Best Harnesses For Pitbulls

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pitbull harness

Looking for the perfect Pitbull Harness …

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Pitbulls are a wonderfully powerful breed. Harnesses can be beneficial in training and are key in any sport or activity where your Pitbull is pulling.

Finding the right harness for your Pitbull can be challenging. With their extreme strength contained in a compact, stocky body, it can be difficult to find a harness that fits comfortably.

We reviewed dozens of harnesses so you don’t have to – and we have a clear winner!

Our TOP Choice for the best Pitbull harness:

Our TOP Choice
RUFFWEAR, Front Range Dog Harness

The four adjustment points in the Ruffwear Front Range allow you to customize the fit.

The all-over foam padding is perfect for short-coated dogs, helping to ensure the harness does not rub or chafe. The reinforced leash-attachment points are built tough to stand up even to a dog that pulls!

The reflective trim will help keep your dog AND you safe in low-light conditions. The ID pocket lets you store your dog's tags to help keep them safe if you're separated.

The y-front style of the Ruffwear Front Range will keep your dog's shoulders unencumbered, allowing them to extend naturally and move freely.

Check the current price here!

Specialized Pitbull Harnesses

What suits your Pitbull on your daily walk will not be appropriate for a weight pull competition. A harness that fits perfectly for mushing will be unsafe as a car restraint. Finding the right harness for all your activities and needs is critical to keep your Pitbull safe. 

We’ve talked to the experts to find the right harness for all your Pitbull’s adventures!

Best for Pitbull Puppies

Your Pitbull will be a muscular dog once grown up, but a little puppy will need a specialized harness to fit his rapidly growing body. When picking a puppy harness make sure it is well-adjustable and distributes the force well across padded panels!

pitbull puppy
Our Choice for Pitbull Puppies
Classic Dog Harness Innovative Mesh Harness

This gentle mesh harness is perfect your the first months of your dog's life. The mesh is soft and will not rub or cause chafing.

The fabric is eco-friendly and breathable, making it perfect for hot & cold, sunny & rainy days out with your new pup.

Get this gentle puppy harness!
06/23/2024 06:11 pm GMT

Best Tactical Pitbull Harness

Top Tactical Pitbull Harness
ICEFANG Tactical Dog Harness

This is the best heavy-duty Pitbull harness on the market. Not only will your Pitbull look fantastic in this, but he will be safe, too!

This harness gives the owner superior control over even a very strong dog. The quick-release buckles make taking it off and putting it on a breeze.

Get this tactical harness for your Sergeant Pitbull!
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06/22/2024 02:32 pm GMT

Best for Running and Dog-Powered Sports

Our Pick for Athletes
BARKBAY Reflective Dog Harness for Walking, Training & Running
$29.99 ($29.99 / Count)

Pitbulls' power, endurance, and energy make them awesome mushing companions. Whether you're venturing out on cross-country skis, trying out a kicksled, hopping on your bike, or setting out for a cani-cross run, your Pitbull will be an awesome adventure companion.

If you like to be active, this is the harness for you! The wide chest panel lets your Pitbull's power be distributed across his large chest, and the reflective stripes will make sure you are seen.

Get this harness for my active Pitbull!
06/22/2024 08:06 am GMT

Best Pitbull Harness for Car Travel

If your Pitbull rides in the car with you a lot, this is a harness that is safe to buckle up in.

Our Choice for Car Travel
Mighty Paw Vehicle Safety Harness

A harness can be a key component of car travel safety. Dogs should always be properly restrained in vehicles. A sturdy and safe crate can be a great option, but not every vehicle can accommodate a properly sized kennel in addition to human passengers and other luggage.

A harness that buckles securely into the seatbelt can be a great alternative. Any harness used in the car must have undergone crash-testing. The force behind a car crash can cause harness components to fail.

Safe travels for my pooch!
06/22/2024 09:25 am GMT

The Challenges with Pitbulls and Harnesses

The combination of their beautiful big, blocky heads, a barrel chest, and a muscled body make the Pitbull physique unique. Many “off the rack” harnesses will not fit properly. There is also the risk of chafing with their short, sleek coat, and often thin or no coat under their arms. 

A harness will need to be highly adjustable to fit properly or customized for your dog. Sufficient padding and high-quality materials will reduce the risk of chafing, as will a good fit! The less a harness moves as your dog moves, the less risk of rubbing and chafing. 

The Benefits of Harnesses

Using a harness instead of a collar can keep your Pitbull more comfortable, particularly while they’re learning not to pull on the leash. Their natural strength means they could cause physical damage to their neck and throat by pulling on a regular collar. 

Harnesses can offer better control than a regular collar when out with your dog. Harnesses disperse pressure over their back instead of concentrating all the pressure on their throat. A harness can also foil some escape artists who have learned to wriggle out of a collar!

There are a myriad of sports where your Pitbull’s natural power will make them top contenders. These sports require harnesses for your dog’s safety. Many Pitbulls excel at mushing sports, pulling a sled or a bike. Pitbulls are often the top performers at weight pull events, where their mettle is tested by pulling a cart loaded with weight. Each sport requires its own specific harness designed to keep your dog safe.

How Can You Choose the Right Harness?

Whatever the reason for the harness, choose one that is the least restrictive and will have minimal impact on how your dog moves. The best harnesses are non-restrictive and highly adjustable (or custom made), ensuring a great fit. 

Not every harness is available in-store, so we have reviewed many different options to narrow down what might work best for your Pitbull. You might also want a color to match your Pitbull’s coat color that you will have to specifically order.

Different harnesses are suited for different adventures, events, and sports. Depending on your plans with your Pitbull, you may need more than one type of harness. 

Buying Guide

Getting the Right Fit

The best harness will be a disaster for your Pitbull if you can’t fit it properly. Look for harnesses with multiple adjustment points so you can accommodate your Pitbull’s big beautiful head, and still have the harness fit properly on their body.

For a sport like weight pull, where you’re asking your Pitbull to give you everything they’ve got, it is worth the investment to have a harness custom made. Even if you have several similar sized dogs in your household, you may find individual harnesses suit your dogs best.

How Can Harnesses Harm?

Unfortunately, there are many harnesses available that can be damaging to your dog. Harness styles can be divided into two broad groups; 1) restrictive harnesses that have straps running over the bones of the front legs, and 2) non-restrictive harnesses with straps that run in front of the front leg bones. Restrictive harnesses can cause long-term damage to your Pitbull’s structure. These harnesses are particularly concerning if your Pitbull is a growing puppy.

Harnesses where you attach the leash to the front, on the chest, can throw your dog off-balance as they move. This, again, can cause damage to your Pitbull’s structure, shoulders, and musculature. You may not be able to visibly see the difference in how your dog moves in a restrictive harness. Still, experts have quantified the impact using pressure-sensing walkway measurement systems. 

The Bottom Line

A well-made, properly fit harness can be an important part of keeping your dog safe. Whether safely restraining your Pitbull in the car and protecting them in case of an accident, or keeping them safe while pulling weights or running with you, or keeping them from escaping a collar while on a walk.

Some harnesses can pull double duty. The SleepyPod car restraint can also double as a walking harness and might suit your Pitbull for your hiking and walking adventures. The Howling Dog Alaska harness can also work for walking and hiking, so if you are doing some dog-powered sports as well as some walks and hikes, this may suit both.

The Right Harness for your Next Adventure

If you are dying to get out on a new adventure with your Pitbull, start by doing some measurements. Different harnesses require different measurements; consult the manufacturer’s website to determine what part of your pooch you need to measure to ensure you get the right fit.