The 8 Best Harness for Larger Dogs

By Erin Shaffer / August 30, 2021

Walking your dog can be fun and relaxing, but not if your furry friend is pulling on the leash. It’s something many dogs do, especially the untrained ones.

Pulling can be pretty dangerous for your dog, and it makes the walk uncomfortable for both of you. It’s even more challenging to control the situation if you have a large dog.

For this reason, you might want to consider a harness for large dogs. A dog harness is a simple solution for many different breeds, making it easier to walk if your doggo likes pulling.

The market offers many different models made from different materials, featuring various attaching points, padding, and adjustable straps.

Take a few minutes to discover the best harness for large dogs and how to pick one for your large breed. We reviewed a few models and included a little buyer’s guide to help you decide.

How to Choose a Best Harness for Large Dogs

Choosing the right harness for a large dog is relatively simple. Still, a few factors can help you make the best choice, even if it’s your first time buying.

Although you may think any harness made for big dogs will fit your pet, this isn’t true. There are no rules, and you might end up with a harness that doesn’t fit.

The first thing you should pay attention to is the size and fit. You should also check attachment points, adjustability, padding, and materials to figure out what’s best for your pup.

Proper Fit

The size is probably one of the most important things to consider when deciding on a harness. Although many models have a few adjustable straps, it’s still crucial to get the size right.

The fit affects many things, which is why it’s vital to think about. Most importantly, a harness that doesn’t fit properly isn’t as secure and safe for your pet.

Your pet won’t have any issues getting out of a harness if it’s too big. This can be quite dangerous when walking near the road with many cars passing by.

On the other hand, a model that’s too little will most likely be uncomfortable. It’ll scuff and irritate the skin, causing many problems to your pup. He/she might start hiding at a sight of a harness and the thought of going outside.

Luckily, many brands offer several sizes and a chart that can help you pick one.

Various Attachment Points

All walking harnesses have at least one attachment point for you to attach the leash. In most cases, this is between the dog’s shoulder blades or somewhere behind them.

It’s the most common attachment that works for many dogs, both small and large. However, some might not like this as it encourages them to pull on the leash.

This is why some harnesses, especially those advertised as “no-pull,” have another attachment point on the front. It’s in the center of the chest, making it easier to walk and control the dog that likes pulling on the leash.

Some models might include a few more attachment points apart from the ones we mentioned, giving you more options to choose from. It’s a good thing as it allows you to test several methods using the same harness.

Padding

Padding is always important regardless of whether your pet pulls on the leash or not. As we mentioned, scuffing and irritation can easily happen if you don’t get the size right.

However, it can happen just as easily, even if the size is right, if there isn’t any padding in the most critical areas. These areas include the chest and straps.

Many models don’t have any padding, and they work well this way. However, it’s often safer to go with a padded one just to be sure you’re avoiding any type of discomfort.

Padding helps to relieve tension, especially if you often walk for an extended period. It also helps to avoid the straps irritating the skin or pulling the fur.

Reflectivity

Reflectivity is another significant factor you want to think about when buying a harness. It’s even more crucial if you usually walk your pet during low-light conditions.

A few reflective points help to make your dog more visible for the passing bikers, skaters, and other people around you. It reduces the chance of someone hitting you as you enjoy your evening walk.

Luckily, almost all harnesses have at least one reflective strap, maybe a company logo or stitching. It’s often best to go for reflective stitching as it goes around the entire construction.

Still, it shouldn’t be a problem even if your harness of choice doesn’t have any reflective points. You can improve it by adding reflective stickers and similar items that glow in the dark.

Material Used

Dog harnesses are made from a wide range of materials, giving you a few options to choose from. Most are made from nylon webbing, leather, and polyester.

Choosing between these materials is often more complicated than it seems for most people. The best way to pick is to learn a bit about how each material performs under certain conditions.

Some materials are more durable than others, handling more stretching without ripping or showing any signs of damage. However, there’s also the stitching that should be equally as durable and resilient.

You might notice some brands use two or more materials combined. This helps to achieve better durability and resistance, especially for a no-pull dog harness.

Adjustable Straps

We already mentioned the importance of getting the size right. Although it’s crucial to measure your dog and make sure the size fits, this can sometimes be a bit tricky to do.

For this reason, most brands use adjustable straps to help you achieve the best fit. These are often easy to adjust, working as any other strap you may have on your standard leash.

The adjustment points are usually where the strap connects as well. This is often the weak point of a harness, so make sure to go for a durable one that won’t break due to frequent use.

One thing to keep in mind is that you can only adjust it that much. It’s still crucial to get the size right because adjusting the straps won’t fix it if it doesn’t fit.

Size Guidelines

Getting the right size is crucial for your dog’s comfort and security. As mentioned, a model that’s too big isn’t safe since your dog can easily get out of it mid-walking. One that’s too small will most likely irritate.

For this reason, you should always measure your dog before settling for a size. Although most brands offer a few sizes to choose from, you need to know your pup’s measurements to make the right choice.

It’s best to use a tailor’s measuring tape since it’s flexible and easy to wrap around your dog’s chest. Grab some pen and paper to note the measurements and compare them to the brand’s sizing chart.

