PDA

View Full Version : harness solution



3kids1cav
27th April 2012, 11:38 PM
Bentley has a puppia harness, but for walks I prefire the easy walk and ses-ible harness for him (had sens-ible but he chewed it up, and I have not sent it for repair yet) Both Sensible and easy walk are horrible to fit, they make that wheel spoke shape that they say is wrong, but nothing I do to try to fix it works. The past few walks when we get in and I take off his front lead harness Bentley lets out a bit of a yelp if I touch under his arm where the harness hits, I am worried this is causing pain, so today we walked with the puppia harness which I know he is comfy in, but the walk was not enjoyable as he started pulling as soon as he realized he could, he walks next to a stroller so I had no choice but to keep the leash really short.

We have tried Halti brand front leads but the small is still too big, which is too bad as it does not make the wheel spoke shape on him.. I tried a bigger gentle lead harness but it was very baggy too even at it's tightest setting, and still made a bit of a wheel spoke shape.

Wondering if anyone has a harness suggestion that fits cavaliers body shape nicely , and is a front lead, he is great on his lead as long as he has the front lead, (or a collar but I do not want to hurt his trachea) as soon as we use a step in or puppia or basic harness, he starts pulling like mad. HELP! Our walks are such a special time for Bentley and I, so I want to fix this fast.

Furrfoot
28th April 2012, 06:28 AM
Maybe these people can help? http://www.shop.dachshunddelights.com/products/Hug_A_Dog_Harness_in_mesh-1-1.html I ordered Rose a harness from them (my little Houdini!). Rose was uncomfortable in the harnesses I had before because they hit wrong under her front legs. We traveled out of town/by plane with the new harness recently, and wearing it for hours didn't bother her at all :) . These also don't put pressure on the neck if you hook it on the d-ring on the back (and while I was skeptical at first, it does work that way). Since they are custom made to your dog, perhaps they could add a d-ring to the front of one for you? It can't hurt to email or call them to ask ;) . I am very happy with Rose's harness.

http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j213/boxart/Harness-Rose-2.jpg

http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j213/boxart/Harness-Rose-1.jpg

BrooklynMom
28th April 2012, 01:07 PM
This is why I have:
http://www.australianexplorer.com/shop/products/88.php

Its hard to see in the pic, but you can front clip on the round ring in the front of the harness. This works for us and she walks great on it. Might only be in Australia though??

3kids1cav
28th April 2012, 03:08 PM
Oh cool! I never even thought of clipping the leash to the front of the basic harness. I will have to try that today for our walk

3kids1cav
28th April 2012, 03:09 PM
Maybe these people can help? http://www.shop.dachshunddelights.com/products/Hug_A_Dog_Harness_in_mesh-1-1.html I ordered Rose a harness from them (my little Houdini!). Rose was uncomfortable in the harnesses I had before because they hit wrong under her front legs. We traveled out of town/by plane with the new harness recently, and wearing it for hours didn't bother her at all :) . These also don't put pressure on the neck if you hook it on the d-ring on the back (and while I was skeptical at first, it does work that way). Since they are custom made to your dog, perhaps they could add a d-ring to the front of one for you? It can't hurt to email or call them to ask ;) . I am very happy with Rose's harness.

http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j213/boxart/Harness-Rose-2.jpg

http://i81.photobucket.com/albums/j213/boxart/Harness-Rose-1.jpg
My husband wants your cavalier haha, he was like "That is our next cav!" He love long drappy Blenhiems.

Furrfoot
28th April 2012, 08:08 PM
Thanks :) ! You should see her sister! ;)

3kids1cav
28th April 2012, 08:31 PM
Thanks :) ! You should see her sister! ;)
lol Do not show me, we both want a female blenhiem or black and tan so badly, we have cav fever again but we have to wait a year or more.

3kids1cav
28th April 2012, 08:33 PM
the basic harness with the leash clipped to the front worked beautifully for me for an emergency run out of town when dh had car troubles. (I decided to bring Bentley along for the ride) I ran out and just walking Bentley out of the house like that was perfect.

Soushiruiuma
29th April 2012, 06:07 AM
Etsy is a site with tons of custom dog harnesses. Most of the craftspeople would be able to make a custom harness as long as you can show them what you want specifically.

