6 Best Harnesses for Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers are incredibly friendly dogs who are known for their luscious golden locks and outgoing personality. Often popular in dog sports and obedience, Golden Retrievers are extremely active and prefer an immense amount of exercise to be happy and healthy. If you adopt a Golden, you are sure to have a powerful yet loving breed on your hands.

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Although Golden Retrievers making excellent family dogs due to their loving, trustworthy demeanors, they can often become unruly if not exercised enough. Goldens require more exercise than the average dog, and with that comes the need for a high-quality dog harness. If left to their own devices, your Golden Retriever will end up taking you for a walk. To avoid your pup constantly jumping and pulling during walk time and outdoor fun, take a look at our list of the best six harnesses for Golden Retrievers.

What to Look for in a Good Harness for Golden Retrievers

Golden Retrievers have extremely high energy levels, which means they need a harness that will last through long walks, rugged hikes and strenuous jogs. When choosing a good harness for your Golden Retriever it’s important that you choose one made from heavy-duty material. Since Goldens are large, active dogs, a durable material that will stand up to extensive daily use is crucial. Strong dog harnesses will be made out of military-grade fabric, nylon with reinforced webbing, leather or other tough-grade materials.

Since Golden Retrievers can be hyper, enthusiastic dogs, you may find that they can easily wriggle out of their harness if they are attempting to chase after something that they are excited about. A secure harness is a must-have for your Golden. It’s so important that you choose the correct size dog harness for your pup. Also, metal buckles and attachments will help keep the harness in one piece should your Golden Retriever use all of their might to pull on the leash.

Safety features such as an LED light attachment or reflective trim will help keep your Golden Retriever safe and visible on adventures in the early morning hours or late at night. They also add a sense of security when keeping an eye on your dog while camping or hiking. Many dog harnesses come equipped with safety features, and you’ll want to consider them when purchasing a good harness for your Golden Retriever.

Of course it’s incredibly important that your Golden Retriever is comfortable when wearing a harness. A good fitting harness made from high-quality, cozy material will ensure that your pup is feeling great when out and about. Comfort is key, as a harness that is too tight or made from itchy material can cause chafing, injury and irritation.

For growing Golden Retrievers or escape artists, you will want to purchase a dog harness with multiple points of adjustment. Being able to thoroughly adjust the harness will ensure a snug fit, even if your pup is still growing. If your Golden could be appropriately named “Houdini,” having several adjustment points will allow you to keep the harness fitting tightly to avoid escape.

Different Types of Harnesses for Golden Retrievers

No-pull dog harnesses are popular among Golden Retriever parents. The breed’s outgoing, playful behavior can be challenging to keep under control, especially when they are excited about a walk. A no-pull dog harness will give you stable control of your Golden when they spot a nearby squirrel or canine friend. No-pull dog harnesses allow you to redirect your dog’s behavior in a secure, safe manner without causing strain or injury.

Golden Retrievers are among the most popular working and service dog breeds. If your Golden falls under this category, you will need a dog harness built specifically for working dogs. Service dog vest harnesses are generally constructed to be tough and durable. They often have added safety features like reflective piping, removable Velcro patches and attachments for storage pouches. A good dog harness for a working Golden Retriever will be made from heavy-duty material.

Some dog harnesses double as car safety restraints. These 2-in-1 harnesses are often crash-tested and designed with the toughest materials. Typically a dog harness for the car will have a handle to pull a seat belt through, so your Golden Retriever will be secure in your vehicle. When you arrive at your destination, simply unbuckle the seatbelt, attach a leash and you’re off!

Standard harnesses are available for Golden Retrievers who prefer style and simplicity. These basic harnesses typically come in a multitude of vibrant colors and attractive designs. If your Golden needs a harness for a stroll around the neighborhood, a standard harness may be a great choice for you! These inexpensive harnesses are generally made from reinforced nylon, and they make a good secondary harness for your pup’s accessory collection.

Overall Best Golden Retriever Harness

Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness and Leash

We recommend this dog harness for your Golden Retriever because of its unique double connection leash design, which allows you to steer your pup in the right direction. The step-in design makes it easy to put this harness on your Golden, and multiple points of adjustment allow a snug fit. With a leash attachment on two parts of the harness, pet parents can redirect their Golden Retriever’s attention if they begin to pull or run after nearby prey. The 2 Hounds Design Freedom No Pull Dog Harness is built with reinforced padded nylon, and it comes with the leash! For a Golden who likes a little more flare, you can purchase this dog harness in a variety of colors.

5 More Top Rated Harnesses for Golden Retrievers

PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness

Another great no-pull dog harness is the PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness. This high rated harness is helps you to properly steer your energetic Golden Retriever without putting pressure on their neck. The belly strap helps keep the harness fitting snugly, in case you have a Golden who enjoys the task of escaping their harness. The Easy Walk dog harness will get you on the road to less stressful walks and outdoor adventures with your dog.

