Instruction - Harness Types


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Harness types
The Siwash harness
Harness your dog
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There are two types of harnesses that are commonly used for drafting; the "siwash" harness and the "buckle" harness. Each type of harness comes in different sizes and it is important that the harness fit your dog properly, no matter which style it is. You should consult with the manufacturer of the harness for specific measuring instructions to insure you get the proper size harness for your dog.

Either harness will work fine for light draft work but my preference for any heavier work is the siwash harness as it will spread the load on your dog more evenly around their body. Here are a few pros and cons of each harness style:

Harness Type

  • Distributes weight more evenly
  • Allows for freer movement (does not cover dogs shoulder)
  • More difficult to put on
  • Doesn't have the "classic" look
  • Easier to put on the dog
  • Available in very fancy leather styles ($$$) that look very nice
  • Can impede movement
  • Fitting is critical to insure chest strap does not ride up under the dog's neck
Here are some diagrams showing the two harness styles

Siwash Harness

Buckle Harness