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[UPDATED MARCH 2021]
Does it feel like your Golden Retriever is walking you? If your daily walks feel more like a power walk than a leisurely stroll, it’s time for you to invest in a dog harness. What is the best harness for a Golden Retriever?
In this article, we’ll look at 7 of the best harnesses for your Golden Retriever, plus the advantages of using a harness and how to determine the right size to get for your Golden.
Best Harness For A Golden Retriever
There are many harnesses to choose from and finding the best one for your dog can be overwhelming. Not to worry, because I have done all the hard work for you and have reviewed 7 of the best harnesses for Golden Retrievers.
1. Rabbitgoo Dog Harness
[Best No-Pull Harness]
The Rabbitgoo dog harness is a great choice for Golden Retrievers who pull. It is fully adjustable and has 2 metal leash attachments, one on the front and one on the back.
The front clip is designed for dogs that pull. When you attach your leash on the front, and your dog starts to pull he will be turned around instead of pulling forward. Soon your dog will learn not to pull. Once your dog is trained not to pull, you can use the back attachment for more leisurely walks, jogging or hiking.
It is easy to put on and take off. You simply unbuckle the chest straps, slide the harness over your dog’s head, and secure the buckles. With 4 easy to adjust straps, you can get a perfect snug fit for your dog. There is no need to worry about your dog being able to slip out of this harness.
It is comfortable for your dog to wear. It is made of durable Nylon Oxford with soft cushion padding to protect your dog’s skin. The breathable air mesh allows your dog’s skin to breathe during outdoor activities.
The reflective strips are super bright and keep you and your dog safe while walking at night.
- No-Pull & No-Choke Harness with 2 Metal Leash Attachments, Chest & Back.
- Easy-on & off Overhead Harness.
- 4 Adjustable Straps; 2 Neck & 2 Chest.
- 2 Fast Release Side Buckles for a Secure Fit.
- Sturdy Top Handle to gain instant control.
- Made of durable Nylon Oxford.
- Weather-proof for all seasons.
- Soft and comfortable cushion padding.
- Breathable air mesh to keep your dog cool.
- Super bright reflective straps ensure safety while walking at night.
- Hand washable.
- Available in various colours.
- Available in 4 sizes. The large size is ideal for Golden Retrievers, it is also available in XL.
- It seems to have it all and comes highly recommended by many users.
- It is a breeze to put on, just pull it over your dog’s head and secure the buckles. No stepping in or looping through.
- With the front leash attachment, dogs learn not to pull.
- It has 2 leash attachments where most harnesses only have one.
- Comfortable for dogs to wear because it has a soft padding.
- Secure and snug fit to prevent dogs from escaping out of it.
- Distributes your dog’s weight evenly.
- Owners of this harness mention that the straps do not stay tight and need to be adjusted at each use.
- The leash attachment points seem to fray, as some owners have mentioned.
- When adjusted, the reflective strips do not show.
2. RUFFWEAR Front Range Everyday No Pull Dog Harness
[Best Long Wearing Harness]
This harness by RUFFWEAR is a great choice for hiking or any activity that requires it to be worn for a long period. It is a great everyday harness. It has 2 leash attachments that allow you to clip your leash to the front for no pulling, and to the back for hiking, jogging, or casual walks.
It is comfortable for your dog to wear with its foam padding along the chest and belly, so there is no worry of any chafing on your dog’s skin. It is easy to put on and take off and features 4 adjustment points to get a perfect fit.
The reflective trim on this harness makes your dog visible while walking at night, and the bright choice of fabric colours makes your dog stand out during the day. There is a storage pocket for you to easily place your dog’s ID tags inside for safekeeping.
- Lightweight, Durable, & made for all-day wear.
- Foam Padding across Belly & Chest.
- Easy on & off, Overhead Design.
- 2 Leash Attachment Points; Chest & Back.
- Customized fit with 4 adjustment points.
- Bright visible fabric with reflective trim for safer walking at night.
- ID tag pocket.
