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Pitbull Terriers are known for their energetic, affectionate, and family-friendly attitude to life. With this energetic trait, they cannot simply be walked with a collar and leash. Often misconceived as aggressive fighting dogs, Pitbulls have an affectionate and loveable disposition.
Unfortunately, their strong builds often tempt owners into training them into fighting dogs, giving Pitbulls a bad reputation. This strength requires training when walking from a young age to ensure the safety of their walker and other dogs and walkers around them.
A harness is the best option for a Pitbull Terrier, as their heavy duty design is there to sit comfortably on the dog without choking or hurting them, whilst ensuring a more controlled walk.
They are also designed to prevent pulling on future walks, so they are ideal for training dogs who have a habit of pulling and not staying close to their owner.
We have found the 5 best harnesses for a Pitbull to provide an easier walk, along with a buyers’ guide and FAQ for any unanswered questions.
In a rush?
Our top pick is the TIANYAO Dog Harness No-Pull Dog Vest, a comfortable dog harness that is designed for large dogs.
This nylon fabric harness is made for complete durability as well as comfortability, as the fabric prevents rubbing against the chest, belly, and underarms.
This design also prevents ripping and tears. The TIANYAO harness comes in four different colors, is easy to put on and remove, and has reflective features for walks in the dark.
It also comes with a dog leash and collar for attaching a name tag. This harness is ideal for long walks, running, hiking, and training.
TIANYAO Dog Harness No-Pull Dog Vest
BABYLTRL Big Dog Harness
Eagloo Dog Harness
rabbitgoo Dog Harness
PHOEPET Reflective Dog Harness
Top Pick: TIANYAO Dog Harness No-Pull Dog Vest
The TIANYAO dog harness is an ideal purchase for any large dog owner, especially for those with a Pitbull. This impressive harness has a no pull feature that is achieved by two sturdy metal clips; the front to prevent pulling and the back for a relaxed walk.
This is a really key feature when looking for a harness as it prevents choking or causing injury whilst keeping your dog controlled. Made from a durable nylon fabric, this material is designed for comfort, safety, and controlling the strongest of dogs due to its anti-tear component.
For the extra comfort, the harness is lined with mesh and a soft sponge padding that allows for a breathable fabric – ideal for wet walks or sweaty runs. Wearing something that isn’t restricting will make a dog walk much easier.
This product also comes with a dog leash and collar, and is fully adjustable to the dog.
- Comfortable nylon fabric
- Second handle for extra control and attachment for a seat belt
- No pull feature for extra control
- Comes with a cartoon pet design on the front for those who would prefer a blank design
Second Pick: BABYLTRL Big Dog Harness
Coming in four sizes and eleven different colors, the BABYLTRL harness is designed for complete adjustability. With adjustable straps and quick snap buckles with locks, this harness is great for putting on and taking off without making a fuss.
The harness is made from a heavy duty nylon for durability and a soft touch to the dog’s body, and is fast drying and breathable for those longer walks.
The handle is a sturdy D-ring for attaching a leash, and the harness also comes with a handle for keeping the dog close and gaining more control.
The bonus of having both a front and back D-ring for the leash is that just one or both can be used at the same time for when the dog isn’t pulling. This harness also has a no pull feature that also prevents choking and is reflectable in the dark.
- Comfortable and breathable fabric
- No pull feature
- Big range of sizes and designs
- Best designed for training dogs from a young age than trying to train adult pitbulls, as it may not be strong enough
Third Pick: Eagloo Dog Harness
The Eagloo dog harness is designed for a no pull walk. With two metal rings for the leash and a no choke feature, this harness is made for distributing the weight of pulling evenly around the chest rather than the neck.
This is better for the safety and comfort of the dog as well as the control from the dog walker. The two leash rings include a V-ring on the back and an O-ring at the front, respectively designed for relaxed walking and anti-pulling.
