Best Harness for Small Dogs

by | Nov 3, 2019 | 0 comments

Aside from feeding and cleaning after your cute little pupper, taking him out for a walk or giving him a quick outdoor social activity is one of the most basic things you can do as a fur parent. Whether you own a cute Chihuahua or a mighty German Shepherd, walking him out on the nearby park is vital to a dog of any shape or size as it gives him a time to exercise, socialize, and even find a perfect spot to do his business!

Given that it’s necessary to walk your dog regularly, it’s important to find just the right body harness that will keep your little guy safe but also comfortable. As a responsible owner, the first step to a successful walk in the park or a simple outdoor pet socialization is to have your dog safely settled on a leash with a harness. Harnesses are way better than having a simple leash and collar because harnesses provide comfort and ease when your dog is doing anything from simple to complex body movements.

To determine the best harness for small dogs, here are the different types of dog harnesses based on functionality and style:

Front-Clip Harness

A front-clip harness, as the name suggests, has its leash ring located on the chest. Front-clip dog harnesses are often used for newly acquired pets. The best front clip dog harness is widely used by dog trainers for basic obedience trainings and impulse control training.

Pros:

  • Easy to wear
  • Great for controlling your dog’s movements
  • Gives the owner the right to steer
  • Prevents sudden pulling from your dog

Cons:

  • May tangle under your dog’s front legs
  • May induce stress and pain on your dog’s chest when there’s excessive pulling
  • You may need additional tools or measures to safely control more aggressive dogs

Back-Clip Harness

Unlike front-clip harnesses, this type of harness has its leash attachment situated on the dog’s back. This type is arguably better as a tool for simple indoor or outdoor walking and social activities for your dogs. Back-clip harnesses is the most common type of harness and is more popular with pet owners.

Pros:

  • More useful for small and non-sporting type dogs with delicate bodies
  • Great for leisure walks and for dogs that are not that aggressive
  • Manageable as it will not tangle on your fur baby’s front legs

Cons:

  • Provides less control for owners
  • Back harness may encourage dogs to drag or pull
  • Not that suitable for aggressive dogs and dogs that pull too much

Dual-Clip Harness

By the name itself, a dual clip harness allows the owner to choose where to attach the leash. The contraption has two leash attachments located on the front and back side. Dual clip harnesses usually have padded vests and no-pull mechanisms. This harness type is becoming more popular among owners because of the options it provides.

Pros:

  • Provides more options to owners in terms of leash attachment
  • Harness can be useful both for training and for simple leisure walks
  • Gives more features and options because of the padded vest and halter

Cons:

  • More expensive than other types of dog harness
  • Padded vest may wear and tear easily

Tightening Harness

A tightening harness has a device that will tighten if your dog pulls on the leash. The no-pull device is commonly located on the side of the harness padding. It may appear either as a loop or a strap that will tighten if there’s a moderate to vigorous pull coming from your dog.

Pros:

  • Easy to wear and manage
  • Perfect for controlling aggressive dogs

Cons:

  • Usage of this type of harness may be limited to training purposes and may not be suitable for regular walks
  • Some types of tightening harness may induce pain if the pulling is too much

Car Harness

A car harness is a function-specific harness. Along with a dog seatbelt, the best dog car harness ensures that your pet is secured while in a moving car, and it also lessens the chance of injury during an accident or collision. You may think that an ordinary front-clip or back-clip harness will do when you have your pup with you in a car, but trust us, it’s better to get a harness that is suitably built for the job.

Pros:

  • Ensures the safety of your pup when inside the car
  • Offers great adjustability for different car seat heights and positions

Cons:

  • Usage and purpose are limited
  • More expensive than a regular harness

Now that we have discussed the different types of harness and their respective functions, we can now determine which is the best harness for small dogs and for other dog sizes.

