By distributing pressure from a leash across your dog’s body, a well-fitted dog harness can be more comfortable for your dog. A dog in a harness is less likely to pull on a leash and is generally easier to control during a walk, which makes them ideal for most jaunts.
We tested 23 dog harnesses in real-world conditions with real dogs of all shapes and sizes. We looked for weather-resistant materials, bright colors for easy visibility, exceptional adjustability, and leash attachment points that can help you with training and control. But while we found our favorites, the right harness for your dog will be the one that provides the best fit.
"Getting the right fit is key, so you should definitely measure your dog," Alison Buehler, a certified professional dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and certified separation anxiety trainer (CSAT) for Brooklyn-based dog trainers Dharma Dog NYC, told The Spruce Pets. Measuring your dog in advance can help you narrow options and guarantee their comfort.
After hundreds of hours of combined testing, our favorite dog harness is the Ruffwear Front Range, which has multiple points of adjustment, lots of color options, and won't chafe or impede your dog's movements. But there are other harnesses we also love that might work even better for you and your dog.
Ruffwear Front Range Dog Harness
Non-absorbent material is durable and easy to wipe clean
Four adjustment points for a custom fit
360 degree reflection piping
Two leash connection points: V-ring on the back and webbing on the chest
Pocket for ID information
Some dogs don't like harnesses going over their head and need time to adjust
A properly fitting harness is key for comfort and to preventing your dog from slipping out while on walks. With five size options (xx-small to large/x-large), all with four adjustment points, the Ruffwear Front Range Dog Harness can provide the right fit for a variety of dogs.
The foam-padded construction of the overhead-style harness is designed to be gentle and comfortable so it won't chafe or irritate your pup. When preparing for walks with our participating tester—a young and energetic Siberian Husky—the Ruffwear Front Range harness only took a few minutes to put on and adjust, even with their excited wiggles for walk time.
The well-constructed harness has two leash connection points: a beefy aluminum V-ring on the back and a reinforced webbing loop on the chest to correct pulling—though we recommend using this harness with dogs who are already leash trained and/or only need mild correction.
The harness is suitable for daily walks, easy to wipe clean, and durable enough to handle most outdoor activities. For low-light adventures, the built-in 360-degree reflective piping keeps your dog more visible to other humans you come across. And for additional safety, there is an ID pocket where you can stash your contact information as a backup to their collar with tags.
Price at the time of publish: $50
Sizes: XX-Small, x-small, small, medium, large/x-large | Materials: Aluminum, nylon | Colors: Red sumac, aurora teal, blue moon, campfire orange, hibiscus pink, huckleberry blue, purple sage, red clay, tumalo teal, twilight gray
Blue-9 Balance Harness
Six points of adjustment to fit any dog body type
No chafing, no restricted movement
Front and back leash attachments
Buckle on neck, so you don’t have to pull harness over dog’s head
Easy to identify top strap, which is a different color
Thin webbing is vulnerable to chewers
No reflective portion
The Blue-9 Balance Harness has a relatively minimal design that does a fantastic job of conforming to a dog’s body without getting in the way. It's available in five different sizes and has six points of adjustment so you can find a configuration that won’t chafe or impede your dog’s movement.
To ensure you are putting on the harness correctly, the strap that needs to be face up on your dog's back is always a different color webbing than the rest of the harness. It has a Y-neck design at the front, which fits higher up on your dog’s neck—though still below where a collar typically rests—so that it doesn’t impede their front legs. It has two attachment points for a leash in either the back or front, making it useful for no-pull training and other adjustments to your dog’s leash etiquette. It’s also a good pick for nervous dogs since it has a buckle for the neck portion of the harness, which means you’ll never have to pull it over your dog’s head.
Blue-9 generously offers a 90-day chew warranty, where you can replace a chewed and damaged harness for half price, but if your dog is prone to chewing, you might find that the thin yet highly durable nylon webbing is no match to your dog's desire for chomping. We also wish the Balance Harness had some reflective elements for better visibility in low-light conditions.
Price at time of publish: $45
Sizes: X-small, small, medium, medium/large, large | Materials: Nylon, plastic, metal leash rings | Colors: Black, blue, camo, hot pink, hunter green, orange, purple, red, sky blue
Rabbitgoo No-Pull Dog Harness
Padded construction to resist chafing
Four points of adjustment for a proper fit
Fast-release buckles on torso
Straps might be too wide for smaller dogs
With a padded design for comfort and two connection points for a leash (back and front), the Rabbitgoo No Pull Dog Harness is suitable for a variety of outdoor excursions. It's available in five sizes and 14 colors, but all combinations of the overhead-style harness are available at a very approachable price.
