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The 11 Best Puppy Harnesses: Tools for Safe and Easy Pup Walks!

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Collars & Harnesses By Kate Brunotts 15 min read March 2, 2022

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Best Puppy Harnesses

Of all the things you’ll need to buy for your new little puppy, a high-quality harness is one of the things you’ll want to prioritize.

Important for safety, convenience, and general pet management, your puppy’s harness will become a regular part of your daily doggo routine. And this means it’s wise to dig in and learn everything you can about them — and we’re here to help you do exactly that.

Below, we’ll explain why harnesses are so helpful, outline the things to look for when making your choice, and share some of the best puppy harnesses around! 

Quick Picks: Best Puppy Harnesses

  • #1 Rabbitgoo Dog Harness [Best Overall Dog Harness for Puppies]: One of the best dog harnesses around, this model is easy to put on and take off, comfortable for canines, and comes with all of the bells and whistles most pet parents are searching for.
  • #2 Puppia Soft Harness [Best Budget-Friendly Dog Harness For Puppies]: This harness doesn’t have fancy extra features, but it will keep your canine companion secure while being gentle on your bank account.
  • #3 PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness [Best No-Pull Dog Harness for Puppies]: Pulling on the leash is a common puppy problem, but this harness will help gently redirect your dog’s stride and make walks easier.

Why Should Puppy Owners Use a Harness? 

why use harness on puppy

All doggos will need a collar or a harness (and many pet parents will opt to use both — more on this later).

Either one will give you a place to attach your dog’s ID tags and serve as a leash-attachment point. But while most owners initially default to a collar, many will ultimately decide that a harness better suits their needs.

A few of the reasons puppy harnesses are often preferable to collars include:

  • Harness are safer than collars. Because they distribute pressure across your dog’s body, as opposed to the neck region like collars do, harnesses are generally considered the safer option.  
  • Harnesses are often more comfortable for canines. In addition to being less likely to injure your dog’s throat, harnesses often serve as a more comfortable leash-attachment point than collars.
  • Harnesses typically provide more control of your dog. Harnesses offer more control than collars, and they’ll usually make walks more pleasant.
  • Harnesses can help teach your dog to stop pulling on the leash. While you’ll ultimately want to use training techniques to teach your dog to walk on a loose leash, some harnesses can jump start the process. 
  • Harnesses often come with helpful bonus features. Collars are generally pretty simple devices, but many harnesses have things like handles and multiple leash-attachment points, and some have places you can stick cute patches too.
In Practice, You’ll Likely Want a Collar and a Harness

While collars and harnesses are sometimes seen as an either/or situation, many owners ultimately decide to use both.

A collar serves as the perfect place for ID tags and it is easy for dogs to wear all the time. But a puppy harness makes a better leash-attachment point, and it can simply be put on your dog before walks.

The 11 Best Puppy Harnesses: Smooth & Safe Puppy Walks!

Without further ado, here are 11 of the best puppy harnesses you can find for your canine companion. Make sure you take your dog’s individual needs into consideration when selecting the perfect harness for your pooch. 

1. Rabbitgoo Dog Harness

Best Overall Puppy Harness

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rabbitgoo Dog Harness, No-Pull Pet Harness with 2 Leash Clips, Adjustable Soft Padded Dog Vest, Reflective No-Choke Pet Oxford Vest with Easy Control Handle for Small Dogs, Black, S

Rabbitgoo Dog Harness

A versatile, high-quality harness that comes with most of the features owners want.

About: This harness from Rabbitgoo has a well-earned reputation for being one of the best-selling, highest-rated dog harnesses around. It comes with all of the features most owners are looking for, as well as “extras,” like breathable padding and multiple leash attachment points.

The Rabitgoo harness is also built to last, thanks to its nylon and polyester design, as well as its reinforced with high-quality stitching. It also comes in plenty of adorable colors for maximum canine cuteness.

Features:

  • Features two leash attachment points and a handle
  • 4 adjustable straps for a secure fit
  • Breathable mesh-padding for year-round wear
  • Reflective strips for safe walks in low-light 
  • Non-slip lock system for a secure fit

Options: This harness comes in small, medium, large, and extra-large, and it comes in 14 colors, ranging from violet to black.

Pros

  • Well-built and very highly rated by owners
  • 4 adjustable straps make it great for growing pups
  • It has 2 leash attachment points
  • Included handle provides extra control
  • Reflective stitching improves visibility at night

Cons

  • They run a bit small
  • Some owners reported slight fraying over time

2. Puppia Harness

Best Budget-Friendly Puppy Harness

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Puppia Dog Harness

Puppia Harness

An affordable, no-frills harness that will keep Spot safe without breaking the bank.

