- What is the Best Harness for a Yorkie?
- Popular Types of Yorkie Harnesses
- Different Yorkie Harness Materials
- 6 Key Components Of A Harness For A Yorkie
- Our Picks For The Best Harness For A Yorkie
- 4 More Top Rated Harnesses For Yorkies
- 4 Frequently-Asked Questions About Yorkie Harnesses
If you own a Yorkie, you may be wondering how you can choose the best harness for your precious pup – or you may doubt that you even need a harness. Isn’t a collar and a leash good enough?
Well, harnesses are very useful for controlling your dog, and they can prevent injuries to your dog’s windpipe and trachea, especially if your Yorkie tends to pull. For your dog’s health, it may be a better idea to switch to a harness – rather than only using a collar.
Not sure where to start? We’re here to help. In this article, we’ll take a quick look at some of the most popular types of harnesses for Yorkies, talk about the different materials available, discuss the features you should look for in a harness – and provide you with some of our top picks!
Ready to learn everything you need to know about harnesses for Yorkies? Let’s get into the details now.
What is the Best Harness for a Yorkie?
- Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness with Steel Nesting Buckles Enhanced Strength
- Chai’s Choice 3M Reflective Dog Harness
- Frisco Small Breed Soft Vest Dog Harness – Most Popular & Most Affordable
- Kurgo Go-Tech Adventure Dog Harness with Seatbelt Loop
- Harness Lead Dog Harness
- PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
- Sporn Non-Pull Mesh Dog Harness
- Puppia Soft Dog Harness
- Solvit Deluxe Car Safety Dog Harness
- Paws & Pals Control Dog & Cat Harness
Popular Types of Yorkie Harnesses
Ready to learn about the most popular types of Yorkie harnesses on the market today? Here are a few common styles you’ll come across when you’re shopping for a harness for your Yorkie.
- Strap harnesses – Strap harnesses are the most common type of harness on the market today, due to the simplicity and versatility of this design. Usually, your dog will “step through” the front of the harness, which is buckled behind the back. It may also slide over the dog’s head. Strap harnesses are usually easy to adjust and are relatively lightweight.
- Vest harnesses – Vest harnesses are common for smaller dog breeds. They are usually made of a soft nylon or polyester mesh, and are strapped around your dog’s chest and back with Velcro or a buckle, just like a vest. Vest harnesses offer superior comfort and are usually very lightweight, making them good for small breeds like Yorkies.
- Harness leads – Harness leads use an all-in-one design that incorporates strong nylon or polyester rope with metal or rubber “stops” which allow the lead to wrap around your dog’s body. They’re very popular with some Yorkie owners because they are nearly impossible for your dog to escape, once tightened and adjusted properly.
- Car harnesses – You don’t want your Yorkie wandering freely throughout your car while you drive, and it’s best to provide it with protection in the rare event you get in an accident. Car harnesses, which usually have some kind of clip, loop or handle where they can be attached to a seat belt, are very popular with Yorkie owners who regularly travel with their dogs.
- Escape proof harnesses – Yorkies are small and crafty, and can sometimes find ways out of their harnesses. Escape proof harnesses resist chewing and can be adjusted to fit tightly around your dog, minimizing the risk of escape.
Depending on your dog and your needs, you may want to get more than one harness – a car harness for when you’re traveling, and a mesh vest harness for everyday walks, for example.
Different Yorkie Harness Materials
Wondering what kinds of materials are commonly used in Yorkie harnesses? Here is a quick overview of the materials you can expect to find when shopping for a harness for your Yorkshire Terrier.
- Nylon – Nylon is the most common harness material. As a synthetic fabric, it has numerous qualities which make it ideal for a harness, including plenty of strength, a bit of stretch, and water resistance.
- Polyester – Polyester, like nylon, is a synthetic fabric, and it shares many of nylon’s properties but is not usually as strong. It tends to be softer, however.
