7 Must-Have Harnesses for German Shepherds [REVIEWS]

GSD Harnesses

German Shepherd dogs are one of the most trainable breeds, although no two dogs are alike. Some dogs prefer to pull, so a harness for German Shepherds is helpful.

These products help with training and relieve your dog’s throat and skeletal system from tugging. Giant breeds have distinct harness demands than beagles or medium-sized dogs.

German Shepherd Harness

Our Top Pick for German Shepherd Harnesses

Our best choice harness for German Shepherd is Rabbitgoo Tactical Dog Harness for Large Dogs. It is of high quality and has many features making it easy to work with.

Types of GSD Harnesses

There are four types to choose from when it comes to harnesses for German Shepherds. Each serves a different purpose and provides an additional benefit, but they all offer the same level of protection. When it comes to training or walking your dog, it’s all about what works best for you and your dog.

Front Clip 

A trainer’s best friend is a front clip. They give you the most control over your dog while teaching them to walk beside you and ignore distractions. You attach the leash to the dog’s chest, eliminating pulling and evenly distributing pressure across the body. 

The front clip may not be the best option if your German Shepherd is prone to spontaneous dashes when it sees a rabbit or squirrel. Depending on your ability to control the dog, it may flip over.

Back Clip 

Back clip varieties provide less control while increasing the dog’s comfort level. These are usually for the well-trained dog who pulls on the leash occasionally when excited. The back clip is the best harness for German Shepherds. 

The opposition reflex, an instinct that causes them to pull harder against the pressure of the chest piece, is common in this breed. This can make them more aggressive, encourage lunging, or simply make them stop listening to your commands for the time being.

Double-Clip

Dual clip models give you the best of both worlds with a clip in the front and one in the back. This allows you to switch between lead positions for various situations quickly, and it’s usually a low-cost investment that your dog can use both during and after training, provided they do not outgrow the harness.

Vests are the high-end version of harnesses, with extra padding for comfort and a close fit. The way a vest hugs their body and creates a calming effect will help anxious dogs. 

The added support that a vest provides is also beneficial to senior dogs and those with spine or other issues. High-end vests, such as those worn by police dogs, are also helpful to German Shepherds. These models are made of extremely durable materials and offer more control.

The Best German Shepherd Harnesses at a Glance

Product NameBest For CaseSummary
Rabbitgoo Tactical Dog Harness for Large DogsBest overall-It has a back handle for increased control,
-Is highly reflective and is fully adjustable, 
-It has buckles with quick-release mechanisms that allow for safe removal in any setting or predicament.
BARKBAY No Pull Pet HarnessBest for small dogs-It is an everyday harness
-It has padded sections to protect the dog
-It has four different adjustable points
OneTigrisTactical Dog Training Vest No Pull Harness for DogsBest quality-It has an ID pocket
-It has two metal points to attach the leash
BARKBAY No Pull Dog Harness Front Clip Heavy DutyBest for safety-Competitive pricing
-Harness with no pulls
-Adjustable to ensure a perfect fit
-Made for comfort
Tactical Service Dog Vest Harness Outdoor Training HandleBest durable-Durable despite its low weight
-Comfortable padding all around
-Sturdy aluminum connector point
PET ARTIST Tactical Dog Harness for Hiking TrainingBest for outdoor training-Contains two metal heavy-duty buckle
-Has two strong nylon handles
Big Dog Soft Reflective No Pull Black Harness size XLBest no pull-No-pull harness
-Long-lasting and waterproof
-Comfortable padding 
-Easily adaptable to one’s needs

Our GSD Harness Buying Guide

The following are the most crucial features to look for in a German Shepherd harness: 

Security

You don’t want your dog to feel like a prisoner, but you want to ensure the harness will keep them secure.

There’s no purpose in using one if you don’t have to. Consider all the ways a dog could try to get away before choosing your next harness. It’s probably not the best solution if the harness allows the dog to escape easily.

All of the qualities and benefits of a dog harness boil down to one thing: security. The goal is to stay in control at all times, and there are a variety of strategies to do so.

Avoid cheap harnesses since most are of poor quality. When you provoke a German Shepherd, these cheap harnesses will not be enough to keep them in place.

Comfort

This is most likely the most crucial feature for the dog, as they will be wearing the harness frequently. You should inspect the interior of the harness to ensure that it is nice and padded.

