How to Size your Dog’s Harness

In the world of dog training, you probably know that a good dog harness can make all the difference in your pet’s success. But how should you measure your dog for a harness? Do you need to buy a special measuring tape or an old belt? What about chest size and neck measurement? We’ve got all the answers


How to measure your dog’s chest

To measure your dog’s chest, you’ll need to use a soft tape measure. If you have one lying around, great! Otherwise, check out this handy tutorial on how to use a regular tape measure.

Take the measurement from behind his front legs (the place where he stands up when he’s not standing). This is his “chest cavity.”

Now repeat this process for each side of his body: measure from behind his front legs and then add 2 inches for each side of his body (front left and back right).

Size your Dogs Harness

How to measure your dog’s neck

  • What to measure: The first step when sizing your dog’s harness is to measure their neck. You want the collar and leash to be snug around your dog’s neck, but not so tight that they can’t breathe or pant.
  • How to measure: To get an accurate measurement of your pup’s neck, start by standing them up with their back against a wall and holding on to one end of the collar with both hands (the part with no buckle). Then slide up along their chest until you feel where it ends at the base of their neck (this will be slightly above where they would wear their collar). Measure this length in inches by wrapping string or ribbon around both ends of each piece together; then add an extra half inch for safety reasons!


What size harness do I buy?

If your dog is between sizes, it’s best to choose the larger of the two. If you get a harness that’s too large for him/her and he/She backs out of it or pulls back against it during walks, then that may cause injury or discomfort for both you and your pup.

If you’re not sure what size harness would be best for your pooch, there are several online resources where people have posted measurements so that others can figure out what size fits them best:

Lil Doggie has great instructions on how to measure your pet!


Make sure you get the right size harness for your dog

When it comes to choosing the right size harness for your dog, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First and foremost is that most harnesses come in two different sizes: small or large (or sometimes extra-small and extra-large). Unless your dog is very small or large, we recommend sizing up to the next size down if possible. If you’re unsure about what size would work best for them—that’s okay! Just make sure that when you get them home from pet store or online retailer that they fit comfortably without chafing their skin or being too tight around their chest area.

When measuring your pup’s torso length against the collar length of their chosen product , make sure that both measurements are equal; if not then go down one size until they do fit properl.


Harnesses come in a variety of sizes. If your dog is between sizes, we recommend sizing up to the next size.

Harnesses come in a variety of sizes. If your dog is between sizes, we recommend sizing up to the next size. To measure your dog’s chest, lay him on his side and measure around his ribcage where it meets his back. You should be able to see even without touching them (and if you can’t, that’s okay).

To measure your dog’s neck, stand behind him with one hand on each side of their neck and gently pull gently upward toward their head until you feel resistance from their collarbones; then place that measurement on the chart below (for example: if they’re 18 inches tall x 7 inches wide = 74 inches). This will give us an idea of where we need to go based off these measurements alone!

Once all this information has been collected then it’s time for math! Use these formulas:

  • Chest circumference compared against height + 1 inch = Weight range needed


Collar measurement

Your dog’s collar should be 1 inch shorter than the circumference of his neck. For example, if you measure your dog’s neck at 12 inches and his chest is 14 inches long, then you would need a 14-inch collar to properly fit him. If he has a small frame or is still growing (and therefore may not have reached full size yet), measure the length of the body instead of just taking measurements at each end—the goal here isn’t necessarily to get an exact match; it’s more important that both ends match up pretty closely so there isn’t any extra room for error when putting on or taking off the harness.


Chest size

The chest size of your dog is measured around his chest. If he has a narrow chest, you may want to go with a smaller harness size. And if he has a broad chest, you may want to go with a larger harness size.


Comfort level

The most important thing to remember when trying on a harness is that your dog should be comfortable. If you feel like the harness is too tight, go back and loosen it up a bit before taking your dog for a walk.

When you’re first putting it on, do so over an area where there isn’t much room for movement—like behind your back or in between your legs—to see if there are any areas that might cause discomfort or chafing once they put their full body weight into walking with it on.

After taking them out for a walk and checking their general comfort level again (and maybe even going over some new routes), make sure that everything fits correctly before rehanging the harness so that no adjustments need to be made later on down the line when things get more complicated with age and wear-and-tear.


Always check the size of your dog’s harness!

Always check the size of your dog’s harness! You don’t want to buy a harness that’s too small or too big, so it is important to measure your dog before buying one. If you don’t know how large they are, try using an old t-shirt or sweatshirt with sleeves that fit comfortably around their shoulders and chest. Take note of where the widest part is for both pieces and use those measurements as guides when purchasing new ones later on.



If you follow the steps above, you should be able to find the right size harness for your dog. It is important to know how to measure their chest and neck so that you can be sure they have enough room in their harness, which will help keep them comfortable while riding!

Souvik Ghosh
Souvik Ghosh
Hi there! I'm a pet enthusiast and passionate content writer. When I'm not typing away at my laptop, you'll probably find me cuddled up with my furry friends, or scouring the web for the latest pet tips and tricks. I believe that our pets are true extensions of our families and deserve to be given all of the love and attention that we can muster up.

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