About: This affordable harness from Puppia may not have all the bells and whistles some other harnesses do, but it’s a simple solution that’ll get the job done and keep your canine companion safe while on walks. Made from 100% polyester, this harness is designed for everyday use and has a soft, breathable mesh design.

This harness features a quick-release buckle that makes it easy to put on and take off. It’s also super compact and easy to store, making it a great harness to keep in your car or in a travel bag if you and your pooch are always on the go. 

Features:

  • Lightly padded, breathable mesh design
  • Machine-washable 
  • Adjustable chest belt 
  • Quick-release buckle for easy on and off
  • Sturdy polyester fabric 

Options: Available in 6 different sizes ranging from extra-small to extra-extra-large and 14 colors.  

Pros

  • Provides excellent quality for the price
  • Lightweight and super breathable
  • Easy to put on and take off
  • Comfy for canines and doesn’t cause any chafing

Cons

  • Lacks some of the bells and whistles more expensive models have
  • Tends to run a bit small
  • The neck hole cannot be adjusted

3. PUPTECK Soft Harness

Most Fashionable Puppy Harness

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PUPTECK Soft Mesh Dog Harness Pet Puppy Comfort Padded Vest No Pull Harnesses

PUPTECK Soft Harness

An adorable harness-and-leash combo that’ll let your pooch strut down the street in style.

About: Some pet parents don’t need a tactical harness with handles, extra D-rings, or other added features for exploring. Instead, they just need a safe harness for their canine companion that looks super cute! This secure and fashionable pick from PUPTECK fits that bill perfectly! 

This over-the-head harness is super easy to put on and take off. It’s also absolutely adorable and features padding and lightweight mesh to keep your canine comfortable. 

Features:

  • Sturdy polyester design
  • Soft edges to prevent chafing 
  • Comes with a matching leash
  • Breathable soft-mesh padding
  • Back-mounted D-ring
  • Adjustable side strap

Options: This harness is available in extra-small, small, medium and large sizes, and you can choose from 21 different plaid patterns. 

Pros

  • Just look at it — it’s adorable
  • Single buckle design makes it easy to put on
  • Comes with a leash, providing extra value

Cons

  • You can’t adjust the head hole
  • Probably won’t help stop leash pulling

4. PetSafe Easy Walk

Best Puppy Harness for Pullers

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PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness

PetSafe Easy Walk

A gentle no-pull harness that effectively redirects your canine companion.

About: If your pooch is a puller, this harness from PetSafe is a dream come true!. The design of this harness makes it easy to redirect your dog. Essentially, it makes it easy to turn your four-footer toward you whenever he attempts to pull on the lead. This makes walking with your furry friend a breeze all without causing you to pull your arm out.

Features:

  • Designed by a veterinary behaviorist to eliminate moderate pulling
  • The lightweight harness is perfect for dogs in warmer climates
  • Sturdy and simple nylon design
  • Two secure snaps for extra safety
  • Chest loop design helps prevent twisting

Options: This harness is available in 8 sizes ranging from petite to extra-large. You can also choose from 8 different color options ranging from apple green to neutral brown. 

Pros

  • Often helpful for reducing pulling
  • Super easy to clean
  • An extremely well-rated harness

Cons

  • It can be tricky to get used to putting this harness on your hound
  • Thin, non-padded design may not be comfortable for all pups
K9 of Mine Staff Experiences

I personally use this harness for my shih-tzu poodle mix, Spicy.

Granted, she’s only 10 pounds, so it’s not like I had a ton of pressure on my arm, to begin with. However, I’ve definitely noticed a difference in her walking since switching to this harness.

I also appreciate that this harness won’t put any pressure on her delicate neck which is important since shih-tzus can be prone to tracheal collapse.

Do note that this harness can take some getting used to in terms of fitting it properly on your pooch. However, this is the case with a lot of no-pull harnesses, and PetSafe even provides a comprehensive tutorial video here.

5. 2 Hounds Harness

Runner-Up: Best Puppy Harness For Pullers

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2 Hounds Dog Harness

2 Hounds Harness

A dual-clip, no-pull, leash-and-harness combo designed for power-walking pups.

About: If your peppy puppy is quite the puller, consider this harness from 2 Hounds. The specialized harness comes with a leash that attaches to the front and back of your dog’s harness to guide your mutt with ease. 

Made in the USA, this high-quality harness features stainless steel hardware and nylon webbing for everyday use. It also has adjustable belly and chest straps so that it’s secure and snug on your four-footer. 