BrooklynMom
29th April 2012, 10:54 AM
Cool! It could work for you, glad it seems to for now!!

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 04:43 PM
Etsy is a site with tons of custom dog harnesses. Most of the craftspeople would be able to make a custom harness as long as you can show them what you want specifically.
I love Esty I will try to get them to do something, I Was telling DH that I should try to patent a Puppia type harness with option of front or back lead. maybe I just will!! Then I would be rich enough to have a cav in every color lol.. by a breeder that specializes in genetic defect testing, and a big fancy house to keep them in!

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 06:31 PM
so still need a solution, the regular harness with it attached to the front loop is giving Bentley a weird uncomfortable gate, hard to explain, almost like he limps when it is there but he is fine when it's not, the past two walks I noticed it after the first couple of blocks, but we go for pretty long walks, I am going to look into what furrfoot has for her blen.

Emkaybee
30th April 2012, 07:15 PM
I haven't had to do it, but I think you could find a harness that fits his trunk, and then add the strap in the front with a ring on it using a sewing machine. Could also have it done at a shoe repair shop or perhaps a tailor's. Good luck. The front harnesses are great. I use one for my 70 lb Golden.

Karlin
30th April 2012, 07:19 PM
I hate to say this or cause unneeded worry: but have you had him checked very carefully for possible pain points? This kind of effect from harnesses -- yelping if touched under the 'arms' (which really should not happen at all unless he is actually being pinched and it is really too tight); and a harness causing gait issues -- may possible be signs of sensitivities due to an issue like syringomyelia. The gait issue in particular, and the difficulty in finding a harness which seems to work for him, would just raise some questions in my mind. Not necessarily something that needs to be looked into right now, but I';d be filing that away and keeping an eye out for anything else that seems odd.

I actually thought initially that you were asking about harnesses because of SM (but don;t think so?) and was going to say that Dr Clare Rusbridge says some SM dogs do better on collars rather than harnesses (not the norm, but sometimes it applies) as a harness rubbing on a syrinx or pain areas can cause pain under the arms, gait issues, scratching etc. With Puppias, the only dog I had that has ever yelped on taking them off when touched under the arms is my most affected SM cavalier).

It all may be totally innocent but it is odd -- especially a harness causing a limp-like gait :( -- and I'd have a talk with your vet and make sure they are aware of the issues with CM/SM in the breed, and then be sure yourself to be familiar with the wide range of potential symptoms -- this is wise just as a norm for any cavalier owner. I know it can cause unnecessary worry for some but in the balance' given the high incidence of the condition in the breed, it is better to err on the side of making sure a dog gets diagnosis and treatment when needed because an owner is alert to unusual signs.

I'd have a vet try some of the more obvious potential pain points next time you are in for another reason -- this tends to be 'armpits', neck, spine, ear/head areas -- and let them know about the various harness problems. As advised for most cavalier owners (excepting those perhaps with multiple cavaliers), if Bentley isn;t insured yet, I'd definitely get insurance before such a vet checkup just for comfort and because this is a wise step in general :thmbsup:. And I'd just keep an eye out for anything that might crop up.

All of us hope we never have issues with SM, but statistically most of us will eventually have cavaliers that do have it, though thankfully far fewer are ever symptomatic. It just makes good owner sense to be alert because of those statistics. :flwr:

Separate to that -- have you taken the Sensible harness to the place you bought it to have it properly fitted? It can be tricky to just use the pictures but really, as long as they are not snug -- they need some give as they do tighten across the back when a dog sits -- they work well even without being exactly to the perfect adjustment. I use them for all four cavaliers and my trainer friends have fitted them for every possible size of dog (though they do gradually come 'loose' and need to be adjusted on a regular basis, I find -- for the cavaliers and my partner's GSD too!). They are really great harnesses (and I find they work really well for SM dogs -- I have three with SM and they seem to be far more comfortable than many other types including Puppias for my most affected SM cavalier).

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 07:46 PM
I hate to say this or cause unneeded worry: but have you had him checked very carefully for possible pain points? This kind of effect from harnesses -- yelping if touched under the 'arms' (which really should not happen at all unless he is actually being pinched and it is really too tight); and a harness causing gait issues -- may possible be signs of sensitivities due to an issue like syringomyelia. The gait issue in particular, and the difficulty in finding a harness which seems to work for him, would just raise some questions in my mind. Not necessarily something that needs to be looked into right now, but I';d be filing that away and keeping an eye out for anything else that seems odd.

