The 5 Best Dog Walking Harness

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A hard and fast rule: Most dogs need to wear a harness when you walk them. Because, even the strongest dog leashes are only effective if they're not putting extra strain and pressure on your pup's neck. So, what makes for the best dog harnesses for walking?

First, look for a product made from strong, durable material that will last. It should have some degree of padding to keep your pup comfy, but also be made of a fabric that won’t rub or chafe. To avoid hot spots or irritated skin, find something with smooth buckles and quality hardware, as well.

Another thing to think about is fit. Consider how big your dog is and select your size accordingly. Make sure the straps are adjustable so you can tighten it up to fit their particular body shape. Lastly, keep in mind your dog’s lifestyle. Do you guys hike a lot or take long runs through the city? In that case you might want something with extra features like pockets or carry pouches. If you walk at night, something with lights will be helpful.

But, regardless of what you're looking for, the size of your pup, or your specific needs, I've got you covered. To assist you with your search, here's a list of the best dog walking harnesses for every type of pup.

1The Best Harness For Small Dogs

This small dog harness has over 6,000 reviews on Amazon, and is constructed with soft 100-percent polyester. The neck opening has cozy padding around it to help it go on smoother and the quality air mesh keeps it ventilated so your pup doesn't overheat. While it does come in multiple sizes, the small and extra-small options are the best for small dogs. Reviewers concur: "This is a very well made, comfortable harness. Both my small dogs wear this Puppia model (in different sizes) and they have worked out very well, even as car safety harnesses." But, the same Amazon reviewer cautions, "However: BEWARE OF THE SIZE CHARTS -- what the chart calls "neck size" is the actual size of the opening."

  • Available Sizes: Extra-Small Extra-Large

2The Best Harness For Large Dogs

This popular dog harness for big dogs is built with durable fabric, reflective striping, and thick padding to keep your pup comfortable while wearing it. It has two strong metal leash attachments on the back and chest with adjustable straps that glide smoothly for a custom fit, and make it a solid pick for larger dogs. As a bonus, there's an extra handle on the back you can use to grab them with if they start darting after small creatures or fellow pups. The large and extra-large sizes are great options for bigger dogs, depending on their breed.

  • Available Sizes: Small — Extra-Large

3The Best Harness For Extra Hard Pullers

This no-pull dog harness features a clever front buckle that helps you control your pup if they tug, along with two zinc-alloy rings that lift pressure from your dog's neck. On top of that, it has a grab handle to reign them in if they start getting aggressive with their pulling. The harness is made with smooth nylon webbing and 3M reflective material that provides visibility at night. "I use this with my pitbull cross," said one Amazon user. "We no longer get into tug of war matches on walks because this gently turns him and keeps me in control much easier when he sees a squirrel."

  • Available Sizes: Small — Extra-Large

4The Best Harness With Pockets

For pet owners who love to go jogging with their dog or bring along things like house keys, wallets, dog treats, or poop bags, this sturdy harness features pockets to hold your belongings. The pouches fit over the sides of the harness like saddlebags and can be removed to make it lighter on days you don't have anything to carry. Best of all, they're easy to attach to the harness with simple Velcro and the single-click closure system is a breeze to adjust.

  • Available Sizes: Medium — Large

5The Best Harness For Night Walks

This glowing dog harness is constructed with built-in LED lights that are visible from half a mile away. The lights are designed with soft fiber optic cables that crank out 360 degrees of illumination, making both you and your pup safer as you stroll. You can rotate between eight colors by clicking a button on the harness, and choose between steady states or multi-color flashing modes. The harness is available in medium, large, and extra-large sizes. While this one is specifically better for medium and large dogs, if you have a smaller pup, you can opt for a smaller version. "Probably the BEST dog light I have ever bought," said one pleased reviewer. "It is VERY bright, and I love the ease of a USB mini charger instead of fiddling with batteries."

  • Available Sizes: Small — Extra-Large

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