Weight

The weight is often the first measurement you can use when selecting a size. It’s usually what most brands use to help you figure out if the size is right for your pet.

However, using just the weight won’t be very helpful because it’s typically used as a general guideline. In other words, you’ll notice that simply saying a harness fits 40-60lbs dogs isn’t precise enough.

Still, weight can help you figure out if other things will fit. Sometimes, the leash attachment, buckles, and stitching are rated for dogs of a specific size and weight.

So, although it shouldn’t be your only or even first consideration, the weight is something you should keep in mind nonetheless.

Length of Torso

The length of the torso is another measurement to keep in mind, although it’s not the most critical. You’ll notice some brands recommend using it while others don’t, so make sure to check what’s the case with the one you’re interested in.

Again, use a flexible measuring tape to measure your dog’s torso length. But, take the time to read the manufacturer’s guidelines first because some brands measure the torso length differently.

With the chest and neck circumference, this can make a difference when selecting the correct size.

Neck Circumference

Neck circumference is a crucial measurement when it comes to ensuring a proper fit. However, not all manufacturers list this measurement range for their products.

Use the same tape to measure the dog’s neck circumference. Wrap it around the largest part of the neck, which is the area near the shoulders.

This shouldn’t be too complicated and makes a huge difference in ensuring a good fit. If you can’t find the brand’s neck circumference range, try consulting with previous users in the customer reviews section.

Chest Circumference

This is possibly the most important measurement to pay attention to when buying a harness. Use the same tailor’s measuring tape to wrap it around the largest part of the rib cage.

The area behind the front limbs is where the harness will go, so it’s important that you get this right. Again, some models are adjustable to a certain extent, so you might get away with getting a few inches wrong.

However, the closer you get to the real chest circumference, the higher the chance you’ll select the right harness size.

Chest circumference is always included in the sizing charts, so you probably won’t have any trouble comparing your dog’s measurements.

Top 8 Best Large Dog Harnesses to Buy

Rabbitgoo Dog Harness

This large dog harness is recommended for medium to large dogs like Huskie, Golden retriever, Alaska, Labrador, Akita, German shepherd, and others.

It’s designed as a no-pull harness with two metal leash attachment points. The chest leash attachment clip will stop your pup from pulling, so it’s ideal for training, while the back one is meant for a more casual walk.

This is an overhead harness that’s easy to put on and take off. It has two quick-release buckles that won’t come off during use.

It also has four adjusting straps that go around the body. Two neck straps and two chest straps won’t slip or choke, and their adjustability allows some room for growth.

Rabbitgo is made from durable nylon oxford material, featuring soft cushion padding to protect your dog’s fur and skin.

Pros:

Breathable mesh

Bright reflective straps

Four points of adjustment

Cons:

Sizes run small

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

Auroth Tactical Dog Training Harness

Auroth is a tactical dog training harness meant for large and medium breeds. It’s easy to put on and take off thanks to its two quick-release buckles and adjustable straps.

It has four points of adjustment – two on the chest and two on the shoulders. This makes it easy to find the best fit for maximum comfort and mobility.

It’s made from 900D nylon and heavy-duty stitching for extra resistance and durability. It also has two rings for the leash, allowing you to pick based on whether you’re walking or training.

Another thing worth noting is the padding that ensures comfort and no irritation. It features breathable mesh to allow the air to flow, which is especially important in the summer.

This one has two 1” strips so that your dog can carry gear.

Pros:

Four adjustment points

Several colors

Breathable air mesh

Cons:

Not the best for in-between the sizes

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

BABYLTRL Big Dog Harness

Babyltrl is a no-pull harness for large dogs like German Shepherd, Pitbull, Labrador, Golden Retriever, and more. It comes in several sizes with a few adjustment points to ensure the best fit.

The no-pull design is ideal for untrained dogs as it helps to prevent choking and pulling. It distributes the pulling pressure across the body to make walks more comfortable.

It has a simple design with quick-snap buckles that make it easy to put on and take off. Another thing worth mentioning is the locking feature on both snaps.

This one has a sturdy handle and a solid D-ring leash attachment. The handle helps to assist and control the dog in different situations.

It’s reflective and lightweight as it’s made from premium nylon oxford material with reflective strips.

Pros:

Soft chest

Sturdy, easy-grab handle

Locking snaps

Cons:

The chest piece runs small

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

Chai’s Choice Best Outdoor Adventure Dog Harness

This Chain’s Choice outdoor dog harness is not only durable but also stylish. Its outer layer is made from scratch-resistant oxford material that’s lightweight and breathable.

It comes with a Duraflex buckle that has a large loading capacity to improve tensile strength. Plus, the entire thing has an ergonomic design that’s easy to put on and take off.

This one is quite comfortable, featuring lightweight mesh lining and sponge padding in the belly and chest. It won’t irritate your dog’s skin even after hours of walking or running.

It has two leash attachment points, including the zinc-alloy D-ring on the back and the zinc-alloy O-ring on the chest. This allows you to choose based on how your dog behaves.