I actually thought initially that you were asking about harnesses because of SM (but don;t think so?) and was going to say that Dr Clare Rusbridge says some SM dogs do better on collars rather than harnesses (not the norm, but sometimes it applies) as a harness rubbing on a syrinx or pain areas can cause pain under the arms, gait issues, scratching etc. With Puppias, the only dog I had that has ever yelped on taking them off when touched under the arms is my most affected SM cavalier).

It all may be totally innocent but it is odd -- especially a harness causing a limp-like gait :( -- and I'd have a talk with your vet and make sure they are aware of the issues with CM/SM in the breed, and then be sure yourself to be familiar with the wide range of potential symptoms -- this is wise just as a norm for any cavalier owner. I know it can cause unnecessary worry for some but in the balance' given the high incidence of the condition in the breed, it is better to err on the side of making sure a dog gets diagnosis and treatment when needed because an owner is alert to unusual signs.

I'd have a vet try some of the more obvious potential pain points next time you are in for another reason -- this tends to be 'armpits', neck, spine, ear/head areas -- and let them know about the various harness problems. As advised for most cavalier owners (excepting those perhaps with multiple cavaliers), if Bentley isn;t insured yet, I'd definitely get insurance before such a vet checkup just for comfort and because this is a wise step in general :thmbsup:. And I'd just keep an eye out for anything that might crop up.

All of us hope we never have issues with SM, but statistically most of us will eventually have cavaliers that do have it, though thankfully far fewer are ever symptomatic. It just makes good owner sense to be alert because of those statistics. :flwr:

Separate to that -- have you taken the Sensible harness to the place you bought it to have it properly fitted? It can be tricky to just use the pictures but really, as long as they are not snug -- they need some give as they do tighten across the back when a dog sits -- they work well even without being exactly to the perfect adjustment. I use them for all four cavaliers and my trainer friends have fitted them for every possible size of dog (though they do gradually come 'loose' and need to be adjusted on a regular basis, I find -- for the cavaliers and my partner's GSD too!). They are really great harnesses (and I find they work really well for SM dogs -- I have three with SM and they seem to be far more comfortable than many other types including Puppias for my most affected SM cavalier).
The yelp is a pinching yelp for sure The buckle rubs him under his arm pit, and when I go to unbuckle it I always get skin at the same time, and he lets out a little yelp, it is rubbing him raw almost. so I don't think we are talking sm.. though I Am very sm paranoid as it is. He has no pain or issues at all in the puppia, he just is able to pull when wearing it, and walks nicer on the front lead. When I put the regular harness on him and attach it, the neck part pulls him off balance if he pulls, it was like he would try to pull ahead and instead of being pulled around with the easy walk, he would go sideways, and it made it look limpy.. I can't describe it.

He does have insurance, I can ask the vet to check him for SM but I don't think that is the issue, I think I just need to find a front lead that fits properly. I ordered the sensible, and the people who sell the easy walks honestly were awful when it came to helping with fit. :(

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 08:02 PM
ack of course Bentley just scratched behind his ear and I freaked out. (normal he had an itch though) I am sure we will have a health issue to deal with with Bentley, I just hope it isn't for a long time. :(

Nicki
30th April 2012, 10:18 PM
As Karlin says we don't like causing unnecessary worry but we do all need to be aware of SM and all the other issues affecting our Cavaliers. Sadly they are prone to many health conditions, but we can still enjoy every day with them and just be aware of what to look for.

This might help http://www.softouchconcepts.com/how-to/how-to-fit

Introduction to the SENSE-ation & SENSE-ible Dog Harnesses http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJyg17iPke4

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 10:38 PM
I will discuss it with the vet at his next visit, His parents and grandparents were SM free, But it is always something to be aware of, I watch the sm cav videos a lot, and Bentley doesn't show any of those behaviors but it is something I constantly worry about. Maybe we could get a test could put my mind at ease, or worst case confirm it so we know what to do for him so he is not in pain when it progresses.
But the arm pit thing is definitely just the ill fitting harness, I can tell it is pinching and rubbing him. we pick him up under his arms all the time with out him caring. (except at 6 months when he fractured his rib jumping after the cat off of DH's shoulder, the fracture was right near his under arm so of course that was painful for him.)