- Mesh – Mesh is usually made from nylon or polyester, and can also be made of nylon and polyester blended with cotton. This material provides excellent ventilation, stretch and comfort, making it ideal for small dog harnesses.
- Cotton – Cotton is a natural and organic material, so it may be more suitable for dogs with skin conditions and allergies. However, it is not as breathable as nylon or polyester, in most cases.
- Leather – Leather is rarely used for small dog harnesses due to its weight and high cost, but is still sometimes a viable alternative option. Leather also has a tendency to stretch when wet and requires regular oiling to keep it strong.
- Neoprene – Neoprene is a rubber material that is an excellent option for padding dog harnesses, and is usually used in conjunction with polyester or nylon.
You may find harnesses made out of different materials, but these six materials are the most common – by far – for Yorkie harnesses.
6 Key Components Of A Harness For A Yorkie
Wondering what you should look for when shopping for a Yorkie harness? Here are a few features and qualities that will ensure you pick the right harness for your Yorkshire Terrier.
- Soft, padded straps – Yorkies have no undercoat, and they have relatively thin fur, compared to some other breeds. For this reason, soft and padded straps are recommended to ensure they do not suffer from skin irritation.
- Adjustability – Many undersized dogs like Yorkies have narrow tracheas, which can lead to respiratory issues. For this reason, you will want a harness that can be easily adjusted for the proper fit, to minimize strain on the neck and chest.
- Reflective material – A reflective design helps protect you and your dog in low-light conditions, and makes your small Yorkshire Terrier easier to spot by drivers, runners, and other dog owners.
- No-pull ring – Despite their small size, Yorkies are fiercely protective – and curious. This can lead to strong pulling. No-pull rings attach to the front of a harness, and help guide your dog back to your side when it tries to pull away, which aids in breaking this bad habit.
- Handle – A handle will let you grab your Yorkie in emergency situations, like if a dog tries to attack it, or if you’re walking on a trail and need to carry your dog across an obstacle, for example.
- Seat belt attachment – Many harnesses with handles also incorporate a seat belt attachment, which keeps your dog safe and secure in the car, preventing it from moving around too much.
All of these qualities are very useful in a harness for a Yorkie, so think about your own unique needs and the needs of your Yorkshire Terrier, and you’re sure to make the right buying decision.
Our Picks For The Best Harness For A Yorkie
Ready to get started, and see all of our top picks for the best Yorkie harnesses? Let’s get started now, and discuss each of our choices in some of the most popular harness categories.
|Our 2023 Picks: Best Harness for a Yorkshire Terrier|
|Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness With Steel Nesting Buckles Enhanced Strength
|Chai’s Choice 3M Reflective Dog Harness
|Frisco Small Breed Soft Vest Dog Harness
|Kurgo Go-Tech Adventure Dog Harness With Seatbelt Loop
|Harness Lead Dog Harness
|PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
|Sporn Non-Pull Mesh Dog Harness
|Puppia Soft Dog Harness
|Solvit Deluxe Car Safety Dog Harness
|Paws & Pals Control Dog & Cat Harness
- Climbing harness-inspired design for durability
- Strong nesting steel hardware
- Durable nylon straps
- Comes with seat belt attachment
Best Overall: This harness from Kurgo is our top overall pick for the best Yorkie harness, particularly if you want a durable harness that will last for years to come. It’s made out of high-quality nylon material with strong metal hardware and built to last. Despite being relatively heavy, it’s comfortable enough for Yorkies, and the padded straps and chest piece are sure to provide your little friend with plenty of comfort. It also has five adjustment points to help you find the perfect fit.
- Built for durability
- Crash-test rated for dogs up to 75lbs
- Extremely strong
- Relatively heavy
- Straps are somewhat stiff
- May not fit the smallest Yorkies
- Lightweight yet durable design
- Easy to adjust
- Rear handle to help control your dog
- Includes front no-pull ring and rear lead attachment ring
Runner Up: This harness from Chai’s Choice is our top runner up, and maybe a better choice for you if your Yorkie is on the smaller side. It uses plastic hardware and more lightweight straps with additional padding, so it’s more comfortable for smaller Yorkies. It also incorporates reflective material which helps keep you and your dogs safe in low light conditions, like on early morning and late night walks. Additionally, it comes in 9 colors and 5 sizes and is easy to adjust to fit Yorkies of any size. It also has a front no-pull ring to help discourage your pup from pulling excessively.