You can check out the list of best harness for small dogs:

Best Harnesses for Small Dogs

RUFFWEAR Front Range Harness

Dual-clip

Foam-padded strips, adjustable fit, no-pull safety mechanisms, ID Pocket, two leash attachment points, reflective trims, six different colors

Check Price on Amazon.com
PetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Harness

Front-clip

Replaceable parts, adjustable fit, padded strips, anti-choke mechanism, four different colors

Check Price on Amazon.com
ICEFANG Small Dog Molle Harness

Front-clip

Foam-padded vest, two metal buckles for load support, with molle strips for hands-free carrying, escape-proof, carabiner hooks, ID pockets

Check Price on Amazon.com
EzyDog Quick Fit Custom Fit Adjustable Dog Harness

Back-clip

Neoprene padded chest strip, easy to use and adjustable straps, quick-clip buckle system, reflective stitching, ten different colors

Check Price on Amazon.com
Gooby – Escape Free Sport Harness, Small Dog Step-In Neoprene Harness

Back-clip / Tightening

Escape-free and choke-free mechanisms, lightweight neoprene material, easy to clean and machine washable, six different colors

Check Price on Amazon.com
PoyPet No Pull Dog Harness

Dual-clip

Reflective vest harness, no-pull and choke-free, three-way adjustable straps, non-toxic padded mesh, twelve different designs and patterns

Check Price on Amazon.com
Koneseve Dog Harness Adjustable Pet Harness Vest

Back-clip

Woven fabric padded liner, nylon strap, no-pull mechanism, reflective stitching, quick side-release buckles, printed design

Check Price on Amazon.com

Best Front-clip Dog Harness

The Original Sense-ation No-Pull Dog Training Harness

The Original Sense-ation No-Pull Dog Training Harness is one of the best harnesses for small dogs. The brand is well-reviewed by owners, especially the ones who focus on conducting behavioral and obedience training on their dogs. It is easy to use and provides a gentle support for small dogs, whether they are playing or simply walking outside.

This best front clip dog harness fits against the sides of the dog, unlike common harnesses that are commonly worn in between the dog’s legs. This ensures that the pressure when the dog is moving forward isn’t felt on the chest area and between the legs but is simply distributed as a gentle steering force on the dog’s sides.

The Original Sense-ation No-Pull Dog Training Harness

One of the best options for smaller dogs. Gentle and effective.

PetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Harness

 dogPetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Harness can definitely be called the best front clip dog harness because it offers a comfortable and snug fit for small dogs who have delicate bodies. It has an anti-choke mechanism, which prevents your small pooch from gagging and choking when he suddenly runs or pulls. Plus, its straps are padded!

Choosing the right size for your dog won’t be a problem because the harness is also highly adjustable. Just make sure to fit the strap on to your dog and adjust the points. Another great thing about this harness is that its parts are replaceable; just contact the brand’s customer support team.

PetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Dog Harness

This harness is made of strong and durable nylon webbing and is easy to use. Highly adjustable and in addition offers replaceable parts!

Softouch Concepts Sense-ation Dog Harness – Tan (Extra Small, Wide)

Softouch Concepts Sense-ation Dog Harness is a gentle dog walker harness that is sturdy and easy to use for new pet owners. It won’t be a problem if your dog is a chewer or a hyper pooch because the soft polyester material is not easy to break or damage. This harness comes in different colors and sizes. The O-rings and leash attachments are plated with nickel, which prevents staining and rusting.

Halti Dog Headcollar

A very sturdy harness that won't be easy for your dog to chew through. Comes in different colors.

ICEFANG Small Dog Molle Harness

Small dogs can be working dogs, too, and ICEFANG Small Dog Molle Harness is the perfect one for your hardworking fur baby. The only one with a padded vest, this harness is one of the best front clip dog harnesses for different dog sizes!

This escape-proof and multi-purpose harness is equipped with molle strips that can be used for hands-free carrying. There is also a dog identifier molle attached on the vest, which helps you find your pooch if he’s busy socializing in a huge crowd of dogs.

