Finding the right escape-proof dog harness is vital if you have a Houdini dog. When you’re taking him on a walk, you should both be enjoying yourselves, not worried about whether he’s going to get loose.
Finding the right harness can turn those stressful walks into the peaceful experience you prefer.
The wrong harness – even if it’s labeled as escape-proof – can cause serious issues for your pup:
- The wrong harness on the wrong dog can lead to physical issues
- A poor-fitting “escape-proof harness” can mean that your dog is still able to wiggle free of the harness
- A poorly made harness might be something your dog can bust through when it runs away (or chew through if they’re a chewer)
Harnesses are also expensive and can be difficult to fit and put on a dog, so purchasing the right one is difficult and important.
For all these reasons, we asked our veterinary advisor, Dr. Addie Reinhard, DVM, to carefully consider dozens of dog harnesses to find one that made it most difficult for a dog to escape.
In this article, you’ll also find Dr. Reinhard’s key considerations for selecting the right escape-proof harness for your dog, and even considerations for why an escape-proof harness may not be the right purchase for your dog at all.
Dr. Reinhard looked for the best combination of comfort and quality as well as safety and durability.
She identified the RUFFWEAR Web Master Multi-Use Support Dog Harness as the best overall escape-proof dog harness.
While this is our top overall pick, different dogs and their owners will have different concerns and specific use cases, so Dr. Reinhard has also selected the top harnesses for a variety of purposes.
The Best Escape Proof Dog Harnesses
- Best Overall – RUFFWEAR Web Master Multi-Use Support Dog Harness
- Best Budget – Rabbitgoo Escape Proof Dog Harness
- Best for Small Dogs – Gooby Dog Harness Escape Free Sport
- Best for Hiking & Trail Running – RUFFWEAR Front Range Dog Harness
- Best Tactical – ICEFANG Tactical Dog Harness
Escape-Proof Harnesses Compared
Here are the top picks from our veterinarian. Compare the ratings and features of different models.
|Vet’s Picks||Model||Rating||Padded||Adjustment Points||Reflective Strips|
|Best Overall||RUFFWEAR, Web Master, Multi-Use Support Dog Harness||5|
|Best Budget||rabbitgoo Escape Proof Dog Harness||5|
|Best for Small Dogs||Gooby Dog Harness Escape Free Sport||4|
|Best for Hiking/Trail Running||RUFFWEAR, Front Range Dog Harness||2|
|Best Tactical||ICEFANG Tactical Dog Harness||4|
*Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5 and based on reviews, feedback, and opinions of actual customers
In This Article
Who Should Buy an Escape Proof Dog Harness
- Escape artist dog parents – If your dog can escape his collar and pull away from his leash, then having a harness that will keep him safe and with you is key to his health and happiness.
- Anxious dogs – For the dog who struggles with outside stressors, having a harness that will keep him feeling secure and safe by your side will make the necessary walks more bearable – and may even convince him to take walks for fun.
- Frequent walkers – Whether your dog pulls or bolts, or even if he’s a trained dog who walks well on the leash, a harness that prevents escape will help make your daily walks all the more comfortable on your pup and for you.
Who Should Not Buy an Escape Proof Dog Harness
- Well-behaved dogs – For the dog who never strays far from his parent’s side, the robust nature of an escape-proof harness may prove to be unnecessary.
- Pups with health issues – Though there are very few circumstances where the occasional use of an escape-proof harness will harm your dog, if they have any condition where the harness interferes, then you’ll want to steer clear. (For example, dogs who developed skin tags or have injuries in areas the harness will rub and potentially irritate those sensitive areas.)
Buying Guide: Research Tips from a Veterinarian
A quality dog harness is important for ensuring your pup doesn’t escape. Dogs that slip out of their harnesses are at high risk of becoming injured, getting into a scuffle with another dog, or being hit by a car. One of the most important factors when purchasing an escape-proof harness is to purchase the correct size. A correctly fitted harness will prevent major mishaps. Other factors to consider include adjustability, durability, and padding. The following product features are important to consider when purchasing an escape-proof dog harness.
- Get the correct size – This is perhaps the most important aspect of purchasing a harness. A well-fitted harness will decrease the risk that your dog will be able to escape from the harness. Measure your dog before purchasing the harness to ensure you are ordering the correct size.
- Look for adjustable harnesses – Every dog is a unique size and shape. Because of this, it is important to seek a highly adjustable dog harness. Look for a harness that has multiple points of adjustment.
- Evaluate buckle quality – The buckles are usually considered a weak point in the harness design. Look for a dog harness with sturdy buckles that seem durable.
- Consider multiple leash attachment points – It can be beneficial to have multiple leash attachment points on the harness. If one buckle breaks, the other buckle will serve as a backup. You may even consider attaching the leash to the harness and your pet’s collar to ensure that they won’t escape from you.
- Look for reflective or bright harnesses – A bright color harness can be safer and easier to spot if you are walking your dog in the evening or at night. Reflective material can also be beneficial so your dog can be easily spotted.
- Choose durable material – Look for a harness that is made out of a durable material such as nylon webbing. You will want to find a material that will be difficult for your dog to easily chew through.
- Consider padding – Consider finding an escape-proof dog harness with some extra padding. Your dog may be less prone to slipping out of its harness if it is comfortable. Also, padding may decrease the risk of damage to your pup’s skin, especially if they tug on the leash.
