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Does Your Dog Have a Sore from Wearing a Harness? 5 Tips to Prevent Harness Chafing

By Jess Rollins
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Dog harnesses are a great way to walk your dog while keeping pressure off of your dog's sensitive throat and trachea. No-pull dog harnesses can also do a great job of gently preventing your dog from taking you for a "drag" instead of a walk. Here at Pet Expertise, we offer four types of No-Pull harnesses such as the Easy Walk Harness. In most cases, they work great for our customers. However, in rare cases, and especially with dogs with very short fur, the dog can develop a contact sore due to the rubbing of the harness. We have put together a few helpful hints to prevent harness chafing below:

  1. First, it's very important to wait until your dog's chafing sore has healed completely before attempting to use a harness again. This will give you some time to come up with a plan to prevent the chafing once you put the harness back on.
  2. This next step is key and often overlooked: Make sure that the harness is fitted correctly and that the girth strap is not in the dogs "armpits". The girth strap (that goes around the barrel of the chest), should lie a couple of inches back from the armpits and be fairly snug. Reviewing the fitting instructions that came with your harness can help. Fitting instructions for the Easy Walk Harness.
  3. Consider not using the harness for running, with a long leash or double-dog leash: Some dogs do fine running in a harness, but if your dog is experiencing chafing, then do not continue to take your dog running while wearing the harness or try padding the harness for your next outing once your dog has healed. In general, front attachment harnesses are not recommended to be used with leashes longer than six feet (including Flexi Leashes).
  4. Add some padding: Padding the harness straps with fleece like our Strap Wrap, or purchasing a harness with padding like our Freedom No-Pull Harness should help prevent chafing. Alternatively you could have your dog wear the harness over a doggie T-shirt.
  5. Don't forget training! Working with your dog to reduce the amount of pulling using our Training Tips for Walking Your Dog With a No-Pull Harness is a great idea for lots of reasons and will also prevent chafing.

I really hope these tips help you and your dog to have a more enjoyable walk. If this helped we would appreciate it if you would consider becoming a customer or sharing this article with a friend. Thanks ~ Jess

Jess Rollins

The Author:

Jess Rollins

Jess Rollins and Pet Expertise's Mission is to Help You to Maximize Your Dog's Potential!

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1 comment

  • This is good info. My boy has the skin of a baby and got chafed in his armpits. Glad to know now that the harness should never be all up in his tender pits.

    Owner of new Boston/Chihuahua

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