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Pet Harness or Collar for Your Pet – How to Choose?

Choosing the right pet harness / Dog Harness or collar for your pet is a big decision that directly impacts their safety, comfort, and overall well-being. With so many options available, it can be confusing to determine the best choice.

Harness - Pet Collars

What should you be looking for?

What are some of the deal-breakers?

This guide will answer it all, providing valuable insights and tips to help you make an informed decision when selecting a harness or collar for your beloved companion.

But first, let’s explore why you might need a harness or collar for your pet in the first place.

Understanding the Purpose of a pet Harness or Collar

Before diving into the selection process, you must understand the purpose behind using a harness or collar.

Both serve as tools to help you control and manage your pet during walks, training sessions, or general activities.

A harness offers a more secure and evenly distributed point of control, minimizing strain on your pet’s neck and providing better overall control. On the other hand, collars are suitable for pets who are already well-behaved on the leash, as they mainly serve as a point of attachment for identification tags and leashes.

Different Types of Pet Harness and Collars


  1. Back-clip harness: The leash attachment is located on the back to provide good control and minimize pressure on the neck. This type of harness is great for dogs who walk calmly and have no history of pulling.
  2. Front-clip harness: The leash attachment on the front discourages pulling by redirecting your pet’s attention toward you. This type of harness provides extra control and is beneficial for larger or more energetic dogs.
  • Step-in harness: Easy to put on and adjust, this type of harness is suitable for dogs who dislike having things put over their heads or their paws manipulated. It is also great for smaller breeds.
  1. No-pull harness: Designed to discourage pulling, this harness often features a front attachment point and additional design features.
  2. H-style harness: It forms an “H” shape on your pet’s back, offering more support and stability.


  1. Flat buckle collar: This traditional collar comes with a buckle closure and is suitable for well-behaved pets.
  2. Martingale collar: It consists of a loop that tightens when pulled to prevent the pet from slipping out of the collar.
  • Breakaway collar: Designed with a safety release mechanism, this type of collar is ideal for cats or pets who may get caught on objects.

Now, back to how you can choose the right harness or collar for your pet: below are a few things you should keep in mind when exploring your options.

Understand Your Pet’s Needs

Every pet is unique, and understanding their needs is the first step in choosing the right harness or collar. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What is their breed, size, and age?
  • Do they have any health conditions or physical limitations?
  • Are they still growing or fully grown?
  • What is their temperament like?

For example, small dogs or those with delicate necks may benefit from a harness that evenly distributes pressure across their body. Similarly, dogs prone to respiratory issues might benefit from a harness that avoids placing pressure on their neck.

Cats, particularly those unaccustomed to wearing collars, might be more comfortable with a harness designed specifically for felines.

In addition, you should consider the activities you plan to engage in with your pet. If you enjoy outdoor adventures or jogging, a comfortable collar and a sturdy and durable harness may be the ideal choice.

Safety First

When choosing the right harness or collar for your pet, you should first evaluate how safe and durable the product is. Look for high-quality materials, such as nylon or leather, since they are resistant to wear and tear.

Sturdy stitching and reinforced attachment points are also important factors to consider in order to ensure the product can withstand your pet’s movements and any sudden pulls.

Additionally, inspect the hardware, such as buckles, D-rings, and clasps, to ensure they are secure and resistant.

Pro tip: Consider investing in a harness or collar with reflective or brightly colored materials to enhance visibility during walks, especially at night.

And when using a harness or collar for your pet, you must regularly check its condition to ensure it remains in good shape and replace it if any signs of damage or wear are present.

Choose the Materials Wisely

When a harness or collar is comfortable to wear, it keeps your pet happy during walks and adventures. Here are a few factors to consider when choosing the perfect material.

  1. Soft padding: Look for harnesses or collars with padded linings to prevent rubbing or chafing on your pet’s skin.
  2. Breathability: Opt for materials that allow proper airflow to keep your pet cool, especially during hot weather.

Proper Fit Means Optimal Comfort

Regardless of the type of harness or collar you choose, it is critical to find the perfect fit for your pet’s comfort and safety.

We recommend taking accurate measurements of your pet’s neck or chest, depending on the type of product, and referring to the manufacturer’s sizing guidelines before making the purchase.

Remember, the harness or collar should fit snugly without being too tight or restrictive. At the same time, avoid choosing sizes that leave excessive room, as your pet may easily slip out or experience discomfort.

Pro tip: If you can find a product with adjustable features to fine-tune the fit and accommodate your pet’s growth, go for it!

Pet Harness vs. Collar: Which Is Better for Your Pet If You Have to Choose One?

Understanding the differences between harnesses and collars will help you determine the better choice for your pet’s needs.

Typically, harnesses are more suitable for dogs prone to pulling or those with respiratory issues, as they distribute pressure evenly across the chest and shoulders. They also provide better control and minimize strain on the neck. So, getting a harness may be the right choice if you have an aggressive or energetic dog or a curious cat that likes to pull on the leash.

On the other hand, collars are ideal for well-behaved pets who walk calmly on a leash. You can also attach identification tags and licenses on the collar if you’re concerned about your pet’s safety in case they get lost.

Final Words on Pet Harness

Choosing the right harness or collar for your furry baby is a decision that requires careful consideration. Take your time looking for a high-quality product made from a comfortable material with adjustable straps for the perfect fit.

At Petnap, we have a soft, fully adjustable harness made from mesh and nylon for optimal comfort for puppies. It comes with a lead with three-stage adjustment loops in small and large sizes. And thanks to the embroidery on the harness, rest assured that your pup will always walk in style!

We also have packs of Fabric ID Bands for puppies. These collars are available in 6 or 12 unique colors and have safety push-togethers for maximum comfort.