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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
- Heavy duty but lightweight nylon leash with secure metal clip
- Bungee action allows for increased range and reduces the impact of sudden movement on your arm and your dog’s neck
- Leash extends from from 33.5 to 46.5 inches
- Dual handles for extra control
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
- Durable steel braided cable prevents heavy chewers and teething puppies from gnawing through
- Aluminum carabiners can withstand up to 850 lbs of force
- Padded soft handle allows for a firm, comfortable grip
- Made in the USA
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
- Harness includes LED light in center of chest
- Reflective trim adds extra visibility
- No-choke/no-pull design ensures sturdy comfort
- Available in 6 sizes
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.
RELATED: The Leash Matters – When To Use What Type
Best Rope Leash
- Made of hand-spliced marine-grade rope capable of withstanding hundreds of pounds of pulling force
- Reinforced ends guaranteed not to fray from daily use
- Adjustable design allows for multiple configurations from hands-free to dual-leash
- 7 feet in length
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
- Handmade, hand-stitched leather leash
- 3/4 in wide, 6 feet long
- Hand loop is lined with soft, luxurious sheepskin leather for comfortable holding
- Stylish and functional/durable design
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
- Hands-free bungee leash designed to absorb shock attaches to included adjustable waist belt
- 48-inch lead extends up to 60 inches
- Includes two control handles
- Slide belt clip lets your dog move from side to side without tangles or tripping
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.
RELATED: 15 Reasons To Keep Your Dog On Leash (Even When It’s Legal Not To)
Best Retractable Leash
- Easy to use lock and break system
- Ergonomic handle with non-slip design
- Durable internal coil allows for consistent retraction
- Full extension reaches 16 feet
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
- Two shock-absorbing bungee tethers
- Stainless steel double ringed swivel keeps the tethers separate and prevents tangles
- Weather-resistant build
- Easily converts between 64-inches and 32-inches so you can manage the amount of control
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
- 1/2 inch diameter, 30 foot long lead allows you to gradually give your dog more distance
- Durable, multi-filament roping is UV coated to protect against decay and fading
- A top choice lead for professional trainers
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
- Harness features padded chest plate and 5 adjustment points for customizable fit
- Secured with two quick-release buckles
- Includes leash clip and training clip that discourages pulling
- Also great as a crash-tested seatbelt in the car
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.
Looking for a good collar next? Try these GPS/Tracking Collars, or check out this helpful guide to dog collars for advice.