top of page
  • loveandapuppy

Dog Collars Vs Harness

dog in harness
Dog with collar and harness

Dog Collars vs. Dog Harnesses: Which is Safer for Your Pet?*

When it comes to outfitting your dog for daily walks and adventures, the debate between using a collar or a harness is ongoing. Both have their pros and cons, but when it comes to safety, understanding the differences can help you make the best choice for your furry friend.

Dog Collars

Types of Dog Collars:

1. Flat Collars: The most common type, suitable for everyday use.

2. Martingale Collars: Designed to prevent dogs from slipping out, often used for breeds with slimmer heads.

dog collars
a selection of collars and leashes

3. Choke Chains and Prong Collars: Training tools that should be used cautiously and under professional guidance.

Safety Considerations:

- Risk of Injury: Collars can put pressure on the neck, potentially causing injury to the trachea, esophagus, or even the thyroid gland. This is especially true if the dog tends to pull on the leash.

- Identification: Collars are ideal for holding ID tags, which can be crucial if your dog gets lost.

- Training and Control: While collars can be effective for training and provide a point of control, improper use can lead to injuries. Choke chains and prong collars, for example, can cause significant harm if not used correctly.

dog harness selection

Dog Harnesses

Types of Dog Harnesses:

1. Back-Clip Harnesses: The leash attaches to a clip on the dog's back, offering comfort but less control.

2. Front-Clip Harnesses: The leash attaches at the chest, discouraging pulling and offering better control.

3. Dual-Clip Harnesses: These offer attachment points at both the back and chest, providing versatility.

Safety Considerations:

- Pressure Distribution: Harnesses distribute pressure across the dog’s chest and shoulders rather than the neck, reducing the risk of neck injuries.

- Control and Training: Front-clip harnesses are particularly effective for training, as they help to redirect the dog's forward motion, reducing pulling and making walks more manageable.

- Comfort: Many dogs find harnesses more comfortable, especially those with respiratory issues or neck injuries. However, a poorly fitting harness can cause chafing and discomfort.

Which is Safer?

For Everyday Use:

- Small Breeds and Puppies: Harnesses are generally safer for small dogs and puppies with more delicate necks


- Brachycephalic Breeds: Dogs with short noses (like Pugs and Bulldogs) benefit from harnesses as they reduce the risk of respiratory issues caused by pressure on the neck.

For Training:

- Pulling Behavior: Front-clip harnesses are excellent for dogs that pull, offering better control without the risk of neck injury.

- Identification and Training Combined: A combination of a collar with ID tags and a front-clip harness can offer the best of both worlds – safety and effective training.

Special Considerations:

- Behavioral Issues:

For dogs with severe behavioral issues, professional guidance is crucial. Sometimes a specific collar or harness is recommended by a trainer or veterinarian.

- Escape Artists:

Some dogs are adept at slipping out of both collars and harnesses. In such cases, a martingale collar or a well-fitted harness with secure fastenings is essential.


Ultimately, the choice between a dog collar and a harness depends on your dog's specific needs, behavior, and health. While collars are essential for identification, harnesses typically offer superior safety and control, especially for dogs that pull or have health concerns. By understanding the differences and considering your dog’s unique requirements, you can make an informed decision prioritizing your pet’s safety and comfort. 

Remember, whether you opt for a collar or a harness, proper fit and regular checks are crucial to ensure your dog’s safety and well-being.


Add reaction

0 views0 comments


bottom of page