Lightweight/low profile harness?

Discussion of useful training and pet care tools.

Moderators: emmabeth, BoardHost

Post Reply
Erica
Posts: 2694
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2011 9:35 pm
Location: North Carolina

Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Erica » Sun Mar 27, 2016 6:35 pm

Between Delta and me, we may be the pickiest pair ever when it comes to harnesses. I'm trying to find something that he will be comfortable relaxing in. He does not like lying down in his Perfect Fit or any similarly-shaped harness he's had before; he also doesn't like things going over his head (very much does not like it, would prefer avoiding this situation altogether as we did a lot of counterconditioning to this situation without much progress).

What kind of harnesses might be better for my small delicate flower of a dog?
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

Shalista
Posts: 1363
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2015 10:04 pm

Re: Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Shalista » Sun Mar 27, 2016 9:24 pm

Bax likes his easywalk. despite his best efforts when i got him as a pup he's never wriggled out of it and it's never rubbed him raw so no bare patches or anything. He steps right into it no problem. I also like that it's very light so i dont feel like i'm saddeling a horse when i put it on him, which matters especially in the summer. Also cleaning it is a breeze if he decides to roll in something especially pungent. Only downside is that if he gets bored he can hook his lower jaw on the chest strap and chew on it.

He'll lay down and relax in it just fine. It's the only harness we've ever tried but 10/10 where we're concerned.
Baxter (AKA Bax, Chuckles, Chuckster) Rat Terrier, born 01/16/13

Erica
Posts: 2694
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2011 9:35 pm
Location: North Carolina

Re: Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Erica » Sun Mar 27, 2016 10:26 pm

I don't like harnesses that go straight across the chest. Too easy for the thing to slip up and push into the dog's neck if/when they pull. :( Delta already can get to the point where the harness affects his breathing with a Y-front; I shudder to think what might happen with a straight-across strap. I think the EasyWalk would be too close to his elbows, too.

Other important traits I'm looking for in a harness for Delta, because I should have listed these first:
-Y front (no straight-across-the-shoulders)
-Girth strap sits well behind the shoulders/elbows
-No thick chest straps between the front legs
-Neck buckle so it doesn't go over his head
-Lightweight materials

I'm looking at the Balance harness again because they have added an option for a neck buckle, but I can't find a retailer for that version. x3 Messaged them and hopefully can get ahold of one of those because I think it *might* work for Mr. Picky-Britches. If that's a bust we may try out a step-in, but the shape of those isn't really my favorite either. I may end up trying to make my own harness for him :lol:
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

Sanna
Posts: 466
Joined: Mon Jan 07, 2013 4:02 am
Location: Stevenage, UK
Contact:

Re: Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Sanna » Mon Mar 28, 2016 8:11 am

The Balance one might work, if not I'm wondering if there's a way you can DIY amend it or your Perfect Fit- maybe it'd be possible to change the chest strap that goes between the front legs for something flatter and softer..? Just thinking out loud here, not very good with stuff like that personally :lol:

Erica
Posts: 2694
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2011 9:35 pm
Location: North Carolina

Re: Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Erica » Mon Mar 28, 2016 9:27 am

Oooh, good idea Sanna! It would be pretty simple to modify the Perfect Fit, because it's all in pieces anyway so I could make my own chestpiece (which includes the between-the-legs bit) without ruining the harness if I mess up :) I could try to make one out of just fabric instead of nylon, maybe...

Sadly it seems like production of the Balance harness is on hold for now. :/ They're still available, but the neck buckle version isn't on the online stores. I could try contacting the brick-and-mortar stores listed to see if they a) have the neck buckle in the right size and b) would be willing to ship; all but one are on the other side of the country though.

I think I'll try the fabric chestpiece first; I have most of this week off for spring break. :) It'll also be a cheaper adventure, hehe.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

Erica
Posts: 2694
Joined: Fri Aug 05, 2011 9:35 pm
Location: North Carolina

Re: Lightweight/low profile harness?

Post by Erica » Sat Apr 02, 2016 8:16 pm

Update: Haven't gotten around to making my own chestpiece for the PF :oops: but today at a dog sport fitness workshop I attended, the instructor took a moment to talk about harnesses (as several of the dogs were in EasyWalks and we apparently have a mutual dislike of them, haha).

For one, she doesn't like the EasyWalk or Julius K9 harnesses (both popular) because they restrict shoulder movement. She mentioned a test done that compared gait changes in dogs wearing the harnesses sold by CleanRun (which may have included EasyWalks, Perfect Fits, and Balance harnesses if done at a time when those were in the shop) and found that the ComfortFlex was the one which least changed the gait. I'm going to email and ask if she has any more information on that because it sounds intriguing to me. Meanwhile, I've got the ComfortFlex bookmarked :lol: At least it comes in Delta's color! Though I'm not fond of the shape of it, maybe I could finally train him Loose Leash Walking on a harness so my concern about its sitting so high up wouldn't be an issue. He takes to LLW well, I just don't always have the mental energy to focus on it, so I need something I can let him pull in should I need that option. :P So when I get a new harness, I will teach him LLW in that and allow pulling in the PF.
Delta, standard poodle, born 6/30/14

Post Reply