Another thing we should mention is the nylon webbing with reflective material.

Pros:

Adjustable straps

Seat belt attachment

Scratch-resistant

Cons:

Difficult to adjust for in-between sizes

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness

Kurgo Tru-Fit is a smart harness with five adjustable points and quick-release buckles. It’s easy to put on and take off, so it’s suitable for walking and jogging with untrained dogs.

It features a front D-ring that helps to train your dog not to pull the leash. It also has a back leash attachment for a more relaxed walking experience when your pet doesn’t pull.

On top of that, this one has a seat belt attachment. It’s a 10-inch tether designed to help you restrain your pet when driving. Although it’ll help to prevent distractions, it’s not crash-tested.

Another thing worth noting is that this one comes in several sizes and colors. Although it’s designed for medium to large breeds, you can adjust the size to find the best fit.

Pros:

Seat belt tether included

Durable nylon material

Strong no-pull front clip

Cons:

The chest might not fit all dogs

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

PoyPet No Pull Dog Harness

PoyPet is one of the best harness for large dogs. It features two metal leash attachment points with reinforced webbing for some added durability.

The front clip is designed to stop your dog from pulling, while the back one is meant for more relaxed walking. The entire thing has a comfortable ergonomic design, allowing the pulling pressure to be evenly distributed across the body.

This one is made from scratch-resistant oxford material that’s comfortable and easy to clean. It also dries quickly, which makes maintenance a breeze.

It has an easy-to-use seat belt attachment with soft padding that won’t irritate your dog’s skin. Plus, the reflective stitching makes your pet more visible in the dark.

Its four adjustable straps allow you to find the best fit even if your dog is in between sizes.

Pros:

Lightweight and durable

Scratch-resistant

Reflective

Cons:

A bit tricky to take off

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

WINSEE Dog Harness No Pull

Winsee is an XL dog harness with a lockable collar. It comes in several sizes you can choose from based on the exact breed you have. All the sizes are adjustable, which is ideal for finding the best fit.

This one has reflective straps that make your pup more visible when walking in low-light conditions. It also has a sturdy handle for controlling and assisting your pet when needed.

The front D-ring is perfect for dog owners who struggle with their dog pulling on the leash. This design helps to prevent that while still giving you enough control.

One of the best things about it is the customizable chest and neck. It makes it easy to adjust the size to fit your dog if he/she is in-between the sizes.

There’s also the locking on the clasp to make the entire thing more secure.

Pros:

Quick-snap buckles

Breathable mesh lining

Double-stitching

Cons:

It might be challenging to put on

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

Eagloo Dog Harness No Pull

Eagloo is another no-pull harness for large dogs. It also fits medium breeds, but make sure to measure your pet carefully before checking the size chart.

It has two metal leash rings and a handle for assisting and controlling your dog. The V-ring on the back is meant for casual walking, while the O-ring on the chest is there to prevent pulling.

The handle in the back is for looping the seat belt through when riding with your dog. You can secure it in place to prevent distractions.

It’s a no-choke harness that distributes the pressure evenly. It has nylon webbing along with reflective material to ensure visibility.

This one is easy to put on and take off thanks to its two quick-release snaps and four adjustable buckles.

Pros:

Sponge padding

Adjustable

Suitable for car riding

Cons:

Some dogs can back out of it

Check Amazon for Availability and Pricing

FAQ

Are harnesses good for large dogs?

Harnesses are good for a large dog as they are for a small dog. They’re great in preventing your pet from pulling or choking, regardless of the breed.

Still, some dogs don’t like this and never get used to a harness regardless of the brand, shape, or size. Still, it’s often a better option than an around-the-neck collar.

Is a harness better than a collar?

As mentioned, a harness is often better than a collar, especially if your dog likes pulling on the leash. However, the choice still falls to your preference and what your dog likes better.

So, it might be a good choice to try both options before settling for one.

What is the right harness to stop your dog from pulling?

As you may have noticed, most harnesses are advertised as “no-pull” products. These often have at least two leash attachment points – one in the back and one in the front.

The front clip is designed to keep your dog at bay, preventing it from pulling on the leash.

Final Thoughts on the Best Harness for Large Dogs

Big dogs are often trickier to control than small dogs due to their strength and size. When they pull on the leash, it makes walking impossible to enjoy regardless of the breed you have.

Luckily, a dog harness can help you with this as it goes around the neck and chest. This helps to distribute the pressure so that there’s no chance of choking or irritation.

Plus, it helps dog owners to train their pets since most have the no-pull feature and several attachment points. The large chest plate is often padded and comfortable even when used daily and for an extended period.

Still, it’s crucial to find the best size that fits your dog perfectly. For this reason, make sure to measure the neck and chest before deciding on one of these harnesses.

About the author

    Erin Shaffer

    Growing up without dogs was one of the most regrettable circumstances in my life. When I got my very first puppy my whole world turned upside down. She bettered my life, so every day I do my best to better hers. Dogs are truly little angels and deserve nothing but the best. Our dogs dedicate themselves to us, so lets give back and be the best pet owners we can be in every way possible.

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