At the very least, ensure that buckles, clasps, rivets, and other metal objects do not scrape on your dog’s skin. Every harness will shift slightly as the dog moves, and those rub sites can quickly develop hot places.

You should also think about your dog’s comfort while wearing the harness. Harnesses with poor designs will place all of the strain on the neck, undermining one of the harness’s principal goals.

Some of them also strain the back, which isn’t ideal. You should ensure that the pressure is on the chest. Even if the dog pulls incredibly hard, the modest chest compression is unlikely to cause any problems.

Convenience

Although this is arguably the least essential component, it does have an impact. You’ll probably want a harness for German Shepherds that’s not too difficult to use, and products will differ substantially in this regard.

Harnesses with quick-snap buckles, for example, are handier because they’re easier to put on and take off.

Carry handles are another excellent feature to observe because they allow you greater control if the leash isn’t strong enough (or if the leash happens to break).

If your harness is difficult to use, it will irritate you for some time. Your dog could bite someone, get hit by a car, or suffer any number of other mishaps if your harness isn’t secure enough and fails at the wrong time.

Durability

As previously stated, this is the most critical component. If your harness isn’t tough enough, it won’t be able to do its function. In the worst-case scenario, your dog will damage and render it useless.

The point where the leash links to the harness is the first thing you should inspect. This is the part subject to the most stress and pressure; thus, it must be strong. In this location, any type of plastic is not advisable.

Plastic is common for buckles and clips. On the other hand, the better items will employ thick industrial-grade plastic, which should be fine.

Thin plastic at any critical place, on the other hand, would be a deal-breaker. You should opt for harnesses with thick nylon straps, but leather is also okay if the quality is good.

Control Features

Consider purchasing a German Shepherd dog harness with a leash attachment in the front and a handle on your dog’s back that tends to pull or is easily distracted.

Proper Fitting 

There is a wide range of sizes in dog harnesses for German Shepherd; thus, it is essential to measure your dog (the diameter of its chest and lower neck) before shopping for a harness that will fit it according to its measurements rather than its weight.

Budget

When purchasing any canine product, it is crucial to consider budget, but this is especially true for expensive breeds like these. Since a pure breed puppy already costs a lot, it is going to be essential to ensure that you maintain a healthy financial balance. 

A healthy diet for your German Shepherd, a sized dog box appropriately for your German Shepherd, dog toys, and other dog supplies will take up a significant portion of your budget.

German Shepherd Harness in the forest

German Shepherd Harness Reviews

Rabbitgoo Tactical Dog Harness for Large Dogs: Best Overall

Amazon’s Choice in Dog Vest Harnesses by Rabbitgoo

Brand: Rabbitgoo

Size: Large, small, medium, xl

Color: Tan, black, blue, green, grey, red

Pattern: Solid

Material: Military nylon material 

Dimensions: 0.59 x 9.09 x 14.21 inches (1.49 x 23.08 x 36.09 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.5/5

Lifestage: All

About This Item

  • Perfect for Big Dogs like German Shepherds, Belgian Malinois, Golden Retrievers, Huskies, Labradors, Akitas, and other large-breed dogs. It’s a tactical dog harness German Shepherd preference for training.
  • A professional working dog vest for service, police, or military dogs, but also suitable for hunting and all outdoor companion dogs
  • Military-standard Material Heavy-duty vest constructed of 1,050D Nylon with durable stitching for enhanced durability and wearability, suitable for all field applications. 
  • Two Metal Shoulder Buckles can withstand tremendous pulling force, ensuring your dog is safely harnessed for training, hunting, working, and other situations. 
  • The pressure load points have pads to protect your dog, and the breathable air mesh ensures that your dog has adequate ventilation and remains comfortable.
  • Has practical design for versatile use: Molle system provided on both sides for pouches, water bottles, and dog tactical supplies. 
  • Multiple Hook & Loop Panels for morale patches and badges to reflect your dog’s personality. A wide spectrum of use for personal service, police enforcement, hunting, or outdoor enjoyment
  • Features a dog safety harness that offers maximum control and safety for the dog with two metal leash attachment points for safer dog walks. One front Clip for no-pull control or dog training, and one back clip for leisurely strolling or jogging. 
  • Reinforced top handle for improved control and easy lifting aid in both general and dangerous situations
  • It is simple to use and fully adjustable: This simple dog harness features four quick-release buckles, making it a breeze to put on and take off the harness. Five fully adjustable straps (2 Shoulder, 2 Chest, 1 Belly) offer a snug fit with maximum mobility.