With four points of adjustment, this Rabbitgo harness can be modified to fit most dogs, but the straps might be too bulky for very petite pups. There are two fast-release buckles on either side of the torso that make it easy to clip the harness securely in place and also to take it off with ease
In addition to its adjustable fit, the Rabbitgoo No Pull Dog Harness has other features to enhance your dog's comfort, including an airy, mesh lining, a sturdy top handle for those times when you need to keep your dog extra close, and reflective stitching to make nighttime walks safer.
Price at time of publish: $23 for small
Sizes: S-XL | Colors: Baby blue, bright pumpkin, classic black, cherry pink, honey wheat, lemon yellow, light gray, mint green, modern violet, navy blue, Passion Red, Rose Red, Tranquil Teal, Vibrant Lime | Material: Polyester, nylon
Harness Lead No Pull Dog Harness
Lots of color options with reflective versions
Lightweight and streamlined
Helpful with correcting pulling on walks
Not chew resistant
Learning curve can be difficult for dog walkers or when leaving your dog with a sitter
The unconventional design of the Harness Lead No Pull Dog Harness keeps the pressure across your dog’s chest, instead of on their neck. It’s made of double-braided polyester which can resist thousands of pounds of pulling strength.
The loop goes around your dog’s neck, then you take the leash length and wrap it across their chest and back through a slit opening. You now have a leash emerging from your dog’s back, attached to two loops, and adjustable rubber stoppers can be moved to capture the right adjustment lengths. It's one continuous piece that takes a moment to understand for proper use, so if you have a dog walker or leave your dog at doggie daycare, make sure to instruct anyone that will be walking your dog how to use it properly.
While you’re more likely to ensure your dog’s comfort with a harness made of flat straps, with more points of adjustment, the Harness Lead is a good minimalist introduction to the harness concept, which does an excellent job of avoiding pressure points or impeding your dog’s natural movements.
The Harness Lead is available in two sizes and ten colors, some with reflective accents. It’s even machine washable (hang to dry).
Price at time of publish: $30
Sizes: Small/medium, medium/large | Material: Double-braided polyester, rubber stops at adjustment points | Colors: Purple/green/yellow, red reflective, blue/turquoise, black reflective, orange reflective, pink/purple, blue/lime, purple, purple/turquoise, pink
Best for Training
PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
Effective no-pull design
Colored belly strap to make dressing easier
Fits comfortably across chest
Very wide range of sizes
Narrow design might not fit dogs with a wider build
The PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness gives the human holding the leash more control over their dog than any other harnesses we tested. The Martingale loop on the front—patented by PetSafe—will stop your canine from pulling and twisting which is essential when training.
The Easy Walk harness is designed to offer a safe and snug fit without any chafing or discomfort while also giving you the ability to steer your dog back toward you whenever they start pulling or misbehaving. The webbing-constructed harness sits across a dog’s chest instead of near their throat, providing an additional layer of comfort that is not indicative of many no-pull harnesses on the market. Another major element that distinguishes the Easy Dog Harness is its colored belly strap which easily lets you know the harness is on correctly. The harness is priced affordably and is well-made with nylon webbing that is easy to wipe clean.
In terms of fit, the PetSmart Easy Walk Harness is fairly narrow, so for large and especially wider dogs, the harness may be too tight or not give the owner enough control. If that sounds like your doggo, we recommend you check out our pick for Big Dogs, the 2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness.
Price at time of publish: $23
Size: Petite, small, small/medium, medium, medium/large, large, petite/small, x-Large | Colors: Apple green/grey, black/silver, deep purple/black, fawn/brown, raspberry/gray, red/black, royal blue/navy blue, teal | Material: Nylon
The Foggy Dog Dog Harness
Sturdy nylon interior and natural cotton exterior
Four adjustable points: two around the neck, and one at chest and belly each
One buckle at the back makes it easy to get on and off
Not as resilient as more strictly functional harnesses
Popular colors are often sold out
At the intersection of style and function is the Foggy Dog Dog Harness. It comes in a variety of colors and prints with seasonal offerings released throughout the year. The harnesses are constructed in the United States with durable nylon and then covered with natural cotton, so they are sturdy yet breathable and soft to the touch.
