How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

Do you have a dog that keeps pulling during street walks? Does your pup run off or drag you down during walks? Is your pooch difficult to train and socialize? Using a harness and leash will solve all these problems.

You might have seen a dog wearing harness units before. Those owners understand that these products are imperative for walking your pup. It’s vital to keep your pet under control. That’s where harnesses can help.

Dogs usually exhibit certain behaviors, such as becoming aggressive or hyperactive. But as the owner, you must exhibit superior power by keeping it under check. Teaching your dog to wear harnesses and leashes has many benefits. It goes beyond stopping your pet from running off. It is something you should learn to do, no matter or small or big your pooch is. Check out this guide on teaching your pet to wear these accessories!

What to Know About Dog Harnesses?

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

A dog harness is adjustable strap-like equipment that you can use to restrain a pet. To use that unit, you need a leash. These products feature straps that pup owners can fasten together when they use them on their pets.

There are different forms of harnesses. Their significant features are straps that wrap around the chest, forelimbs, and torso.  These accessories come in different shapes and sizes. The best harness for small dogs isn’t the same as for large ones. It’s vital to pick one that suits your pup. These units are adjustable; you can loosen or tighten this equipment to suit the animal’s size.

As the popularity of dog harnesses grows, innovations begin to surface. Nowadays, you can get a “lifting harness” for pups with health issues and conditions. There are units for pooch owners who have disabilities, including those on wheelchairs. It means such people can walk their dogs despite sitting in a wheelchair. Isn’t that awesome?

Importance of Leash for Dog Wearing Harness

You cannot use a harness without attaching a leash. It is a rope that you clip to the basic unit to help restrain a pet. These help to tame large breeds of pets, especially pooches. Leashes are crucial for potentially aggressive and disobeying animals.

When you attach a leash to a harness, it serves purposes beyond restraining your pet. It can be an aesthetic addition and help in training. People also use leashes with collars and halters. But our focus in this article is using these units for dogs.

Why Teach Your Dog to Wear a Harness and Leash?

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

We cannot overemphasize the importance of dogs using harnesses and leashes. They are a must-have for every pet owner. These products are not only for restraining pets but also for training them.  Giant breed dogs such as English mastiff, Rottweilers, and Pitbull are aggressive. The aggressiveness worsens when they lack proper training.

Using harnesses and leashes are practical tools to tame solid and big dogs. This act will also help you manage their stimuli and excitements.  If you have a pup that will not stop pulling and running off during walks, these units will benefit you. Although some people prefer collars to harnesses, a dog using a harness is a safer option.

Some dogs have underlying medical conditions. Wearing a collar can choke their throat, causing more distress. And this is the reason for using these units is to serve them better.  Older dogs who need help standing up or maintaining stamina also need harnesses. If you have puppies with fragile spines, this helps protect them from hurt.  If you are a trainer, you must know the benefits of these accessories. Especially if you are walking many pooches and you need to keep them under control.

The wide range of purposes for these units include the following:

  • For taming aggressive and hypersensitive pooches
  • Walking
  • Exercising
  • Pup training
  • Assisting or rescuing pooches (lifting harnesses save pups with disabilities from distress)

Types of Dog Harnesses

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

Pet owners have preferences when it comes to using harnesses. Manufacturers consider many factors when producing a dog walking harness. The goal is to please different customers.

Different types are also available to suit the sizes and body shapes of a pup. If your pet is not comfortable in a harness, then it is not the right choice. The common types of dog harnesses are:

1. Front-Clip Dog Harnesses

These units feature two leash attachments, one at the chest and another at the back. This feature helps an owner wrap a harness around a dog’s torso, down to the chest, and forelimbs.  A front-clip type is similar to a body unit. It is good when you need to train your pup. The product has horizontal straps that prevent the shoulders’ movement. They are unsuitable for long-term use. Using them on your animal for a long time can affect how it walks.

2. Anti-Pull Dog Harnesses

If you seek to prevent or control pulling behavior in your pet, this unit is the best. It is a dog walking harness, also called a no-pull pet accessory. It helps to distribute strain from walking your pup. An anti-pull unit also prevents animals from pulling on leashes during a walk.

3. Back-Clip Dog Harnesses

A back-clip product is the opposite of the front-clip unit. This accessory wraps around a pup’s torso, down to the chest and the hind limbs. You can use this unit for daily walks with your pet or when going on short-distance hiking. Your pooch should not have it on for a long time to avoid impacting its limbs.

4. Dual-Clip Dog Harnesses

This accessory combines the features of front and back clip harnesses. It is a two-in-one tool that serves various purposes. Consider the size and body shape of your pup before acquiring a dual-clip unit. It is a suitable dog walking harness for all pooch sizes.

