In finding the best harness for German Shepherd dogs, it means you should feel as if you have a whole lot more control over your dog when taking them for walks.
After all, no matter how well trained they are, you can never rule out something catching their eye. Let’s face it, dogs will be dogs.
But here’s an important fact. You want to make sure that a harness is not only strong enough, but that it’s also comfortable for your dog. You don’t want it to be causing them problems.
Would you want to wear a coat that is restrictive and hurts? Of course not, so why would you want to effectively put your German Shepherd through the same thing?
This then leads to a problem. Merely looking at a harness for German Shepherds isn’t enough. This is not something where you can go by looks alone. Instead, you need some help and advice, and that’s what we are about to give.
So, what do we see as being the best dog harness for German Shepherd dogs? Well, you are about to find out.
Best Harness For German Shepherds – Reviews & Buying guide for 2021
BEST OVERALL: Rabbitgoo Tactical Dog Harness and Bungee Dog Leash Set
Our winner is this tactical dog harness and bungee dog leash set by Rabbitgoo, and it’s our winner for a few reasons.
First, the harness is crafted from nylon, and it’s available in both black or tan, so they are perfect colors for your German Shepherd. Also, it does come in both medium and large sizes, but in general this harness is designed for large dogs, so your German Shepherd certainly falls into that category.
This model comes with two buckles on the shoulders, and this means it’s easier to get the harness to fit perfectly. It’s also heavy duty and contains strong stitching, so it’s going to be able to cope with the energy and power of your dog.
But what is also cool with this harness is that they have really focused on the comfort of your dog by using a breathable air mesh so it’s perfect against their body.
Finally, this harness also contains pouches for carrying gear, such as water bottles for example, but they aren’t too obstructive or placed in such a position that it will annoy and irritate your dog.
Overall, this harness is easy to fit, is comfortable for your dog, and is strong and sturdy. For us, it’s the best no pull harness for German Shepherd dogs on the market.
- This harness is made from highly durable nylon, so it’s capable of withstanding a lot of punishment.
- The bungee lead extends to 49” while you can remain in control at all times even when your dog has this bit of freedom.
- The harness comes with two different clips for attaching the leash covering both non-pull and a back clip which is designed for having more of a relaxed walk.
- It comes with reflective threads, and that’s going to provide some safety and security when taking your dog out at night.
- The pouches for carrying things are a good addition.
- You need to double-check the chest part of the harness that things are fitted correctly or it can wriggle loose.
- The clips could have felt a little bit stronger, but they still do a great job.
Runner up: Expawlorer Big Dog Harness
Our runner-up here is this Expawlorer big dog harness, and as soon as you set eyes on it you will understand why we love it so much.
First, the harness is available in a variety of colors, and it not only comes in a large size, but there’s also an extra large option should your German Shepherd by larger than normal. Also, it’s made from highly durable nylon, so this harness should last a considerable amount of time, and be capable of withstanding a lot of punishment.
For the control aspect, then there’s a rubber ring above the harness to provide you with that close sense of control. However, if you plan on giving your German Shepherd a bit more freedom, then it’s easy to attach a leash as well.
The harness has a no-pull design, and if you do have to reign them in for some reason, then the pressure and weight is going to be evenly distributed across the harness instead of at one single point. That just makes things a lot more comfortable for your dog.
Expawlorer have also sought to make this easy to attach, and you are looking at a quick buckle along with an adjustment buckle to provide maximum comfort.
Overall, we love the simplicity of this harness. It does the job it’s designed for, and it does it well.
- The harness is quick and easy to attach, so that means you won’t be struggling to get your dog to wear this at any point.
- It comes with night reflectors included, so it’s all safe when taking your dog out in the dark.
- The way the pressure is spread across the harness makes a real difference, and it does mean your dog won’t feel like its chest is being crushed when you need to suddenly pull on the harness.
- The close control handle is a great idea for when you are in those situations where you don’t feel comfortable them being on a slightly longer leash.
- The harness is easy to wipe clean, and as it’s nylon it’s also going to be resistant to the weather in general.
- The harness doesn’t come with any pouches on it, and that may be important for some people.
- The harness is quite short in the body, but it still provides that support and control around the neck and chest area.
Alternative: PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
Our next option is this simple easy walk dog harness by PetSafe. It’s keeping things to a basic level, but that doesn’t mean it’s incapable of doing a great job. Instead, the opposite is true.