The harnesses are available in five sizes and each is complete with four adjustable buckles, two at the neck, one around the belly, and one at the chest for length. A gold-colored D-ring on the back is positioned to evenly distribute pressure when connected to a leash. Our Pomeranian tester immediately picked up the pace of their walk indicating comfort and security while out on a walk. The harnesses are priced higher than others that made our list, but they are well-made with an aesthetic approach that keeps a dog comfortable and pawlished.
A buckle at the back makes it easy to get on and off a dog, and a leather logo patch indicates which side of the harness goes on top so you can be certain the harness is on correctly. It's easy to spot clean but is also suitable to be machine washed and air dried.
Price at time of publish: $59
Size: X-small, small, medium, large | Colors: Olive, evergreen, cider, hot pink, buchanan plaid, ruby, onyx, ocean | Material: Cotton, nylon
Wild One Harness
Three leash connection points: front, top near neck, and top at the back
Available in a variety of colors and designer patterns
Easy to wipe clean or hand wash
Matching leash and poop bag carrier sold separately
Some leash attachment points are too close to the trachea when fitted on some dogs
The padded polyester construction of the vest-like Wild One Dog Harness is soft against a dog's skin to help prevent chafing, and they are made with nylon webbing around the neck and the body that's adjustable to fit your dog's unique shape.
The lightweight, stretchable harnesses are available in a variety of colors with the option to purchase a matching leash and poop bag carrier. There are three coated carbon D-rings for leash attachment. One is located at the front which can help to detour pulling and two are located at the back, one near the base of the neck and the other mid-back. Our participating Daushand mix felt most comfortable with the leash clipped to their back, but you may find your dog prefers another spot. With frequent walks in the wet and muddy Seattle weather, we found this harness easy to wipe clean and it drys very quickly.
The price point is high, but the harness is well-made and offers a shape that is comfortable for many dogs to wear. It's available in six classic colors with designer collaborations and limited-release colors offered seasonally. If you opt for a brightly-colored harness and have a light-colored dog, you should first-hand wash and hang dry to avoid dye transfer. We also recommend paying close attention to neck sizing when selecting a size for your dog, and size up if they are between sizes. The harness is placed over the head, which takes some dogs a moment to get used to, and snaps closed around the torso.
Price at time of publish: $48
Size: X-small, small, large, x-large | Colors: Lilac, black, navy, blush, gray, tan | Material: Nylon, polyester, coated carbon
Best for Hiking
Ruffwear Web Master Dog Harness With Handle
Sturdy aluminum v-ring at mid back and reinforced webbing at rear of harness for leash attachment
Lift handle on the back
Five points of adjustment with a Y-neck style at the front
Rugged padding with reflective accents
No front clip, so not recommended for no pull training
Designed for trail conditions, the Ruffwear Web Master is constructed of durable weather-resistant polyester fabric along with perforated foam offering padded, breathable protection that won't impede movements.
The Ruffwear harness is designed to be easily put on and take off with five points of adjustment for a proper fit. On the back, you'll find an aluminum v-ring as the primary leash attachment point, followed by a sturdy padded handle to assist your dog over obstacles, and lastly, a reinforced webbing loop where you can attach items like a light or GPS tracker. The front of the harness has a Y-neck with adjustable sliders for unrestricted front leg movement, and around the torso is a set of adjustable straps that offer support.
There are additional safety features, too, including bright fabric with reflective trim lines for visibility at any time of day and in any weather. In addition to hiking, this versatile harness is also beneficial for dogs with mobility issues. It does not feature a front clip and we do not recommend this harness for training a dog not to pull while on a leash.
Price at time of publish: $55
Sizes: XX-Small, x-small, small, medium, large/x-large | Colors: Aurora teal, blue moon, campfire orange, hibiscus pink, purple sage, red clay, red sumac, twilight gray
Best for Big Dogs
2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness and Leash
Can accommodate very large dogs, up to 250 pounds with chests up to 44 inches wide
When used with a double-connection training leash, harness offers unmatched control
Rip-resistant fabric and chew-proof guarantee
Heavy-duty stainless steel rings
Has to be taken on and off over head which some dogs don't enjoy
While on walks hefty hounds can be more difficult to reign in and keep from pulling because of their natural force, but 2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness will help wrangle your dog's mighty movements.
