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Best Dog Harnesses for 2020

For a lot of dogs and their owners, simply attaching the lead to their collar is not enough.

Whether yours pulls and you don’t want to pull on their throat, or whether you don’t want to risk their collar slipping off over their head, a harness can help to keep your dog much safer and make your life easier too.

To find out which dog harness we chose as the best available to buy online, read below.

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    Our Top Picks

    Image Product Details
    Julius-K9 Powerharness
    • Breathable mesh material
    • Can be personalised
    Check Price
    Eagloo No Pull Dog Harness
    • Hand washable
    • Four adjusting spaces
    Check Price
    Halti Black Dog Walking Harness
    • Reflective 3M Scotchlite strip
    • Matching accessories available
    Check Price

    Top 10 Best Dog Harnesses Reviewed

    1.
    Julius-K9 Powerharness

    Perhaps the most famous dog harness around the world, used by police dogs, search and rescue dogs, trainers and now thousands of ordinary dog owners.

    The chest strap ensures that controlling them is an easy job, and it is velcro so can be adjusted to give a comfortable yet secure and perfect fit.

    The reflective patches are interchangeable, so you can keep the reflective branded patches on there or get some which display their job, country of origin, name or something a bit more fun such as Hot-Dog, Mad Dog or Girl Power.

    The personalisation doesn’t stop there, either. You can purchase front control belts of you need a front lead clip, or a chest pad if pulling is an issue or you have a very muscly dog. Scrap the reflective patches altogether and instead velcro some small padded bags on there so the poo bags, water bottles and treats can be carries by your dog if you want to remain bag and pocket-free.

    To round it off, a huge choice of colours and sizes means this harness is truly one for all pets and owners out there.

    Features

    • Breathable mesh material
    • Can be personalised

    Specifications

    • Sizes: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, Baby 1, Baby 2, Mini, Mini-Mini
    • Colours: 40+ to choose from
    • Material: Oeko Tex

    2.
    Eagloo No Pull Dog Harness

    Dogs usually pull when being walked. They can be overexcited, they can take a while to understand that their four little legs can make them go further than your two, and they can get a whiff of absolutely anything at a moments notice causing them to dart off.

    But when you’re trying to ensure they don’t do this, and instead stay by your side, you will need a harness which makes it effortless for you to hold them back yet is comfortable for them. There is a large padded area which sits on their chest, two zinc alloy rings which sit on their chest and back, and there are reflective linings on the straps.

    Nylon webbing and a breathable mesh lining will help to keep them cool when needed, and won’t be too restrictive on them.

    Features

    • Hand washable
    • Four adjusting spaces

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large, X-Large
    • Colours: Black, Green, Orange, Blue, Pink
    • Material: Oxford fabric, Nylon webbing, PP cotton

    3.
    Halti Black Dog Walking Harness

    If your dog is great at walking off the lead but needs the occasional restraint if there are other dogs around, or they need some help getting into the car, then a handle on their harness could really help.

    It would allow you to hold them still and secure without constantly taking their lead on and off, and ensure it is safe for them again. It could also help with energetic strong dogs who need some encouragement to stay close.

    The handle on this design is quite large, and always there to grab at a moments notice unlike some other designs which have them fastened down with velcro as to not look unsightly or catch on anything.

    Five points of adjustment mean you can get the fit just right, and a lead clip at the back and front gives extra security and control. As it is from Halti, it can be used with the headcollar or training lead.

    It is extremely easy to put on, and there is a size to suit every breed.

    Features

    • Reflective 3M Scotchlite strip
    • Matching accessories available

    Specifications

    • Sizes: XS, S, M, L
    • Colours: Black, Blue, Purple, Red
    • Material: Nylon

    4.
    Ruffwear Webmaster Blue Dusk Dog Harness

    A walk around the block won’t do. You are off on a daily hike up mountains, around lakes and through the woods with your pooch every day – so you need the equipment to match up to it all.

    Supportive, this Ruffwear model is designed to help you manoeuvre dogs up and over obstacles, with the ability to help them out a little bit if needed. Thin foam lining gives support and padding, without restricting their movement.

    Importantly, it is very secure, which can be vital if you are far away from home but your pooch is a bit of a Houdini. You can adjust it with five points of tightness, and the hook for their leash is one of the most secure of the lot, so it won’t accidentally clip off or come loose.

    The preferred harness for many mountain rescue and service dog handlers who need something comfortable yet will keep them scrambling. A light loop adds the finishing touch, for visibility even when dark.

    Features

    • Perfect for climbing or intense movement
    • Washes and dries easily

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large, X Large
    • Colours: Blue, Red, Grey
    • Material: Polyester

    5.
    Ruffwear Overcoat Fuse Harness Dog Jacket

    When the weather gets a bit colder or it is drizzling outside, your dog likely needs a coat. But combining their harness with a coat can be tricky, so why not buy an all-in-one? It will make your life easier when getting them ready, and they will be much more comfortable.

    This jacket-harness combination is rugged with a weather-resistant shell and polyester fleece lining to keep them warm and dry. Two leash attachment points at the front and back can give you a choice on how to control them, or you can have two leads for extra security if you are far away from home.

