The 10 Best Dog Harnesses

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This wiki has been updated 33 times since it was first published in April of 2015. When you need to maintain dependable control over your canines without straining their necks or compromising their mobility, a dog harness is a more comfortable and safer alternative to a standard collar. We've put together a collection of options that will work whether you're just walking your pup along a busy city street or relying on a K9 to help save lives in the field. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Signature K9 36MHU

2. Truelove TLH5651

3. Embark Pets Adventure

Editor's Notes

December 11, 2019:

It's important to match your harness to the personality, activity level, and lifestyle of your dog so you both enjoy outings a bit more. We considered the various ways canines like to run and play when making our selection.

Should you have a finicky pet who doesn't take kindly to wearing a harness in the first place, you'll like that the Embark Pets Adventure is really simple to put on Fido, so he shouldn't fuss too much. Just slip it over his head and then adjust it to get a comfortable fit. It's also designed not to choke, so is a good choice for stubborn pups who love to pull. The Dean and Tyler All Weather, with its large opening for the head and easily-adjustable straps, should also be straightforward enough to put on a difficult pet.

When it comes to summer outings, the Signature K9 36MHU and the Julius-K9 IDC are good choices as they have breathable liners. Pair one of these with a travel water bowl and Spotty should stay plenty cool during your adventures.

We have a couple options for service animals and dogs on duty in the OneTigris Tactical, with its many patch panels, and the RedLine K-9 Yurkiw, which can also hold multiple service patches. If your pup will be working or walking at night, you may also like that the EzyDog Convert Trail-Ready has reflective trim and the Julius-K9 IDC has a glow-in-the-dark logo.

Special Honors

Wild One Soft And Stretchy As its name suggests, this cushioned harness will be quite comfortable for your canine, easily conforming to the pet's body. It has durable woven nylon straps and coated carbon steel D-rings that should stand up to plenty of use, and is available in six attractive colors. With three leash attachment points — two on the back and one on the neck — it gives you a few options of ways to control Fido.

Happy Wags Luxury Designer Heart Crystal If you like your pup to step out in style, this harness might be for you. It's made of Ultrasuede fabric, which feels much like real suede but is actually made of an ultra-fine, brushed microfiber, so it's a good choice for those who prefer cruelty-free products. Plus, it's breathable. It features a real Swarovski crystal and a simple hoop-and-look closure, and is machine-washable.

4. Kurgo Tru-Fit

5. Ruffwear Web Master 30102

6. Julius-K9 IDC

7. RedLine K-9 Yurkiw

8. EzyDog Convert Trail-Ready

9. OneTigris Tactical

10. Dean and Tyler All Weather

Uses Of The Dog Harness

Some dog harnesses are even used in conjunction with seat belts to keep the dog restrained and safe when riding in a moving vehicle.

The individual dog harness is often specifically tailored to how the owner intends to use it. Some harnesses are designed specifically for dogs with disabilities or injuries while others are intended to aid the dog in pulling something such as a sled.

Harnesses can be used to assist with training as well as to prevent a dog from pulling hard on the leash during walks. These harnesses are usually worn along with a collar, and they have multiple rings for attaching a leash. They are becoming a more popular choice than the collar leash combination, as they're more comfortable for the dog and make it far less likely that he will be able to slip away when he becomes excited or scared. A harness will keep your dog safe, while reducing the amount of strain placed on his neck during walks.

A strongly built harness is not only good for walks, but it can help a dog with a physical disability or injury to regain his or her mobility. Even if the dog is unable to regain full mobility, a harness allows the owner to effectively assist the dog with moving around and walking up and down stairs.

Some dog harnesses are even used in conjunction with seat belts to keep the dog restrained and safe when riding in a moving vehicle.

What Do I Need to Know Before I Buy?

There are several factors you will need to consider before settling on the harness that is right for you and your dog. You can get the opinions of friends and neighbors, but ultimately, what works for them might not work for you.

Regardless of what you choose, you want your dog to get some exercise so he's not cooped up in your house or apartment all day long.

First, determine your purpose for using the harness. If your motivation is daily exercise, then you will want something that will hold up well under daily use and something that is easy to put on and take off your dog.

You may also need a harness to assist a dog with an injury or physical disability.

If you plan to use it to train your very active dog, you will need something with multiple options for leash placement and that discourages continuous pulling.

You may also need a harness to assist a dog with an injury or physical disability. In this case, your chosen harness should have a handle on the top, so you can physically assist your dog with his movements.

Secondly, consider your dog's individual personality. If you have a dog that is highly active, you will need something that will prevent him from wiggling out of the restraint without compromising comfort during walks and runs. This harness will have to hold up under a high level of stress to the buckles and rings.

Thirdly, consider your preference for how the harness attaches to your dog. Some prefer side buckles that wrap around the dog's torso, while others would rather use a harness that a dog can step into before it clips around the back.

Finally, consider your available budget for purchasing a harness. There are many on the market that come in a wide range of prices. The odds are good that you will find something affordable that will meet all of your specific needs. However, there may be times when you have to stretch the budget to get the right harness for your dog, especially if he has a number of special needs.

Take your time and browse the types of harnesses available to you. Once you have considered all of your options, you are sure to find the one that is right for you and your pooch.

History of the Dog Harness

The dog harness is an improvement on the dog collar, which has been around for thousands of years. The widely held belief is that the kings and queens of antiquity were the first to fashion and use dog collars.

The ancient Greeks used dogs to protect their herds and flocks, fitting them with spiked collars so wolves could not attack their necks.

The ancient Egyptians kept dogs for hunting and protection purposes. Just like cats, dogs were often mummified with their owners. In order to train their dogs to hunt and protect, the ancient Egyptians used collars and leashes that were handcrafted.

The ancient Greeks used dogs to protect their herds and flocks, fitting them with spiked collars so wolves could not attack their necks. They were trained to be friendly so as not to harm family members and friends, but the animals were also instilled with enough aggressiveness to act as protectors in any situation.

While dogs still have a high amount of usefulness, such as being sled dogs or shepherd dogs, the majority of dogs currently owned in the United States are kept as pets. Dog collars and harnesses are still used to train these dogs to be friendly yet protective, but these animals are generally considered to be members of the family.

It is unclear when exactly the harness came into being, but pet owners now enjoy using it as a simplified means of training and keeping their dogs safe. Dog harnesses are especially useful for military and police personnel who have to train dogs for bomb or drug sniffing and other dangerous tasks.

Brett Dvoretz
Last updated by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as in front of a laptop screen, Brett can either be found hacking away furiously at the keyboard or, perhaps, enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He has been a professional chef, a dog trainer, and a travel correspondent for a well-known Southeast Asian guidebook. He also holds a business degree and has spent more time than he cares to admit in boring office jobs. He has an odd obsession for playing with the latest gadgets and working on motorcycles and old Jeeps. His expertise, honed over years of experience, is in the areas of computers, electronics, travel gear, pet products, and kitchen, office and automotive equipment.

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