A Comprehensive Guide to Dog Harnesses

Two Dogs in Harnesses Dog Walking in Columbus, Ohio

As a dog owner in Columbus, Ohio, ensuring the safety and comfort of your furry friend during walks and outdoor activities is a top priority. One essential tool for achieving this is a dog harness. Harnesses offer a secure and gentle way to control your dog while reducing strain on their neck and throat. Whether you’re exploring the Scioto Mile, strolling through the Short North, or just heading out for a casual dog walk in Columbus, having the right harness will make all the difference.

Here’s a guide to the different types of dog harnesses, how to choose the right one, and how to properly fit them onto your dog:

Back-Clip Harness

Back-clip harness for dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Back-clip/step-in harness on Amazon

A back-clip harness features a D-ring on the back where the leash attaches. This is the most common type of harness and is ideal for well-behaved dogs who do not pull on the leash.

How to Put It On:

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust the chest strap so it fits snugly around the dog’s torso.
  3. Buckle the harness and attach the leash to the D-ring on the back.


  • Easy to use
  • Comfortable for dogs
  • Ideal for small and medium-sized dogs


  • Not effective for dogs that pull

Front-Clip Harness

Easy Walk harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Easy Walk harness on Amazon

The front-clip harness has a D-ring on the chest. It is designed to discourage pulling by turning the dog towards the owner when they try to pull ahead.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust the chest strap so it fits snugly around the dog’s torso.
  3. Buckle the harness and attach the leash to the D-ring on the chest.


  • Effective for reducing pulling
  • Provides better control


  • Can cause the leash to get tangled under the dog’s legs
  • Not suitable for off-leash activities

Dual-Clip Harness

Dual-clip harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Dual-clip harness on Amazon

A dual-clip harness offers both front and back attachment points. This versatile option allows you to switch between front and back clips depending on your dog’s behavior and the situation.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust the straps around the chest and torso.
  3. Buckle the harness and attach the leash to the desired clip (front or back).


  • Versatile
  • Great for training and everyday use


  • Can be more expensive

Step-In Harness

Step-in harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Step-in/back-clip harness on Amazon

A step-in harness is designed for dogs to step into it with their front paws, after which the harness is pulled up and secured. This style is great for dogs who dislike having harnesses put over their heads.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Lay the harness flat on the ground, unbuckled.
  2. Have your dog step into the harness with both front paws.
  3. Pull the harness up around the dog’s chest.
  4. Buckle it on the back and adjust the straps for a secure fit.


  • Easy to put on
  • Comfortable


  • Can be tricky for very small or large dogs

Vest Harness

Vest harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Vest harness on Amazon

Vest harnesses cover more of the dog’s body and are often padded for extra comfort. They are typically used for smaller dogs and provide a snug fit that can be more secure.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the vest over your dog’s head.
  2. Place each of your dog’s front legs through the designated leg holes.
  3. Secure the Velcro or buckle on the back.
  4. Adjust the straps for a snug fit and attach the leash to the D-ring on the back.


  • Comfortable and secure
  • Often includes additional features like pockets or reflective material


  • Can be too warm in hot weather
  • May be restrictive for larger dogs

No-Pull Harness

No pull dog harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
No pull dog harness on Amazon

Designed specifically to reduce pulling, no-pull harnesses often have a front-clip attachment and additional features like padded restraint sleeves. They apply gentle pressure to discourage pulling behaviors.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust the chest strap and any additional straps around the torso.
  3. Buckle the harness and attach the leash to the front D-ring.


  • Effective for pullers
  • Provides good control


  • Can be uncomfortable if not fitted properly

Car Safety Harness

Car safety harness as used by dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio
Car safety harness on Amazon

A car safety harness is designed to keep your dog secure while traveling in a vehicle. These harnesses are crash-tested and can double as walking harnesses.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust the straps around the chest and torso.
  3. Buckle the harness and attach the seatbelt tether.
  4. Attach the leash to the D-ring for walking.


  • Enhances safety during car rides
  • Often multifunctional


  • Can be bulkier than regular harnesses

Tactical Harness

81EKN0ngD1L. AC SL1500
Tactical harness on Amazon

Tactical harnesses are designed for working dogs or dogs involved in outdoor activities like hiking. They are usually made from durable materials and come with handles and MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment) systems for attaching gear.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Place each front paw into the designated leg holes.
  3. Secure the buckles on the sides or back.
  4. Adjust the straps for a secure fit and attach the leash to the D-ring.


