Even if your dog is the best-behaved dog in the world and listens to everything you say, you still need either a collar or harness. If you are looking for a solution to the problem of whether you should put a collar or harness, to control your dog, here is all that you need to know.

Collars have been used on dogs for a long time, but in comparison harnesses have appeared more recently on the dog care scene. Let’ put them together side by side and see which one is the best for your dog.

Collar vs. Harness

Having a collar vs. a harness is a matter of great debate between dog owners. Different people have a different points of view, especially for different breeds. We have a more objective view on the subject matter. To decide on the two options, the best way is to look at all the facts about your dog and your relationship with them.

Here are the factors to consider when shopping for either a dog collar or harness:

1. Size of the Collar vs Harness

Collars are easily available in all sizes and you can purchase it from your nearest veterinary shop or order it online. On the other hand, it is not exactly easy to find a size that would perfectly fit your dog. There are chances that if you order online, you and your dog might not be too happy with the fit. But, if you are ready to shell out more cash, it can be customized. Make sure to measure ahead of time!

The downsize to harness sizes, is if they aren’t adjustable around the neck, it can be tricky to find one that fits properly both lengthwise and girth.

2. Safety

Collars can put pressure on the neck of the dog. This is fine as long as you have a dog like a Great Dane, but the little ones do not respond well to that type of pressure. On the other hand, Harnesses put no pressure on the neck and your tugging only keeps the dog in control without potential injury. Harnesses are much better for training.

3. Ease of Use

Collars are extremely easy to put on and get going. You just have to put it around their neck, and make sure it can’t slip over the ears. Harnesses take some more time. If your dog loves moving around it can test your patience.

Collars can be worn all day. Harnesses might make your dog uncomfortable if you are expecting it to wear all day. If your dog has long body hair, the hair is usually caught up around sides.

4. Cost

Though it might not matter much, because you love your pet; Collars are cheap and can easily be replaced. Harnesses, on the other hand, can be comparatively expensive. If you are getting a custom made a harness for your dog, costs can shoot up high.

5. Size of the Dog

dog harness vs collar

Larger breeds are often better controlled with a collar and the smaller ones with a harness. Also, a harnesses like no pull harnesses, go well with the little ones who are not trained and love jumping on people. If your dog loves jumping on strangers, the harness is a better choice. At the same time, it is easy to escape from a collar, which has to be given consideration.

6. Training & Control

Here, the pain caused by the collar is an advantage because the pain causes negative reinforcement and the dog understands what it is expected to do. They can also be trained with a harness but the trainer needs to be more experienced. Harnesses are safer but the control it provides to keep the dogs behavior in check, is less.

7. Material & Design

Common collar materials available are:

  • leather
  • plastic
  • nylon
  • canvas
  • and metal

They are available in as many colors and patterns as you would want. Dog harnesses, though, are usually made from canvas or nylon. With harnesses, take the material into more consideration, as it covers a good portion of the body. Only soft material is advisable for the harness.

dog collar vs. harness

8. Type of the Dog

As a dog owner, you know your dog. You know its behavior and pattern. The selection of either a Collar or Harness depends on your particular dog, aside from just going by breed.

9. Runaway Dogs

Dogs can slip more easily from collars. If you have a dog that often runs away, the harness is a better option. It is almost impossible for a dog to get out of a well fitted harness. Also, when it is trying to run it does not hurt the dog if properly put on. A dog collar can do serious damage to the neck of a dog that pulls constantly.

10. Dog Tag & Licence

It is easy to put your dog’s Tag & License on a dog collar. It becomes more difficult with a dog harness. A harness does not provide the perfect area where you can attach tags. Also, it can make your dog uncomfortable.

More about Dog Collars vs Harnesses

Now that we’ve finished the general discussion on Collars versus Harnesses there is a little more to consider.

Within collars and harnesses you have several options each with their features: Collars like rolled Collars, Choke Collars, Chain Slip Collars, Smart collars, Head Collars, and even bark collars for dogs just to name a few options. Harnesses also have many options like comfort harness, front-clip harness, back-clip harness, head halter harness and more.

Though these are the basic criteria to select the right option for your dog, it may differ depending on the brand. One also needs to consult your vet while deciding which is better for your dog. It is not a straight forward yes or no. Look at the dog, understand its habits, know your requirements and then go for the right choice.

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