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Wordless Wednesday: Harnessing Lilly

I admit it. I’m a Wordless Wednesday rule-breaker. I always say too much. Today, let’s talk dog harnesses. The one Lilly is wearing here is actually Ginko’s (scaled down badly). I need to find a good one for Lilly, so any and all recommendations welcome.

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I took this picture Memorial Day Weekend, when Lilly and I hiked (in the fog) up to our favorite lookout point … except we couldn’t really see much.

Still, the cool weather suited Lilly just fine.

I say this all the time, but the real power behind having a dog as your best, best friend is that you are NEVER alone … on a hike or in life.


Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related. I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

SeeDogThink - July 12, 2011

We currently have 3 harnesses that we use regularly:

A ruffwear harness for Tai, an easy walk front clip harness for Maggie (made from recycled plastic! How cool is that?!) and a brand-new freedom harness I got from Ahimsa in Seattle. We only got the freedom harness in the mail yesterday but I already love it. Fits nicely, satin-y materials on the behind the legs parts and the option for front or back clip. Definitely worth a try, especially because they sell them with double clip leashes, so you can have the leash attached to both front and back at the same time, for extra stability. The harness seemed to have some pressure points in it that made Maggie feel a little calmer. Or maybe I’m imagining this part because I was so excited about it!

Nicole - June 27, 2011

Love your blog! I’m not sure what you’re looking for in a harness, but this one is my favorite: It’s completely fleece lined, which is great for us because my girl is sensitive under the armpits. It also does not require the dog to “step into” it, and I find that really helpful. My girl is reactive, and doesn’t especially like having to put on equipment, so it’s much easier to get this onto her. The construction is very solid, too.

Good luck finding a great harness!

Dooley Turbeville - June 26, 2011

I’m a VERY active service dog (that makes his partner do the typing) – and we own a tack-room filled with more dog gear than one could possibly imagine. [Yes I have an Easy Walk harness – which I use almost exclusively for sleep-overs, and babysitting kittens… but, I digress.]

I enjoy Ruffwear’s equipment (jackets, floats, and hiking boots)… but have recently discovered Signature K-9’s harnesses. Amaaaazing quality and performance.

Because you’re an avid hiking pair… I strongly recommend a dorsal handled harness which is magnificent for keeping close contact with each other for climbing and balance. No matter which of you need assistance, you won’t be disappointed or in peril (e.g. Jumping into high trucks, maneuvering rocky ledges, lifting out of water, or out of harms way from ‘other-animal’ attack or thorns, etc.)

For lifelong durability on mid size dogs, this tracking harness is the bomb!

And this one is a well fitting piece of art: Which will also last “forever”… figuratively speaking.

Nearly any working harness on the market can be found here:

One of my favorite multi-purpose walking harnesses:

Exceedingly cute (even on the poodle modeling) but too costly IMHO is: => w/ matching saddle bags $ available $.

On the extreme opposite end of the scale… this lightweight adjustable all-day harness from Ruffwear is nearly delicate in comparison, but is far less expensive and Ruffwear gives an excellent guarantee! => and its on sale for $12. But don’t expect collars like this to last more than a few seasons before they start looking gnarly and plastic clasps fail. BTW – Ruffwear gives 50% off everything store wide, if shoppers work with a certified service canine.

And, no… I’m not a dog that’s in the advertising business. My grrrrl just stumbled-upon this blog.

Once again, my work is done.
Nap Time and Best Wishes!
Dooley ~ ;-p

P.S => Google Images is a great way to see which designs appeal to you, before you dig thru a zillion more websites:,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=b60a647265eb9143&biw=1508&bih=760

JJ - June 23, 2011

If fitted properly, a dog can run and play in a no-pull harness without worry. It should sit up high on the breast bone and STAY there. The only time it would impede movement would be if the leash was attached and the dog pulled out ahead.

Any harness would work – heck, a “seatbelt” from your local pet store will do the trick.

I bet if you defined what you wanted from your harness for the pretty miss Lilly, someone would be able to tell you the exact one you were looking for – or how to make a currently existing model BE the one you are looking for.

(Example: Dog with sensitive skin, puller, collapsed trachea, etc. We’d maybe say easy walk with something like synthetic sheep skin on the inside – you can sew it or even glue it on.)

Anyway, I don’t have much in the way of ideas, because we switch between types of equipment so much that we don’t use harnesses very much anymore.

Sorry. Wish I could have been more helpful.

    Roxanne Hawn - June 23, 2011

    Great points, JJ … and thanks everyone for the ideas. I just need to scope through the dog harnesses people suggested here on the blog and via twitter and see which one I think would work best for Miss Lil.

Laura, Lance, and Vito - June 22, 2011

I 2nd the comfort flex harness! So easy to take on and off and it doesn’t hinder the dogs movement in any way.

I like easy walk if you need a no pull harness, but since it’s no pull the dogs can’t really run in it and such.

Amy@GoPetFriendly - June 22, 2011

We love the boys’ Easy Walker harnesses. The leash attaches at their chest, which really helps them remember not to pull on the leash!

sara - June 22, 2011

comfort flex harnesses are awesome. Easy on/off, and my dog doesn’t choke when he goes into his scared to death pull. Made locally (well at least local to me!).

Penny Ronning - June 22, 2011

I’m looking for a good one too so I look forward to reading the recommendations!

AC - June 22, 2011

We’ve been enjoying fog around here too.

Kona uses a Canadog harness. Would highly recommend it. Well made, small company, great service. It’s made for dogs to pull in but I’m sure it functions fine even without a puller.

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