Is a Harness or Collar Better for a German Shepherd?

Depending on your German shepherd’s training ability, harnesses and collars will vary in their ability to hold your dog back. Both help you enjoy your walks with your energetic German shepherd more, especially if they tug. However, the no-pull harness style is a suitable compromise for control and safety for German Shepherds that pull since a collar may strangle your pet.

Continue reading to learn more about whether a harness or a collar would be more suited for you and your German shepherd, as well as the disadvantages and benefits of both walking devices.

Advantages of Using Only a Collar to Control Your Dog

During walks, your dog should wear a plain flat traditional collar. According to the Humane Society, your dog’s identity should be inscribed on your flat buckle collar.

Many dogs that become separated from their owners are rescued by good Samaritans who use the information on the ID tag to track down their owners. With this information, don’t overlook the value of a traditional collar. When buying a collar, seek one with a safety release to assist your dog get free if it becomes tangled around their neck.

Collars are Unquestionably More Practical

Collars have the advantage of being able to be worn at all times, as opposed to harnesses, which should only be worn during walks. Even if you don’t keep your dog’s collar on at all times, a collar is far easier to take off and on than a harness.

The Drawbacks of Walking Your German Shepherd with Just a Collar

An issue with any collar is that controlling a dog by its neck is difficult. If your German shepherd’s collar is too low on the neck, it might push its weight onto it and tug with enormous force, harming you or them. Hair loss or breakage around your dog’s neck might be caused by constant, long-term use.

If your dog tries to escape their collar, it might slip over their head, especially if they are a puppy. On the other hand, a Martingale collar helps keep the dog from escaping the collar. A Martingale collar may not be enough for a Shepherd who tugs on his collar so tightly during walks that he chokes and gasps for air.

Using a Harness on a German Shepherd

Harnesses for German Shepherds are ideal if they allow proper shoulder movement and do not produce extra tugging that stresses the handler’s arms. Look for a harness with a vertical chest strap to prevent any unique gait from intruding on the complete range of motion of the shoulders, as well as extra safety features like luminous material, heavy-duty buckles, and a double clip for further security and control.

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While a double-clip harness can promote pulling, a no-pull harness interrupts the dog’s ability to pull since the leash is clipped into both the front and rear chest pieces.

The double clip makes it difficult for your dog to pull since it twists their body to the side instead of being jolted straight back as they lunge ahead. This action discourages constant tugging since it does not give the results the dog desires, such as allowing the dog to go ahead effortlessly.

Harnesses Do Not Put Strain on the Neck of Your Dog

Harnesses do not create strain on the trachea since they fasten over the dog’s chest rather than around the neck. They’re perfect for pets with neck difficulties, collapsed trachea, or constricted airways because of this. These problems can also be avoided with the use of a harness.

Using a Harness on Your German Shepherd Has Its Drawbacks

When taking your German shepherd for a walk, there are a few disadvantages to utilizing a harness. Harnesses can be more challenging to put on and take off than a regular dog collar, and they may also demand greater physical power.

If the harness on your dog is too large, your dog may be able to squirm out and escape. On the other hand, too tight dog harnesses can be uncomfortable for dogs.

Preventing Pulling in Your German Shepherd with a Head Halter

The head halter benefits solid and powerful dogs who require more significant control when out on walks. However, unlike a body harness, which most German Shepherds more readily accept, it takes longer for your dog to grow used to wearing it.

Halters aren’t cruel or harmful in and of themselves, but they might irritate your GSD if they don’t fit properly and are uncomfortable for him to wear. This learning curve may be too steep for some owners, and for some Shepherds, it may be too unpleasant. However, many German shepherds reject the head collar, and some owners may give up too soon due to frustration.

For Better Walking Behavior, Should German Shepherds Wear a Harness or Collar?

Collars and harnesses are helpful tools for walking your dog, but they aren’t a perfect answer to the problem. Use the headcollar if your German Shepherd pulls excessively and poses a safety risk.

On the other hand, the no-pull harness is the preferred alternative for most German shepherd owners since most dogs must be educated to wear the headcollar because they dislike having items on their faces.

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To teach etiquette and enjoy your walks with your dog, combine these tools with simple German Shepherd obedience training at home.

Always Include Identification on All Harnesses and Collars

Remember to wear identification tags on all of your walking collars since dogs and puppies can suddenly bolt or become afraid and flee. Purchase a set of tags for all of your collars or wear your ID tag on the flat buckle collar during walks.

This implies that all of your dog’s harnesses and collars should have identification on them at all times. You never know what can startle or divert a dog enough to drive them to flee. Furthermore, if frightened, your dog may bolt out of your house or off-leash. Even the most vigilant and conscientious dog owners are not immune to mishaps.