Lead Me On

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The girls in their current harnesses

Happy little friday, dogs on thursday and thankful thursday!!  Be sure to catch Sissy’s post – yes, the DIVA herself bothered to write a post – on an easy way to support shelter pets. 

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Mugsy & Fred

Today’s post is about walking, pulling and harnesses.  I think I’ve mentioned before that my dogs walk in harnesses, period.  We started with the boy dogs, first because of Fred’s back problems (didn’t want to move lower back problems up into his neck, now did we?!), then because of Mugsy’s collapsed trachea. 

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Sissy 8-08

Then came Sis.  Sis got switched to a harness in obedience school, because if you’ve been to either blog more than once, you’ve probably realized DIVA likes to be in charge, even if she is sweet about it.  No amount of training has broken her of her urge to pull, and now with glaucoma, a harness is necessary to prevent straining which increases eye pressure.

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Gg 11-08

Gretchen Greer went in a harness right away because she was so dang tiny.  I’d never had a 4 lb. puppy before, and we still view her as tiny and fragile.  (Go ahead and snort and guffaw, other terrier owners!!)  However, she’s developed an annoying pulling-hop when she sees something ahead she wants to get to faster, so my big project for the weekend is finding a no-pull harness that fits her tiny selfdom.

There is more than one brand of no-pull body harness out there.  We’ve used two of the brands, and most likely, Gretchen will go in the brand Sissy’s wearing in her “purple harness” photo.  Ironically, that brand isn’t the best fit for Sis, and the one she’s wearing in the top photo is one of Mugsy’s old harnesses.  Yep.  Sis is THAT skinny; she weighs more than double what Mugsy did, even at his heaviest, but she can wear his “clothes”.  I can’t find THAT style locally, nor can I find a size chart, so Gg will get what I can get my hands on.

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My favorite "harnessed" photo 4-08

(Why no, I’m not linking to brands, because I’m not sure the all-black harness Sis is sporting in the first photo is still available and because I’ve learned that despite great designs and customer care, no single style fits all dogs.  You can ask questions in the comments and I’ll answer honestly, one-on-one.)

That’s my thankful too.  I’m so glad there are options and many companies out there that have our pets’ safety and well-being in mind.  I’m also thankful for my two personal trainers, who don’t believe in rest-days, but the do allow for varied intensity and duration of said walks.  Hem.

What are you thankful for today?

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15 comments on “Lead Me On

  1. gMarie says:

    ::dogs::life::knitting::Army Wives::chicken noodle soup::Friday’s off::sewing::

    I need to do the harness experience with Lucy. She pulls something furious and JB’s shoulder can’t take it any longer. Beau does that hop, skip, jump kinda pull when he’s tracking and smells a dog who walked before us. He needs to ‘find’ him now! g

  2. Nichole says:

    Wonderful post…… as another harness household, we know all too well how hard it is to find the “right” harness for each dog – esp with 4 mutts! 🙂

    LOVE that last shot… just LOVE it!

  3. jen says:

    thankful you posted some sweet pictures of fred and mugsy. i love their sweet little faces still. ❤

  4. AlisonHyde says:

    “Personal trainers.” *snort* Too funny!

  5. Marjie says:

    That last snuggling picture is the cutest of all. Good luck in your harness quest; I know that’s been going on for a while for you. There’s some good in having a dog who only fits a pony harness, isn’t there? At least I don’t have to hunt; Agway is there for me!

  6. Sue says:

    Though my dogs wear collars on a normal day to day basis, we have a number of different harnesses for different purposes. Yesterday a life jacket may have saved Morgan’s life when she fell getting off the boat and landed in deep water inside the boat dock. The handle on the back helped us lift her straight out with no problem.

  7. kathy b says:

    thankful for your post. I will forward your blog to a friend who is adopting a beagle on monday….welcome tilly!

  8. StarSpry says:

    I just love all the photos 🙂 I hope you can find a good harness for Gretchen!

  9. Bubblesknits says:

    Micro does that strain/pull/hop thing, too. It helps if there’s no one walking in front of us. If the kids decide to run ahead, though, I’m in for a tug of war. lol I thought about getting one of those harnesses with the loop in front, but haven’t been able to find one small enough for him.

  10. Ruth says:

    Humph…we have harnasses…bought the kind you linked to a while back. We loved them…until the little dears pulling stretched them out a bit. Now, I’m back in the hunt for new ones. Oh yes, these still work, but I want soft, non-strectching harnasses, and I’d like to have some color choice. Possibly too much to ask for!

  11. Barbara says:

    Love the last photo, Chan. We never used a harness, but I can sure see the advantages.

  12. Amy says:

    I had no idea that getting a harness for a dog could be that much of an ordeal!! Well, you learn something new everyday! But even though I’m not a dog owner, I can tell that a harness looks for comfortable than a chair around a dog’s neck, or something just attached to a collar.

  13. Kathy says:

    awww…love the pic of the snugglers.

    Never used a harness and never knew you had to try them out for each dog. *sigh* It’s enough getting Mr. B in the car let alone trying on harnesses….lol

  14. Anita says:

    Love all the photos! And Gretchie is a wee fragile thing! 😛

  15. I love Fred’s ears!! And that photo of Fred and Mugsy snuggling is truly precious.

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