    Two zip pockets either side will allow you to place your valuables in there without having to carry a bag, and they are low-profile to keep them secure. Reflective trim helps in low-light conditions and there is a dedicated loop where you can attach a light.

    It is a pricey pick, but from a top brand and will really come in handy if you love to explore with your pooch.

    Features

    • 25% recycled polyester
    • Outer is water repellent

    Specifications

    • Sizes: XXS, XS, S, M, L, Xl
    • Colours: Orange
    • Material: Polyester

    6.
    Halti No Pull Harness

    The Halti is loved by professional dog trainers. They have a range of products designed to help train your dog to walk well, but the mix of stop pull lifting action and front control with this harness will have them walking by your side in no time.

    The unique pull lift mechanism means they can walk normally and comfortably at all other times, but when they pull, the harness will tighten. Your dog will soon realise that this is not as pleasant as when it is loose and will learn to stay closer to you to prevent the lifting.

    A clip both at the front and back will give you a choice of where to attach the lead, or you can buy the dedicated Halti Training Lead to clip it onto both rings for extra control. It can also be combined with the Halti Headcollar.

    Bear in mind that no harness is a failsafe resolution to pulling, however – you will also need to use a combination of treats and vocal commands to ensure they know what is going on.

    Features

    • Non-slip chest panel
    • Underarm sleeves

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large
    • Colours: Black
    • Material: Polyester

    7.
    Ancol/Pure Dog Listeners Dog Training Harness & Lead Set

    You are at your wit’s end trying to be the walker as opposed to the one being walked. The dog doesn’t listen to what you say, and nothing seems to work.

    When this harness is on, your dog will find it harder to pull you or defy orders. The lead attaches to the side, which can be confusing for them at first, so they are more likely to give you their attention.

    Using this with a combination of a calm approach, treats and praise and stopping occasionally for them to walk by your side, and you could have a completely different dog within a few weeks.

    It is nice and easy to get on with a simple buckle clip fastening around their belly. As a bonus, it comes with a DVD tutorial so you can get some much-needed tips on how to use it fully.

    Features

    • Fleece lined belly strap

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large, X-Large
    • Colours: Black/Purple
    • Material: Nylon

    8.
    RAC Car Harness

    Travelling to new places with your pooch is exciting and it is great for them to get out and explore, but keeping them safe in the car can be a big worry.

    They need to sit on a seat to ensure they aren’t rolling about the boot, but they just won’t sit still even when a seatbelt lead is attached. With this harness, they can still make themselves comfortable, but won’t become a distraction or hurt themselves.

    It works with the existing seatbelt so keeps them even more secure compared to having a separate seatbelt lead. The larger surface area also helps prevent any injury by spreading the weight in case of an emergency stop.

    It can be doubled up as a walking harness by simply attaching their lead to the D hook at the rear, reducing the need to swap everything over when you are out and about.

    Features

    • 2-in-1 use
    • Reduces the impact of braking or crashes

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Small, Medium, Large, Extra Large
    • Colours: Black/Orange
    • Material: Polyester

    9.
    Pets at Home Toy Dog Harness

    Just because your dog is small doesn’t mean they can’t give you a hard time when it comes to controlling them, and they can be the best escape artists too.

    This one will keep your little prince or princess perfectly safe when out and about on walks. Specifically designed for toy dogs, it is fully adjustable to get the perfect fit, and the mesh material is breathable so they will be comfortable.

    It dries very quickly which is good if they love to go for a doggy paddle in the river, and there are two lead rings on the back so you can have a bit of extra security or even fasten two dogs together so they both walk nicely alongside one another.

    Features

    • Soft for a secure fit
    • Padded

    Specifications

    • Sizes: X-Small, XX-Small
    • Colours: Black
    • Material: Nylon

    10.
    Ancol Bull Terrier Dog Harness

    Made from robust leather which is top-grain bridle quality, this is not only a strong harness for dogs with more muscle than a champion weightlifter, but it is also likely to last throughout their entire life.

    Bull-type dogs can really pull when they want to, which makes it both hard and uncomfortable for you to walk them until they are fully trained. Even angelic dogs can occasionally pull towards a cat or lampost. The strong leather combined with the perfect shape to fit around their wide-shoulder bodies could be the answer.

    The fittings are all solid brass so won’t wear away in bad weather or with the use of the leads, and a handcrafted finish rounds it all off. The price may be a bit on the upper side but for a product which can last a lifetime, it is a great investment.

    Features

    • Strong leather
    • Hand finished for a unique touch

    Specifications

    • Sizes: Large
    • Colours: Black
    • Material: Leather

    Buying Guide

    Sizes

    The majority of harnesses will come in size variations such as small, medium and large, and perhaps some in between and either side for tiny or huge dogs. There are a few things to think about when picking the size for your dog:

    • Being a medium in one brand/harness doesn’t mean they will be medium in another brand
    • Many give rough guides by breed, such as a medium is for a Labrador – but remember that not all Labradors are the same size so don’t take it as exact
    • There are several places in which the harness needs to fit securely and this may vary depending on design so measure everywhere
    • Your dog may fall between two sizes – getting the size up and tightening it is better than getting a small harness which could prove too tight if they put on weight

    Most harnesses can be tightened and loosened to get the exact fit on all parts of the body, and to help any grow into it or to loosen it off slightly in warm weather or when they get their winter coat. But you should still try to find the best fit and not rely on the adjustment, as over-adjustment could make the harness an uncomfortable fit overall.

