathable mesh material, which absorbs sweat. A reflective nylon tape ensures it is visible in the dark.
It has a ring in the shape of ‘D’ on the back of the dog and others in the shape of ‘O’ on the chest. Thus, it is used for walking and running, controlling the movement of the dog or installing the seat belt, depending on the ring used. Buyers note that their dog pulls less when wearing this harness on walks.
The most affordable dog harness
Harness available in six sizes and four bright colors. This garment is made with breathable mesh that guarantees ventilation and does not harm the skin of pets. It has a ring made of zinc alloy and has reflective stripes on the sides to allow your dog to be visible in the dark if a light shines on it.
It is priced lower than other products on this list and buyers note that it is very comfortable to go for a walk and they are happy with its light weight. It is inserted through the neck and closed with a single plastic buckle. It is adjustable, but consumers recommend taking a good look at the size before buying.
The most functional dog harness
It is a harness without a vest that offers the possibility of adjusting both the neck and the chest. It comes available in various dark shades and in three different sizes to choose from. It provides great general control over the dog during walks and has an internal pad that seeks the comfort of the animal.
Drag pressure is evenly distributed over the body so that in the event of a jerk, all the weight is not put on one part of your pet. This harness features a loop to attach the leash and an easy-grip handle to help you control your dog. It is made of strong Oxford nylon.
Shopping Guide: What You Should Know About A Dog Harness
It is important that before buying a harness for your dog you know the functionalities of this product and its benefits for you and your pet, depending on the model you choose. Here, we have included the most important aspects about harnesses so that you can be well informed. In addition, we answer the most frequent questions in this regard.
Why should I take my dog out of the house with a harness?
When leaving home, you should take your dog insured so that he cannot escape or go to a place where his life could be at risk, such as the road. Therefore, it is necessary to wear it attached to a harness with a strap. In addition, for other passers-by or dogs it will be more comfortable if you take your dog under control. By car must also be tied.
Dogs must be restrained in all public places except those that are already designated for them. You should only go loose in parks where these animals are allowed or other specific areas.
Are all walking harnesses also used to tie my dog in the car?
A dog has to be tied up when traveling by car. You can buy your pet a special harness to go by car, which exist, or you can use the one he already has to walk. In this second case, you must have a strap that on the one hand ties one of the harness rings and on the other is hooked to the seat belt.
Like you, you must wear a seat belt to comply with the law and because you want to travel safely, you must do the same with your dog. And for the belt to be comfortable, it is best that it is attached to a harness. In the event of braking, this garment will ensure that the dog is well collected and that the pull does not damage the body.
Are there people who may fear my dog if he is not wearing a harness?
There are people who are not used to interacting with dogs and who do not understand their ways of expressing themselves with humans. In addition, the same dogs, when a person is afraid of them, can become very nervous. The animal smells their adrenaline or feels uncomfortable with the body gestures of those who fear them and may bark at them.
If you carry your dog tied to his harness, you can control him in such a situation and not disturb other people who pass by on the street and are afraid of animals. If it is loose, the situation can get complicated. Since the dog can also become very nervous when faced with a fearful person, and the passerby will further increase his discomfort and fear.
Is my dog required to be in a harness by law?
It is common for there to be legislation on the care of dogs, although it is not the same in all countries or in all communities of a country. The law must be made to protect the dog from abuse. And to force their owners to follow rules also outside the home. The most common is that the animal must be tied up in cities.
Most laws require the dog to have liability insurance and regulatory vaccinations. In public spaces and places that allow dogs, they must be on a leash. Dogs classified as potentially dangerous can never go loose. And for the rest, there are specific spaces designed to give them freedom.
Is a collar the same as a dog harness?
They are not the same, although they perform practically the same function, which is the possibility of taking your dog for a walk in a safe way. Both, with a leash, prevent your pet from wandering away and from being able to go out on the road without your control, from getting close to a dog with whom it can fight or allowing you to direct its movements.
The harness is necessary to go by car, attached to the corresponding hitch, while the collar should not be used in this case. An accident or a sudden stop could harm the animal.
What problems can a collar cause to a dog that the harness does not?
Traditionally, the collar has been used more than the harness when taking our pets for a walk. However, many experts have spoken in recent years about the problems of the necklace. While others continue to defend him. Here, in the following table, we will see the advantages and disadvantages of one or the other.
How do I control that my dog does not pull a lot on me with his harness?
The way the dog walks when you go out together depends a lot on how you have educated him. Some pets pull a lot on their leash and walking moments are torture for their owners. You yourself can suffer from your back for holding your pet so that it does not go where it should not, that it follows the path or that it walks slowly.
In these cases, experts recommend not using extensible leashes, because they are giving a freedom that the dog cannot have while being educated. Not a very short one, because it will overwhelm the animal. Keep in mind that you set the rules, but you should try to walk at their own pace because it is their time. So don’t stop every little bit.