- Reinforced webbing leash loop on the chest and aluminum V-ring on the back.
- Available in various bright colours.
- Available in 5 sizes. The Large/XL is ideal for Golden Retrievers.
- Soft and comfortable harness to wear all day, the padding is lightweight and allows your dog’s skin to breathe.
- A great choice for pullers.
- Easy to put on and take off. Just slide it over your dog’s head and snap the two buckles around your dog’s chest.
- It comes in fun bright colours and has reflective trim.
- Highly rated for its proper fit and staying in place. It might move slightly off-centre during pulling but quickly returns to position.
- Durable and well-made.
- Distributes your dog’s weight evenly.
- The buckles are slightly covered by fabric (recessed), which makes unbuckling this harness a bit tricky for some owners.
- Some owners wish that the front leash attachment point was aluminum instead of the reinforced webbing.
3. Chai’s Choice Dog Harness
[Best Outdoor Adventure Harness]
The Chai’s Choice harness features an ergonomic design that makes it super comfortable for your dog to wear every day. The soft sponge padding along the chest and belly and lightweight mesh allow your dog’s skin to breathe.
Both stylish and durable, available in a variety of fun colours that you can match to your dog’s personality, and it is made of scratch-resistant oxford material.
This harness has 2 leash attachment points, a Zinc-alloy D-ring on the back, and a Zinc-alloy O-ring on the chest. It includes a handle on the back for you to gain instant control of your dog, or use it to help aid your dog while walking, climbing stairs, or standing. It provides greater support to injured or handicapped dogs.
It is a great choice for keeping your dog safe while riding in your vehicle. The sturdy handle on the back allows you to loop the seat belt through to keep your dog secure. Other safety features include 3M reflective material for nighttime visibility.
- Easy On & Off, Overhead Design.
- 2 Zinc-Alloy Leash Attachment Points.
- Handle on the back for Instant Control & To Loop Seatbelt Through.
- Made of Scratch-Resistant Oxford Material.
- Fully Adjustable.
- Comfortable & Lightweight. Soft Sponge Padding along back and chest.
- Lightweight, Breathable Mesh Lining.
- Available in 9 colours.
- Available in 5 sizes. Large or XL is ideal for Golden Retrievers.
- Easily slides over your dog’s head.
- The handle on the back is a nice touch when you need to control your dog quickly, and it doubles as a seatbelt loop through.
- Fun colours to choose from.
- Durable, well-made and scratch-resistant material.
- Has front & back clips, great for pullers.
- Reflective trim makes walking at night safer.
- Comfortable for your dog to wear with a soft sponge padding.
- Lightweight & breathable, great for everyday use.
- The quick-release buckles are made of plastic, not the best choice for strong heavy pulling dogs.
- The sizing is off, especially around the neck area when trying to put it on your dog.
- The straps loosen and need adjusting.
4. Copatchy No Pull Dog Harness
[Best Budget Harness]
Who says a good harness has to break the bank? The Copatchy harness may be a budget harness but it has a lot to offer. It is soft and comfortable for your dog to wear. Featuring soft sponge-filled padding with breathable mesh that allows your dog’s skin to breathe during daily activities.
Unlike other harnesses that your dog must step in, or put his head through, you simply clip it on.
The sturdy handle on the back gives you instant control of your dog, as well as aiding a senior or injured dog.
- Anti Pull Dog Harness.
- Sponge-Filled Padding.
- Lightweight & Breathable Mesh.
- Fully Adjustable to ensure a snug fit.
- Easy to put on, simply clip it around your dog’s chest and neck. There is no stepping in or pulling the head through.
- Leash Attachment on the back.
- Available in 5 colours.
- Available in 6 sizes.
- Budget-friendly harness that works well.
- Soft and comfortable.
- Easy to put on and take off, no stepping in or putting your dog’s head through it.
- The sturdy handle on the back for greater control.
- The company offers great customer service.
- Easy to adjust.
- The clips are made of plastic, not the best for strong heavy pullers.