  • Durable and robust
  • Great for outdoor activities


  • Can be heavy
  • Overkill for casual walks

Head Halter

51yOGqcyQ6L. AC SL1500 1
Gentle Leader on Amazon

Although not a harness, a head halter fits around the dog’s muzzle and neck, giving the owner control over the dog’s head. This can be very effective for strong pullers.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Place the halter over your dog’s nose.
  2. Buckle the strap behind the ears.
  3. Adjust the straps to ensure a snug but comfortable fit.
  4. Attach the leash to the ring under the dog’s chin.


  • Provides excellent control
  • Reduces pulling


  • Takes time for dogs to get used to
  • Can cause discomfort if not used correctly

Escape-Proof Harness

61rqrbYf8nL. AC SL1500
Escape proof harness on Amazon

Escape-proof harnesses are designed for dogs who are experts at slipping out of regular harnesses. These harnesses typically have additional straps and points of adjustment to ensure a secure fit.

How to Put It On (see video):

  1. Slide the harness over your dog’s head.
  2. Adjust multiple straps around the chest, torso, and neck.
  3. Buckle the harness securely.
  4. Ensure all straps are snug and attach the leash to the D-ring.


  • Prevents escape
  • Highly adjustable


  • Can be complicated to put on

Choosing the Right Harness for Your Dog

With all the various types of dog harnesses out there, finding the perfect one for your dog can be overwhelming. Whether you opt for a back-clip, front-clip, dual-clip, gentle leader/head halter, or another, remember to prioritize your dog’s comfort and safety above all.

Here are some other important factors to consider when choosing the perfect dog harness:

  1. Size and Breed: Ensure the harness is appropriate for your dog’s size and body shape.
  2. Behavior and Training Needs: Identify your dog’s specific leash behavior and choose a harness that addresses those needs.
  3. Comfort and Fit: A properly fitting harness should be snug but not restrictive, allowing your dog to move comfortably.
  4. Material and Durability: Opt for a high-quality harness that can withstand your dog’s activities and last for a long time.

How to Properly Fit a Dog Harness

Once you select the right harness, it’s important to ensure a proper fit. You’ll want to start by adjusting the straps for a snug fit, allowing enough room to fit two fingers between the harness and your dog’s body. This balance prevents discomfort and makes training more effective. Signs of a poor fit include fur loss or chafing, the ability to wriggle free, resistance to walking, and the harness rotating from side to side.

You’re Ready To Go Dog Walking in Columbus!

With your dog’s harness properly fitted, you’re ready to explore the vibrant streets and dog-friendly places of Columbus, Ohio. Enjoy scenic strolls along the Scioto Mile or adventures in the Short North, knowing your pup is comfortable and secure. An effective and well-fitted harness ensures safe, enjoyable walks for both you and your dog, and makes it easier for your Hands N Paws dog walker to manage your pet. So, leash up and get ready for memorable outings in this lively city!



Hello! Thanks for visiting our blog. I'm the proud owner of Columbus's own Hands N Paws, started in 2018 to bring joy to pet parents. See you in the next post!

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The terms of this agreement are as follows: “Client” refers to you, “Company” refers to us (Hands N Paws), “Team Member” refers to the person from our team providing services for  your pets, and “Team Members” refers to the Hands N Paws team as a whole.


It is important to inform Hands N Paws of any specific emergency instructions or medical conditions related to Client’s pets. This will help ensure the safety and well-being of pets during emergencies.

In case any of Client’s pets need emergency veterinary treatment, Team Member will contact the designated vet on file and/or a local emergency vet. Team Member will also communicate with Client and/or emergency contacts regarding the situation.

Client gives permission to Team Member to transport the pet(s) to a veterinary clinic and/or make treatment decisions (except for euthanasia), especially if it’s a life-threatening emergency and/or Client cannot be immediately reached. Client is responsible for any veterinary fees incurred. 

Client releases Hands N Paws from any liability for any damage or harm to pets or property that occurs beyond the reasonable control of Team Member during the provision of emergency veterinary care. 


To comply with local laws and ordinances, it is required that all pets have the appropriate vaccinations and licenses before Company begins services. For further information on these requirements, please visit the Ohio State Bar Association’s website at https://www.ohiobar.org/public-resources. Client should also check with his/her veterinarian to determine which vaccinations/shots the pet requires. 

For safety reasons, we encourage all dogs and cats to wear an ID tag or collar that includes name and contact number while Team Member is working with them.


To ensure access to Client’s home during scheduled services, Hands N Paws requires that Client purchases a lockbox and places a spare house key(s) inside of it for Team Member to use. Client can purchase the lockbox on Hands N Paws’ website by clicking Buy Your Lockbox. Once it arrives, the lockbox should be programmed with a unique four-digit code. The lockbox should then be placed on the main door handle or in another secure location, and the lockbox code and location information must be entered in the Client’s account on Precise Petcare.

