The Ultimate Guide on How to Put a Harness on a Dog
Dog Facts

The Ultimate Guide on How to Put a Harness on a Dog

Notably, over 4.5 million individuals in the United States yearly experience dog bites. This startling number accentuates the necessity of adopting suitable restraint measures like a harness, guaranteeing that all participants' outings and walks are secure and pleasurable.

Selecting the Ideal Harness for Your Dog

Identifying the perfect harness constitutes a vital phase in this manual. Harnesses are available in many designs and dimensions; opting for one that aligns with your dog's unique needs and physique is imperative. As you ponder the ins and outs of putting a dog harness on, bear in mind the dog's breed, stature, and disposition. For example, the protocols for putting a harness on a small dog vary somewhat from those for larger breeds. 

Likewise, certain types of harnesses, like the easy walk variant, are an excellent pick for dogs with a tendency to tug, providing a straightforward approach to maintaining tranquil and regulated walks.

Getting Your Dog Used to Their Harness

Let your dog get acquainted with their new accessory to ensure a smooth process when using a harness. Lay the harness on the ground and allow your dog to sniff and investigate it. You should reward your dog with treats and praises as they approach the harness, creating positive associations with the new gear.

Preparing to Put the Harness on Your Dog

Before learning how to put on a dog harness easy walk, it is essential to set the right environment. Choose a quiet space where your dog feels safe and comfortable. Ensure you have ample time to be patient and encouraging, making the experience as positive as possible for your furry friend.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Put a Harness on Your Dog

Now that we've laid the groundwork let's delve into the step-by-step process of how to put a dog harness on.

  1. Step 1: Start by laying the harness flat on the ground, unbuckled, with the inner side facing up.

  2. Step 2: Encourage your dog to step over the harness, positioning his legs through the appropriate openings. Treats can be a great motivator during this step.

  3. Step 3: Gently lift the harness and buckle it over your dog's back. Ensure that you are not pulling any fur or skin in the process.

  4. Step 4: Adjust the harness to sit comfortably, yet snugly, around your dog's body. You should be able to slip two fingers between the harness and your dog's skin.

Adjusting the Harness to Ensure a Proper Fit

Once the harness is on, it's time to make necessary adjustments to ensure a proper fit. Pay close attention to areas around the neck and chest, as these are the parts that can potentially cause discomfort or even injury if not adjusted correctly.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Putting a Harness on Your Dog

When learning how to put a harness on a dog, avoid the following common mistakes:

  • Choosing the Wrong Size: A harness that is too tight or too loose can cause discomfort and potential injuries.

  • Skipping the Adjustment Phase: Not taking the time to adjust the harness properly can lead to an improper fit, making the harness less effective.

  • Forcing the harness on: Always ensure that the process is as comfortable and stress-free as possible for your dog.

Tips and Tricks for Putting a Harness on a Wiggly Dog

For those wiggly, energetic furballs, try the following tips to make the process smoother:

  • Practice during Quiet Times: Choose a time when your dog is calm and relaxed to practice putting the harness on.

  • Use Distractions: A toy or treat can help distract your dog while you put the harness on.

  • Positive Reinforcement: Always reward your dog with praises and treats when they cooperate, building a positive association with the harness.


Harnessing your dog doesn't just offer a more controlled and safer walk, but it also stands as a responsible act towards reducing potential risks and accidents, especially considering that most dog bites occur in the home or a familiar place. 

Alarmingly, dog bites are the fifth most frequent cause of visits to emergency rooms, with the most common victims being children.

Interestingly, it has been observed that unneutered male dogs are more likely to bite than neutered dogs, adding another layer of complexity to the issue. As a responsible dog owner, understanding and implementing the techniques of how to put a harness on a dog can be a vital step towards fostering safer interactions and reducing the statistics surrounding dog bites.

With this comprehensive guide, we hope to equip you with the knowledge and techniques to harness your dog with ease and confidence, fostering a safe and happy environment for your pet and your community.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to put a harness on my dog?

To put a harness on your dog, first, lay it flat on the ground, then have your dog step into it with their front legs through the openings, and finally, secure the harness around their back and chest, making sure it's snug but not too tight to allow comfortable movement.

Should I take my dog's harness off?

Yes, removing your dog's harness regularly is recommended to prevent any potential irritation or injury and to give them freedom of movement while at home or in a secure area.

What is the purpose of a harness on a dog?

The purpose of a harness is to provide safer and more controlled walks, as it distributes pressure more evenly across the dog's body than a collar, preventing potential neck injuries and offering better control.

Can you leave a harness on a dog all the time?

No, always leaving a harness on a dog can cause skin irritation, matting, and other potential health issues. It is advisable to remove the harness during periods when constant control is not necessary.

How to put a harness on a small dog?

To put a harness on a small dog, gently slide the harness over the dog's head, making sure the front legs go through the openings, and then secure the harness around their back and chest, ensuring it's snug but not too tight for their comfort.