- Only one leash attachment on the back.
- Not the best choice for strong pullers, as the strap around the neck, can cause choking.
- No chest support.
- The sizing is off.
5. Noxgear LightHound Illuminated Safety Harness
[Best Light Up Dog Harness]
Keeping your dog visible during those early mornings and nighttime walks is extremely important. A light-up LED harness is a great way to keep your dog safe while walking during low-visibility conditions. An LED harness is also useful on camping trips, hunting, hiking, or for being able to spot your dog in a large backyard.
The Noxgear LightHound harness is lightweight, durable and comfortable for your dog to wear, but the best part is it makes your dog visible with its 360-degree illumination. Your dog will be visible from over a half-mile away.
There is no need to buy batteries for this harness, it is USB rechargeable. You get 12 hours of illumination on one charge.
The cool part of this harness is that you have 8 colours all in one harness that you can illuminate your dog in, as well as 6 different multi-colour flashing and slow fading modes. You can illuminate your dog in green one day and the next in red, no need to be stuck with the same colour.
With an overhead design, it is easy to put on over your dog’s head and is easily adjustable at the neck and chest. There is a metal ring leash attachment on the back.
- 8 Super-bright colours & 6 flashing modes all in one vest are easy to select at the push of a button.
- Rechargeable USB battery that gives 12 hours of illumination on 1 charge.
- 360-degree illumination is visible from over 1/2 mile away.
- Uses flexible fibre optic cables and 3M Scotch lite reflector technology.
- The vest is lightweight, breathable, and durable. Made from military-grade Cordura fabric.
- Overhead design.
- Metal ring leash attachment on the back.
- Adjustable at the neck and chest.
- Great for all-season use, and it is rainproof.
- Machine washable.
- Makes walking your dog safer at night.
- Long-lasting illumination of 12 hours, and far visibility up to 1/2 mile away.
- Many colour options and modes all in one.
- Machine washable.
- It can easily slide over another harness, collar, or dog coat.
- More of a vest than a harness, it is not the best for dogs that pull. You will need to use it with another harness.
- The straps attach under your dog which might cause friction.
- The power cord is not included but works with any micro USB charger.
- It is pricey.
6. Juxzh Truelove Soft Front Dog Harness
[Best All In One Harness]
The Juxzh Truelove harness is a great all-in-one harness that is soft and comfortable for your Golden Retriever to wear all day during any activity. It has it all, 2 strong leash attachment points, a handle on the back, reflective stitching, breathable mesh padding, and a multitude of stylish colours to choose from.
This high-end dog harness is fully adjustable and is easy to put on and take off. Simply slide it over your dog’s head and secure the buckles on the sides. There is no worry of any chafing on your dog’s skin because there is soft sponge padding along your dog’s chest and belly.
Your Golden Retriever will enjoy the comfort of this harness, and you will love it for its durable construction and safety design. The outer layer is made of durable scratch-resistant oxford material and nylon webbing with 3M reflective material that makes your dog visible at night.
You can use the sturdy handle as a seat belt attachment to ensure your dog is safe while riding in your car.
- Comfortable Ergonomic Design.
- Soft Padding on the Chest & Belly.
- 2 Leash Attachment Points; 1 Aluminum-alloy V-Ring on the back, & 1 Stainless-Steel O-Ring on the chest.
- No-Pull Harness evenly distributes your dog’s weight.
- Breathable Mesh Lining.
- Reflective Stitching.
- 4 Adjustment Points.
- Easy On & Off, Overhead Design.
- Sturdy Handle for Instant Control & Seatbelt Attachment.
- Available in 11 stylish colours.
- Available in 5 sizes. Large or XL is ideal for Golden Retrievers.
- A great all-in-one harness, the quality and price can’t be beaten.
- Durable scratch-resistant material.
- Soft and comfortable for your dog to wear all day.
- Variety of stylish colours.
- Easy to put on and take off.
- The buckles are on the top and protected by fabric so there is no worry of any friction or chafing.
