Dog collar or dog harness?
The dog collar has always been the tool for leading and personal accessory for the dog.
In the past, only dogs with special tasks wore harnesses. Avalanche rescue dogs for example, or dogs used to pull carts and sledges.
Dog collar vs. harnesses
Today we also use harnesses for our dogs in the city and for the daily walk.
Whether you should use a dog collar or harness for the dog depends on a few factors.
Basically, strong pressure should never be applied, because otherwise the cervical vertebrae and larynx of the dog could be injured.
Outdated methods of education, such as giving a twitch on the dogs collar should be avoided for the dog’s sake.
Leashes on the dog collar
In many cities, dogs must be kept on a leash. Well behaved dogs usually do not need harnesses.
If the dog has learned to walk on a leash and pay attention to its owner, it can wear a dog collar. When moving around in his territory the dog usually knows his surroundings well.
Dogs that pull very much on a leash should do a dog training session with their humans so that the walk can be relaxed and stress-free.
Some dog owners have difficulties keeping the dog on a leash and therefore resort to controversial products. Chain collars, choke collar and spiked collars really add great pain to the animal.
For large dogs that strongly pull on the leash, is e.g. a head harness the better option, as it works very well for horses too. This will help guide the dog, but please be very careful and avoid a strong hitch.
The dog leash should always be additionally attached to the collar. After getting used to, it offers relief to many dog owners.
During training / on the training leash
For dog training, a harness can be quite suitable, if it fits perfectly and does not restrict the dog.
If the dog is leashed on a very long training leash, it must necessarily carry a harness.
The long leash grinds on the ground and is always hanging somewhere, which is very dangerous. Therefore please never attach a long training leash to the dog collar!
When playing with other dogs, the dog should not wear a harness. There is a risk that the dog gets stuck on the harness and injured. When you take your dog e.g. to the dog park, it should better wear a dog collar.
Riding a bike or horse
If the dog runs next to the bike or horse, it should better wear a harness. By sudden cropper or distraction the dog could be injured by the leash attached to the dog collar.
Be careful with fences, especially electric fences! If the dog tries to whiz through, it can get stuck with the harness and get an electric shock ;(
For puppies, a harness is suitable if it fits well. Many puppies do not like their first dog collar or harness and try to get rid of it. The puppy must first be accustomed to the dog collar and learn to walk on a leash.
Whether you want to practice walking on a leash with a dog collar or harness it remains a matter of taste, depending on what you would prefer to use later when the dog is adult.
A harness can be taken for the puppy to protect the sensitive neck and bones in growth, because it can uncontrollably jump on the leash.
However, a harness can also limit the freedom of movement in the shoulder area, so you should pay attention to the fit and, for e.g. choose a harness for sled dogs where the shoulder area can move freely.
If the puppy is still growing, it is very important that the dog collar and harness are regularly readjusted.
This should be taken into account when purchasing, so you dont constantly have to buy a new product.
With a puppy you should also consider, that a harness – if once chewed – is usually much more expensive than the dog collar.
For older dogs
For the older dog or dogs with movement problems, you can use a harness to assist in walking in certain situations.
Then it should be ensured that the harness is well padded from the bottom, in order to carry the weight of the dog as soft as possible.
Very anxious dogs
Very frightened dogs can be led on a so-called safety harness, which prevents by a third strap that the dog moves backwards out of the harness.
Travel in the car
To transport the dog in car in the front seat or back seat, it must wear a special harness to buckle up the dog.
If transported in the trunk or in a dog crate, your dog doesnt need an additionally harness for the seat belt.
For walking and in dangerous terrain, the dog can wear a harness to keep it save and better control in extreme situations.
When traveling on the boat, the dog should also wear a life jacket.
When swimming, the dog collar is more suitable, because it does not restrict the dog in the movement. After swimming or walking in the rain, the dog collar dries faster than a harness.
A harness must be perfectly adapted
The dressing and undressing is very cumbersome in some harness variants, because the dog must first pass through with his front legs. The dog collar has the advantage that you can put it on and off faster.
Some harnesses have a ring in the center of the chest. This ring can push the harness on the thoracic vertebrae while pulling.
If it does not fit properly, the harness scratches under the front legs and bothers the dog while running.
A harness can also affect breathing if set too tight. Therefore, it is important that the dog harness is never too tight. Otherwise, there is a risk that the dog feels uncomfortable.
If all these factors are considered, you can easily make the decision if you want to buy a dog collar or harness for your dog.
For both products the material should be light and soft, for example nylon. Its also good if it is washable.
Do you use a dog collar or harness for your four-legged darling?
Write us in the comments!