This best front-clip harness may be a little more expensive than its counterparts, but the options and flexibility it provides you and your dog are worth it.

ICEFANG Small Dog Molle Harness

This is an escape-proof and multi-purpose harness aimed at smaller dogs, offering a comfortable padded vest.

Best Back-clip Dog Harness

EzyDog Quick Fit Custom Fit Adjustable Dog Harness

Even though the price of this item is on the high end compared to the other best harness for small dogs, the style and comfort it provides justifies its value. The brand boasts its patent-pending design, which ensures that the contraption easily fits your dog without any hassle. The straps and sleeves are padded, and the stitching has reflectors, making you and your dog safe even if it’s dark outside.

Aside from being a harness, it is also equipped with an adjustable dog collar. The neoprene chest sleeves and heavy-duty buckles assure owners of the product’s long-lasting quality and premium style. Indeed, EzyDog Quick Fit Custom Fit Adjustable Dog Harness is the best harness for small dogs that is worth your money!

EzyDog Quick Fit Custom Fit Adjustable Dog Harness

This is a long-lasting harness of premium quality. The straps and sleeves are padded, and the stitching has reflectors.

Gooby – Escape Free Sport Harness, Small Dog Step-In Neoprene Harness for Dogs

The only back-clip harness that also functions as a tightening harness, the Escape Free Sport Harness by Gooby is one fine walking/training equipment for your dog! This lightweight and escape-free harness is perfect for your small pooch because it ensures that no matter how excited or active your dog is, the harness won’t induce any pain and pressure on his chest.

Features include a rubber adjustment tab that promotes both off-leash and on-leash training. At the same time, the leash and harness tighten very gently when your dog attempts to escape or run around. In terms of durability, the harness has POM plastic buckles and ring attachments. This type of material is lightweight but sturdy because it’s mainly used for making safety seat belts.

Gooby - Escape Free Sport Harness

This harness features a rubber adjustment tab that promotes both off-leash and on-leash training. Made of lightweight but sturdy materials.

Koneseve Dog Harness Adjustable Pet Harness Vest

Koneseve Dog Harness Adjustable Pet Harness Vest is one of the most competitively-priced harnesses on this list. It is also one of the best-reviewed and well-received brands for small dog owners and pet owners in general.

The harness basically sports a padded vest and is easy to put on your pooch’s body. It doesn’t have any other complicated contraption, and the breathable woven fabric is made to withstand wear and tear. The straps are reflective and will ensure your dog’s safety even if you go out with your pet at night. The harness vest is also easy to clean and is machine-washable.

Koneseve Adjustable Dog Harness

Easy to put on, with a simple design and easy to clean - this is a very convenient option from a well-received brand.

PetLove Dog Harness, Soft Leash Padded No Pull Dog Harness with All Kinds of Size

PetLove Dog Harness is the only back-clip harness that is designed to wrap around your dog’s chest and sides rather than the usual in-between the legs contraption other harnesses have. Such design makes this harness easier to put on and take off. It also makes the harness a gentler and lighter option for not-so-active dogs.

The material is durable and stylish, without compromising on the safety and design of the product. The soft sponge padding is highly breathable, and the mesh lining is lightweight. Just like most harnesses, PetLove’s Dog Harness also has reflective linings.

PetLove Dog Harness

This harness has a special design that avoids the usual in-between the legs contraption other harnesses have. This makes it easier to put on and take off..

Best Dual Clip Harness

PoyPet No-Pull Dog Harness

This updated 2018 version of the PoyPet No-Pull Dog Harness is super easy to use and was improved for better padding and long-lasting quality. This best harness for small dogs is designed for maximum no-pull safety, and its double ring attachment gives owners options on whether to use the harness for training purposes or for simple outdoor exercise. The backside of this harness also has a handle for owners who conduct off-leash activities and soft training. There’s also a black mesh pocket that can be used either as a name tag or contact information holder.

PoyPet No-Pull Dog Harness

Very easy to use and representing exceptional quality. Designed for maximal no-pull safety.