Designed to accommodate dogs weighing up to 250 pounds with a maximum chest width of 44 inches. The patented design features two stainless steel D-rings for leash connection—one at the front that avoids the sensitive neck area and a Martingale loop at the top. For optimal control, the harness should be used in tandem with a double connection training leash that has two prongs for simultaneous attachment to both harness clips. 2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harnesses are often sold with a training leash, but you can also purchase it separately.
Our participating Bernadoodle tester has the common canine habit of getting excited and lunging toward squirrels. With sudden forceful movements, especially from big dogs, this harness gives the leash holder a needed double-powered assist to counteract the momentum of a dog hurling themself forward. The extra-strength strap of the harness that goes around the belly from behind the armpits to the lower chest, allows for wielding a great deal of control without any unnecessary discomfort directed toward the pulling canine. The harness is constructed of rip-resistant, industrial-grade nylon with velvet lining so it's soft against a dog's skin.
The harness must be put on and taken off over the head which some dogs do not enjoy, but once it's on, four adjustment buckles can help you get a comfortable fit around your dog. It can also be used for more relaxed walks with a leash connected to one of the D-rings.
Price at time of publish: $42
Sizes: X-small, small, medium, large, x-large, xx-large | Colors: Red, royal blue, purple, brown, rose pink, raspberry, turquoise, teal, burgundy, hot pink, navy, neon green, neon orange | Material: Nylon, velvet, stainless steel
Best for Car Rides
EzyDog Drive Dog Car Harness
Crash tested by internationally-recognized Automotive Safety Engineering body
Can be used for walks too
Designed to distribute pressure points
Can be difficult to fit
The EzyDog Drive Dog Car Harness is a secure, padded harness that has two handles on the back designed for your car’s seat belt. It has a contoured and padded chest plate, which distributes any tugging across your dog’s body. We tested it alongside a dozen dog car seats and carriers in our search for the best automotive safety equipment for dogs, and our testers selected it as their favorite car restraint harness.
The EzyDog uses beefy components for maximum safety, though it can make it tricky to fit to your dog initially. But once you’ve fit the EzyDog to your pooch you can lock in the strap configuration, and then it’s straightforward to take it off and put it on again using the magnetic clasp.
While the EzyDog is usable as a walking harness, its complex fit, bulky straps, and padded front are geared toward keeping your dog safe on car rides, so it might not be the most comfortable for active dogs. The EzyDog Drive Dog Car Harness was independently crash-tested and certified by the Automotive Safety Engineering in Australia.
Price at time of publish: $125
Sizes: Small, medium, large | Color: Black | Material: Nylon, synthetic fabric
Our favorite dog harness is the Ruffwear Front Range Dog Harness, which is adjustable to comfortably fit most shapes and sizes, made out of durable fabric with reflective piping, and has two leash connection points. If you are working on no-pull training, the PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness gives you more control than any other harness we've tested and is priced affordably.
How We Tested
We researched and selected 23 dog harnesses and sent each one to a home with at least one dog for real-world testing.
Each of our canine participants was fitted by their human according to their assigned harnesses. For two weeks, each doggie-led duo went on daily walks with the non-pawed participants gathering insights and taking note of what they liked and didn't like. At the end of our trial period, they provided feedback in the following categories: Fit, Durability, Ease of Use, and Value along with photos of the harness in use.
Equipped with this first-hand information, we ranked and categorized our top picks to meet a variety of needs. All of our recommendations received very high marks from testers.
What to Look for in a Dog Harness
The essential types of harnesses are:
Back clip harness: This is the most common type of harness on the market, designed for dogs with basic needs who can get through walks or jogs without pulling. It features a metal D-ring attached to the back of the harness.
Front clip harness: These are also known as “no-pull harnesses,” because they are designed to train dogs not to pull their leash. In this case, the D-ring is attached to the front of the harness, positioned across the dog’s chest.
Dual-clip harness: These adaptable harnesses include both front and back clip options. Several of our favorite options on the product list, including our top picks, feature dual-clip designs.
Step-in harness: If your dog is finicky when it comes to getting strapped into a regular over-the-head harness, they may prefer a step-in design. When using these, the dog steps into two large loops that form the harness, and then the harness is pulled up and buckled behind them.