- Has 2 leash attachment points, and a sturdy handle.
- Overhead design means you have to adjust it every time you put it on your dog.
- The buckles are plastic.
- Some owners mention that the sizing is off and it runs small.
- Hard to adjust at the neck.
7. PetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Harness
[Best Minimal Design Harness]
The PetSafe Deluxe Easy Walk Harness has a very simplistic look, but it is cleverly designed to stop your dog from pulling. The front leash attachment rests on your dog’s chest and when your dog starts to pull he will be steered towards you to your side. There are no straps that go around your dog’s neck to cause gagging or choking.
The Deluxe Easy Walk Harness features extra neoprene padding to make walking comfortable for your dog. It has 4 adjustment points to ensure a secure and snug fit. It is made of nylon and highly reflective strips. With the contrasting band colour on the belly, there is no confusion as to which strap goes on the top or the bottom.
- No-Pull Harness deters opposition reflex. The front Martingale leash loop steers your dog to your side to reduce and eliminate leash pulling.
- Padded with neoprene for added comfort.
- 4 Adjustment Points.
- Easy to put on, simply pull over your dog’s head and secure the side buckles.
- Made of durable nylon.
- Highly reflective strips.
- Available in 4 colours.
- Available in 4 sizes.
- It is lightweight and easy to put on.
- The deluxe version has neoprene padding which makes it comfortable for your dog to wear, and the padding helps the harness stay in place.
- Very minimal look compared to other harnesses.
- Simple but clever design with the martingale loop on the front to steer your dog towards you to the side to redirect pulling.
- No straps around the neck mean no pressure to cause choking or gagging.
- It can easily be washed.
- Fully adjustable to ensure a snug and proper fit. Adjustment points include the belly, shoulder, and 2 in the chest.
- Quick snap buckles.
- The initial adjustment setup can be difficult. With the 4 adjustment points, it does take time to get the right fit the first time. After that there is no need to adjust the straps each time you put it on or take it off, you simply clasp and unclasp the buckles.
- Not sturdy enough for strong pulling dogs as the chest strap loosens during pulling.
- Has a tendency to stretch out when it gets wet.
- The sizing is off on some dogs, causing the chest strap to sit too low. Owners of this harness mention that it runs big.
- Some owners have mentioned this harness starts to fray.
Should Golden Retrievers Wear A Harness? [7 Advantages of Using a Harness]
There are many advantages of using a harness for your Golden Retriever, as compared to using a collar. Let’s look at all of the advantages below:
1. Gives You Better Control Of Your Dog
A harness is designed to wrap over your dog’s body, whether you are using a strap harness or a chest harness, you will have better control of your dog’s movements.
2. Prevents Injuries To Your Dog’s Neck
When your dog pulls while wearing a collar and leash, all that strain is put on your dog’s neck and can cause injury. A harness distributes that strain across your dog’s chest and back, and no pressure is put on your dog’s neck.
3. Prevents Choking And Gagging
Because there is no pressure put around your dog’s neck when your dog pulls there is no risk of him choking or gagging.
4. Discourages Pulling
When using a collar and leash, your dog is able to pull forward and will continue doing so because it works. With a harness, your dog’s pulling will be redirected to the side or turned around, which will cause your dog to stop pulling.
5. Can’t Escape Out Of It
Many dogs can easily wiggle their heads out of a collar, and once they learn how they will do it often. But, with a harness that is fitted properly, your dog will not be able to escape out of it because it wraps around its body.
6. No Tangling
When your dog wears a leash and collar there is a chance of either you getting tangled up or your pup getting tangled up in the leash. Especially when you have an excitable puppy or dog jumping up. With a harness, it is harder for your dog to tangle you or himself up when the leash is attached to the back.
7. Offers Support For Older Or Injured Dogs
Harnesses that have an added handle on the back allow you to aid your dog in standing up, climbing stairs, and walking. Older dogs may need extra support to help them get around, as well as injured dogs or dogs recovering from surgery who may feel unbalanced and wobbly from certain pain medications.