One additional note: if you plan on taking your dog on walks where he will encounter other dogs, then you’ll benefit from making sure you know how to introduce him to new dogs in the right way to stop problems before they start. An escape-proof dog harness can help you keep your dog under control in situations that could potentially lead to anxiety or aggression, as well.1
How Much Do They Cost?
The good news is that escape-proof harnesses aren’t the type of dog gear that will break the bank. You can find harnesses in a decently wide range of price and quality, but the bulk will fit within the scope of roughly $30 to $60.
Our Methodology: Why Trust Pet News Daily
Finding the right harness for your pet can be tricky. As a large dog owner and veterinarian, I have tested many different dog harnesses. These escape-proof harnesses were selected based on my professional experience as a veterinarian and my personal experience as a dog owner. An escape-proof harness should be durable, comfortable, and adjustable, so these key product features were considered when choosing these products. Only products from the most reputable and reliable pet companies were selected to ensure top-notch product quality. – Dr. Addie Reinhard, DVM
The Best Escape-Proof Dog Harnesses
1. Best Overall – RUFFWEAR Web Master Multi-Use Support Dog Harness
The RUFFWEAR Web Master Multi-Use Support Dog Harness (read our review of Ruffwear Web Master) is perfect for your escape artist pup. It’s made of robust, foam-padded straps and features a handle on the back for grabbing and restraining. That also makes it perfect for the owners trying to teach their pets to heel.
The Y-shaped front makes it a comfortable harness. The two leash connection points, along with the anodized aluminum v-ring, make it comfortable for you to guide him, even when he’s being naughty.
- Safety light loop
- 5 points of adjustment
- Space for patches for service or working dogs
- Too few reflective accents
- Not chew-proof
2. Best Budget – Rabbitgoo Escape Proof Dog Harness
The Rabbitgoo Escape Proof Dog Harness uses heavy-duty polyester weaving to reinforce the straps and, when used in conjunction with the lift handle, it makes controlling your over-enthusiastic pup all the easier. (read our review of Rabbitgoo escape-proof dog harness as well)
You’ll be able to select the fit for your dog that you’ll need, but bear in mind these are for larger dogs. There are five adjustable points to make sure your dog’s harness fits just right, and that kind of customization is crucial to making it inescapable.
- Large padded handle for “dog lift”
- Breathable padding prevents overheating
- Y-front design for comfort
- Plastic clips are a weak point
- Too few reflective strips
3. Best for Small Dogs – Gooby Dog Harness Escape Free Sport
The Gooby Dog Harness Escape Free Sport is designed to truly be inescapable (read our review of Gooby Dog Harness). Unlike a lot of this harness’s competitors that allow a dog to struggle and slip out by sliding back, this harness offers what it calls an “Escape Free” functionality that prevents this kind of tactic.
This is a harness intended for small dogs, and if that’s what you have, then this is the kind of harness you should be looking for – simply adjusting a large dog harness to fit your small dog may nullify the escape-proof features.
- Adjustable on the back and front
- Escape Free function
- 4-point adjustable connections
- No padding on the back straps
- Not meant for dogs bigger than 35 lbs
4. Best for Hiking & Trail Running – RUFFWEAR Front Range Dog Harness
The RUFFWEAR Front Range Dog Harness (read our review of Ruffwear Front Range Dog Harness) uses a more durable shell fabric to make sure that this harness isn’t torn apart with regular wear and tear. That means taking your dog on the trail won’t be a problem.
The two attachment points are reinforced with heavy webbing meant to withstand your dog’s pressure and still allow you control over him while on your hike. That’s certainly a plus when you’re taking your dog someplace where he’s sure to encounter wildlife!
- 4 points of adjustment
- Reflective trim
- ID tag storage
- Plastic clips are a weak point
- Not chew-proof
5. Best Tactical – ICEFANG Tactical Dog Harness
The ICEFANG Tactical Dog Harness (read our review of Icefang Tactical Dog Harness) is an excellent harness for training your dog, especially if you’re working with him for more advanced training. The metal buckle is tested for up to 1,000 pounds of load-bearing, and the two leash clips will make sure your dog is comfortable and could help ensure he won’t strain himself during your more intense training.
The durable handle has earned the name of “control handle” with good reason. It’s sewn into the harness and strong enough to grab quickly and easily for a more rambunctious dog.
- Quick-release buckle
- 4 adjustment points
- Panel for service dog patches
- No reflective strips
- Buckles create noisy movement
Frequently Asked Questions
Additional Sources & Resources
- The best step-in dog harness
- The best dog lift harness
- The best no-pull dog harness
- The best harnesses for huskies
- The best front clip dog harnesses
- The best puppy harnesses
- The best car harnesses for dogs
And our individual harness reviews:
- The Ruffwear Webmaster Dog Harness review
- The Icefang Tactical Dog Harness review
- The Gooby Dog Harness (escape free sport) review
- The Ruffwear front-range dog harness review
- The Rabbitgoo Escape Proof Dog Harness review
And our breed-specific harness guides:
- The best harness for German Shepherds
- The best Husky Harness
- The best Dachshund harness
- The best Chihuahua harness
Pet News Daily uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
- The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Indoor Pet Initiative. Introducing a New Dog to Your Current Dog. Indoorpet.osu.edu. Accessed March 28, 2021.
- Gibeault S. Bored dogs: how to recognize doggy boredom (and help!). Akc.org. Published April 24, 2019. Accessed April 30, 2021.
- Academy Animal Hospital. Does My Dog Need Longer Walks? Academyanimal.com. Published March 1, 2020. Accessed April 30, 2021.