Number One Review of the Best Dog Harness for Pulling
Welcome to our review of the best dog harness for pulling. In this review, we explain why the best dog harness to stop pulling is essential for your dog’s comfort and happiness, and then we will look at four of the best dog harnesses on the market.
It’s a common sight in our streets and parks. First, you see a dog straining at the leash, wheezing away as if taking his last breath, and then comes the owner, arms stretched out in front, trying to keep some semblance of dignity intact – eyes straining and firmly fixed on the cause of his embarrassment, sweat pouring down his brow. Oh, what to do about a dog that won’t stop pulling?
Once the habit has been established, it can be difficult to break. Dogs love to pull. Ask a Husky. In fact, don’t bother; he’ll be too busy pulling something outrageously large. When confronted with this dilemma, you will need to put in place a long-term training program that will take patience and dedication, but it is certainly something you will have to do. You will need to find the best dog harness for pulling, and that’s where this review will help you.
For the sake of your public image, we will turn to a fix for the here and now. It’s called the “no-pull” dog harness, and we will review the best dog harness to stop pulling later on. If you use one of the best dog harness for pulling leads, your dog will be discouraged from pulling, giving you the time to repair your damaged public persona until you’ve successfully trained your best friend for loose leash walking.
So, what are the best dog harness for small dogs and the best harness for large dogs? There are lots of options available in the market that come in many variations of the basic design. To help you make the right decision, we’ve gathered below a few of the best dog harness for pulling solutions on the market. We also look at their pros and cons and why we recommend them.
Best Dog Harnesses for Pulling
2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull
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PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
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Halti Dog Headcollar
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PetSafe Gentle Leader Headcollar
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How to stop your dog from pulling on a leash
It’s what you’ve always imagined it would be. You’ve made the decision to get a four-legged companion, and now, it is calmly keeping pace beside you, a picture of trust and obedience – you’re in control, top dog, alpha male, the go-to guy – then you wake up, get off the floor, dog leash still in your hand, with big bump on your head. It’s time to do something; it’s time to find the best dog harness to stop pulling and quick!
Walking nicely on a leash is not an instinctive behavior for dogs. Their instinct tells them to pull. Young dogs of all breeds are excitable and curious animals. That’s quite a combination! However, like any desirable behavior, if you’re willing to teach, then your dog can learn.
It’s no secret that dogs are among what could be considered pack animals, and in a pack, there is an existing hierarchy. There are times when a dog will attempt to rise up the greasy pole and dethrone you; it is commonly believed that pulling is just such an attempt.
If your dog is generally well behaved at home, then it knows only too well it’s not the alpha in the house. Things don’t suddenly change when you go outside for a walk. It is more probable that dogs are overcome with excitement and overwhelmed with sensory input when they venture outdoors, especially if they are unfamiliar with their surroundings. The nose will lead them to every place they pick up a scent from, and that’s everywhere! It’s important for building a picture of where they are, as is leaving their mark wherever possible, which means frequent stops.
Your dog will be so caught up in smelling, exploring, and peeing that all training goes right out the window. You’ll no longer be able to get your best friend to respond to even the most basic commands. Your dog is dedicated to the cause and will see no reason to stop pulling, as even the act of pulling itself can be rewarding. Should you be tempted to release your dog from the lead, then that’s the ultimate reward – freedom and autonomy in the great outdoors! Now, your dog knows that pulling on the lead pays off big time. If you can get the best dog harness to stop pulling, then your problems will be solved.
First steps in taking back control
Teaching your dog can take some time, and walking calmly on a leash is no exception. In teaching theory, there is a method called operant conditioning. It basically means behavior is determined by its consequences, whether reinforcements or punishments, with the key to success being the repetition. It’s not hugely popular in the modern classroom, but some educators still believe in its application. Dogs are more black and white – less complicated – than humans; therefore, operant conditioning has greater benefits with the canine species. So, reward your dog when he does as he is told, and once you have started your training, never give up.
Introducing the leash
Let’s begin with getting your dog leashed up and ready to walk. The first time your dog sees a leash, it won’t go beyond thinking it’s just something worth chewing on. Once the association is made between the leash and going for a walk, it becomes the center of your dog’s universe.
Your dog’s training starts now. Teach the dog that the leash doesn’t go on until there’s calm. So back off, and do nothing if the pooch gets excited as you try to attach a harness. Once all four paws are on the floor, move to attach the leash. If the bad behavior continues, you back off once more. Repeat this as often as necessary until your pet learns that the leash can’t go on unless he is calm.
Start with small steps
When starting your training, it can be a good idea to keep the length of your walks to a minimum. The more time you spend with your dog pulling you along, the more likely you are to give up. You need to be in the right frame of mind and put a good amount of energy into reinforcement. Also, your dog can’t focus on your instructions if he’s getting all wound up during a long walk in unfamiliar terrain. Try walking a short route in your neighborhood, and walk it repeatedly. A familiar walk is still a pleasant one, though considerably less stimulating. Your dog will be less distracted if he sees the same things repeatedly.