How To Choose The Best Harness For Your Golden Retriever
When it comes to choosing the best harness for your Golden Retriever you should take into consideration the following:
Your Golden’s Age And Temperament
Puppies and young adult Golden Retrievers are full of energy and without proper training can be a chore to walk! A no-pull harness will be your best choice.
The best harness should be comfortable for your Golden to wear. It should not be pinching his skin in any spots or cause any skin irritation. Harnesses that have soft padding and breathable mesh will allow your dog to be comfortable during any activity.
You want the harness to be durable enough to last a long time as well as keep your pup secure. If your Golden is a strong puller, you will need a harness with thick durable reinforced straps and durable buckles to keep your dog secure.
A harness that is adjustable will allow you to get a snug and proper fit. You will want a harness that can be adjusted along the chest, belly, and back for a proper fit.
Ease Of Putting It On And Taking It Off
Many harnesses are either an overhead design where you pull it over your dog’s head or a step-in design that your dog has to put his front legs into. The harness you choose should be easy to put on because you don’t want to have to wrestle with your dog to try to put it on.
Many harnesses have reflective strips for added safety while walking at night. If you walk your dog during low-light conditions or near high traffic areas it is important to get a harness that has reflective material to increase your dog’s safety and visibility.
Leash Attachment Points
Many harnesses have only one leash attachment point, either on the front chest or on the back. A harness with a front clip leash attachment is best for dogs who pull as their pulling action will be redirected.
A harness with a back clip is best suited for dogs who are trained not to pull, and it is intended for leisurely walks or jogs. Some harnesses have 2 leash attachment points that allow you to use the front clip for training and the back for leisure walks.
The following short video gives you a quick overview of a front clip harness and a back clip harness:
What Size Harness Does A Golden Retriever Need?
If you are buying a harness online it is important to use the manufacturer’s sizing chart as a reference. Different harness styles will fit differently and to be sure you get the right size, you will need to measure your Golden.
Some harness sizes are based on weight so that is a good starting point. You will also need to measure your dog’s neck and chest size.
Golden Retriever puppies will usually be a size small or medium depending on their weight, and adult Goldens generally are a size large or XL.
Keep in mind that some harnesses are fully adjustable and some are not. A properly fitting harness should be snug enough to secure your dog but not tight that it will cause pinching. If the harness fits too loose there is a chance your pup could wiggle out of it.
For more details on how to measure your dog for a harness, check out this step-by-step guide on wikiHow.
The Best Harness For A Golden Retriever, My Top Pick
The Rabbitgoo Dog Harness is my top pick! I love this harness because it has 2 strong leash attachment points, it has a sturdy handle on the back to instantly control my dog, and it has soft padding with breathable mesh to keep my dog comfortable.
With this harness, it is easy to get a secure snug fit because it is fully adjustable with 4 points of adjustment. It goes on easily by pulling it over your dog’s head and securing the buckles. I love that it is stylish and durable, and the price point is great.
This harness has reflective strips to increase my dog’s visibility at night, but for added safety, I like to use a light-up dog collar as well while walking at night.
I hope that this article was able to answer the question of what is the best harness for a Golden Retriever? There is a multitude of harnesses out there to choose from, but I have been able to narrow the choice down for you to the best 7.
Choosing the best harness for your Golden will come down to your dog’s individual size, temperament, and what style and features you want in a harness.
Getting your dog used to wearing a harness is a little easier when they are a puppy, but any age of Golden Retriever can get accustomed to wearing a harness.
When you switch from a collar to a harness, it may take a few walks to get used to, but soon you and your Golden will notice a huge difference for the better. A harness will ensure a safer and more enjoyable walking experience for you (no more sore arms and legs), and for your dog (no more choking and gagging).
What About You?
Does your Golden Retriever wear a harness? Which harness is your favourite? Has a harness changed the way your Golden Retriever walks?
Share your thoughts and comments below. I would love to hear from you.