Our furry little friends are always our top priority, and although they can’t communicate with us in the most convenient ways, yet they try to express themselves in the most obvious manner. There are certain tells that you can always look out for, to better communicate with them. A little twitch, to tell you that something is bothering them, a low howl when they wish to pee, circling around their bowl longing for food or a loud bark when you bother them too much.
If you know what is bothering them, you can help them, protect them and ensure their safety. But what if your dog is a runner, an escape artist, who tends to slip away at the slightest chance. How can you protect your dog if it has a tendency to run away and hide? It is obvious that you want your dog to be at arm’s length, safe, under your vigilant eyes. So how do you make sure that they are safe, sound and around you all the time?
Well there is a sundry of methods you can employ to ensure your that your dog is always close to you. There are multiple devices, in the market, used to keep a hold on your dogs like dog slings, dog leashes and most common and efficient of all, a dog harness. The proficiency of the device of your choosing may vary depending on the kind of dog, its size, strength and weight. But in most cases, dog owners have relied upon harness over all others.
Method for measuring a Dog:
Typically, dog harnesses are sold based on the weight of the dog. Even though it is a significantly reliable technique, you may measure your dog to be more certain of the kind of harness that will suit it. Knowing the weight as well as the measurement of your dog, can aid you in getting the best suited harness for your dog. Taking measurements for a harness is rather easy and doable at home.
1. For this you’re obviously going to need a measuring tape. The wise choice for you would be to measure the part of your dog’s body which is the broadest to give him a more spacey and comfortable harness.
2. The broadest part would have to be his chest which would be right behind his armpits.
All you have to do is wrap the measurement tape around him, making the ends meet at his back (ensuring you measure his chest by pulling the measurement tape from behind his front legs).
3. Be careful not to pull the measuring tape too hard. You want the harness to be comfortable and not so tight that it might possibly bruise him or worse, cut into his flesh.
4. Now take the weight and size measurements to the store and look for a harness that is two inches larger than the measurement you took.
5. If your dog doesn’t fall into a definite size range and instead falls somewhere in between, then always take the size that is bigger. A loose harness can be adjusted at your will but a tight one is extremely impractical and inconvenient.
6. Also, cross check the weight range that the harness and your dog fall into and find the most ideal package.
Voila! You got your dog a practical and snug harness.
Here’s a video to help you get a better understanding of how to measure your dogs for the harness.
Are Harnesses Better Than Dog Collars?
There has been a constant debate when it comes to dog owners buying accessories for their dogs. People are often stuck wondering what would be the better, healthier choice for their dog. Hence the dilemma; Which is better? A dog Harness or a Dog Collar?
To give a clear answer to this question: harnesses are undeniably better and superior in comparison to collars and there is a legitimate reason for it.
The most basic benefit of a harness over a collar is that since it has a much better hold, it makes it easier to navigate and control the dogs.
Collars have a hold specifically in the neck region which is the cause of a lot of strain and stress and in some cases (where the dog becomes uncontrollable and tries to pull away) cause neck fractures as well. Harnesses on the other hand have a strong and sturdy hold all over the body of the dog. The force or the pressure gets evenly distributed all over the body and hence is neutralized to a great extent.
Dog collars only have partial control over the body and when dogs try to pull away, they might succeed partially. The grasp of the collars is specifically in the neck region hence not very effective.
Whereas in case of dog harnesses, majority of control is in the hands of the owner as the pressure is spread all over their body. Therefore, when dogs in harnesses try to pull away, it doesn’t yield much effect and eventually their urge to pull away ends.
One additional benefit of harnesses is that it mildly assists the dogs in getting up if they need help doing that after lying down without causing any discomfort.
How to Adjust a Dog Harness?
You want your dog to have a comfortable experience wearing a harness. You also want to make sure that the harness does not cause any restriction in movement. Hence to be certain that they have fun, and can jaunt around freely, you need to ensure that the harness you have hoisted on your dog is properly in place, neither too loose nor too tight and is worn in the correct manner.
1. The most rudimentary check you need to keep in mind is that the harness your dog is wearing should have correct sides in correct places. The label should be on the outside and the front ring belongs in the forefront of the dog’s body.
2. The front loop of the front ring will go over your dog’s head. In some of the harnesses, there may be one or more strap loops present, which need to be clasped into their respective buckles, subsequently place it over the head of your dog (behind the neck) and the rest (which is in the front) should be against his chest above his front legs, permitting muscle movement.
3. Alter the straps as necessary such that it falls and sits perfectly on its chest and back.
4. Now you arrive at the belly straps. Don’t start regulating it just yet. First check how tight or loose it is and then pull it to the other side to buckle it up with the harness. Now alter it through the adjusters as needed, till it fits the torso of the dog perfectly.
5. It is time to check that all the straps are well adjusted. See if your dog can comfortably move around and lie down in the harness. The harness should not be restricting his range of motion.
6. To ensure that the harness isn’t too tight and just comfortably snug, you can simply put two fingers between the harness and the torso of the dog (one on one). And if it does not fit as expected, you might need to make certain adjustments to ensure that the harness is not too tight for the dog.
Signs of a Poorly Fitted Dog Harness?
Dogs have their way of expressing how they feel. Their emotional reaction to various things can be enough for us to know what all they like or dislike. In case of harnesses as well, if you want to know if the harness is ill-fitted:
- Your dog might start resisting the harness. You may notice that he is repelled by the harness and may even begin refusing walks.
- In case the harness is too loose, he might be able to slip out and escape.
- A tight harness may also result into chafing of the skin, loss of fur or worse, it might even injure him.
- If buckles and straps of the harness begin falling aside, then it is time to fix it.
Can You Leave a Harness on your Dog All Day?
The purpose of getting a dog harness is to make the dog feel at home, comfortable and a part of the family. But there is an ulterior motive as well which is to train them and make them behave suitably. A harness is primarily for reinforcements and training. Dogs behave better when they are in a harness even if there is no leash attached to it. They become more attentive, cautious and readily follow commands as well. Leaving a harness on your dog is absolutely alright. But after regular time intervals remember to temporarily remove the harness to let their skin get some air and if your dog has long hair, it will also prevent twisting and entangling of their hair (matting).