When choosing a harness for your pup, there are many different options to consider and review before deciding which one is right for you and your dog. If your pup is on the smaller side when it comes to size, it can be difficult finding them a harness that fits just right. We have reviewed different styles of harnesses and have narrowed it down to the best eight and ultimately to the best dog harnesses for small dogs.
Top 8 Picks
Our top eight harnesses are
We’ll go into an in-depth review of each of these harnesses and what they are best for.
Best Basic Small Dog Harness
Out of the eight best small dog harnesses, the Puppia RiteFit is the best basic harness. This harness is made of a soft, mesh like material and features plastic buckles for security. The neck and chest portions are adjustable for your growing pup. The RiteFit is available in small, medium, large, and extra-large. The harness does come in nine different colors, three of them are bright enough to make sure your pup is visible. The harness is a back-clip only harness. Puppia has a sizing guide for how you can measure your dog in order to ensure that you purchase the proper harness.
Best Choke-Free Harness for Small Dogs
Best Nylon Harness for Small Dogs
The JUXZH is the best nylon harness for small dogs. This harness is a multi-clip harness, so you can attach the leash at either the back or the front. This harness is available in nine different colors, three are high visibility colors. The JUXZH also features reflective stitching throughout the harness, adding visibility. Soft sponge padding lines the harness near the chest and belly area. JUXZH offers a sizing guide to help you pick the perfect size for your pup and sizes are available in x-small, small, medium, large, and x-large.
Best No-pull Harness
Fashionable Harnesses for Small Dogs
Sometimes you want your pup to look good while walking them, so we found the perfect harness that is functional and cute. Alfie Couture Harnesses work well and look adorable on your pup! They are made of a soft, lightweight, breathable material, and are machine washable. They come with a matching leash and are suitable for the smallest breed size.
Alfie Couture features a sizing chart with pictures to help determine the correct fit for your pup! Plastic buckles are located at the top of the harness for extra security. They offer a variety of designs and sizes are between and x-small, small, medium, large, and x-large.
Best Sling Harnesses for Small Dogs
Best Adventure Harness for Small Dogs
Large dogs are not the only ones who enjoy hiking and outdoor adventures, small dogs love it too! The best outdoor harness for small dogs is the Ruffwear Front Range Harness. This harness is a multi-clip harness, allowing leash attachment at the back and front.
It is available in six different colors, two of them suitable for high visibility. Foam padded straps across the chest and belly area help provide all-day comfort. There are four points of adjustment and an ID badge pocket for your pup’s information. The harness fabric features reflective trim to help your dog be seen no matter the time of day. Sizes are xx-small, x-small, small, medium, large/x-large.
Best Harness for Light Pullers
Best Dog Harness for a Small Dog
The best harness for your small pup is one that fits their measurements properly, not too snug, breathable, easy to get on and off, and adjustable. You do not want a harness that is easy for your dog to get out of, rather look for one that can be adjusted if necessary. Comfortable and breathable materials are a must.
Soft and flexible materials such as mesh or nylon, will keep your pup comfy and will not smother your pup. Safety features are also something to look for, such as reflective material, this way your pup is easy for you and others to spot in case they wander too far.
Benefits of a Harness; Is it okay for a small dog? Is it necessary? Is it dangerous?
Dog harnesses can provide many different benefits, ranging from providing a feeling of safety to your pup or allowing you to have more control of your dog while taking them on walks. Harnesses are more effective for your small pup instead of a collar, the main reason is that collars are easy for small dogs to slip out of whereas a properly fitted harness is more difficult to escape from.
Collars for any size dog are always a risk, they can become caught or tangled up on things and end up choking or seriously harming themselves. Harnesses eliminate the risk of your pup getting caught up or tangled with a collar.
A harness offers much more control versus a regular collar, for example, it is easier to pull on a harness (without harming your pup) if your dog decides to chase a squirrel versus pulling on a collar which can potentially choke them.
Reflective harnesses increase visibility for your pup, there are reflective collars but since they cover just one area of your dog, they are not as effective. Some pups inherit breathing problems or they could have them due to other underlying issues, no matter the case, using a collar can make these problems worse instead of better.
A harness will not make breathing problems worse, so you can walk your pup safely and comfortably. A bonus feature for dog harnesses is that they can provide a source of warmth for your pup, this is especially useful if you live in an area that gets seasons.
Harnesses are absolutely okay for small dogs, this is why some are made specially for small dogs! Make sure to look for small dog specific harnesses, not bigger ones that adjust down. Harnesses are not a necessity, but they are convenient for both you and your dog.
It is entirely up to you if you feel like getting a harness for your dog. Harnesses are not dangerous, if researched properly and the size is the right size for your pup, then they are much safer than collars. It can take awhile to find the best harness for your dog, but it is worth the work and wait!
What to look for when buying a dog harness?
Easy, Secure Closures
It’s important to you and your furry friend that you choose a harness that is easy to get on and off, and is still secure. Harnesses that buckle instead of tie, operate like a belt buckle, or slip-on are much more beneficial. A buckle works like a quick release for your pup, in case they become stuck, but is still strong enough to not become undone when your dog pulls at the leash.
Metal buckles are the most durable, but they can sometimes be a little heavy for smaller dogs. Strong plastic buckles are the most ideal and work just as well as metal buckles. Step-in harnesses with buckles are the easiest and most secure harness for your pup.
You don’t have to wrestle a harness over your pup when you use a step-in one. For a step-in harness, you simply lay it on the floor or flat surface and gently guide your dogs legs through the openings and then you pull it up, buckle, and voila!
High Visibility Features
There are several different harness types such as back-clip, front-clip, multi-clip, no pull, and no choke. Each one is different from the other and offers features that can be useful depending on how your pup walks.
Back-clip harnesses are the most popular type of harness and feature a metal, plastic, or fabric ring on the back for the leash to clip through. These type of harnesses are mostly ideal for dogs who do not pull or yank on a leash when walked. However, back-clip harnesses provide the least amount of control.
Front-clip harnesses have the same type of ring as back-clip ones, except it is located at the front near your dog’s chest. This type of harness is better than a back-clip harness when it comes to control. The location of the loop/ring allows much more control and works much better for dog’s that pull. When dogs try to pull with a front-clip harness, instead of tugging them backwards in the same direction like back-clip harnesses, they can be pulled to the side which teaches them not to pull.
Front clip harnesses work well for bigger dogs that need to be taught not to pull or yank while walking. Multi-clip harnesses feature a loop/ring on the back and front of the harness, so if your dog learns not to pull anymore, you can switch the leash to the back clip!
No-pull harnesses typically have a feature where the harness will tighten against the dog’s chest when they attempt to pull. Most small dogs do not pull very hard so a no-pull harness is probably not necessary. No-choke harnesses are simply harnesses that do not feature a loop or material around the dog’s neck.