A harness can be an effective training tool for puppies. But can puppies wear a harness all the time? Don’t leave your puppy’s harness on all day. It is best not to leave a harness on your puppy except when training her. Harnesses increase your control, prevent constant tugging and/or pulling, and are perfect for dogs with neck and esophagus injuries.
But just like dog collars and leashes, it’s best not to put a harness on your dog all the time. When your pup is at home it is more comfortable for your dog and a safer way to leave them unattended. When left unattended, even for a short period of time, there is a chance your puppy could caught in something while running around or jumping at home.
A puppy can start getting used to a harness at eight weeks old. This is also true for collars. Whichever you will be using for your puppy’s training, collar or harness, start getting your puppy used to wearing at 8 weeks.
A harness will be the preferred choice for short-nosed breeds such as bulldogs and pugs. These breeds are prone to respiratory problems and harnesses will not put pressure on her windpipe. Other than for these breeds, it depends on which you prefer, collars or harnesses. You can try both and see which one works best for you and your puppy.
Puppies, as well as dogs, should not sleep with harnesses on. Harnesses can cause skin irritations, get caught, and become a choking hazard. This is especially true if your dog sleeps in a crate. They can also cause a dog or puppy’s fur to become matted, especially the long-haired breeds.
Additional reasons not to let your puppy or dog sleep in a harness include they are quite uncomfortable because of all the buckles and straps, they’re likely to be chewed, and be very hot to wear. It is highly recommended to only put a harness on your puppy or dog for training purposes.
What Are The Types Of Dog Harnesses?
There are quite a lot of harnesses available in the market today. It is also important to note that each one of these harnesses comes with its unique style and features. Here are some of the available options out there in the market.
Back-Clip or Step-In Harness
If you have a small, easy-going dog then consider getting a back-clip (or step-in) harness. These provide your dog with a lot of comfort and have the added benefit of looking great!
This type of harness does not prevent your dog from pulling, jumping up, or other aggressive behavior. The freedom given with this design could encourage your dog to pull.
The front-clip harness has a ring to attach the leash at the center of your dog’s chest. This harness gives you much-improved guidance over where your dog is going than the back-clip harness.
This harness does lessen pulling however it still doesn’t provide enough control over serious behavioral problems. Another problem seen with this harness is increased leg entanglement with the leash.
Dual Clip Harness
The dual clip harness uses a specially designed leash that connects to the harness in two places, one on the back and the other in the front. This provides more control when walking your dog.
The strongest leash connection is in the back; however, the front clip provides increased tension if your dog lunges forward which allows you to easily redirect the dog.
Dual clip harnesses are more expensive in addition to possibly causing irritation on your dog’s shoulders.
If you have a very large, out-of-control dog, you might consider the tightening harness. This harness applies increased pressure on your dog until he stops pulling.
Be careful with this harness to be sure you don’t end up with one that constricts too much and injures your dog. This can end up causing aggressive behavior.
I would skip this one or try working with a professional trainer that doesn’t use pain to try and get dogs to behave.
Head Halter Harness
This harness has a completely different way of attaching and working than the other harnesses. The head halter straps around your dog’s neck with another lead that loops around the snout. The leash is then attached to a D-ring under your dog’s chin.
The purpose of the head halter harness is to focus your dog’s attention forward as you walk. When your dog pulls, the tension on the leash redirects your dog’s head down and toward you. This gentle reminder gives you greater control as you walk.
A head halter harness is not a muzzle, and it is not designed to induce pain. Of course, this type of harness doesn’t work on dogs with pushed-in snouts. Also, there is a period of adjustment where your dog might object to wearing this.
Eventually, he may adjust to wearing this halter, but this could take some time. If you are successful in getting the halter over your dog’s snout, he most likely will continue to try and remove it.
Ensuring your puppy or dog has a high quality of life is all dependent upon the choices you make for her throughout her life.
Being a responsible dog owner means providing your pup with the best nutrition, veterinary care, physical and mental exercise, and more that you can. To make the best choices for your dog you need to do your research and ensure that you are informed.
Your dog’s comfort is very important and finding a harness that will work well for both you and your dog is the goal. Most dogs will respond well to positive reinforcement combined with some training technique, such as free shaping, shaping, luring, or some other choice.
If you find yourself unable to control your dog, please seek out a professional trainer that practices positive reinforcement. Get references to be sure this trainer’s students have good things to say about this trainer.