- Lightweight and comfortable
- Padded, ventilated mesh
- Strong metal rings for leash attachment
- Sizing runs a bit large
- Neck is somewhat difficult to adjust
- Straps are relatively stiff
- Simple, vest-style design
- Available in sizes that will fit even the smallest breeds
- Reflective trim for safety
- Breathable mesh for comfort in hot weather
Most Affordable Pick: If you have a small Yorkie or even a Teacup Yorkie, this is our top pick for the most affordable dog harness for your dog. It’s a mesh, vest-style harness, which slips over your dog’s legs and then uses a velcro strap and a plastic buckle to connect securely behind its back. Dual metal rings allow for leash attachment, and the extremely light, soft fabric is ideal for dogs who may have sensitive skin or dogs that are too small for a more heavy-duty harness.
- Breathable and lightweight
- Won’t irritate dog’s skin
- Simple to attach and secure
- Metal loops may be too large for some leashes to attach
- Sizing runs small
- Velcro may wear out over time
- Includes seat belt loop/handle
- Carabiner/strap included for seatbelt use
- Front no-pull ring and rear harness ring
- Padded neck and chest
Best Hiking Harness – Those who don’t own Yorkies may be surprised, but if you’re a Yorkie owner, you know just how much energy your pups can have! Yorkies love going on adventures and hikes, and this harness is a good option for Yorkies who love hiking, though it won’t fit most Toy Yorkies. It includes a rear handle to help you control your dog on the trail, rear and front lead attachment rings, durable metal hardware, and strong nylon straps.
- Comfortable and lightweight
- Plenty of padding on straps, neck, chest
- Reflective trim for safety
- Neck is not adjustable
- May be too big for some smaller/toy Yorkies
- Not crash test rated
- All-in-one harness and lead
- Completely escape-proof
- Can be adjusted for Yorkies of almost any size
- Easy to wash, dry and clean
No Escape Harness Lead: This harness lead is a unique alternative to traditional vest-style and strap-style harnesses, and it’s a good option if your Yorkie tends to try to escape its harnesses, or chews through the straps regularly. The unique nylon rope design uses rubber stoppers which allow you to adjust it to fit a dog of any size, though it may be too heavy for some Teacup Yorkies. It also does not have any flat straps with sharp edges or buckles, which can help your dog avoid abrasion and skin irritation if your Yorkie has sensitive skin.
- Nylon lead is rated for 3,700lbs of tensile strength
- Fits dogs of all sizes
- Easy to put on and take off
- No padding
- Difficult to adjust during first use
- You can’t use your own lead, and the included lead is relatively short
- Simple, lightweight design
- Easy to buckle onto and off of your dog
- No-pull front ring
- Easy to adjust with metal hardware
Best Walking Harness: For a simple, day-to-day walking harness, this product from PetSafe is a great option, particularly if your Yorkie prefers strap-style harnesses, rather than vest-style harnesses. It’s very lightweight and simple, with a single attachment ring at the front for your lead, and an easy-buckle design. However, the straps are somewhat stiff and lack padding, so it may not be a good option if your Yorkie has respiratory issues or joint problems.
- Comes in 8 sizes, will fit any Yorkie
- Front no-pull ring for better control
- Easy to put on and take off with a plastic buckle
- No rear lead attachment point
- Minimal padding
- Straps are relatively stiff
4 More Top Rated Harnesses For Yorkies
Haven’t had enough? Interested in seeing some more of our top-rated harnesses for Yorkies? Here’s a quick overview of a few more harnesses that didn’t quite make our “top- rated” list, but still may be a good option for your Yorkie!