5. Body Dog Harnesses

These are not for all types of dogs. Manufacturers design these products to help pups relieve stress. It helps pressure from pulling not to concentrate on the neck region. Circulating the stress throughout the body helps the animal to perform better. 

If your dog is not a strong dog that drags during walks, a body harness is not suitable. Wearing other types, especially a walking unit, will be better. These accessories are also not adequate for pets with skin allergies. They can irritate the skin and make the condition worse.

How Old Should a Puppy Be to Wear a Harness?

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

For many dog owners, what age to start using a harness and leash for their pets is the question that comes to mind. No one wants to lose their favorite pets, not to choking or self-caused harms. New owners often worry whether their pets are not too small or young to wear this product. It is safe for both puppies and adult pooches. Once you get the perfect size and shape that suits your pet, you are good to go.

Your puppy can wear a harness as little as eight weeks old. A pup wearing it before this age is at risk, although it varies on the individual.  An animal with this accessory might not start walking with it immediately. It takes some time for the pet to familiarize with the tool until it can use it well.

Depending on how you train your dog, it can take time before they begin to walk in a harness. Some will not start until they are 16 weeks old.  Before you get this unit for your puppy, note the following:

  • Introducing harnesses to puppies is a big deal – get ready for the task.
  • Do not introduce this product as if it is a toy. If you do so, your puppy can begin to chew on it. 
  • Do you train with this product in isolation or connect a leash to it?
  • Let the pet familiarize itself with the clasping sound and how you attach a leash.
  • Put the harness on the animal and let it know that it is not a toy – this can take some time.

Some puppies are stubborn right from a young age. So, there is a tendency that the pet will put up a fight when putting on this unit. If this happens, approach the dog with care and keep it calm.  It is common for these animals to experience distress when using an accessory for the first time. Give your pet a minute, and it will be better for it.

Should You Leave Your Puppy in a Harness?

The simple answer to this question is no! Do not leave a pet in a harness. A dog using it every hour of the day is not a good idea.  Whether a puppy or an adult pup, leaving this accessory on your animal for a long time is wrong. It can cause more problems. Even humans do not feel comfortable wearing a piece of clothing for a whole day.

Controlling and training the pooch to use a harness and leash is important. But you can do this without making it look like a punishment or leaving the puppy uncomfortable. Using a harness the entire day can also cause terrible destructive behaviors. These include aggressiveness and excessive barking. The animal can also become very irritated and jump at people out of frustration.  No matter how fancy or beautiful this accessory might be, only use it when walking the pet. You could also benefit from using this product for training. However, don’t forget to leave it in storage after finishing the session.

Socializing the dog is important. The experts recommend these units when outside. However, don’t make the animal uncomfortable by making them wear it more than necessary.

What Harness Is Best for a Puppy?

How to Teach Your Dog Wearing Harness and Leash?

If you have ever tried giving your puppy this unit, you noticed the excitement. There are exceptions. Some doggies become afraid and pull back from wearing these accessories. It is best to choose a product that fits your dog, which includes its size and personality. This recommends you study the behavioral pattern of your pet before choosing a unit.  The best puppy harness is one in which it fits, and the animal is most comfortable. It means different types will work for different dogs.

Two categories are most suitable for puppies: front-clip and back-clip harnesses. Also, there are important factors to consider before getting this product for a puppy. They are:

  • Size

You want a unit that fits well. Don’t hesitate to give a bit of allowance. It will ensure your pup has sufficient space to breathe properly. You’ll also secure it’s not too tight, which can lead to discomfort.

  • Material

Most harnesses have nylon materials. They are affordable and durable. Some owners prefer leather since they find it to be a premium material.

  • Safety

Consider how safe your puppy will be wearing a particular harness. Is it too tight? Do you have the necessary control? Additionally, check if there are any extra features.

  • Adjustability

Adjustability is convenient since your pup grows every day. An adjustable harness lasts longer because it follows that growth. It ensures it won’t become too tight.

  • Flexibility

A good harness must enhance flexibility. That means it should give your pet the freedom of moving around. It shouldn’t weigh them down unless you want to discourage them from moving.

  • Weight

Heavy harnesses aren’t suitable for puppies. Even adult dogs won’t appreciate them. Lightweight material ensures the pup doesn’t even feel they’re wearing the unit.

  • Quality and Durability

It’s a general rule that high-quality products last longer. A harness should be a fairly long-term investment. Your dog shouldn’t be able to chew through it quickly.


The ideal time to introduce this product to your pup is at an early age. A dog wearing harness is a simple solution to the problems pet owners face with their animals. You can begin working with the accessory as early as eight weeks or the moment you bring the pet home. 

As for other accessories, don’t forget a GPS tracking collar. It can prove even more useful than a harness in an outdoor environment. Thanks to this system, you’ll always know the pup’s location. That’s why you shouldn’t hesitate to get this unit, as it can prove a vital accessory in pet training!

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