The JULIUS-K9® chest harnesses (Powerharnesses and IDC®Color&Gray® belt harnesses) have been designed for ease of use and for simple application. These types of harnesses are therefore most commonly used during city walks or when working with service dogs. As a result of improper leash use, sizing, or harness adjustment, some dogs can still wriggle out of the harness.
If the leash is inadvertently pulled in the opposite direction to how the harness was put on, the harness might be pulled off the dog. This can happen if
- the harness is adjusted too loosely,
- the dog starts moving backwards trying to run away.
- the dog lags behind and is being pulled by the leash
Dog harnesses are designed to guide the dog in a gentle, neck-sparing way on the leash, to hold the dog, and to make it possible for the owner to hold it back in case of an emergency. A dog harness is not a coercive tool! When facing the dog, do not pull the leash towards you and never pull the dog after you on a leash because it will hurt them. Improper leash treatment can cause the dog to try to escape. The owner would be responsible for the dog pulling loose from the harness should this happen.
How to safely walk your dog in a harness
If the dog is prone to panic or feels insecure near traffic, it is recommended to use the handle on the top of the harness to help the dog.
It is also a good idea to use the collar and dog harness together with a double carabiner leash while walking. In this way, the dog can be led safely with one hand and the collar does not overload the dog’s neck if it needs to be held back suddenly. The Y-belt or pressure distribution pad, which can be retrofitted to the harness, also allows the harness to rest securely and comfortably.
How to adjust the dog harness
Proper sizing and adjustment is essential for any type of harness. Before using the harness for the first time, it is very important to read the instructions carefully and to follow them. In the case of chest harnesses, adjust the girth strap of the harness so that only your palms can be slid between the inner lining of the harness and the back of the dog. The chest strap should allow four fingers to fit in between the dog’s front leg and the girth strap. Harnesses that are set too loose can be dangerous because the dog can get out of them, but overly tightening harnesses should also be avoided.
How to correctly walk your dog on a leash
When walking, the leash should always be loose, and only held tightly when there is a good reason, for example if you are forced to stop the dog suddenly due to a traffic situation. If the dog is scared, panics, or is just unwilling to move on, under no circumstances should you try to go any further and pull. If possible, keep the leash loose, but keep it short and try to get hold of the harness handle by getting behind the dog.
Getting certain dogs used to a harness can be difficult in some rare cases. In cases like these we recommend seeking help from a professional dog handler who works with positive reinforcement.