There is also an extra handle on the back for attaching to a seat belt – ideal for travelling. The material is a breathable nylon that prevents straining the dog whilst maintaining a level of control.
This harness comes with 2 snap buckles and 4 adjustable buckles for easy removal and size changing. This harness also comes in four sizes and nine different colors.
- Range of designs
- No pull and no choke features
- Comfortable and breathable fabric
- Not chew proof
- Hand wash only
Fourth Pick: rabbitgoo Dog Harness
This no pull harness is ideal for training Pitbulls to stop pulling on walks. The two metal leash ring design is used again here to prevent pulling, as the chest attachment stops the dog from pulling, and the back ring is for relaxed and casual walks.
It also comes with a top handle for keeping the dogs close – a great tool for training dogs who have the tendency to pull and disobey when you tell them to stop.
Also made of a breathable nylon oxford material, it is softly padded against the dogs body and is heavy duty to prevent tears or rips. This product comes in 4 sizes and ten different colors, as well as reflective strips for walking in the dark.
It is also easy to put on and take off with its overhead design and 2 fast-release buckles. The adjustable straps are also helpful for maintaining a firm structure over the dog.
- Comfortable nylon fabric
- No pull feature with 2 leash rings
- Comes in ten colors
Final Pick: PHOEPET Reflective Dog Harness
The last product on our list, the PHOEPET dog harness is an easy harness to put on and remove with its 3 buckles – one on the neck and two on the chest – with no need to go over the dog’s head. This is ideal for dogs who struggle with putting harnesses around their head.
This harness has a 2 leash ring system to prevent pulling or to act as a normal leash ring for casual walks. There is a convenient handle at the back for maintaining further control over your dog and for looping seatbelts in the car.
This product comes in five sizes and eleven different colors, and is made from nylon oxford fabric for the comfort of the dog. This fabric is also heavy duty, prevents tearing, and is virtually chew-proof (for most dogs – try to not let them chew the harness).
The harness also features reflective straps to make other walkers or drivers aware of the dog when they are walking at night – ideal for the safety of both the dog and owner.
- Placement and removal does not need to go over the head
- No pull system
- Comes in five sizes and eleven different colors
- The chunkiest design on our list for those who don’t want a visibly heavy duty look
Best Harness For Pitbull Buyers’ Guide
Why Pitbulls need a harness
A harness is a necessary piece of equipment for anyone training their Pitbull on walks. As Pitbulls are naturally inquisitive and strong animals, they are often nightmares to walk.
Both the walker and the dog need more control and stability than just a leash and collar, as only this can cause choking and may aggravate the dog.
A harness should be used over a collar on any dog preferably, regardless of whether they pull or not, because they work to balance out the pressure over the chest of the dog rather than the neck.
It’s sort of the equivalent of a human harness for climbing or a swimming vest – the best place to focus all the pressure without causing damage is the chest/torso area.
Harnesses tend to come with a no pull system that is achieved by 2 leash rings, one at the front of the dog and one on the back.
The ring at the front is designed to prevent pulling, as the pressure from the dog’s strength is evenly distributed across their chest to create a certain level of uncomfortable tension that prevents them from pulling without hurting them.
This will ultimately teach them that they can walk without pulling, and therefore they are treated by a relaxed walk from the second leash ring at the back that is designed for casual walking.
Of course, with some dogs, they will just pull and pull – but whilst they may not learn anything from the harness, it is still a safer option than just a collar and leash.
A harness with an extra handle at the back is ideal for this, because it gives the walker more control over keeping their dog close. It also works well as a seat belt holder for travelling.
Due to their strength and size, pitbulls require harnesses made from heavy duty materials such as nylon or polyester.
These materials are designed for durability as well as comfort, as the soft material is gentle across the dog’s skin – especially the sensitive underarm area that is often most affected by harnesses.