Features:

  • No-pull leash harness bundle redirects your dog from two points with the included leash
  • Made in the USA
  • Sturdy nylon design
  • Stainless steel hardware
  • Adjustable chest and belly strap

Options: This no-pull harness comes in 7 different sizes ranging from extra small to extra-extra-large and 19 different colors (along with a matching leash). 

Pros

  • Redirects pullers without putting pressure on the neck
  • Easy to put on your dog
  • You can switch to one leash attachment over time

Cons

  • More expensive than some of the other options
  • It’s more complicated to rig up than standard harnesses

6. RUFFWEAR

Best Puppy Harness for Adventurous Four-Footers

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RUFFWEAR, Flagline Dog Harness, Lightweight Multi-Use Harness with Padded Handle, Red Rock, Medium

RUFFWEAR Flagline Harness

A secure, rugged, and feature-packed harness designed for endless exploration.

About: RUFFWEAR makes a whole line of snug and secure harnesses for furry friends. However, the RUFFWEAR Flagline Harness is the only model that features a front clip, back clip, and a handle for your convenience. 

The rugged harness is designed for adventure, as it features reinforced webbing and a debris-resistant lining. Notably, this harness features six different adjustment points so that you can count on your canine staying secure while traversing from one area to the next. 

Features:

  • Padded handle for easy lift support while on adventures
  • 6 adjustable strap points 
  • 4 buckle design for a secure fit
  • Reflective trim for low-light walking
  • Debris-resistant liner

Options: This rugged harness comes in solid red, teal, or grey, and you choose between 5 sizes suited for dogs between 13- and 42- inches wide. 

Pros

  • Lightweight yet sturdy design
  • Debris-resistant lining helps keep it clean
  • Adjustable straps made it easy to fit on just about any dog

Cons

  • May be overkill for daily walks
  • Uses 4 buckles, so getting your pooch in and out of the harness isn’t super quick

7. Auroth Tactical Harness

Best Puppy Harness for Escape-Artists

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Auroth Tactical Dog Harness for Small Medium Dogs No Pull Adjustable Pet Harness Reflective K9 Working Training Easy Control Pet Vest Military Service Dog Harnesses Black S

Auroth Tactical Harness

A sturdy and secure harness that’ll prevent most canines from slipping free.

About: If you have a hound Houdini, this tactical harness from Auroth is for you. With four adjustable straps and two sturdy plastic buckles, this harness is designed to provide a supremely secure and snug fit. 

This harness also features a handle on the back for use while adventuring. Plus, you can use either the no-pull front ring or back leash attachment while walking your furry friend.  

Features:

  • Features 2 sturdy quick-release buckles
  • Back handle for adventuring 
  • Metal leash attachments on front and back for added flexibility
  • 4 adjustable straps for a snug fit
  • Padded design to reduce chafing 

Options: This sturdy harness comes in small, medium, large, and extra-large sizes, as well as 13 different colors and patterns.  

Pros

  • Very sturdy, rugged design
  • Reflective stitching improves visibility in low-light conditions
  • Back handle is great for owners with leash reactive pups
  • With 4 adjustable straps, it’s easy to get a good fit

Cons

  • The Velcro strips don’t look especially awesome
  • This harness is a bit heavier than the average harness
K9 of Mine Staff Experiences

Hey there, pet parents! Ben, here.

I use two different harnesses with my pupperino, but the Auroth is my favorite. I’ve shared my thoughts on this model before when discussing the best escape-proof dog harnesses, but I’ll try to recap my experiences here briefly:

  • It’s pretty well-made and durable. If memory serves, we’ve been using it for more than three years at this point. There are tiny little places where some of the stitching has frayed, but it still works perfectly.
  • I love the combination of dual leash clips and a handle — something that isn’t terribly common among harnesses.
  • It has nifty Velcro strips for attaching patches, though they don’t match the color of the harness (we have the red one — the black one does appear to have matching Velcro). This is kinda lame, but it only matters because I don’t use patches to cover the strips.
  • The buckles are plastic, which means they don’t clank-clank-clank when my pooch walks around the house, but they’re still sturdy and feel quite secure.
  • The harness is pretty lightweight for a “tactical” style harness.
  • It’s pretty easy to put on, but it isn’t super easy to take off. But this is only a minor inconvenience for us.

I should mention that my doggo is a middle-aged gal, not a puppy, but I would have gladly used it when she was younger if I didn’t already have one I was using at the time. I should also point out that while this harness seems nearly impossible for a dog to escape from, my little lady doesn’t try to escape, so I haven’t personally seen it tested in such a fashion.