This harness from Sporn is a unique hybrid, incorporating features of both a vest-style and strap-style harness. It uses soft, mesh nylon with plenty of padding, and the extra-small style is designed to fit dogs as small as 2 lbs, thanks to the multiple adjustment points. If you want the comfort of a vest-style harness and the safety and control of a strap-style harness, this is a good way to get the “best of both worlds.” It’s important to note, though, that it lacks a front no-pull ring, and only has a lead attachment point on the rear, so it may not be ideal if you’re training your Yorkie not to pull.
This Puppia soft dog harness is another great vest-style harness that may be right for smaller or Teacup Yorkies. The soft, mesh neck slips over your dog’s head, and dual plastic buckles in the back attach it underneath its belly, securing it to your Yorkie. The rear metal ring provides you with plenty of control when you attach your lead, and the soft polyester-cotton fabric blend won’t irritate your Yorkie’s skin.
If you need a car-safe harness for your Yorkie, this harness from Solvit is a great option. It comes with a crash-rated and DOT-approved carabiner and strap for use in the car and has been rated for 3,000+ lbs of tensile strength. Additionally, it includes plenty of ventilated padding, and an easy-to-use leash attachment point for use once you’ve reached your destination, and are ready to take your Yorkie outside.
This product from Paws & Pals is a good option if you’re on a tight budget, as it’s one of the most low-priced harnesses on the market. It’s also useful if you have a Teacup Yorkie, as it will fit even the smallest breeds. The vest-style harness secures with two buckles after slipping over your dog’s head, and is made of a breathable, soft polyester mesh, with a metal attachment ring in the rear for your lead.
4 Frequently-Asked Questions About Yorkie Harnesses
If you still have more questions about Yorkie Harnesses, we’re here to help. Here are a few frequently asked questions about harnesses for Yorkshire Terriers.
- What size harness should I get for my Yorkie? – As a rule, you should go for an XS or “Petite” size. However, each dog is different – and so is each harness. So, to make sure you get the right size, we recommend measuring your Yorkie’s chest girth and neck girth. Use a soft tape measure to measure the neck at its thickest point, and measure the chest at its widest point. Most harnesses have measurements for chest and/or neck girth online, so you can use this information as a guide to making sure you get the right harness size.
- Is a harness really necessary for a small dog like a Yorkie? – You may think that only bigger dogs need a harness. But in fact, small dogs can benefit from a harness – over a collar – in many ways. First, a harness helps you keep your dog under control, and away from bigger dogs or other threats. Additionally, harnesses minimize constriction of the airway from pulling – which is dangerous in breeds like Yorkies, which often have weak airways. Finally, a properly-fitting no-pull harness will help train your dog not to pull as hard, which makes for easier walks.
- Should I stop using my harness if it irritates my Yorkie’s skin? – Yes. We recommend taking a break from using the harness until your dog’s skin heals. Then, you may want to try re-adjusting the harness to get a better fit. If your harness is too tight, it can cut into your dog’s skin – too loose, and it may shift around, causing abrasions. The harness should be just loose enough for you to fit two fingers around the strap. If re-adjusting the harness doesn’t help, we recommend purchasing a new harness with softer, padded straps – and consulting with your veterinarian to make sure your dog doesn’t have a skin condition.
- How can I get my Yorkie used to its harness? – Most of the time, you won’t have to do anything. Just put it on your dog, and take it for a walk! But if your dog is a bit more suspicious about its new harness or doesn’t seem to like it, we recommend putting it on and taking it off a few times – and giving your dog a treat after doing so. Then, have your dog wear the harness around the house for a little while every day. After a few days, it will adjust to it – and you’ll be ready to go on your first walk!
We hope the answers to these questions have been helpful and aided you in choosing the right harness for your Yorkshire Terrier!
After reading this guide, you should have a good understanding of pretty much everything there is to know about choosing a Yorkie harness. So start shopping today – after reading our guide and our top picks, you’re sure to choose the right harness for your pup.