Harnesses are the most comfortable form of restraint for dogs, because their weight should be evenly distributed over the whole chest and shoulder area (the strongest part of the dog). For years, animals have been harnessed to pull large weights; horses, oxen and dogs have all been 'harnessed' for work. So what does this mean for dog owners trying to walk and control their pet dog? Quite simply, that most harnesses encourage a dog to pull, hardly an ideal outcome for the average pet owner!
However, there are now several designs of harness available that, for various reasons, discourage or stop pulling. Best known is the HALTI Harness which has a unique patented, front attachment system, that controls the dog from the chest, turning his whole body just as the HALTI turns his head. The HALTI Harness stops pulling and calms over-boisterous dogs by steering the dog whilst not causing discomfort to sensitive parts of the body. For maximum benefit, the HALTI Harness should be used in conjunction with a double-ended Training Lead, linked to both the front chest and rear shoulder rings. The HALTI Training Lead is ideal for this purpose.
Other no-pull harnesses are available, such as the 'Lupi' and the 'Non-Pull' Harness by the Sporn Company. Both are effective and work by converting the dog's forward movement into an upward lift. Most soon learn to self-regulate and not to pull and neither requires skill or training by the owner.
There is an enormous choice of equipment available today which make it easy to banish pulling on the lead. Some of the equipment is kinder on dogs than others, but much depends upon how skilful and precise the handler is. The best investment most owners can make is to commit time and energy in training and exercising your dog, aiming to have at least two interesting walks with your dog a day. Walking your dog should be a pleasurable experience for you both. A little time and effort in the begining will pay dividends for years to come.