8. Gooby Harness

Easiest Puppy Harness To Put-On

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Gooby - X Harness, Small Dog Choke Free Step-in Harness with Synthetic Lambskin Soft Strap, Hunter Green, Small

Gooby Harness

Simple and effective step-in harness that’s super easy to put on and take off your pooch.

About: If you’re looking for something to quickly slip on your pooch, this harness from Gooby is a great choice. The step-in harness is not only easy to put on, it is also secured by a single safety buckle for extra convenience.

For additional comfort, this harness features a breathable, mesh-style construction to help keep your canine cool. And finally, this harness is machine-washable, making it quick and easy to clean.  

Features:

  • Soft synthetic lamb-skin straps to help reduce chafing 
  • Step-in harness for easy on and off 
  • Machine-washable 
  • Breathable, mesh design
  • Nylon-lined straps 

Options: This harness comes in small, medium, and large sizes and 9 vibrant colors ranging from Flamingo Pink to Sea Blue. 

Pros

  • Simple step-in design makes it easy to put on
  • Soft straps help keep pups comfortable
  • Sits fairly low on the chest to prevent any unnecessary pressure on the neck 

Cons

  • Isn’t a great option for dog escape artists
  • Some owners found that this harness can retain odors

9. Ecobark Harness

Most Eco-Friendly Puppy Harness

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Classic Dog Harness Innovative Mesh No Pull No Choke Design Soft Double Padded Breathable Vest for Eco-Friendly Easy Control Walking Quick Release For Puppies Full size Breeds Large Dogs (Large, Blue)

Ecobark Harness

A simple, breathable mesh harness that’s partially made from recycled water bottles.

About: If you want to keep your sweetie secure while helping to protect the planet, this harness from Ecobark is certainly worth considering. The unique harness features straps made from recycled water bottles, so it’s less wasteful than other harness options. 

Plus, your puppy will benefit from the harness’ lightweight, comfortable design. The soft, mesh harness is easy to put on and take off with a single buckle and adjustable waist strap. 

Features:

  • Padded, lightweight mesh design
  • Safety buckle is easy to clip on and off
  • Reinforced stitching to prevent chafing 
  • Adjustable waist strap
  • Metal leash attachment on the backside 

Options: This eco-conscious choice is available in 6 sizes and 17 solid colors.

Pros

  • Eco-friendly and made from recycled materials
  • Easy to slip on and off with its single buckle design
  • Very comfortable fit

Cons

  • Non-adjustable neck hole is too big for some pups
  • Not especially durable

10. Rantow Cooling Harness

Best Puppy Harness for Hot Weather

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Rantow Dog Cooling Harness - Reflective Pup Cooler Vest Outdoor Training Walking Cool Harness - 7 Sizes for Small Medium Large Pet Dogs (XS (Neck:10.3'-11.1', Chest:14.6'-16.5'))

Rantow Cooling Harness

A cooling vest and harness combo that helps keep your canine cool in warm weather.

About: While this harness doesn’t have as many reviews as we’d normally like to see, it’s worth mentioning since this Rantow Harness also functions as a dog cooling vest. Simply soak this harness in cold water, ring it out, and then suit up your pooch before heading out on a hot day. 

The harness is secured by a buckle in the back and is perfect for canines in hotter climates. 

Features:

  • The cooling harness is perfect for pups in warm climates
  • Single buckle design
  • Back leash attachment 
  • Can be soaked for immediate use or kept in the freezer
  • Lightweight design 

Options: This cooling harness only comes in single color, but you have your choice of 7 different sizes 

Pros

  • Helps keep canines cool in hot weather
  • Easy to put on thanks to the single buckle design
  • Dogs didn’t seem to mind wearing it
  • Great price given its cooling features

Cons

  • This harness portion of the vest isn’t adjustable
  • It appears to run small

11. RUFFWEAR Harness Jacket

Best Puppy Harness for Cold Weather

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RUFFWEAR, Overcoat Fuse Jacket Harness Combo for Dogs, Canyonlands Orange, XX-Small

RUFFWEAR Harness Jacket

An insulated harness-jacket combo that’ll help keep your wagger warm in cool weather.

About: If you’re looking for a winter harness or you and your puppy live in a colder area, this insulated harness from RUFFWEAR is worth considering. The fleece-lined harness provides your pooch with some extra warmth without weighing him down. 

This harness is also notably longer than most and has a weather-resistant lining, allowing it to double as a jacket. The harness-jacket has a sturdy metal leash attachment on the back. 