What we Liked About it

  • This dog harness has a back handle for increased control,
  • It is highly reflective 
  • It is fully adjustable 
  • It has buckles with quick-release mechanisms that allow for safe removal in any setting or predicament.

What we Did Not Like About It

  • It is expensive

BARKBAY No Pull Pet Harness: Best for Small Dogs

Amazon’s Choice in Dog Vest Harnesses by BARKBAY

Brand: BARKBAY

Size: Large, small, medium, XL

Color: Black, red, pink, blue, dark blue

Pattern: Solid

Material: Nylon oxford, zinc alloy clips, POM buckles 

Dimensions: 13.98 x 12.36 x 2.68 inches (35.50 x 31.39 x 6.80 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.4/5

About This Item

  • It is an everyday dog harness. This No pull dog Harness is lightweight no-rip Nylon with anti-chafe padding, making it ideal for running, hiking, and strolling activities.
  • No pull Front leading ring provides additional controls, which might assist you in training your dogs to cease tugging. It is a good harness for a German Shepherd puppy too.
  • D-ring attached to the back for less stressful strolls. With anti-chafe padding, pressure is even across the body, and the head-over harness may be easily put on and taken off without causing any discomfort. 
  • Its unique 4 points of adjustability create a product that has a nearly perfect fit.
  • Its ultra-reflective strips will ensure your dog is visible even when it’s dark outside.
  • It has a top easy lift handle that provides an additional measure of safety and control.

What we Liked About it

  • It is an everyday harness.
  • Has padded sections to protect the dog
  • It has four different adjustable points.

What we Did not Like About it 

  • It can be hard to adjust.

OneTigrisTactical Dog Training Vest No Pull Harness for Dogs: Best Quality

Brand: OneTigris

Size: Large, medium, small, XL

Color: Gray

Pattern: Gray

Material: Nylon 

Dimensions: 10.08 x 13.19 x 2.36 inches (25.6 x 33.50 x 5.99 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.5/5

About This Item

  • It is a new, improved version with different sizing; you can refer to the Size chart available in the package for more information. 
  • It is a high-quality 1,000D nylon and generously padded in all pressure points for a comfortable fit. The material is both long-lasting and plushly cushioned.
  • It is an easy-to-adjust dog harness. Handle it at the top for directing traffic. Four buckles with quick-release buttons make putting it on and taking it off simple while adding a layer of protection; one top handle for leading and controlling your dog and one V-ring on the front for attaching the dog’s leash.
  • Uses the MOLLE System and the Military Attire: Each side has a hoop and loop strips panel in addition to two MOLLE straps, making it simple to attach molle pouches or identification panels.
  •  Because of this, the OneTigris harness does not support high loads, and we strongly recommend that you do not rely only on the grab handle to carry your dog.
  • Has panels with hooks and loops for attaching the morale patch: One full-length strip of 9 inches (22.86 centimeters) long and 2 inches (5.08 centimeters) wide strong duty loop panel on the top for ID badges. On the neck strap, there is one 3.5-inch (8.89 centimeters) long and 2-inch (5.08 centimeters) wide loop panel.
  • Available in four colors and three sizes, ideal for various activities and settings, including dog walking, hiking, and other types of training. Take measurements around your pet’s neck and chest to ensure a comfortable fit.

What we Liked About it

  • Available in different colors
  • It is new with improvements
  • It is easy to adjust

What we Did not Like About it

  • It does not support heavy loads.

BARKBAY No Pull Dog Harness Front Clip Heavy Duty: Best For Safety

Brand: BARKBAY

Size: Large,medium,small,XL

Color: Pink, purple, red

Pattern: Pink

Material: Nylon Webbing

Dimensions: 4.4/5

Star Rating: 11.5 x 11.14 x 2.8 inches (29.2 x 28.29 x 7.11 centimeters)

About This Item

  • The padding material is anti-chafe mesh and lightweight No-Rip Nylon, and the construction features four points of adjustability for a fit that suits the wearer.
  • Easy to put on and off with a hassle-free and comfortable ID tag pocket that helps keep your pet safe and ensures that your pet returns home Safely. 
  • Two dependable metal attachment points for the leash, one on the back and one on the dog’s chest.
  • Ultra reflective strips to ensure you see your dog at all times, including during the night.
  • Easy lifting handle at the top for added protection and control

What we Liked About it

  • Has an ID pocket
  • It has two metal points to attach to the leash.