I just really want a front lead that fits Sheesh is that so hard to ask? lol

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 10:40 PM
As Karlin says we don't like causing unnecessary worry but we do all need to be aware of SM and all the other issues affecting our Cavaliers. Sadly they are prone to many health conditions, but we can still enjoy every day with them and just be aware of what to look for.

This might help http://www.softouchconcepts.com/how-to/how-to-fit

Introduction to the SENSE-ation & SENSE-ible Dog Harnesses http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJyg17iPke4
yea see I can never get the c strap high enough even on the tightest setting, it always hits just above his armpit. then the buckle rubs lime crazy, it makes that wheel spoke shape. I loved the sensible harness for his walks the best though. I like it with out the martingale thing. his broken one is an extra small

Nicki
30th April 2012, 11:26 PM
It's brilliant that you are so aware about SM - but don't forget to enjoy him too :)

It sounds like your harness is too big :( that's bad that they didn't fit it for you - and have sold you the wrong size.

My boy is in the small, he is 8.8kg but he is only just into the small, it also fit my boy who was 11.4kg in the past. However I walk him and Lauren in the ezydog harnesses - but they don't have a front fastening ring http://cavalier-gift-shop.org/cavalier-king-charles-spaniel-ezydog-harness/prod_216.html

My girls are around 7.3 to 7.5kg and they fit the extra small, it's perfect for them and does actually adjust just about enough to fit Tommy. [but they have girly colours LOL]

If you download the fitting instructions from that page they are really helpful. The top strap over the back does need to be quite short - Dog Training Ireland [whom Karlin is talking about] recommend it to be quite short on Cavaliers, so that it sits quite high up above the elbow, they find this works best.

Mine don't like the mesh harnesses as they don't like them being pulled over their heads, these are loose enough that it is not a problem

Furrfoot
30th April 2012, 11:55 PM
Is it possible that some Cavaliers are deeper chested than others? I had the same issue with my boxer and harnesses as I have had with Rose (that really surprised me)- too short across the front from side to side (the "C" strap in the pic in the link) and for the ones that had a strap from under the neck, between the front legs and to the back/rib strap. I finally found a harness that was adjustable enough from front to back for my boxer, but I couldn't find one in the small harnesses (plus then we had the "Houdini" issue come up).

Good luck, I know it's frustrating!

3kids1cav
30th April 2012, 11:56 PM
It's brilliant that you are so aware about SM - but don't forget to enjoy him too :)

It sounds like your harness is too big :( that's bad that they didn't fit it for you - and have sold you the wrong size.

My boy is in the small, he is 8.8kg but he is only just into the small, it also fit my boy who was 11.4kg in the past. However I walk him and Lauren in the ezydog harnesses - but they don't have a front fastening ring http://cavalier-gift-shop.org/cavalier-king-charles-spaniel-ezydog-harness/prod_216.html

My girls are around 7.3 to 7.5kg and they fit the extra small, it's perfect for them and does actually adjust just about enough to fit Tommy. [but they have girly colours LOL]

If you download the fitting instructions from that page they are really helpful. The top strap over the back does need to be quite short - Dog Training Ireland [whom Karlin is talking about] recommend it to be quite short on Cavaliers, so that it sits quite high up above the elbow, they find this works best.

Mine don't like the mesh harnesses as they don't like them being pulled over their heads, these are loose enough that it is not a problem

Those look a lot like our car harness for Bentley. That is really helpful. Bentley is ok with the puppia going over his head, just sometimes he prefires to try to play with it on the way on, he will want to grab it and get excited.. I have to have him sit and look at me then he refocus's!