As like the other harnesses, this version is available in a variety of colors and sizes, so finding one that you feel works for your German Shepherd should not be a problem. Also, it’s crafted from nylon, so it’s hard-wearing and won’t be destroyed by the weather.
But here’s a bonus. This harness was designed by a specialist in dog behavior, that should mean they understand how best to control a dog while making sure they are not uncomfortable. Thankfully, this harness does seem to fit the bill.
It includes what’s known as the Martingale loop as well as leash attachment on the front chest. This provides better control over your dog without putting too much strain on them.
Also, the chest placement is important. It allows you to pull on the leash with the constraint being placed gently on their chest area rather than their neck. This is less scary for your dog, and they are more likely to listen to your commands.
Finally, it has a quick attach style, so getting it on and off your dog should be easy.
- The harness is very easy to put on, and yet it stays strong and sturdy.
- The position of the pull on the chest is perfect resulting in better control.
- Your dog won’t feel constricted in this harness, and it may be perfect for a first-timer.
- Your dog won’t overheat in this harness as it uses minimal material.
- It’s designed by a dog behavior expert.
- It doesn’t have any night-time reflectors.
- It only offers one position for the leash.
Alternative: Excellent Elite Spanker Tactical Dog Harness
Made from 1000D nylon, this harness by Excellent Elite Spanker has the full-on appearance of a tactical harness. As well as being strong, it does have padding to prevent chafing for your dog, so comfort is clearly key here.
This is also a no pull harness, and it comes with a quick-release buckle and is easy to adjust. For example, adjusting under the belly is done via a slider buckle.
The leash is attached via a v-shaped buckle crafted from an aluminum alloy, so it’s strong and sturdy. This provides you with a whole lot of control over your dog at all times.
- It’s very easy to fit on your dog.
- The quick release buckle is easy to operate.
- The padding does deliver comfort to your dog and stops chafing.
- The harness is strong and durable for all conditions.
- Adjusting is easy via the sliding buckles.
- You need to make sure it’s the modern version as they changed strap locations.
- There’s no night reflection.
Alternative: Albcorp Tactical Dog Vest Harness
Finally, there’s this tactical dog vest harness by Albcorp, and it too is crafted from high-quality nylon. However, this version comes with military webbing, and it has loop panels which means the dog can carry some gear without it interfering with the control aspect.
It’s also designed to be exceptionally easy to attach, while there is a close control handle on the top of the harness along with the option of attaching a leash. It has a front chest D-ring which engages the no pull approach as well.
Overall, this tactical dog vest keeps things nice and simple, but it does provide control over your dog at all times. It fits snugly, but is easy to adjust, and that should mean it’s comfortable for your dog to wear, and that’s certainly something you should be looking for as a respected owner.
- Very easy to put on and adjust.
- It comes with military webbing and makes it easy for your dog to carry some items.
- The close control handle is a nice addition.
- The D-ring makes it easy to adopt the no pull approach with your dog.
- It’s crafted from high-quality nylon.
- It should have some night reflective features on it.
- The fabric is quite stiff, so your dog could get hot.
How to Buy the Best Harness for German Shepherd Dogs
Whether you are wanting the best walking harness for German Shepherd dogs, or the best tactical harness for German Shepherd dogs, we have you covered with the various options listed above.
The key to finding the best harness for German Shepherds will be to cover several points. You need to think about your own self and the control aspect, while you also need to consider your dog and their comfort.
That is why we recommend the following points to be taken into consideration at all times when trying to buy the correct harness.
- Make sure the harness fits them perfectly. We will discuss this in more detail later.
- Make sure the harness is easy to both fit and remove. You don’t want to be messing around with a buckle in the wrong situation.
- Consider how your dog is going to feel in the harness. Is it offering padding to prevent chafing? Is it breathable so they won’t overheat when wearing it?
- How do you control your dog? Does it come with more than one option for close control, as well as on a leash?
As you can see, these are very practical things to think about when making this purchase. The best harness is the one that fits, gives you control, and doesn’t hurt your dog. It really is that simple.
What Isn’t Important When Buying a German Shepherd Harness
But let’s also get one thing straight, when you are looking at buying a harness for a German Shepherd, it’s more about practicality than how it looks. Don’t worry about colors, even though there are several available, and the material is going to always be strong nylon.