Safety harness: These are generally used in vehicles, attaching to the seatbelt to keep dogs safe and secure.
Day-pack harness: If your dog needs to carry some provisions or accessories around with them, a day-pack harness will allow them to wear everything they need on their back.
Dog Harness Vs. Dog Collar
The majority of dogs should wear a collar for identification, but if you’re trying to decide on a harness or a collar for walking and training, you should take into account your dog's size and temperament. Many small dogs cannot be walked with a collar because the risk of them experiencing a collapsed trachea is too great. Many very large dogs will also benefit from the control a harness gives to their human who is holding the leash, like our pick for Big Dogs, the 2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness, which has a leash clip at the chest and the back.
"No matter what harness I use, I like to connect the leash with a little extra clip to a flat collar so if a dog does get out of the harness, you can grab them by the collar." Alison Buehler, a certified professional dog trainer (CPDT-KA) and certified separation anxiety trainer (CSAT) for Brooklyn-based dog trainers Dharma Dog NYC, told The Spruce Pets. She recommends adding a tiny latch, like the Hound Safe Leash Safety Strap to the leash because it gives you a few extra seconds to grab your dog if they do wiggle out of the harness.
Sizing and Fit
Finding the right harness for your pup is often a process of trial and error. It is important to pay close attention to the specific recommendations of the manufacturer before selecting the size of harness. The most important indicator will be the dog’s girth, which means that you’ll need to measure your dog’s chest diameter. Weight is also usually a factor in sizing, so it is important to get an accurate weight measurement.
Most harnesses are easy to adjust, which allows room for a dog to grow into them. To check the fit, the best litmus test is to make sure you can stick two fingers between the harness and your dog. Harnesses that are tighter than that can create chafing and discomfort.
Since the point of harnesses is usually to keep dogs safe, secure and in control, good dog harnesses are made of durable, rip-resistant material—usually nylon and polyester. Additional padding can help with the comfort of the harness, as well as protecting against breakage or other damage. In terms of D-rings, stainless steel or another fail-safe metal is the ideal make, to assure that the weight of your dog does not pull the harness and leash apart.
Training to Walk On A Harness
If you have a rambunctious dog who needs some corralling, it is wise to start them out with a no-pull harness, which are sometimes referred to as training harnesses. With their front-clip design, these are intended, over time, to teach your pup not to pull or try to tear away during walks or jogs.
Is a dog harness better than a collar?
Harnesses are a better choice than a collar for most dogs. Because they go around the dog’s chest and behind their front legs, they won’t choke or strain a pulling dog's neck like a collar can. Harnesses also provide you with better leverage to control a large dog or a dog who likes to pull.
How do you measure a dog for a harness?
The most important measurement area is their chest, which means the broadest part of your dog’s chest. You will also need to measure their neck circumference, and cross-reference these measurements with their weight to get all the information you need to pinpoint the correct fit.
How do you put on a dog harness?
This depends on the type of harness. Most of the basic types of harness (front, back, and dual clip designs) are put on over the dog’s head. Step-in harnesses allow the dog to step into the harness’ two loops while it is lying on the ground. The harness is then pulled up and buckled by the owner behind the dog.
How should a dog harness fit?
It should be tight and secure, but not uncomfortably so. As mentioned before, you can check the fit of a harness by sticking two fingers between the vest and your pup.
How do you prevent pulling with a harness?
If you’re purchasing a harness to stop your pup from pulling on a walk, you’ll definitely want to select one with a chest loop attachment for the leash. The placement helps to gently correct by pulling your pup to the side if they get too far out ahead of you.
Why Trust The Spruce Pets?
This roundup was updated by Anna Mejorada, a writer for The Spruce Pets who share her home with a happy Pomeranian named Gidget. Before researching and writing about pet products for a living, Mejorada embarked on a self-mandated, ongoing quest to find the optimal items for her dog. She is now delightfully devoted to helping humans discover and select the most favorable products for their pets.
A previous version was written by Winston Cook-Wilson, a freelance writer and product tester for The Spruce Pets. This list was compiled after taking a broad survey of the options available on the market for all the major types of dog harnesses. It incorporates information from reviews by product testers and dog safety experts. The list is designed to take into account the needs of different types of dogs, The Spruce Pets’ team considered each product’s safety features, durability, and size, among other factors.