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A solid dog leash or harness is as essential as those daily walks you need them for. Different dogs require different types of leashes though, and the amount of available leash and harness options out there can be overwhelming, to say the least.
We compiled a list of some of the best leashes and harnesses for your dog, whether they’re a puller, a chewer, a rugged outdoors pup, or a night owl. Some parents prefer to use a leash alone, while others would rather have their dog fitted with a leash attaching harness.
Some things to think about when shopping for a dog leash or harness:
- Length: Some dogs are fine with more roaming freedom, but many parents prefer to keep their pups closer and under control. Several of the leashes listed here let you operate with different lengths depending on the amount of control you want.
- Configuration: Depending on where you’re walking and how your dog handles walks, you’ll want either a leash you can hold firmly in your hand or a leash that lets you keep your hands free. A few of these leashes offer a combination of configurations with optional handles and additional clips.
- Material: Check to see whether the leash is designed for appearance or functionality. Stronger, larger dogs will need more durable leashes, and some materials deter chewers as well.
- Walking Environment: If you’re walking in public or crowded areas, you may want a leash that lets you keep tighter control. Some leashes can be re-configured from more casual walking to public walking. Some leashes are better for hikes and outdoor experiences, while others may be just right for a city or suburban environment.
The following leashes and harnesses are great options for specific types of dogs and environments.
Best Leash For Pullers
Both the bungee action and the dual handle design make the OneTigris Training Nylon Bungee Dog Leash an excellent choice for dogs who like to pull on walks. Its design prevents discomfort in your hands/arms or on your dog’s neck. The dual handles let you change how much control you have.
Best Leash For Chewers
Yep, sometimes dogs (especially puppies) like to use their leash as a chew toy. The Mighty Paw Chew-Proof Dog Leash will make that a lot more difficult for them. It’s made of durable, steel braided cable, and the handle is soft for your holding comfort.
Best Reflective Leash/Harness
The Headlight Harness LED Light Dog Harness features multiple bright and reflective components to make those nighttime walks safer. There’s a reflective trim and a bright LED light in the center of the chest.
Best Rope Leash
The Found My Animal Adjustable Rope Dog Leash is 7 feet long, and the O-rings let you change the leash configuration from hands-free to palm-held to around the wrist. This leash is made of extremely strong rope that can withstand hundreds of pounds of force.
Best Leather Leash
A leather leash looks a lot more stylish than the typical nylon or rope kinds. The Soft Touch Collars Leather Braided Traffic Handle Dog Leash is also durable and easy to control your dog with.
Best Hands-Free Leash
When you walk your trained dog in safe, familiar environments, sometimes you just don’t need to hold on to their leash. With an included belt for you, the Tuff Mutt Hands-Free Bungee Leash lets you stick with your dog while using your hands for other things. It also has two control handles if you need to suddenly reign the pup in.
Best Retractable Leash
Retractable leashes offer a certain kind of freedom for your dog on walks. The TUG Nylon Tape Retractable Dog Leash features a simple button-touch lock and brake system, so you can let your dog use the full 16 feet or reel them in to a much closer distance.
The main concern with retractable leashes is the tangling aspect, and they tend to be more flimsy than, say, a rope or leather leash. Typically, retractable leashes tend to be the least recommended type.
Best Dual Leash
If you need to walk two dogs at the same time, why not do it with one leash? The Pet Fit For Life Dual Dog Leash is a bungee leash with two separate tethers. The double-ringed swivel keeps the tethers from tangling.
This particular product also comes with a travel bowl.
Best Long Leash
The Mendota Products Pro-Trainer Check Cord Rope Dog Lead is a great long leash option for dogs that can safely spread out from their people on walks. It’s 30 feet of durable rope with UV protection to prevent fading, and it’s even machine washable.
Most Secure Harness
Without a proper, secure fit, a dog can easily slip out of its harness. The Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness has 5 points of adjustment to keep your dog safe, secure, and comfortable. It also works great as a seatbelt in the car when attached with a separate tether. Remember: the harness is not a leash substitute. It’s more of a collar substitute.