By purchasing a harness specifically designed for a large, powerful dog, you are automatically going to be purchasing one that is strong enough to deal with their power and strength. That means the stitching is strong and the material won’t rip.
Basically, focus more on the individual features of the harness rather than how it is made. You are going to be covered in that respect with any harness on the market.
Harness for German Shepherd FAQs
We know you are going to have a number of questions going through your mind right now when it comes to choosing your German Shepherd harness vest.
So, hopefully we have covered the key ones below that will then make it easier for you to make your decision.
Should I Use a Harness for My German Shepherd?
The quick answer here is undoubtedly yes, but it comes with a few additions to that answer. You see, you cannot just go ahead and grab any old harness and think that this will be fine, that’s not the case.
Instead, it really does need to fit them perfectly, but more on that in a bit.
With a harness for a German Shepherd, you need to make sure that it does not restrict their shoulder movement. You should also consider checking out a non-pull harness, and make sure it always has strong stitching. Your German Shepherd has a lot of power behind them, and you need to be certain that the harness is up to the task.
But overall, it will certainly provide you with more control over your dog when outside. Exactly how you get that control is going to depend on the harness in question. Most offer a no pull approach, but some will have a close control handle on the top as well as the ability to connect a leash.
However, there’s no doubt that a harness will make life a whole lot easier for both you and your dog.
How Do You Measure a German Shepherd for a Harness?
So a bit more on the measurement aspect as it’s really important that you get it correct. After all, you want the harness to be comfortable for your dog, so knowing how to measure is key.
There are two main areas to focus on with the measurements, the neck and chest.
Now, for the neck, you are looking at what’s known as the lower neck. That means you are measuring further down away from their head, and it’s certainly not in the area where a collar would sit.
Take your tape measure, and wrap it around their lower neck and take the measurement. Then, measure their chest, and this is going to be the widest part of their body. Once again, take the measurement.
As an additional step, you may want to measure the length of their body. However, that’s not always required as the neck and chest are the two key areas.
Do German Shepherds Calm Down with Age?
If you are worried that your German Shepherd is full of life and energy, then there is the potential for them to start to calm down a bit, and this is often somewhere between the ages of 5 to 7. However, don’t think that this means your dog is going to just lie around all day and do nothing.
Instead, when we talk about them calming down, we just mean their energy levels have moved past their peak a bit. They will still be quite energetic and wanting to go for long walks and have fun, but it’s just not going to be as full on as it once was.
But let’s get one thing clear here. We are never talking about your German Shepherd becoming something of a couch potato. Even when they are older, they will still be wanting to get up and do things, so if you thought differently, then you are wrong.
Of course, if you buy a puppy, then they will start to calm down a bit after they reach 6 months or so. But then, you do have the adult energy to contend with, and that will stay with them for the first few years of their life.
How Do You Know if a Harness Fits Your Dog?
There are a couple of tell-tale signs that a harness is fitting your dog perfectly, and one of the key areas to focus on is the chest.
With the chest, it should be a case that you can easily slide two fingers into the gap between the harness and your dog. That is going to be perfect.
If you can fit in more than that, you will find your dog can work their way out of their harness. Anything less than that, and the harness is going to be too restrictive, and that can cause all sorts of problems. Quite simply, too tight is going to result in chafing, and that’s painful for your German Shepherd, or any dog for that matter.
But if you want to make sure that the harness is indeed fitting your dog perfectly, then you should repeat the two finger test at any point on the harness. Look at the straps, and test them in this way. However, always stick to the two finger measurement, it’s the easiest way of doing this.
If you find that you struggle at any point on the straps, then adjust them accordingly. By the end, you should have a perfectly fitted harness for your German Shepherd.
As you can see, finding the best harness for German Shepherds is easy, and we have checked out several examples of items that fit the bill perfectly.
The key in choosing the right German Shepherd harness is to just make sure it’s strong enough to cope with their power, and that it first them perfectly. That is why we stress that you should go back to one of of FAQs regarding how to measure them, and make sure you do it right.
A harness is a wonderful thing. It provides a sense of control over your dog without it being anything negative for them.
Whether you want the full on tactical harness, or something with a more simplistic approach, getting a harness for your German Shepherd should not be something you need to really think about. Consider the features that are important to you as an owner, and then make sure the harness in question comes up to your expectations.