Australian Shepherds are incredibly active dogs. They need daily exercise in order to live a healthy and fulfilled life. My two Australian Shepherds are sure to get a nice 30-45 minute walk daily. As a first-time dog mom, I started out just using leashes and their good ole’ collars on our walks but soon learned that a good reliable harness was the better way. Harnesses provide more security, durability, pull-control, and so much more. Because of this need, I have been through a lot of trial and error trying to find the best dog harness for Australian Shepherd pups.
Understanding the Needs of Your Aussie
Before you delve into the vast selection of harnesses available on the market, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the unique traits of Australian Shepherds. These dogs are known for their high energy levels and active lifestyle, which means a harness is an essential part of your day-to-day.
A good harness is not just about ensuring your Australian Shepherd doesn’t pull away during walks – it is also about providing comfort and maximizing control.
The wrong type of harness may actually be doing harm by putting unnecessary strain on your dog’s neck and chest area, especially if your Aussie is still a puppy. So let’s take a closer look at the different types of harnesses and the benefits each one provides.
Pros and Cons of Different Types of Harness
Not all harnesses are designed alike. Some are made with breathable mesh fabric that is gentle on your dog’s skin, while others boast heavy-duty durable materials for extreme durability. Front-clip harnesses provide better control for owners, making them an excellent choice for a dog that pulls. On the other hand, back-clip harnesses are perfect for well-behaved dogs that don’t require much guidance.
Remember, the right sized harness is key to a snug fit. Adjustable straps allow for a custom fit that accommodates the different sizes that Australian Shepherds can range in. Reflective materials, while not a deal-breaker, can add a nice layer of safety during your early morning or late-night walks.
Finally, how the harness is worn and removed is another aspect to consider. Harnesses with quick-release buckles are usually more convenient, making them a good choice for excitable dogs or those who aren’t fond of dressing up.
Each type of harness comes with its own pros and cons, hence as an Australian Shepherd owner, you need to weigh your priorities and choose accordingly.
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Top Dog Harness Features for Australian Shepherds
When considering the perfect harness for your Australian Shepherd, a few essential features should be at the forefront. First off, the harness should be made of high-quality materials to ensure reliability and longevity. As hardy, active dogs, Australian Shepherds can easily wear out a harness over time if it’s not made from durable materials.
Adjustable Straps and Quick-Release Buckles
Adjustable straps are fundamental because they allow for a snug fit, uniquely tailored to the size of your dog. This is essential, especially if your Australian Shepherd puppy still has some growing to do. With adjustable straps, the harness can grow with your furry best friend to ensure a comfortable and secure fit over time.
In addition to adjustable straps, quick-release buckles are another valuable feature. They can ensure speedy attachment and detachment of the harness, which can be a real boon during energetic early mornings or late nights.
Attachment Points – Front Clip and Back Clip
The best dog harness should offer front and back attachment points. The front clip, or front D-ring, can provide excellent control for dogs with high-energy levels, often exhibited by Australian Shepherd puppies.
If your Australian Shepherd pulls during walks, the front clip can help deter this behavior. The back clip is useful for more relaxed strolls or when the dog is off-leash in a secure area. Both of these attachment points offer a level of versatility suited to the active lifestyle of an Australian Shepherd.
Reflective Stitching or Strips
It’s also important to consider harnesses with reflective stitching or strips. As a dog owner, the safety of your Australian Shepherd is important.
Reflective material on the harness can significantly improve your dog’s visibility to drivers during early morning or late night walks, enhancing their safety. Also, they can make it easier to spot your dog in poorly lit areas or during nighttime escapades.
In summary, when selecting the best harness for your Australian Shepherd, consider adjustable straps, quick-release buckles, front and back attachment points, and reflective materials. These features aren’t just fancy extras; they are essential aspects that can contribute to your Australian Shepherd’s overall safety, comfort, and happiness.
What is the Best Dog Harness for Australian Shepherd Pups?
When it comes to choosing the best dog harness for your Australian Shepherd, considering the size of your dog, the harness’s high-quality materials, and points of adjustment is vital. Here are some top choices worth considering.
Durable and Reflective Harness
As a dog owner, chances are, you want something that can stand the test of time. A durable harness made from heavy-duty yet comfortable materials is an excellent choice. It’s suitable for Australian Shepherds with an active lifestyle, given their high energy and tendency to pull.
One such option is the ‘PoyPetNo Pull Dog Harness’ which offers a secure fit, adjustable straps for a proper fit, and a front D-ring for additional control. It also comes in a ton of different colors and the cost is so affordable.
A quality harness with reflective stitching or reflective strips is a good choice for those early morning or late nights walks. This design adds an extra layer of safety by making your Australian Shepherd puppy visible, even in low light conditions.
Breathable Mesh Harness
Breathable mesh fabric is another feature to look out for in the perfect harness. It protects the dog’s skin and chest area from chafing. Brands like ‘Voyager Step-in Air Dog Harness’ epitomize this feature coupled with a hook and loop fastener, buckles and D-rings for a nice secure fit.
This is the dog harness I use currently with my dog, Lacy. She has the light pink one and I love how easy it is to slip her in to this specific harness. If you read the reviews, a lot of customers feel the same way.
No-Pull Dog Harness
If your dog is a major “puller” like my Aussie, Maverick, the PetSafe Easy Walk No-Pull Harness might be the best option for you. Its patented loop design puts gradual safe pressure on your dog’s shoulders to ease pulling.