Types of Harness
The multitude of brands available are essentially just a variation of three different types of dog harness.
- Head harnesses or head collars
- Front attachment harnesses
- Back attachment harnesses
Let’s take a brief look at each so you know which is the best dog harness for pulling that matches your needs.
Head Harness or Head Collar
Actually, these are not really a harness in the strictest sense of the term, but they are frequently described as such and are always grouped with harnesses by retailers. However, they are one of the best dog harness to stop pulling solutions around. The head collar works by fitting it on and around a dog’s head, with an attachment for the dog leash right under the chin.
When dogs pull, the full force of this goes into turning their head toward you. Once their head is turned, it stops them dead in their tracks. So, pulling only makes the walk stop. They soon learn to not pull while wearing the head collar.
You need to start gently with this device and allow your dog time to get used to wearing the collar before going out for a walk. A little training and acclimatizing in the house are needed, although many dogs take to the device right away.
Front Attachment Harnesses
As the name suggests, these harnesses have an attachment for the leash at the front of your dog, in the middle of his chest. This harness is very effective in helping you stop your dog from pulling! Given that the leash is attached to the front of the dog, when he pulls, the leash tugs his chest toward the side, thereby turning the dog toward you and not allowing him to move forward. Like the head harnesses, the dog gets turned. The aim is to go straight ahead so that if it turns him, your pet will stop immediately. A dog soon learns that he only gets to go forward if he does not pull.
It should be noted that it is not a good idea to use a front attaching harness if you plan to run or jog with your dog. Front attaching harnesses are for walking only. The straps can become tangled around you and your dog. If you want to run with your dog, then use a back attaching harness instead.
Back Attachment Harnesses
This harness is attached on the back of the dog, sitting right behind the shoulder blades. Back attachment harnesses are used if you need or prefer to take pressure away from a dog’s neck, perhaps if he is recovering from an operation or if you just don’t like a leash around your dog’s neck. These are a good choice if you like to go jogging with your dog. You can attach your dog leash to your belt, and it clips handily onto the back of your dog so it isn’t in the way while jogging. So, these harnesses are great if you want to jog but terrible if your dog likes to pull! Do not use this harness when training your dog to stop pulling.
With the dog leash attached to your pet’s back, it can encourage pulling, just like a Husky. It feels good to a dog, as he would like to oppose the pulling from behind with more pulling from the front. Avoid this if your dog is a puller.
Have a look at some of our best dog harness for small dogs and best harness for large dogs that like pulling candidates.
2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness & Leash
Make leash training a walk in the park with the Freedom No Pull Harness. It’s a multi-purpose harness with many great features, and that’s why it’s our best dog harness for pulling top pick.
It has a martingale loop on the back, so you can attach a leash to the rear, and if your dog pulls, it puts gentle pressure on his chest and discourages pulling by what’s known as the “opposition reflex.” This is the reflex that encourages dogs to pull against pressure caused by traditional harnesses. You can use this attachment if you want to go jogging.
The more effective no-pull solution is the attachment for a leash on the chest that will gently steer your dog if he begins to pull. You can attach a leash to the back, to the front, or even both to give yourself different levels of control depending on the situation. The harness has a soft velvet lining to ensure it’s comfortable for your dog and to prevent friction sores, often seen when using other harnesses.
If your dog damages the harness, the manufacturer will replace, free of charge, two chewed straps.
The harness is available in sizes all the way from XS to XXL, making it the best dog harness for small dogs and the best harness for large dogs. It is available in a wide array of different colors and styles, so it’s suitable for all owner types! It currently comes with a step-by-step training guide to help you stop your dog from pulling.
● Included double connection training leash provides two points of contact with your dog, allowing you to steer your dog from the front connection.
● Patented design reduces twisting, straining, and pulling, thus providing a more enjoyable experience for you and your dog.
● Improves communication and training while out for a walk and helps to redirect your dog’s attention.
● Stainless steel hardware and heavy-duty nylon with Swiss velvet lining behind front legs to prevent rubbing and chafing. Good for dogs of all weights.
● Made in the USA with four points of adjustability to fit any dog body shape or type.
Available in an array of colors and styles, this harness is multi-purpose, has a ton of great features and is effective at discouraging pulling.
PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
Want to stop your dog from pulling on the leash? Sounds like a dream! Enjoy pull-free walks around the block with the PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness. The front of chest attaching harness is the best dog harness for pulling, giving you the ability to gently steer your dog to the side, stop his pulling, and redirect his attention toward you when he pulls. The placement of the leash attachment ensures this happens automatically when he pulls, therefore teaching him not to pull while walking.
