Best Harness Chihuahua

Chihuahuas are little pint-sized bundles of joy. The smallest of all common dog breeds, these little dogs make great family pets, and are full of personality. But like many small breeds, they are prone to issues like tracheal collapse – which means walking a Chihuahua with a traditional leash and collar can be dangerous.


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For this reason, many Chihuahua owners choose to walk their dogs using a harness. But if you’ve never shopped for a dog harness before, you may not know where to start. Don’t worry – we’re here to help. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at a few of the best harnesses for Chihuahuas. From no-pull harnesses that help you control your dog, to car harnesses, hiking harnesses and more. Read on, and get more details now.

Wondering what types of harnesses are popular among Chihuahua owners?  Let’s take a look at a few different products that you should be looking for if you need a new harness for your Chihuahua

  • Vest harnesses – Vest harnesses are very popular with smaller dogs. They usually use a simple, step-through design with a single buckle and attachment point in the rear, and are made out of nylon or polyester mesh for comfort, breathability and stretch. They’re usually comfortable enough for all-day wear, and are easy to put on and take off.
  • Walking harnesses – Walking harnesses typically use a strap-based design with quick-release plastic buckles. They are usually very light and minimally padded, and are intended for use on quick, everyday walks, rather than for extended wear.
  • Car harnesses – Chihuahuas are small, curious and active – so it’s not a good idea to leave them untethered in the car. Purpose-built car harnesses use strong nylon and metal hardware to attach your dog to a seat belt, and some multi-purpose harnesses also have a handle that allows them to be attached to a seat belt.
  • Harness leads – Harness leads use an all-in-one design which can be sized to fit any dog, and they are also usually chew-resistant and almost impossible for your dog to escape – making them a great option for Chihuahua Houdinis!
  • Hiking harnesses – Chihuahuas make great hiking partners, especially with the right harness. Hiking harnesses are usually padded and ventilated to keep your dog comfortable while wearing the harness all day, and incorporate safety features like reflective materials and a handle, which allows you to pick up and control your pup easily.

There are plenty of other types of Chihuahua harness out there, but these are the most popular by far – so do a bit of thinking, and you’ll be able to figure out which ones are right for you.

Different Chihuahua Harness Materials

Wondering what kinds of materials are usually used to make Chihuahua harnesses? Here is a quick overview of what you can expect from the most popular harnesses on the market.

  • Nylon – Nylon is the most common choice for dog harnesses, as it is a synthetic fabric which is water-resistant, strong, and easy to clean. It also provides good breathability and ventilation.
  • Polyester – Polyester is also a synthetic fabric, and shares most of the same qualities as nylon. It’s usually not as soft, but it does have better water resistance, and is highly-resistant to wear and abrasion.
  • Cotton – Cotton can be used on its own for dog harnesses, or blended with nylon and/or polyester. If your dog has sensitive skin, cotton may be a good choice, since it’s not a synthetic fabric
  • Mesh – Mesh is usually made of either nylon or polyester, and is designed to provide comfort, breathability and stretch, making it a great choice for dog harnesses, particularly for smaller breeds which cannot pull very hard.
  • Leather – Leather is still used in dog harnesses. It’s very strong and durable, but it’s quite heavy and expensive, so it’s primarily used in harnesses for larger breeds. Smaller breeds are typically better off with a fabric harness.
  • Neoprene – Neoprene is a synthetic rubber that is extremely soft and conforms to the shape of your dog’s body, and it’s often used to provide extra padding and comfort in Chihuahua harnesses.
While you may occasionally find harnesses made of other materials, the above options make up the vast majority of Chihuahua harnesses on the market today.

5 Key Components Of A Harness For A Chihuahua

Not sure what you should be looking for when purchasing a Chihuahua harness? Here are 5 qualities you should try to find in a great Chihuahua harness.

  • Removes pressure from neck – Chihuahuas do not have much neck muscle, and are prone to tracheal collapse, which is why you should use a harness that distributes your dog’s weight away from its neck. This way, pulling and tugging on the leash will not damage your dog’s airway.
  • Padding and ventilation – Chihuahuas can have sensitive skin, particularly short-haired Chihuahuas, so we recommend a harness that is soft and padded, and has plenty of ventilation to help keep your dog comfortable in warm weather.
  • Plenty of adjustability – Adjustability is very important for Chihuahuas, because they are usually very small, and have uniquely-shaped bodies. You need a harness that can easily be adjusted to fit your dog perfectly – this helps prevent escape, chewing on the harness straps, rubbing on the skin, and more.
  • Reflective materials – A reflective harness will make your dog more visible in low-light conditions like early morning or late evening walks, which helps enhance its safety and ensures that other people can easily see you and your dog.
  • No-pull ring – No-pull rings are attached to the chest of a harness, and help redirect your dog to your side when it tries to pull away. They are useful for training your Chihuahua not to pull, and keeping it in line. If your dog has a pulling problem, a no-pull harness is a good investment.

If you can find a Chihuahua harness with all of the above qualities, you’re sure to be able to keep your furry friend safe, comfortable and happy whenever it goes on a walk in its new harness!

