My parents needed to get me a harness that would be comfortable for me to wear on walks, without restricting my neck (like a collar can) when I get up to puppy mischief and burst into spontaneous sprints and zoomies. The Ruffwear Front Range Harness is designed for adventure dogs, but so versatile that it can be used for everyday activities such as my morning poop and fetch outings. This post covers my review of this dog harness, as well as what my parents thought about its features and functionality.
Choosing a dog harness instead of a collar for hiking
There is a lot of information out there about the dangers of using collars with new puppies – we can hurt our necks from pulling on the end of a leash. As my parents wanted me to be able to come out hiking and on adventures with them, I needed a harness that would be comfortable to wear all day, and allow me to run around on trails without risking a neck injury.
I like that the Ruffwear Front Range Harness has a leash attachment at the chest, as well as the back, so if I pull on the leash then they can use the chest attachment, which stops me wanting to do that and reminds me to walk nicely. I still have a few very nice collars (including the Ruffwear Hoopie Collar), but they don’t often have the leash attached to them, especially not when we are on trails and adventuring.
Is the Front Range Harness comfortable?
I LOVE running in the Front Range Harness! I don’t even notice I have it on. As it is well-padded, I find I can wear it for hours and not be uncomfortable or complain. I do prefer to sleep naked, though, so my harness is always taken off when I’m in the house and ready to settle down.
How well does the Front Range Harness fit?
As I joined my new family when I was 8 weeks old, I have grown a lot every week since then. It was hard for my parents to know what size to pre-purchase the Front Range harness in. As it turned out, although I was a healthy 11lb at 8 weeks, I was still too small for the Small size harness. With all the straps tightened to the max, I still had a bit of wiggle-room, especially in the neck area. The neck hole was a bit big for me, and the fabric at the front gaped a bit. I assure you, I took full advantage of the wiggle-room, by almost wiggling out, a couple of times. However, once I had grown a little, around 10 days later, I fitted into the Small, just.
Now I am 14 weeks old (and 22lb), they have had to make the chest straps looser than the tightest fitting, although the neck hole is still on the smallest size. I still have plenty of room to grow with this harness, as the adjustable straps allow for several inches of increased chest girth. I expect that once I approach my full size, I will be at the top-end of the Small size range and may need a Medium-sized harness at that point.
PUPDATE March 2020: I am now 8 months old and have moved up to my Medium-sized Front Range Harness. The medium fits me perfectly with room to grow as I approach fully-grown adult size.
How to put on the Front Range Harness
The harness has two easy-to-use plastic clips, to attach it around my chest – one on each side. To put the harness on, it slips over my head, the clips and harness fabric go between my front legs, and come up on each side to clip in at the top, on my back. So it’s easy for my humans to do it up.
My biggest issue initially was getting the harness on over my head. I don’t like putting my head through things, but we worked around this by my humans enticing me to bite a treat or small soft toy, through the neck-hole. I fell for it every time, and before I knew it, the harness was on and being clipped in. Now, I look forward to wearing the Ruffwear Front Range Harness as it means that soon I am going to get to go outside on a walk – or a bigger adventure!
Ruffwear Front Range Harness Review: Design
My humans appreciate the design of the Front Range harness: simple, but with some really useful features:
- It is good only having two clips to do up, and the Front Range Harness is very quick to get on
- The front chest leash attachment, as well as the metal back attachment.
- A pocket for my dog-tags, to keep them out of the way and reduce jingling
- Attractive color options to choose from
- Reflective strips on either side, which help me stay seen in the dark.
Top loop attachment (video below).
I get comments several times a week from people saying they like my harness and asking where it came from. Not as many as the comments I get telling me how cute I am, but still – this is a good-looking dog harness!
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I like the blue color of my Front Range harness. The advantage of being a (mostly) black dog, is that black goes with everything. I’m pretty into blue stuff, the green and purple also look very nice.
Ruffwear Front Range Harness Review: How to Clean it
My humans have not had to clean my harness much since we have had it. However, I have big plans to make it very dirty, more often, now I am fully vaccinated and able to visit more trails. The couple of times they have washed it, they’ve just hand-washed it with normal detergent.
How durable is the Ruffwear Front Range Harness?
I’m going to try and test this Ruffwear harness to the max, and see if I can break it, haha. I’ll let you know if I manage to do so, and update this post. I have heard that they are very durable – hence Ruffwear being the brand of choice for many dogs and their humans seeking trail and adventurous excursions. When I first had to wear it I would rub it along every wall and railing I came across, so I have scuffed the straps, but this doesn’t affect their use.
Also, I decided I like the harness so I have stopped doing this, even though it is fun.
The Ruffwear Front Range Harness covered by this review is available for purchase at the stores below:
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