    You can read how to get the perfect size in our FAQ section.

    Lead Clips

    The majority of harness clips will be on the back of the product, around the centre of the dogs back. This is seen as the best place to help control the dog, and a sharp tug to get them to walk properly is less likely to hurt them.

    But there are some models where there may be an additional or primary clip on the side or front of the harness. These are great for extra control, such as if your dog pulls or is strong. A pull on one of these clips can feel a bit strange to them so they are more likely to react to the sensation.

    Having two clips can be a good idea if you want to use two leads to help keep them secure, or if you want a double training lead which can free up your hands.

    Fastenings

    The majority of fastenings involve buckles. This makes for a secure fit, as well as making it quick to get on and off and get going. There may be a few which are fastened using a similar way to a collar, but these could be fiddly, especially if your dog is a fidgeter.

    Pressure Points

    This refers to where the dog feels the pull and restraint if you tug on the lead to get them to slow down.

    Getting a harness which has the chest as the main pressure point could be vital. A padded area here will make any pulls or lead control a lot less harsh on your dog, and it frees up pressure on their neck. This is why many people choose a harness over a collar.

    Cost

    Remember that a dog harness should be a bit of an investment. You want something which is going to last for quite a long time, which is even more of a concern as you’ll likely be using it daily.

    The best harness for your dog will also help to keep them secure when walking on the lead, and safe. Some can be prone to allowing your dog to contort themselves and slip out when walking or running, even if they don’t mean to do this, so spending that more could mean more security.

    The price of a dog harness can vary between £10 and over £100. You will likely pay more for a larger dog vs. a toy breed, and those at the higher end may also give you better adjustments, more padding, and more features.

    Other Buyers Ask...

    Why Should I Use A Harness?

    There are many reasons why a harness is better than a collar for taking your dog a walk:

    • Security – Harnesses are less likely to slip off vs collars, as they can’t just slip over their head
    • Control – It is easier to control your dog as the harness covers their whole body, and it can discourage pulling, especially with large strong breeds
    • Safety – Prolonged use of a collar with a dog that pulls can cause lasting throat and trachea damage, especially with Brachycephalic (flat-faced) breeds
    • Choice – There are a lot more options of harnesses to suit your particular dog compared to collars for a more secure fit

    How Do I Fit/Measure A Dog For A Harness?

    You generally need two measurements – the neck circumference and the chest.

    Grab a soft measuring tape and wrap around the largest part of their torso/chest first. This is usually around their ribcage as opposed to behind their armpits. Then measure around their lower neck. A harness sits below where the collar goes, so don’t take this measurement in the same place.

    You may also want to measure the width of your dog. While this is mostly to do with preference, you still need to cover your dog’s core and bear in mind some breeds are longer than others. Weight can also be a factor, but a tiny french bulldog can weigh the same as a whippet, so double-check your chosen harness is good for the weight and won’t be too weak if they pull.

    If between two sizes, always go up. They can always be tightened, but a small harness can’t be loosened more than they allow.

    Remember the two-finger rule as well. You should be able to slide two fingers between your dog and harness to ensure it isn’t too tight. Check the harness is suitable for what you need it for as well. There are some dedicated high-activity models out there, and some harnesses are simply not a suitable shape for some breeds either.

    Can I Leave My Dogs Collar Off If They Are Wearing A Harness?

    Dogs should always wear a collar for identification purposes when outside in public spaces. Even if they are chipped, they need to wear a visible collar and ID tag with suitable information on.

    When their collar doesn’t form part of their lead or harness makeup, it can be kept loose enough to be comfortable but will still need to be tight as to not slip off, or so it can be grabbed if they run away.

    There are some harnesses out there which can be incorporated with a collar using a small clip to ensure that if their harness slips off, they are still attached to the lead via the collar.

    Could you not just place an ID tag on their harness? Well, if the harness comes off accidentally, then you are in a bit of a pickle. A collar is likely to remain on until they are found and reunited. It could be a good idea to put a tag on both though.

    Can I Attach A Go Pro To My Dogs Harness?

    If you like to go on adventures it could be entertaining to see it all from your dogs level. There are dedicated harnesses out there which you can mount a camera to. These keep the camera secure, elevated above their bodies or fastened to their chest and in the right position.

    It could be difficult or impossible to attach a camera to an ordinary harness, as they usually don’t have the correct fastenings for this.

    Which Harness Can I Use For Running?

    This usually doesn’t require a special harness, as it is all in the lead that you use which attaches around your waist or arm.

    But you may want to look for a harness which gives your dog plenty of room to move such as one for high-activity or adventure dogs, and one which is strong enough for you to pull them back without stopping or ruining your running to do so.

    You may also want to look for a double hook harness, for extra security.