Our Picks for the Best Harness for a Chihuahua

Now that you know everything that you need to know about Chihuahua harnesses, it’s time to take a look at a few of our top picks. From hiking harnesses to walking harnesses, no-pull harnesses and more, we’ll discuss all of the harnesses that may be right for you and your pup. Let’s get started now.

Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness with Steel Nesting Buckles Enhanced Strength

Key Features:

  • Durable, climbing harness-inspired design
  • Comes with carabiner and strap for use in the car
  • Multiple adjustment points
  • Padded, ventilated chest for comfort

Best Overall – This harness from Kurgo has been built with high-quality, nesting steel buckles, strong nylon straps, and a padded and ventilated chest piece which keeps pressure off of your Chihuahua’s neck. In addition, it’s crash-test rated for use in the car and comes with a carabiner and strap, allowing you to attach it to a seat belt. The harness is easy to adjust for a perfect fit, and the all-metal hardware ensures that it will last for years.

Pros:

  • Crash tested for dogs up to 75lbs
  • Includes no-pull front lead attachment ring
  • Strong, durable design

Cons:

  • Relatively heavy
  • Difficult to put on, take off
  • May be too big for smaller Chihuahuas

Chai’s Choice 3M Reflective Dog Harness

Key Features:

  • Reflective 3M material for low-light safety
  • Heavily padded, ventilated
  • Includes rear handle
  • Plastic buckles for easy use

Runner Up – If you’re looking for a more lightweight harness, this product from Chai’s Choice is our runner-up for the best overall Chihuahua harness. It’s built with metal hardware, strong nylon straps and plastic quick-release buckles which make it easy to put on and take off. The straps can easily be adjusted, and a heavily-padded back and chest piece ensure the comfort of your dog. The front no-pull ring helps control pulling, and the rear lead attachment point allows you to use this as a traditional harness, too.

Pros:

  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Easy to adjust and put on
  • Helps prevent pulling

Cons:

  • Plastic buckles may not hold up to prolonged use
  • Runs slightly large
  • Not crash test rated

Frisco Small Breed Soft Vest Dog Harness

Key Features:

  • Simple, vest-style design
  • Strong double metal ring for lead attachment
  • Flexible, soft and comfortable
  • Reflective trim for safety

Most Affordable Pick – This is our top pick for Chihuahuas if you’re on a budget. It uses a simple, step-through vest design which attaches using a plastic buckle and velcro strap and a durable, stretchy polyester mesh. In the rear are two metal rings for lead attachment, and the harness is trimmed with reflective strips, which helps enhance low-light visibility.

Pros:

  • Comes in a variety of small sizes to fit any Chihuahua
  • Comfortable enough for all-day wear
  • Simple to put on and adjust

Cons:

  • Velcro may not hold up to prolonged use
  • Not machine washable
  • Metal loops are large, may not be compatible with smaller lead clips

Kurgo Go-Tech Adventure Dog Harness with Seatbelt Loop

Key Features:

  • Includes carabiner and strap for use in the car
  • Rear handle to control, lift your dog
  • Four-way adjustability
  • Reflective trim for low-light safety

Best Hiking Harness –  If you like taking your Chihuahua on adventures and need a comfortable hiking harness for all-day wear, this product from Kurgo is an excellent choice. It’s made of durable nylon and metal hardware, and included both a front and rear lead attachment point. The neck, chest and back are all heavily padded and ventilated, but the harness remains relatively light. Reflective trim helps enhance safety, and multiple adjustment points help you get a custom fit for your Chihuahua.

Pros:

  • Extremely comfortable for all-day wear
  • Easy to adjust
  • Discourages pulling

Cons:

  • Not crash-test rated
  • Neck is not adjustable
  • May be too large for some Chihuahuas

Harness Lead Dog Harness

Key Features:

  • Integrates both a lead and harness
  • One size fits all
  • Machine washable
  • Rated for up to 3,700 lbs of tensile strength

No Escape Harness Lead – If your Chihuahua is an escape artist and you’re having trouble finding a harness that’s small enough for your dog, you may want to consider a harness lead, such as this product. It uses a one-piece braided nylon rope with rubber stoppers and a metal clip, which wraps around your dog’s chest and back, tightening securely in place. When adjusted properly, it helps discourage pulling and is nearly impossible for your dog to escape from.

Pros:

  • No sharp buckles or straps
  • Can be adjusted to fit even the smallest Chihuahuas
  • Helps prevent pulling

Cons:

  • Relatively short lead
  • Hard to adjust during initial use
  • No padding

PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness

Key Features:

  • Simple three-strap design
  • Quick release plastic buckles
  • Easy to adjust
  • Minimizes pressure on airway

Best Walking Harness – If you are looking for an extremely simple walking harness which can be used on quick walks with your Chihuahua, and is easy to put on and adjust, this is a great option. It is built with strong nylon and metal hardware, with plastic buckles for easy placement and removal. A front no-pull ring helps keep your dog under control, while multiple adjustment points make it easy to get a perfect fit.