Features:

  • The jacket and harness combo helps provides protection against the elements
  • Fleece-lined interior for extra insulation and padding
  • Reflective stitching for low-light walking 
  • Machine-washable
  • Reinforced-stitching for long-lasting use 

Options: This cute coat comes in orange, green, or muted purple and 6 sizes ranging from extra-extra small to extra-large. 

Pros

  • Incredible quality (like most RUFFWEAR products)
  • Weather-resistant lining helped keep dogs dry
  • Fleece lining keeps dogs warm

Cons

  • More expensive than other selections on this list
  • Only features one adjustable belly strap so fit can be a problem for some dogs

Safe Use of a Puppy Harness: Avoiding Accidents & Injuries 

It’s of utmost importance that you understand how to use a harness properly. Here are a couple of considerations to keep in mind to keep your puppy safe and sound. 

  • Familiarize Fido with it slowly. Puppies are just starting to make sense of the world, so it’s important that you give your canine companion plenty of time to adjust to his new harness. Let your dog sniff the harness on the ground before attempting to put it on him. Anytime your dog interacts with the harness positively, be sure to reward with plenty of praise and training treats. 
  • Make sure you find the right fit. You’ll want to pay close attention to each harness’ sizing guide before placing an order. Make sure you take the time to properly measure out your pooch and pick an adjustable harness so that you can tweak the fit as your puppy grows. A properly fitted harness should be snug, but you should still have enough room to put roughly two fingers between your dog’s body and the harness. 
  • Practice indoors first. It will take some time for your puppy to get used to walking on a leash and using a harness (consider also grabbing one of our top recommended leashes for puppies too). In order to stay safe, you’ll want to practice indoors first. You can even leave your dog’s harness on for short periods of time while he’s roaming around the house and practice walking on a leash inside. If you have a fenced-in yard, you can practice there too, before hitting the streets. 
  • Follow operating instructions. Each harness comes with its own specifications and operating instructions (especially when it comes to adjusting the puppy harness for size). Take the time to read through these instructions carefully so that you can keep your canine safe with confidence. 

What Should You Look for in a Puppy Harness?

best harnesses for puppies

Here are some key factors to take into consideration while finding the perfect harness for your precious pooch. 

  • Comfort: Your puppy’s harness should be comfortable for everyday use. It should fit his body snuggly, without excessively rubbing his body or binding in any place. 
  • Space for Identification: Your dog can still wear a collar with identification tags while using a harness, but it’s nice if you have the option to add a couple of tags to your puppy’s harness too. Look for D-rings on the front or back of the harness – some harnesses might have both. 
  • Quality Hardware and Stitching: You don’t want to cheap out on parts when it comes to something as important as your dog’s daily harness. The D-rings should be solid and securely attached, and the harness’ buckles should snap and unsnap smoothly. Quality stitching can also help your harness stay in optimal condition for longer. 
  • No-Pull Features: If your puppy tends to pull, having a front-facing harness clip  can be super helpful. Other harnesses are designed to tighten when your pooch pulls, which can also help address pulling behavior.
  • Adjustable: An adjustable harness for puppies is a must for obvious reasons. It might be worth checking to see if your harness of choice is available in a size or two up so that your best buddy will have a seamless transition once he grows out of his current one. 
  • Style: There are plenty of different types of harnesses, so you may have to try a couple of options to find the right pick for your puppy. A cute pattern doesn’t hurt either, though obviously, this is secondary to safety. 
  • Ease of Use: Your harness of choice should be easy to secure on your four-legged friend, and it should also be easy to hook to your hound’s leash.  
  • Reflective Stitching: Reflective stitching or features can help keep you and your canine safe, especially while walking around at night. For that matter, you can add a glow-in-the-dark ID tag to make your pooch even easier to see after dark.  
  • Handles: A handle or two can provide more control over a reactive pooch or a puppy just learning his manners. They can also be helpful for giving your dog a boost when managing rough terrain. 
  • Padding: Padding can help prevent friction for your furball, and it’ll help keep him comfy when the leash tightens. 

***

A harness is an essential piece of gear for any puppy parent. Hopefully, this guide will make it easier for you to find the perfect harness for your canine companion! 

Have you tried any of these harnesses? How is your puppy progressing with leash training? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below! 

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Written by

Kate Brunotts

Kate is a dog-loving content specialist with over a decade of canine-care experience. She is currently a professional dog walker and pet sitter, with previous experience working at the Heart of Chelsea Animal Hospital in Manhattan. When not spending time with four-footers, she can usually be found crafting top-notch dog-care articles that pet parents can trust. Kate loves dogs of all shapes and sizes, but Bernese Mountain Dogs hold a special place in her heart.

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