No worries, I enjoy Bentley so much, he gives me so much joy, I have tried so hard to look into other breeds as I know there are so many health concerns with cavs, but I just can't fall in love the way I love Cavs.. They make me warm and tingly, they make me smile. I just love them. I love my Bentley so much, I have grown so attached to him so I try to push the health concerns out of my mind and not worry unless there is something obvious to worry about. Not that I like thinking about it, but when Bentley is gone, I plan to go with a breeder who specializes in genetic testing very thoroughly, next time. when I got Bentley I thought I did every thing right, she answered all of my questions, showed me the health tests on the parents and grand parents, and pedagrees of course, and we met his parents and aunt and grandmother. she was the one that said no ack cert till he was neutered which is excellent.. she got our vet referral ect. She breeds to better the breed. Bentley was a lower cost cav, he was last of his litter (I wanted him sooner but my grammy passed away and I got so busy, I just let him go, then a month later I called just in case and sure enough he was there still waiting) and she was having surgery so she wanted to move him out to a good family, so she took 500 dollars off of his purchase cost. which was nice of her. But then my mind starts going like "was there more to his discount that she didn't tell us" the vet says he is perfect no murmurs ect.. and he is just a wonderful love bug cav. So either way, no regrets. He is part of our family. Like a furry kid who listens much better to me than my real kids.
He can be mischief but what puppy isn't? haha

3kids1cav
1st May 2012, 12:02 AM
Is it possible that some Cavaliers are deeper chested than others? I had the same issue with my boxer and harnesses as I have had with Rose (that really surprised me)- too short across the front from side to side (the "C" strap in the pic in the link) and for the ones that had a strap from under the neck, between the front legs and to the back/rib strap. I finally found a harness that was adjustable enough from front to back for my boxer, but I couldn't find one in the small harnesses (plus then we had the "Houdini" issue come up).

Good luck, I know it's frustrating!
Bentley is for sure deep chested! This was the first thing I noticed when I first went harness shopping for him when he was just a new little guy.

3kids1cav
2nd May 2012, 04:56 PM
I just bought a halti front lead harness it attaches to the collar too (I like that for security reasons) I had tried it on him before and it was huge on him but the line of the strap around his body under his armpits made that nice straight line.. I had tried a small. Well I was looking at them again today at a different store, and pulled the small out of the box to look at again, it looked a lot smaller than the last time I played with a small. I think the last small had a medium in the wrong box. I betcha anything! I bought it figuring I would have to return it likely, sure enough it fits great, not even on the smallest setting but still with room to grow. and it makes that nice straight line instead of that wheel spoke look. I do have to be careful not to catch his fur in the buckle like the other harnesses but it is not rubbing him raw and it is pretty well padded in that area. I think I found a winner, walk #1 in it went beautifully!

Furrfoot
2nd May 2012, 08:25 PM
Yay! :)

Karlin
2nd May 2012, 09:07 PM
There's plenty of adjustment in any good brand front clip harness to adjust for deep chested dogs, but one brand might of course fit better than another. All cavaliers have a deep chest. But getting a proper fit is sometimes something a trainer needs to do the first time around. But honestly -- you don't necessarily want a fit exactly like the diagram. None of mine have a line going straight across as the harness needs to have some give. :) The right size will have plenty of adjustment room at the top, sides and bottom of the harness. All the front clip harnesses can also be clipped to the collar for extra safety. :thmbsup: But I've never had a properly fitting front clip harness come off a dog -- unlike several other types of harness. It's one reason my trainer friends recommend them.

3kids1cav
3rd May 2012, 05:37 AM
There's plenty of adjustment in any good brand front clip harness to adjust for deep chested dogs, but one brand might of course fit better than another. All cavaliers have a deep chest. But getting a proper fit is sometimes something a trainer needs to do the first time around. But honestly -- you don't necessarily want a fit exactly like the diagram. None of mine have a line going straight across as the harness needs to have some give. :) The right size will have plenty of adjustment room at the top, sides and bottom of the harness. All the front clip harnesses can also be clipped to the collar for extra safety. :thmbsup: But I've never had a properly fitting front clip harness come off a dog -- unlike several other types of harness. It's one reason my trainer friends recommend them.
yea I was fine with the easy walk being a weird fit since it was secure, and he only wears it for walks and I take it off with the leash at home, but we were getting to the point where we got him from the walk and he would be rubbed under his arms till they were chaffed almost. I had to use something else for the past few days so he could just heal up. This halti one is a great fit, the only thing is that it has a place to attach on the back too, you have to use that weird leash with two hooks and it makes a loop, but I just went with the regular leash attached to the front. I will call the company and make sure that is ok, but it was very secure for our walk that way.