Pros:

  • Available in plenty of small sizes
  • Very simple to use
  • Martingale loop to prevent twisting

Cons:

  • No padding
  • Lacks rear lead attachment point
  • Thin material can be chewed through easily

4 More Top Rated Harnesses

Looking for even more choices? We’ve got you covered! The harnesses below didn’t quite make our list of top picks, but they are still great products, and may be ideal for you and your Chihuahua. Take a look, and make sure you get the right harness for your pup.

Sporn Non-Pull Mesh Dog Harness

This harness is a great option if you need a comfortable, padded, ventilated harness for your dog. It comes in X-small and will fit any Chihuahua, and is easy to adjust. The chest and straps are heavily padded with breathable nylon mesh, and a rear attachment ring helps you control your dog and prevent excessive pulling. The nylon mesh material helps provide stretch and comfort, and keeps pressure away from your Chihuahua’s airway, ensuring its comfort and safety.

Paws & Pals Control Dog & Cat Harness

This harness is extremely simple, and we highly recommend it for smaller Chihuahuas. Simply slip it under your dog’s legs and buckle it in the back, and you’re good to go. The one-piece design features adjustable rear straps, though the neck cannot be adjusted.  A rear metal buckle allows for lead attachment and good control of your dog. However, this harness does not have any anti-pull features, so we do not recommend it for dogs who are not properly leash trained.

Solvit Deluxe Car Safety Dog Harness

If you need a purpose-built car harness for your Chihuahua, this product from Solvit is a great option. It’s built specifically for comfort and safety in the car, and is DOT-approved for car safety. The nylon is breathable and strong, with a tensile strength of up to 3,000+ lbs, and a ventilated mesh interior. A carabiner and strap are included to attach the harness to a seat belt, and the rear attachment points can also be used for a leash, allowing you to walk your dog once you’ve reached your destination.

Puppia Soft Dog Harness

If you’re on a tight budget, this is another great pick that’s perfect for small breeds. The harness simply slips over the neck and buckles behind your dog’s legs, using a plastic quick-release buckle. It’s easy to adjust to ensure it fits properly across your dog’s back and chest, and helps minimize the strain on your dog’s neck. A strong metal ring on the rear allows for lead attachment, and the mesh design is flexible and comfortable enough for all-day wear.

5 Frequently Asked Questions About Chihuahua Harnesses

Got questions about buying a Chihuahua harness? Need a bit more information? We’ve put together a list of some of the most frequently-asked questions about this topic, so take a look below and get answers now.

  • What size harness should I get for my Chihuahua? Chihuahuas are the smallest common dog breed, so it’s usually a good idea to get the smallest, extra-small or “petite” size in a dog harness.
    However, we recommend that you measure your dog to ensure that its harness fits properly. Use a flexible tape measure to record the thickness of its neck at the widest point, as well as the thickness of its chest at the broadest point of its ribcage. This will help you ensure that you choose the right harness for your Chihuahua’s size.
  • How can I prevent tracheal collapse in my Chihuahua? By using a harness! Collars place a lot of pressure on your dog’s neck. Chihuahuas, like other small breeds, have very little muscle around their neck, and jerking, pulling or tugging can cause your dog’s airway to collapse, or cause damage to its neck and spine. That’s why we highly recommend using a harness. Even a few accidental jerks or pulls could cause damage to your dog’s airway.
  • Will a harness irritate my Chihuahua’s skin? Not if it’s properly adjusted. Skin irritation can be caused by a harness that’s either too tight or too loose. A harness that’s too tight may cut into your dog’s skin and cause abrasion, while a harness that’s too loose will shift around excessively, which can also cause rubbing and discomfort. Your dog’s harness should be tight, but not overly-tight. You should be able to fit two fingers into the tightest point of the harness.
  • How can I prevent my Chihuahua from chewing through its harness? If your dog has a tendency to chew through harnesses, we recommend you only put its harness on when it can be observed – like on a walk. That way, you can intervene if it starts to chew. Even just saying “NO” in a loud voice, for example, can provide negative feedback that will help your dog break this habit. In addition, you should also make sure that the harness is tightened properly, and that any hanging straps are tucked away to make them harder for your dog to grab and chew.
  • Should I get more than one harness for my Chihuahua? This depends on your needs. If you drive with your Chihuahua a lot, for example, a car harness may be a good option – and you may also want a traditional walking harness for day-to-day use. Think about what you and your dog like to do together, and you’ll be able to make the right choice.

We hope that the answers to these questions have helped you learn more about dog harnesses. For more information, we recommend consulting with a dog trainer, a vet, or doing some more reading and research online!

Conclusion

We hope that the above guide has been helpful, and provided you with an overview of the different options on the market, as well as plenty of information about choosing the right harness for your dog. Even if you’ve never purchased a Chihuahua harness before, you’ve got all the information you need to make the right decision.

So don’t wait. Take another look at some of our top picks now, then do some browsing on your own to explore all of your different options. Once you’ve read through this guide, you’re sure to make the right choice for you and your dog!

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