We are often asked what harness we use, what we would recommend and why. Rather than just let you know what ones we like, we thought it would be beneficial for you to read our pro's and con's on all of the harnesses we have tested. This way you can make an informed decision on what harness would suit your pup best.
We recently asked for your favourite harnesses on our facebook page and then we tested out the top six! You can read all of our thoughts and what harness came out on top below.
Julius K-9 Power Harness (£19.99 - £44.99)
The Julius K-9 harnesses have a wide range of colours to choose from and you can even personalise them with velcro patches on either side which we love! They are made of durable material but we did find a lot of hair would stick to the inside - not a major problem though as they are machine washable. Although the handle gives an added safety measure we do not feel it is enough to say that this is a safe harness. The Julius K-9 was originally created for police dogs and because of this it was actually purposely designed to be easy to escape - incase the working dog was ever to become stuck on something. As well as this, the harness hinders the natural mobility of a dogs shoulder area and can also damage the spine. During forwards movements, a harness with a horizontal strap is similarly restrictive for the dog as a rubber band around our arms would be for us humans (Brigitte Jost, 2018). In conclusion we do not feel that the Julius K-9 is a safe or comfortable harness for any dog and so we cannot recommend it to our customers.
Doodlebone (£8.50 - £12.50)
I used the doodlebone bold harness for my own dogs for a long time, then Katie came along! As Katie is very small and is a bit of an escape artist we found that she would very easily worm herself out of the doodlebone harness or it would gradually slip off itself. Although this is the only fault we could find with the harness, it is not one of our main recommendations as it does not suit smaller dogs. However, for medium to large sized dogs it is great as they have so many bright colours to choose from, it's machine washable, lightweight and extremely well priced.
Halti Walking Harness (£12.99 - £24.99)
The halti harness is great for both training and walking as it has two points where you can clip a lead for training dogs not to pull on the lead. We love the fact that it has five points of adjustment - meaning no matter your dogs size or shape this harness will fit perfectly (we actually managed to get it to fit perfectly around Katie's little hunch caused by her scoliosis). The reflective stitching makes it perfect for late night or winter walks as it means you and others can easily see your dog which is a great safety feature. Another safety feature we liked was the handle on the back, it is very lightweight and so does not affect the dog but is a great addition incase you have to quickly restrain your dog for whatever reason (dog approaching, too close to the road, etc). It is the only harness so far, apart from the ruffwear harness) that has passed Katie's escape test. The only fault we could personally find was that it only comes in four colours.
Ezy Dog Chest Plate Harness (£20 - £27.50)
We had high hopes for the Ezy Dog harness and we did originally love it but after researching we found that a lot of people have had problems with the chest plate snapping suddenly which can be dangerous for the dog wearing it. As well as this, there has been many complaints about the chest plate digging into dogs necks - so while it is comfortable for a brachycephalic breed, it may not be the best option for other breeds.
Ruffwear (£36 - £44.95)
The amazing bright colours are what first attracted us to this harness but after testing and researching it has quickly become one of our favourites. We had our doubts because of how much material it has - we originally thought it would be heavy like the Julius K-9 but it is actually made from a breathable, mesh interior and is very lightweight all round. It has four points of adjustment and the reflective stitching that we love for safety! The added ID pocket is a nice touch as you know it will always be readily available in case of emergency. We actually couldn't find a single fault with this one.
Perfect Fit (£34.48 - £44)
The soft fleecy lining is great for comfort and means that chaffing will never be an issue with the Perfect Fit harness. This one seems to really focus on the comfort of the dog as it comes in three parts so can be adjusted to fit any shape and size of dog. It also has the two leash clips, like with the halti and ruffwear, for training and pulling purposes. We did find that the fleece attracted a lot of dirt and it wasn't the easiest to clean but it was very comfortable for all of the dogs.
In conclusion there is only two harnesses detailed above that we would definitely no longer use and that is the Julius K-9 and Ezy Dog harness as safety is a major factor for us when promoting a harness and we do not believe that these are safe enough for everyday use. We love the Ruffwear and Halti Walking harness because they have so many added features and great safety points and because of this these will be the two brands we will be stocking in the future and recommending to all of our customers.
We hope that this has helped some of you to pick out a harness that will best suit your pup and if you have any questions at all please do not hesitate to send us a message.