Alternatively, Client may elect to provide a code for entry via a garage door or electronic keypad and if so, must enter all necessary codes in Precise Petcare. Client is strongly encouraged to purchase a lockbox, however, to ensure that Team Member can access pets at all times during scheduled services, especially in situations where the power goes out or batteries die and Team Member need alternative access to the home.


All Team Members have access to Clients phone number, but are instructed to only use them when necessary or for urgent purposes during services with pets. Hands N Paws prioritizes the privacy and confidentiality of phone numbers as personal information.

All correspondence between Client and Team Member should be centered around Client’s pets and the services provided. If Client has inquiries regarding scheduling, cancellations, app-related matters, or any company-related concerns, these are to be directed to the Company via the office number: (614) 636-6644. The Company’s client support team is available during office hours, Monday through Friday, 9am-5pm. We are closed on Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal Holidays. The Company will make contact with Client outside of office hours should there be any urgent need for communication.


In order to provide the best possible service to pets, it is crucial that Client provides Team Member with detailed and up-to-date information regarding their pets. This information should be accurate, complete, and accessible through the Client’s account in Precise Petcare. Team Members can only work on the basis of the information that is available to them through the Client’s account in Precise Petcare. Likewise, Client acknowledges that the accuracy and comprehensiveness of the information they provide directly impacts the quality of the services delivered. Client, therefore, takes full responsibility for any consequences that arise from inaccurate, incomplete, or outdated account information.


Arrival times for services occur within a two-hour period. Team Members are unable to guarantee exact arrival times due to various factors that may affect scheduling and travel times. To accommodate these considerations, we use time blocks rather than specific times. Client will see this in the dropdown menu when Client selects Arrival Time in the request service form within their Client account.

While Team Members understands that Client may have preferences regarding arrival times, it is essential to acknowledge that Team Members cannot guarantee meeting those specific requests. Flexibility is needed in order for Team Members to accommodate for needs of other Clients on schedule.


For the most up-to-date and detailed descriptions on service offerings, please visit our website at www.myhandsnpaws.com.


The following service surcharges may apply under certain conditions:

Last Minute Service: A fee of $15 per service will be charged for bookings made with less than 24 hours’ notice.

Holiday Service: A fee of $20 per service will be applied for services provided on the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve.

Additional Pets: Base pricing for services includes up to 2 pets. For each additional pet beyond the initial two, an additional fee of $7 per pet will be added.

*Additional fees may apply, as discussed/negotiated between Company and Client. 


Hands N Paws strives to accommodate as many service requests as possible. However, the approval of service requests is subject to the availability of Team Members. Upon submitting a service request, Client will receive a confirmation or declination email/notification indicating whether Hands N Paws can fulfill the requested work. Sometimes, this may take up to 48 hours or more.

If a service request is declined, we encourage Client to explore alternative options or contact our dedicated client support team for further assistance. Company is here to help and find the best solution for all pet care needs.


To ensure a personalized experience for new Clients, Hands N Paws requires a virtual or in-person Meet N Greet before getting started with pet services. These meetings allow us to connect with and onboard Clients and discuss their pet care needs.

All virtual Meet N Greets are free of charge. All in-person Meet N Greets come at a $50 cost. Meet N Greets are no more than 30 minutes in length.

New Clients can book their Meet N Greet on our website at www.myhandsnpaws.com. Existing Clients can book their Meet N Greet in their designated client account in Precise Petcare.


Payment Method: All services with Hands N Paws are to be paid for using a credit or debit card. All major cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discover are acceptable. Client can securely add and store card information within their Client account. Adding and keeping a valid credit card on file is a requirement for requesting any services with Hands N Paws.

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Additional Fees: Client may be charged additional fees if Team Members are instructed to, or determine the need to, purchase items for the pet(s) while under the care of Hands N Paws. These items may include pet food or treats, litter or cleaning supplies, transportation to the vet, or emergency expenses for the general care of the pet(s). Hands N Paws and/or Team Member will consult with Client before making any purchases, and will retain and share any receipts as proof of purchase.


When Client schedules services with Hands N Paws, the Company has likely turned down other work so as to devote our time to the work requested from said Client.

Client understands and accepts the Company cancellation/refund policy as outlined below:

– 100% refund is issued as Account Credit if cancellation is made at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled service(s).

– 50% refund is issued as Account Credit if cancellation is made at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled service(s).

– NO refund is issued for same-day cancellations/less than 24 hour notice.

PLEASE NOTE: Refunds are NOT transferable. Should Client be eligible to receive an Account Credit (based on terms above), that will be auto-added to his/her account and applied to the very next invoice with us.


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