If your dog is pulling more than he should, stop until he relaxes and then continue. If you can’t get him to stop his jerks, you can change direction and so he will be very aware of which way you are going to take. To perform these actions, you must also be calm. If you are nervous, he will notice and be too.
Is the harness suitable for dogs of all weights and sizes?
In our selection of products, we have seen that the vast majority of harnesses come in various sizes. You can find a harness for both a small Chihuahua and a Great Dane. Of course, if your dog is very large, you will have to take a closer look at the quality of the garment, its seams and its resistance.
For very small dogs, the harness is more of a nice accessory, since if the animal has little weight it is easier to control it. For the grown-ups, a harness is a very useful accessory to educate them at the beginning, since it allows us to direct their movements and make them understand what to do and what not. And also necessary for its control.
Can the harness make my dog pull more on me?
Some say that the harness can lead the animals that are wearing it to pull more. The reason is that it is an element created and used in the past for dogs to transport sleds or carts. However, this market has evolved and there are different types of harnesses, many of them even ideal for training animals.
Therefore, it is not clear that a harness will make the dog pull more. In fact, if you have that habit, you can find harnesses on the market created to teach your pet not to do it. Also, if your dog pulls you when you go for a walk, the harness will cause less physical damage than the collar, since the weight is better distributed over his body.
What advice should I follow when I go for a walk with my dog and his harness?
Going out to the street is a very fun time for your dog, so you have to respect his tastes, although always following some rules that you set. Therefore, you should dedicate the beginning of the outing to going somewhere designated for dogs, such as a park. Give him space to smell the surroundings, play, and relieve himself.
After their moment of dispersion, you can go for a walk together. There you must put the rules. You can allow it to smell or mark from time to time, but not to be a constant and not allow you to move forward.
What happens if I only put the harness on my dog to go out to relieve himself?
It is not recommended, under any circumstances, to leave the house just for your dog to relieve himself. That will make him understand that he must hurry every time he steps on the street and he will not want to advance or do anything else than mark the space. Therefore, your pet’s only goal will be to urinate as many times as possible before returning home.
This habit will mean that when you really want to go out for a long walk, your dog will not know how to keep up with you. He will continue to think that you will return home soon and will insist on marking the ground every few steps, making the walk very difficult and heavy. It’s not his fault, it’s what he’s been learning from his outing routine.
How long should a dog walk in his harness last?
At the time of incorporating a new canine member to the family, we must know that, if we live in an apartment, we will have to dedicate several hours a day to their recreation. Dogs come out to relieve themselves, play, and socialize with other animals. Experts recommend three daily outings of at least 30 minutes each.
Dogs need to discover new smells and interact with other animals and people to get their minds to work. And if you go out several minutes at a time, the dog will go calmly on his walks because he will know that he will have time for everything.
Can I take my dog with a harness out when he is a baby?
If your dog comes into your life as a baby, you have to know that he cannot go outside until he completes his vaccination period. Normally, if you follow the stipulated times, you will not be able to leave until 12 weeks of life. So, when you buy your first harness, take into account how large it may be after that period of confinement.
Puppies should relieve themselves in a designated place at home. Experts say that between 3 and 14 weeks of life, dogs learn everything you teach them. So, it is an important period in education. Even if they can’t go out, you can start putting on a harness and leash to be home and walk together.
What vaccinations should my dog have before leaving home for the first time with a harness?
Whether your dog is baby or older, when it comes home you should check what vaccines it has and give it the missing ones before taking a harness and going for a walk. Thus there will be no risks of contracting diseases. Mandatory vaccinations are those that protect your dog against distemper, parvovirus, hepatitis, leptospirosis, parainfluenza, and rabies.
- The first vaccine is given between six and eight weeks of life and the second is given in the ninth week.
- Booster shots are given at twelve weeks .
- After the visit to the vet, the puppy can now step on the street.
- It is advisable to put a microchip before going out for a walk the first time, in case you could get lost.
Does any harness I buy for my dog prevent his jerks?
All harnesses allow you to have better control over the direction your pet is going to take. But not all are designed against jerks. Many of these designs are simply for going out for a walk. Therefore, you should look carefully before buying a new harness, which specifies that it prevents jerks.
If your dog is very big, strong, or is still learning to follow your commands, you should buy an anti-pull harness. These are specially designed so that, in case your pet pulls on you, the front part closes slightly and takes freedom from its legs. These have the strap attached to the chest of the animal.
How to use an ‘anti-pull’ harness for my dog?
Dogs, especially large ones, can drag us at will during walks with their tugs. But today you can get a harness created specifically to educate your pet to respect your times and speed. The educational harness is a product specially designed for walking while controlling its movements.
