How to Use Body Harnesses & Head Halters for Better Leash Control
You might consider a dog body harness instead of a collar for your puppy. This works well for smaller-sized dogs. You can secure the body harness with adjustable straps that will fasten across the chest of your puppy and then over its front legs.
Most harnesses have a basic metal D-ring which hooks on to the leash. You can locate this clip on the strap, running down a dog’s back. You can use these instead of collars and they provide a safer environment as the puppy tries to pull away. There are other harnesses available but the majority of them are this style.
The puppy will receive most of the tension from the leash and not the neck or head area. Since puppies dart and run everywhere a collar could injure the dog easily and a serious spinal injury could even occur. When you remove the pressure on the airway you’re using a safer method. These harnesses are effective and safe and are better than regular neck collars for your puppy.
Other Styles of Body Harnesses
You can also get a great body harness that is designed specifically to discourage your dog or puppy from pulling away. On this harness the cords go down and then under the front legs and then route backup to where the lead attaches. If your dog attempts to pull the cords will press on the armpit of the dog and the dog will stop pulling away from you.
There’s another type of harness that you can use to deter your puppy from going its own way. This harness is called a “no pull” harness. On this harness the chest strap is attached to the center where the leash is attached. This allows the leash to turn the body of the dog away from the direction the dog is headed in. if the dog tries to pull away the dog will be shifted into the opposite direction.
Are Head Halters Safe and a Good Alternative?
The dog head halter is preferred as an alternative to a body harness by many dog owners. You can buy several different styles of head halter for your dog. These are designed to keep the dog from pulling on the leash.
All the styles have a strap that you put around the muzzle for your dog. Another strap is secured around the dog’s neck. If your dog happens to pull away the halter forces the dog’s head to towards the opposite direction from where the animal is trying to move to.
There are some drawbacks to head halters although they do work quite well. The halters look similar to muzzles so if someone sees your dog with a halter they might think the dog isn’t friendly. Some make act rudely to you, have nervousness around your dog, or stare at your animal.
Another challenge would be getting your dog to get accustomed to the head halter. It may take some time before your dog is able to get used to the halter fitted around it. This usually takes about 2-3 weeks but some dogs may take longer or shorter periods of time. If the dog reacts negatively towards the halter, your dog may begin to associate leash-walking as an unpleasant experience. Walking outdoors should be a favorite “hobby” for your dog, so when you notice that your dog is not happy with the head halters on, do not try to force it upon the dog lest it starts to find walking a great displeasure.
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