Tactical Service Dog Vest Harness Outdoor Training Handle: Best Durable

Brand: Hanshengday

Size: Large, medium, small, XL

Color: Black, khaki

Pattern: Black

Material: Nylon 

Dimensions: 13.11 x 10.43 x 2.8 inches (33.29 x 26.49 x 7.11 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.0/5

About This Item

  • Durable material and rubber soft padding. Constructed with our premium 1,000D Nylon and generously padded in all pressure zones to ensure a comfortable and secure fit. A unique rubber handle offers a safe and comfortable grip at all times. It swiftly controls dogs in emergency circumstances. 
  • Has four quick-release buckles. An easy-to-adjust dog harness that allows for quick putting on and taking off while offering an additional layer of safety. It also has one top handle for leading and controlling your dog and one V-ring on the front for attaching the dog’s leash.
  • Has a breathable mesh and MOLLE System: The breathable mesh will leave your dog’s skin feeling so soft, and each side has a panel with hoop and loop strips, as well as two MOLLE straps, making it simple to attach molle pouches or identification panels.
  • It contains panels with hooks and loops for attaching the morale patch. One continuous strip of a heavy-duty loop panel measuring 9 inches (22.8 centimeters) in length and 2 inches (5.08 centimeters) in width is ideal for ID badges. On the neck strap, there is one 3.5-inch ( 8.89 centimeters) long and 2-inch (5.08 centimeters) wide loop panel.
  • There are five sizes and two colors available; please measure your dog before purchasing to ensure that the vest will fit properly. 
  • This tactical dog vest harness is of high-grade Nylon and features a plush pad on the inside, making it a gear option that is both long-lasting and pleasant for your canine companion. 
  • The tough Nylon may protect the dogs from injury, while the mesh covering on the inside would keep it ventilated and prevent them from sliding backward.

What we Liked About it 

  • It is durable
  • It has a breathable mesh and MOLLE system.

What we Did Not Like About it 

  • It is a bit pricey.

PET ARTIST Tactical Dog Harness for Hiking Training: Best For Outdoor Training

Brand: PET ARTIST

Size: Large, medium, XL

Color: Black, coyote brown, green

Pattern: Solid

Material: Nylon 

Dimensions: 14.57 x 11.02 x 3.78 inches (37.0 x 27.99 x 9.60 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.2/5

About This Item

  • It contains two heavy-duty metal buckles, each suitable for a weight of 1,000 pounds (454 kilograms). Double-check that the load-bearing is secure by attaching a hook-and-loop pad to the belly. Every sewn portion is strong to ensure its longevity.
  • The front D ring has a complete seal, making it very strong, and it has an efficient no-pull design, allowing you to use less effort to control your dog. 
  • Two back clips that have hooks on them can serve various purposes, including hanging the dog if that becomes necessary. 
  • It has one longitudinally padded handle that can hoist the dog with one hand to go over obstacles during outdoor activities such as hiking, training, and missions. 
  • It has two strong nylon handles making it easy to hold the harness when strolling through a crowd or lifting the dog if one of its legs has injuries.
  • There are four adjustment positions; check that the harness is comfortable for your dog to wear. The entire harness has pads with a comfortable sponge and breathable mesh. The design provides optimal protection for the dog’s delicate belly and whole body. If you thread the front D ring panel through the dog’s legs and ensure that the vest is appropriately balanced, it won’t slide to one side and irritate the dog. Easy to put on and take off.
  • Each side has two molle straps, a panel with hook-and-loop strips, and three nylon loops for attaching molle pouches, identification panels, morale patches, and other accessories like a folding dog bowl, poop bag dispenser, and other such items. 
  • The entire set includes one tactical vest harness, one waist pouch, one tools pouch, one EMT bag (with no emergency supplies inside), and two patches of the United States flag. 

What we Liked About it

  • It is very strong, making strolling easy.

What we Did Not Like About it

  • It can be hard to adjust.