RUFFWEAR Front Range Harness

As a trusted dog and pet care supplies brand, RUFFWEAR did not slack off on providing a quality dual clip harness. The brand is proven to be one of the best harnesses for small dogs and big dogs alike. Their Front Range Harness series is made for premium design, comfort, safety, and durability.

The dual leash attachment is ideal for both pullers and leisure walkers, making it pssibly the best harness for small dogs. The harness has a soft and gentle padding and is breathable enough to be adequate for everyday adventures. Its premium material is easy to use and won’t budge even to the strongest pulling force. You also should not worry about its maintenance and overall durability. You can hand wash the foam-padded strips, and the aluminum rings will not stain or rust.

RUFFWEAR Front Range Harness

Great for strong pullers as well as leisure walkers. Made of a breathable material that can be hand washed.

Best Car Harness

 Even the best harness for small dogs won’t keep your pet safe in a vehicle. Travelling with your four-legged friend should not be a hassle with the best dog car harness of 2019.

Mighty Paw Vehicle Safety Harness

Mighty Paw Vehicle Safety Harness is one of the most flexible and best dog car harnesses in the market. Available in all sizes, this brand can serve as a regular dog harness and a car harness!

The four tri-glide attachment system that is featured in this product ensures that your dog is safely secured and comfortable while in a moving vehicle. It lessens pressure and the pull force, even when your dog is moving on the car seat. The materials are lightweight and breathable, enabling your dog to be comfortable and less anxious while you are driving on the front seat.

Mighty Paw Vehicle Safety Harness

This harness was designed to ensure your dog's safety and comfort during a car trip, with a four tri-glide attachment system.

SlowTon Dog Car Harness Plus Connector Strap

The SlowTon Dog Car Harness is a super affordable best dog car harness that does not compromise on safety and comfort! The design of this best dog car harness makes sure that you don’t have to let your pet step into the straps before securing the leash to your car seat. You just have to buckle the whole padded vest on your pup’s chest, and it’s good to go. The harness is durable enough to prevent your dog from lunging forward or even jumping out of the window.

Plus, you have to note that it has different colors and patterns to choose from!

SlowTon Dog Car Harness Plus Connector Strap

This harness offers a design that makes securing your pet in a car much faster and easier without compromising the security.

BARKBAY Dog Car Harness and No Pull Dog Safety Vest Harness with Car Seat Belt Lead Clip

BARKBAY Dog Car Harness is arguably one of the most affordable and best dog car harnesses in the market! Aside from being a harness built for car rides, this product also includes the car seat belt lead clip that is adjustable and compatible with most vehicle types. Your dog can move and lie down anywhere in the back seat, and that won’t be a problem with this dog car harness!

At the same time, you have to know that, besides being possibly the best dog car harness, this is a dual-function harness. If you are not using it in your vehicle, you can just adjust the leash and straps to make it a no-pull walking harness! Despite its price, the material in this product does not disappoint. The padded vest has a breathable mesh and the zinc alloy ring resists rust and scratches.

BARKBAY Dog Car Harness

This dual function harness can be used to secure your dog in a vehicle as well as a no-pull walking harness outside!

Conclusion

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.

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Greg Holmes
Greg Holmes resides in Portland, OR with his wife and two daughters, as well as three Havanese dogs. Being an AKC-certified CGC Evaluator and a certified dog trainer, taking care of dogs has been a big part of his life ever since he was young. His love for dogs started when his father took him to the state dog shelter to find his first puppy, which he named Einstein because the dog presented with a very unruly coat when he saw it for the first time. From this experience, he has become a very strong advocate of "adopt don't shop" for aspiring pet parents.

Greg joined the Pupped.com team because he believes that every dog, regardless of breed or age, deserves critical attention and the best dog-related products in the market because man's best friend only deserves, well, the best. Being an active member of the American Kennel Club, he aims to provide up-to-date information to his readers and present factual data about the products available in the market.