Make a dog harness with a step-by-step approach!
Below are photos about some DIY harnesses I made, as well as those made by other folks.
We also discuss the things you need to consider before making a harness, and how dog harnesses have different uses.
Personalized Dog Harness
by Bobbi Meredith
Make a personalized dog harness for each season of the year, including holidays!
Each personalized dog harness is easy to make and can be adapted to fit any size dog.
I make them for my Katie (an English Pointer with a 17″ neck, 29″ chest, 19″ waist and 28″ from neck to tail) and for friends’ dogs that I pet sit which are much smaller. I also made one for a dog that weighed 130 lbs (Great Pyrenees).
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I took a harness that I purchased at a pet supply store that slips over the dog’s head and between the front legs, with one side sliding through the loop on the back and fastening on the other side. I then folded it in half and traced it out on paper to make the pattern.
Next I use seasonal fabric and line it with upholstery fabric for strength, sewing it according to the pattern. I use belting of matching colors and even make a leash to match sometimes.
You can try a one-layer summer harness and put trim around the edges. Flowers and bows make a nice addition. Pair it with a skirt for a complete outfit. Making matching ‘bracelets’ from scraps with elastic to scrunch them up and keep them on their legs make a nice addition as long as you do not make the bracelets too tight.
I purchase leashes and adjustable collars from dollar stores and use the hardware on my harness/leash. This is so much cheaper than buying new hardware.
I will try to do a video showing measuring and making a harness next month.
Other Homemade Harness Ideas
Dog Harness for My Labrador
by Shahid from Tench Rawalpindi, Pakistan
- First I bought a simple leash that has rings and hook locks.
- Then I cut the leash and divided it into three different pieces.
- The pieces are attached in a triangle shape to each other: one piece into the dog’s neck and the other one is turned around his legs.
- The third one is attached to the clip, and the harness is ready!
No Pull Dog Harness
Here’s a very simple idea sent in by Teresa from Canada for a no pull dog harness.
Comet’s harness can also be used for this purpose.
Things to Consider When You Make a Dog Harness
Personalized Dog Harnesses
by Bobbi M. of Marietta, GA
- Your dog’s comfort. If it fits properly, your dog will associate the harness with fun instead of pain.
- The efficiency of the harness to help him or her perform in the best way possible. There are several different types of harnesses to accomplish this. (See Harness Types below.)
- To avoid confusing your dog, it’s recommended that you use a harness for either walking or pulling activities, not both. Ideally, you will use a head halter or do proper leash training if you plan on having your dog pull things too.
- Is the harness going to be for a temporary event (such as the rope harness we created for Comet) or do you want it to last a long time and be durable?
- For another type of temporary event, make a personalized dog harness for special occasions, such as celebrating the seasons of the year or particular holidays. (Thank you, Bobbi!)
If you need materials to make a harness, Strapworks.com has a wide selection of nylon and polypropylene webbing with colors hard to find elsewhere.
They also carry the necessary hardware. Prices and shipping seem reasonable.
Different Harness Types
- A carting harness: the cart shafts rest on the harness
- A freighting harness: tug lines are at a downward angle
- A sledding harness: tug lines are level with dog height and the harness is in a cross shape
- A pulling harness for bikejoring and dog scootering: tug line is at a slight upward angle to bike or scooter stem
- A pulling harness for roller- and skijoring and for canicross: tug line is at a steep upward angle to person’s waist
- A walking harness: leash at upward angle to person’s hand
- A dog wheelchair harness
Click here to make a dog harness Uberpest.com style. It looks like they cover several of the above types of harnesses.
Happy travels to you and your dog!