Julius-K9 IDC Powerharness

For working and service Golden Retrievers, we suggest the Julius-K9 IDC Powerharness. This dog harness was designed specifically with service dogs in mind. The sturdy, German-made materials are comfortable, tough and can withstand any task that your dog is performing. Velcro on the harness makes it easy to switch out label patches if you have a working dog. The front strap of the Julius-K9 dog harness is reflective for additional safety, and the entire outer shell of the harness is weather-proof. Although built for working dogs, this dog harness is a good choice for any Golden Retriever.

Kurgo Journey Dog Harness

Does your Golden Retriever love to accompany you on outdoor adventures? The Kurgo Journey Dog Harness is a great option for high performance dogs. The chest plate is breathable and comfortable, and even if your dog is pulling, it won’t put any strain on their neck. You can even attach your leash to the front of the harness for an effective no-pull design. This dog harness has several points of adjustment, allowing for a custom-like fit. It’s also machine washable, great for dogs who just had fun playing in the mud!

Mighty Paw Padded Sports Dog Harness

For active Golden Retrievers who are prone to pulling on the leash, we like the Mighty Paw Padded Sports Dog Harness. This multi-use harness is built for dogs who are tough pullers, but it can be used as a car safety restraint also. The dog harness is made from weather-proof material that is also comfortable. We like that this Mighty Paw dog harness also comes with a handle attached in case your pup needs an extra boost! We recommend this harness for a Golden Retriever of any energy level.

Sporn Training Dog Halter

If your Golden Retriever pulls on the leash and you’re teaching them to walk more properly, we suggest the Sporn Training Dog Halter. The front two chest straps are made from braided cord nylon material for premium comfort. The dog harness fasteners are made from steel, which means this harness will be tough enough to last against your Golden’s strength. A benefit of the Sporn Training Dog Halter is that it can easily and quickly be converted into a collar, adding a sense of convenience for any pet parent.

Tips for Getting Your Golden Retriever Accustomed to a Harness

Early training of your Golden Retriever puppy is important for helping them develop into a well-mannered adult. It’s imperative that you expose them to new situations, such as wearing a harness, as young as possible. Even if you have a newly adopted adult Golden, it’s never too late to get them used to the concept of using a harness. Follow these tips to ensure a smooth transition when getting your Golden Retriever accustomed to a harness.

  1. Reward based training (positive reinforcement) is the most effective way to get your dog accustomed to wearing a harness. You will want to have plenty of treats available to reward positive behavior. If your dog isn’t food motivated, you can use a brief play session with their favorite toy as reward.
  2. When you receive your new dog harness, start by allowing your Golden Retriever to see it and sniff it. If it helps, put the harness on the ground so your dog can investigate on their terms. This process will help puppies and adults who are especially skittish. Reward your dog for sniffing the harness so they understand that it’s a positive object.
  3. After your dog is comfortable with the sight of the harness, it’s time to try it on. While equipping your Golden’s harness, treat them for allowing you to put it on. Adjust the harness according to your dog’s shape and size, and continue to give them treats and praise. Your pup’s harness should fit snugly but not too tight. You should be able to fit two fingers between the harness and your dog’s body.
  4. Once you have the harness on your dog, let them wear it around the house for a few minutes until they get used to the feel of it. Keep giving your dog lots of treats and praise if they are taking the new process in stride.
  5. After successfully equipping the harness on your Golden Retriever, you can start taking them on walks! If they are nervous about the harness and leash, start with small walks and gradually increase the length.
  6. Remember to never force the issue and be patient. If you get frustrated with harness training, so will your dog. If your Golden Retriever is nervous or fearful, it’s okay to take the process as slowly as possible. It’s better to go slow and end up with a happy dog in a harness than to rush it and end up with a dog who is more fearful than before.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I choose the appropriate size harness for my Golden Retriever? – When shopping for a dog harness online, most options have an associated sizing chart to reference. It’s important that you choose a size based on your dog’s measurements – not the general size of the harness. Measure your Golden Retriever’s neck, body length and girth. Based on those measurements, you can reference the sizing guide and choose which one will be best.

What type of harness should I get for my senior Golden Retriever? – There are dog harnesses available for senior and handicapped dogs. These types of harnesses often offer hind or frontal support. If your senior Golden simply needs help getting up into the car or onto the couch, many harnesses come equipped with an assistance handle.

How tight should the harness be on my Golden Retriever? – You will want a harness to be snug on your dog, but not too tight. You should be able to fit two fingers between the harness and your dog’s body.


Golden Retrievers are playful dogs who need consistent exercise in order to stay out of trouble. If they aren’t exercised enough they can end up being destructive due to boredom. Your Golden wants to be a part of the family, so taking them on hikes, runs and bike rides is their dream come true. But to successful make those activities enjoyable, you’ll need to start with a high-quality dog harness. We know that the list we provided of good dog harness for your Golden Retriever will make journeys with your pup stress-free and fun!

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