The best part is that the harness was actually designed by a veterinary behaviorist who set out to create a harness that targeted this common problem. If your dog needs to learn some “leash manners” then be sure to look into this harness.
While fashionable might not be the first requirement on your list of things your perfect dog harness will have, its a great added bonus. As a dog mom who appreciates cute things, the Lucy & Co. dog harness comes in many adorable patterns. I have owned about four of these harnesses and they have held up extremely well.
My dogs are actually wearing their Lucy & Co dog harnesses in the cover picture of this post and in the picture of us in the grassy field (scroll up). My dog, Maverick has been wearing his for a year and it is still going strong.
One of my personal favorite things about this harness, is it is super light weight and reversible. You get two different patterns on each side so sometimes it feels like a totally different harness.
Training Tips and Maintaining Safety with Harnesses
While having the right harness is crucial, teaching your Australian Shepherd how to behave while in one is just as important. Here are some training tips and safety considerations to ensure an enjoyable experience for both pup and owner.
The Role of a Good Harness During Training Sessions
A good harness can play a pivotal role during training sessions. It gives you better control over your high-energy Australian Shepherd and can make the training process much smoother. A harness with a front D-ring is especially helpful for steering your dog in the right direction and preventing pulling behavior.
Safe Use of Seat Belts with a Harness
For car rides, connecting a seat belt to your dog’s harness can be an effective way to keep them safe and secure. Ensure that the harness you choose for this purpose is designed to withstand force and does not place stress on your dog’s neck or chest in the event of a sudden stop. Select a harness that offers secure attachment points for a seat belt.
Advantages of a Pull Harness for an Australian Shepherd that Pulls
If your Australian Shepherd pulls a lot while on walks, a pull harness could be an excellent solution. Pull harnesses, especially those with front clip attachment points, can provide additional control and discourage your dog from pulling without causing them discomfort.
The ‘Petsafe Easy Walk Dog Harness’ is a popular choice with its front attachment point and adjustable straps for a secure fit.
In conclusion, using a harness with your Australian Shepherd can significantly enhance your walks and training sessions. It not only provides better control but also ensures the safety and comfort of your furry best friend. Always remember to monitor your dog while they’re wearing their harness to ensure a snug fit and prevent any potential skin irritations.
Time to Take your Pup for a Walk!
To sum it all up, we’ve delved deep into the world of the best dog harness for Australian Shepherd, and here are the key aspects to remember.
- Always consider the size of your Aussie and the level of their energy when choosing the right harness.
- Adjustable straps and quick-release buckles are vital features for a good harness.
- Attachment points, such as a front clip and a back clip, provide better control, especially if your Australian Shepherd puppy pulls.
- Reflective stitching or strips on a harness improve visibility during late nights and early mornings.
- High-quality materials like a durable, breathable mesh fabric ensure a secure fit and comfort for your furry best friend.
- The role of the harness during training sessions is instrumental, and integration with a seat belt can maintain safety during car rides.
The perfect harness for your Aussie is out there, matching their active lifestyle and ensuring your peace of mind. Remember, the well-being of your dog’s skin, chest area, and neck are vital when making your selection.
Equipped with the knowledge from this post, dog owners, especially Australian Shepherd owners, should now feel well-prepared to invest wisely in a harness that promises the perfect balance of comfort, control and durability for many walks, runs and adventures to come.
Australian Shepherd Dog Harness FAQs
How to ensure a proper fit for my Australian Shepherd’s dog harness?
To ensure a proper fit, first measure your dog’s chest and neck before purchasing. After putting the harness on your Aussie, you should be able to fit two fingers between the harness and your dog’s chest. Major adjustment points should be secure but not tight, and the harness should not shift excessively when the dog moves.
Before purchasing the harness, make sure to read the manufacturer’s directions on how to choose the proper size harness for your pup. Every harness is measured differently.
What does front-clip and back-clip mean?
Front-clip and back-clip refer to the attachment points on a harness where you connect the leash. Front-clip harnesses provide additional control and are excellent for training, especially if the Australian Shepherd pulls. In contrast, back-clip harnesses are more comfortable for the dog and can be a good choice if your Aussie doesn’t pull too much.
Why do I need reflective strips on a dog harness?
Reflective strips on a harness improve visibility of your dog, especially during early mornings or late nights. This becomes particularly relevant if you and your furry best friend are fond of walking in areas with low-light or during hours when visibility is poor. The reflective material helps to alert other people and vehicles of your dog’s presence.
Can small dogs wear the same harness as an Australian Shepherd?
It really depends on the size and specific needs of your smaller dog. Harnesses are made in different sizes and designs to accommodate various breeds and sizes of dogs. Always measure your dog properly before purchasing a harness to ensure a snug fit.
What is the importance of a breathable mesh fabric in a dog harness?
Breathable mesh fabric is used in harnesses to ensure your dog’s comfort. It is lightweight and allows air flow, reducing excessive sweating which can be uncomfortable for your dog, especially during long walks or high activity periods. This type of material can also be easier on your dog’s skin, reducing the risk of chafing or irritation.
Can I use a harness for Australian Shepherd puppies?
Yes, but make sure to get an adjustable harness that can grow with your puppy to ensure a proper fit.
Is it safe to leave a harness on my Aussie all the time?
It’s best to remove the harness when not walking or training to prevent any discomfort or irritation.
What’s the best way to clean and maintain a dog harness?
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, but typically, hand washing with mild detergent and air-drying is a safe method for maintenance.