It is also best to look for a breathable mesh fabric that allows a fast dry from wet or sweaty walks, as this also benefits from washing. A harness should be softly padded to not only distribute the pressure of the pull, but to prevent the material from rubbing at the skin.
If you notice that your dog’s skin is irritated or suddenly very sensitive from wearing the harness, do not put it back on them until you find a backup.
This is because they will grow to be afraid of, or even angry at, the harness which will make walking even harder and could potentially aggravate the dog.
How to fit a harness
It is vital to make sure the harness fits properly on a dog, for both their comfort and safety. If it is too loose, the dog will try to escape.
If it is too tight, this may cause pain and will prevent your dog from having a good relationship with the harness and will therefore refuse to wear it. There is a general “two finger” rule with dog harnesses – you should be able to slide two fingers underneath the harness.
This will help with your judgement to know if it is too tight or too loose. The best way of measuring a dog harness is to measure the chest and neck of your dog, and if in doubt, go a size larger.
It is easier to adjust a larger harness to be smaller than it is to make a smaller harness bigger. Remember, Pitbulls have wider shoulders than some other dogs, so it is best to go for a more adjustable material like nylon.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is a collar or harness better for a Pitbull?
A harness is the better option for any large dog who has the tendency to pull. A collar is more beneficial for holding a name and address tag, as it is not enough to control a pulling dog.
A dog’s neck can be extremely sensitive, so avoid using a collar and leash as this will cause discomfort. It will also be much harder to walk the dog.
A harness works to distribute the pressure from pulling around the chest area, which prevents pain whilst teaching the dog that pulling isn’t comfortable and therefore shouldn’t happen. A harness is a really efficient training device without hurting the dog.
What is the best harness for a dog that pulls?
Fortunately, you cannot really go wrong with any of the harnesses we have recommended. Unfortunately, dogs can be picky when it comes to harnesses.
Sometimes they grow to like it, sometimes they can get on with it, and sometimes they will hate it. It is a matter of trial and error.
We recommend looking for a nylon material harness with a no pull system and an extra handle at the back. Some dogs may prefer harnesses that don’t go over their heads, which can be achieved by harnesses with more buckles.
Can I leave my dog’s harness on all day?
As a harness is a training device to prevent pulling, it is not recommended to leave a harness on all day. Whilst you might assume the dog will learn to tolerate and get used to the harness by leaving it on for long periods of time, this method will not be useful for walks.
This is because the dog will get comfortable with the harness and will not associate it with exercise, and therefore pulling, as they will not feel the pressure from the pull to teach them to not pull.
Alternatively, they could grow to hate the harness and may see this method as punishment.
Should you get a harness for a puppy?
If you want to train your Pitbull from an early age to resist the temptation to pull, it’s a great idea to have a small harness. Just be aware that you may have to purchase replacement harnesses as they grow.
However, due to their size, it isn’t necessary as they are usually easier to control with just a collar and leash.
Why does my dog hate putting his harness on?
This could come down to several factors. Your dog may find the harness uncomfortable, in which case keep an eye out for any sensitive skin.
They might not be in the mood for a walk due to tiredness (or laziness – you know your dog’s behaviour better than anyone), or they have made a negative connection to the harness.
This could be down to the comfort of the harness, or the pulling sensation that they ironically need to stop doing.
If this is the case, it’s worth treating them with food after putting the harness on or taking them to their favourite destination to replace whatever cognitive association they have with a positive one.
If your dog becomes aggressive or terrified to leave the house, it is best to consult with a professional trainer or vet.
Are dog harnesses dangerous?
Harnesses are designed with safety in mind, for the dog as well as the walker. It is unsafe and therefore dangerous to keep them on for long periods of time, as this could become very uncomfortable for the dog.
Do not let a dog sleep in a harness, as this could become a choking hazard if it attaches to something.
Whilst the two leash ring system is really effective for anti pull training, it is worth using the back ring for some walks every now and then to prevent putting strain on the throat or affecting their gait and shoulders.