Choosing a dog harness over a collar has excellent benefits, but there is no point to your harness if you do not how should a dog harness fit. Dog collars tend to choke dogs when they’re pulled, but with a harness, the weight and pressure are distributed evenly. They also help you, and your dog avoids getting tangled up in the leash. A dog harness simply gives you and your dog better security and comfort, so you can enjoy walks and playtime even more. Read on to learn the right way to fit your dog’s harness.
How to Measure Your Dog for A Harness
The right measurement is essential to making sure you give your dog the right harness fit. You do not want something too loose that it can tug against your dog’s body or something too tight. For this step, you will need a flexible cloth measure and a notepad or your phone to take note of the measurements. You will need to measure three areas of the dog’s body: the chest, neck, and weight.
- Start with measuring your dog’s chest. Start at the bottom of the rib cage, then go up and over the back. Go back down to where you started.
- To measure your dog’s neck, wrap the measuring tape around the thickest part of the dog’s neck. If you measured for a collar, you probably would measure the part right on top of the dog’s shoulders, but that is not where the dog harness fits.
- Lastly, weigh your dog. Dog harness manufacturers often size their harnesses by a dog’s weight. A tip for dog owners who have dogs that don’t sit still on a scale: weigh yourself, then pick up your dog and weigh yourself again. The difference between the two measurements should be your dog’s weight.
How to Shop for A Dog Harness
Before we get into how should a dog harness fit, it’s important to find the right harness.
While they have different aesthetic designs, dog collars are pretty simple and straightforward. However, the differences among dog harnesses have a purpose. The type of dog harness you end up with will depend on what you and your dog are comfortable with. Remember, you are on the other end of the leash and controlling the harness attached to the dog, so make sure you know how to work and manage the harness you choose.
The two main types of dog harnesses are over-head, or step-in harnesses. An over-head harness slides over your dog’s head, and you secure it around the back. A step-in harness requires your dog to step into them, and you pull it up over their body to secure it. Step-in harnesses are easier to put on for some dogs. However, over-head harnesses are more comfortable to put on, especially for old and disabled dogs. Over-head harnesses generally have more padding as well, which provides extra comfort.
Harnesses will come with either metal or plastic buckles. Plastic buckles are fine for light activities and smaller or calmer dogs. Plastic buckles are easy to quickly open and close. However, if you have a large and energetic pup, a harness with sturdy metal buckles may prove beneficial. Also, metal buckles less tend to catch and pinch your dog’s fur.
Finally, when selecting a dog harness, make sure there is a good number of points of adjustment. You will need to make adjustments around the neck, chest, and other areas for a safe and comfortable fit.
How to Put on an Over-Head Dog Harness
Now that you have picked out the perfect harness for your dog, it’s time to learn how to fit a dog harness.
Before putting on an overhead harness on your dog, make sure it is loose so you can easily slip it onto your dog. You can tighten and adjust accordingly once the harness is on. For a proper dog harness fit, follow these steps.
- Slip-on the loosened harness over your dog’s head.
- Swing the chest piece up and the buckles attached to the
chest piece. Fasten these buckles to the back of the harness.
- Adjust the sides, the belly, and the neck for a fit snug.
One way to know how a dog should harness fit as you’re putting it on and adjust it is to fit your fingers between your dog and the harness. A snug and proper fit should measure about two fingers.
How to Check if A Harness is Fitting Your Dog Correctly
While the two-finger measure is a quick way to figure out the right fit, another way to know how should a dog harness fit is to check for your dog’s reaction to the harness and their behavior while in the harness.
If you see any of these signs, you readjust or resize your harness:
- Your dog manages to wiggle free from the harness.
- There is loose fur around the harness area.
- The harness is causing chafing.
- The back of the harness keeps rotating.
- Your dog is resistant to walking and other activities while wearing the harness.
A well-fitting dog harness equals a happy dog. Finding the right harness and putting it on correctly is important in knowing how should a dog harness fit. A dog harness is truly a great, secure, and comfy alternative to a dog collar. They work well for small, energetic dogs and stronger, heavier dogs. Know more about dog accessories.