It applies stress across the shoulders and not the neck or throat, making it safer and less stressful than many other solutions available. That means stress-free walking for you and your pooch.
Made from strong and durable nylon webbing, with quick release snap attachments, it allows for easy access. You won’t have to struggle to get your pet’s front legs out of the harness.
Available in eight different sizes for different girths and seven colors, this is a wise choice if you are looking for the best dog harness for small dogs or the best harness for large dogs. It’s fantastic value at nearly half the price of the freedom no pull harness.
● Discourages dogs from pulling on the leash, thus making walking stress free for you and your dog.
● Quick-snap buckles can be found behind the shoulder and belly straps enable you to easily take it on and off. The belly strap is a different color, making it easy to tell which strap goes where.
● Martingale loop on the chest attachment prevents twisting, with four adjustment points to provide maximum comfort.
● Ideal for training dogs to walk without pulling on a leash.
● Chest strap rests across your dog’s chest instead of putting pressure on the throat, so there’s no choking, gagging, or wheezing.
This harness is made of strong and durable nylon webbing and is easy to use. The leash is placed in a way that automatically redirect your dog's attention towards you when he starts pulling.
Halti Dog Headcollar
Halti has become the world’s favorite canine best dog harness for pulling, an impressive feat and welcome relief to dog owners whose pets are still not getting the obey phase. As previously mentioned, body harnesses aren’t the only non-pull solution in the market. Many believe head collars to be even more effective than chest attachment harnesses.
If you are finding it difficult to get a harness that fits your dog’s girth, then a head harness is a good option. The Halti dog head collar works on the idea that where a dog’s head goes, his body will follow, much in the same way as riding a horse. With the ability to gently guide your dog’s head, you can easily steer him where you want him to go. When he starts to pull, it gently moves his head toward you, bringing the pull to an end. There are no metal parts that come in contact with the dogs’ skin, and the pressure from the steering is placed near the nose and far from the eyes.
There are concerns that if a dog lunges strongly, he could strain his neck, but the risks are small, as evidenced by the sheer number of people who have used this product and left positive feedback in reviews. However, you must take the time to get your dog used to wearing this device, but don’t worry because most dogs take to it quickly and easily.
This is the tool to use if your dog is a bit wild and a strong puller. Additionally, each headcollar comes with an on-off muzzling action that can close your dogs’ jaws, making training and behavior modification practical and safe.
● Both practical and easy to train or modify your dog’s behavior. The unique head collar design provides the best steering efficiency with unrivaled comfort.
● Gently allows the owner to steer the head and control the direction of movement.
● No metal parts come in contact with the dog’s skin, and steering is accomplished through pressure that’s applied down the nose, far from the eyes for a gentle correction.
● Can be used as a passive way to train dogs to stop pulling or as a tool for active training.
● Features an on-off muzzling action to close the dog’s jaws.
This is a head harness that gives you the possibility to gently guide your dog’s head, in order to steer him where you want him to go and stop him from pulling on the leash.
PetSafe Gentle Leader Headcollar, No-Pull Dog Collar
Recommended by vets and trainers the world over, the PetSafe Gentle Leader Headcollar is the best dog harness for pulling training solution.
Much like the Halti, the gentle leader provided by Premier Pet Products allows you to control your dog through steering his nose. As they say, where the head goes, the body is sure to follow. A dog’s natural instinct is to pull when tension is on the lead, even if he is choking. When owners pull on the collars, the dog will automatically pull in the opposite direction. The Gentle Leader Headcollar functions in the same way as a halter; the dog’s head is gently moved in the owner’s direction, stopping the pulling action immediately. Your dog cannot pull if he is facing toward you, so with this device, the problem is managed.
Available in five sizes from XS to XL and eight different colors, it is the best dog harness for small dogs and the best harness for large dogs.
As a bonus, the gentle leader comes with a full training guide and comprehensive DVD to teach you how to use this device to train your dog.
● Immediately stops jumping, lunging, and pulling with gentle control.
● Adjustable directional nose loop allows you to direct your dog’s head.
● Anyone can walk big or strong dogs.
● No pressure on the dog’s throat. The pressure is placed on the back of the neck instead of the front of the throat.
● Can be employed for puppies that are as young little as eight weeks old, and then convert to a regular collar, if needed.
With this head collar, the dog’s head is gently moved in your direction, stopping the pulling action immediately. Available in many sizes and colors.
All the harnesses in this review are short-term solutions. Dogs will almost certainly go back to puling if they aren’t in the harness. That means you will still need to train your pet for loose leash walking eventually.
We hope that this guide has helped you make your decision on which best harness to purchase for your pet. We are confident that any of these products would put you and your pooch well on your way to having stress-free walks around the neighborhood and beyond.