The harness adjusts to the body of the dog and usually has several grips so that you control it and you decide the direction. Harnesses usually have a ring on the chest and another on the back to choose which one suits us best.
How can my dog react the first time he goes out with a harness?
Dogs are intelligent animals. They learn easily, but we have to educate so that they understand what we want from them. When you go out the first few times, the street will present many stimuli, which will not always be pleasant. Therefore, when he is a puppy, if you do not see him comfortable, take him out several times a day in short periods of time.
It is recommended not to force the dog on its first walks or expose it to the street for a long time if it is not comfortable. Let him sniff and discover his rhythm to familiarize himself with the surroundings. Don’t force him to interact with other dogs or people. He will only do it as he wants and feels comfortable.
Should I put a muzzle on my dog in addition to the harness?
While the harness and leash are mandatory for dogs in almost all public places, the muzzle is only required on some occasions for most breeds, and only some dogs should always wear it. On trains, dogs not in the carrier should wear a muzzle.
There are breeds designated by law as Pit Bull Terrier or Staffordshire Bull Terrier, among others, that must always wear a muzzle in public spaces. Also dogs that show a markedly aggressive character or that have carried out attacks on people or other animals must, in addition to the harness, have their mouths covered.
The dog harness is not only useful to make your walks together more comfortable, but it is mandatory for many cases. When choosing one or the other product, you must analyze what is best for you and what is best for your pet. To help you choose the best harness for both of you, here we will analyze different aspects:
- Night visibility
A harness must be carefully measured to ensure that the neck opening is large enough to accommodate your dog’s head. And so that the lower part conforms to your body. If it is loose, the animal may escape and the harness may rub against your body when walking. A large harness will make it difficult to control the animal.
If it is tight, our pet will feel overwhelmed and may even have trouble breathing. Almost all harnesses available on the market come in a wide range of different sizes. And each garment is adjustable with straps to make it wider or narrower, according to each animal.
There are many materials to choose from. We can even buy a harness for summer and another for winter. The important thing is that the fabric is resistant to withstand the pulls that a dog, especially a large one, can give it. And the strips that join parts to others are usually made of nylon, since this is a strong material.
This helps the dog breathe and makes sweat not a nuisance. Some are made to put in water and thus keep your animal cool in very hot environments. Also the harnesses made of nylon straps serve for the heat. In winter a padded harness is better.
In addition to choosing one or another material depending on the climate, you have to make sure that the materials are of quality so as not to damage the animal’s skin. Most products indicate when they are created, in a way that respects canine skin. It is a very important factor to take into account. Poor quality material can create injuries.
There are different forms or designs that a harness can take for our dog and that will fulfill different functions depending on which one is chosen. They also adapt to different bodies and shapes of these animals. Below, you can find a list of the main designs that the market offers when it comes to dog harnesses:
- Harness in ‘Y’: Created with nylon straps, normally that surround the chest and legs and closes at the rib area. The strips can be made of another material such as leather. They are ideal for small animals or that know how to walk without pulling their owners because they give little control. In summer they are very cool.
- Safety harness: This model is also called three-point. It is similar to the ‘Y’ harness, but with a strap at the waist that prevents the animal from turning back. It is common for breeds like hounds or greyhounds. The animal can feel more protected by its owner with that third point on its waist.
- Training harness: Also called anti-pulls. They are garments created in such a way that if the dog jerks, you can stop it. They have a ring to hook the strap in the center of the chest, in front; and sometimes another high on the back. It can facilitate the learning process. It is also formed from nylon strips.
- Vest harness: This harness, normally padded and which is more comfortable for the winter months because it covers the dog’s body more, has become very fashionable with the Julius k9. Although if they are lightweight mesh, they also work for summer. For fearful animals, they may feel more protected. And you can control the animal.
There are many harnesses that are visible in the dark. These will allow you to find your pet in case it gets lost at night or runs in low light. When we talk about harnesses created to never lose sight of our pet, even if we are in the dark, we find these models:
- Reflective tapes: They are made of a material that bounces light back towards its source. This means that they only do their job when they receive a light bulb. If not, they cannot be seen. Therefore, to make this type of harness for your dog visible, streetlights, a car that circulates or a flashlight that you have would serve.
- Luminescent tapes: These are less common for a dog harness than reflective tapes . They have a material that receives and stores energy and then emits it in the form of light when there is no clarity. That is, they make the garment visible even in places where no type of light reaches.
Dogs need to leave the house several times a day. To stretch, disperse and relieve themselves. But the regulations require that these pets wear a leash that must be tied to a collar or harness. This last garment has become very fashionable because it is very comfortable, both for the dog and for its owner.
A harness is a great ally when it comes to going for a walk with a dog, educating it, directing it and controlling its movements. And mandatory to hook it to the seat belt when the animal is driving. There are all sizes on the market and you can choose from various models and materials, depending on your needs.