Big Dog Soft Reflective No Pull Black Harness size XL: Best No Pull

Amazon’s Choice in Dog Vest Harnesses by EXPAWLORER

Brand: EXPAWLORER

Size: Medium, XL

Color: Black, blue, red

Pattern: Solid

Material: Nylon 

Dimensions: 10.2 x 9.41 x 1.69 inches (25.9 x 23.90 x 4.29 centimeters)

Star Rating: 4.3/5

About This Item

  • No-pull harness for huge dogs
  • For size XL, breast girth ranges from 36 to 46 inches (92 to 117 centimeters).
  • Your pet will be more secure with a reflective collar.
  • Padded with an additional handle for convenient and simple control.
  • Heavy, strong metal D-ring capable of holding leads

What we Liked About it

  • It’s the best no-pull harness for German Shepherd that does not choke the user.
  • Long-lasting and waterproof
  • Comfortable padding on the sleeves and comfortable mesh foundation
  • Easily adaptable to one’s needs

What we Did Not Like About it

  • No specific features, like reflective strips.

FAQs on GSD Harnesses

What is the Most Important Factor About Choosing a Harness?

This is a hotly debated topic, but we believe the solution is durability. The fundamental goal of a harness for German Shepherds is to keep the dog under control, which entails coping with a lot of tension and pressure over time.

Should I Use a Harness in Conjunction with a Dog Collar?

The majority of the time, the answer is no. Most harnesses contain a neck strap, eliminating the need for a collar. A collar would be compatible with those who have a chest strap, but it isn’t absolutely necessary.

However, you may want to keep the collar on to guarantee that the dog’s tags and license do not get lost. The collar and license can easily attach to a harness or the dog’s collar.

The only actual regulation is that you never wear collars with harnesses that have a neck strap. This regulation is in place to prevent your dog from choking.

Why Should I Choose a Harness Over a Collar?

A harness has several advantages over a collar, so many dog owners prefer them. First and foremost, harnesses offer far more security than collars.

Some dogs are adept at slipping out of collars, but a harness prevents them from doing so. Second, a harness allows you to pull hard and maintain a solid grip over the dog without the risk of choking.

Would a German Shepherd Benefit From Wearing a Harness?

Harnesses are beneficial for German Shepherds as long as they don’t restrict the natural movement of the dog’s shoulders and don’t cause the dog’s handler to experience additional pulling that strains their arms. 

Look for a harness with a vertical chest strap to prevent any unusual gait from impeding the full range of motion of the shoulders. Additionally, the harness should include additional safety features such as reflective material, heavy-duty buckles, and a double clip for extra security and improved control.

Although certain harnesses can make pulling easier, a no-pull harness prevents the dog from pulling by clipping the leash into both the front chest piece and the back of the harness.

The double clip prevents the dog from simply pulling on the leash because it rotates their bodies to the side if they lunge ahead, rather than causing them to proceed in a forward direction. This action deters the dog from pulling continuously because it does not give the results that the dog desires to go forward easily.

Advantages of Using Harnesses

The handler is not the only one who benefits from the greater control and safety a full-body harness provides.

When pups are too young to use a training collar, these harnesses are excellent training tools for teaching them how to behave while walking on a leash.

The no-pull variants give walkers more control over heavy pullers and prevent them from lunging too much, both of which can cause them injury or put them at risk of running into traffic.

Your dog will be less likely to jump up on strangers or friends if they are wearing a no-pull harness.

Canines that consistently lunge while wearing conventional collars pose a lower risk of choking than other dogs.

When dogs are walking while wearing harnesses, they are less likely to inadvertently entangle in their walkers’ leashes or to create a tripping hazard for themselves.

german shepherd on ground

Our Conclusion

Most of the time, a collar is insufficient equipment for German Shepherd owners. When you have a large and active dog like this, you need something that gives you more control so you don’t lose your temper.

Dogs that can get out of their collars benefit from the additional security provided by a harness. It does not matter why you decide to get a harness for your pet; what matters is that you get the best one possible for them.

It requires a special harness like our best pick Rabbitgoo Tactical Dog Harness for Large Dogs, to keep German Shepherds in line. This is because they are among the breeds with the greatest energy and most affectionate, but these dogs are worth the effort. Read our article and find out How Long Do German Shepherds Live?