How to Train your Dog to Participate in Harnessing, Happily! (Part 1)

fearful dogs Aug 24, 2020
Nervous Pittie in Harness

Last week we showed you how to use treats to introduce your dog to a harness.  But if you have a sensitive dog, a few treats might not be enough to distract them while you put the harness on. If this describes your dog,  you’ll need to do some training. 


In this week’s video we show you how to train your dog to put their head through the head opening of a harness. This is an example training plan. Your dog might need more or different training steps to reach the same goal.  The common themes are: 1) Take it slowly and never push the harness toward your dog; 2) Use treats every step of the way; 3) Your dog should be having fun! 

**Important note: While you are doing this training, avoid putting the harness on your dog for walks.  Your careful step-by-step work will be ruined if you are forcing the harness on outside of training sessions.  If it’s safe to do so, walk your dog on a collar, or forgo walks until harness training is complete. 

This is Part 1 of 2.  Next week we’ll show you how to add the fastening of harness clips. 


We’d love to hear what you think! If you tried the steps shown in the video, how did it go with your dog? Join us in our Fearful and Reactive Dog Facebook community and share your thoughts. Email us at [email protected]If you're looking for more guidance with your fearful dog, check out our monthly training membership.