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Discussion Starter #1
I've seen that some have had good experiences with "Freedom" harnesses. Just wondering if anyone has had experiences with Rabbitgoo's harnesses.

I recognize that some folks don't believe the harnesses are necessary, or useful. But, for us, the front clip helps. And, we're continuing to work on on-leash manners, so it's a work-in-progress.
 

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I looked at harnesses extensively since Molly is starting to pull. We ordered a gentle leader and boy, that just isnt working.
Yesterday I went between the Rabbitgoo and the Pet safe deluxe. They were both equally rated but the petsafe was cheaper. Since she is still growing so fast, I chose the Petsage Deluxe
 

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I wasn't familiar with the Rabbitgoo harness, looked it up. It looks nice...

I adopted a 2yr old boy from my County Shelter 9 years ago after I lost my 15.5 yr old.
This boy was supposed to be good on a leash-he about pulled my arm out of the socket.

I got the Easy Walk harness, not the one that goes over the nose.
I used it for about 2 weeks, after that I went back to the collar/leash, I was able to lose leash walk him after using it. I've never had to use it since.
 

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Here is the thing with no pull harnesses: they require you to not actually train your dog. I am a huge fan of training TOOLS, but these no pull harnesses do a disservice to dog and owner.

Dog: can actually do joint damage. These front clasping harnesses (less with rabbitgoo? maybe?) work by constricting the movement of the front legs and if you're not training as well as letting the dog pull against the harness, you risk serious damage to joints, as you would risk damage letting a dog pull on a flat or buckle collar.

HOWEVER, if you're actually leash training in conjunction with the harness, it is then being used as a tool and okay. I need to get off my soap box, but there are so many people around me who suggest a no pull harness for a dog as opposed to asking the person to train the dog it shocks me.

SoCal, I do not mean any of the above accusatory to you as you say you're working on leash manners, however, in a young growing dog, I recommend avoiding harnesses that put excess pressure on the joints and work on yielding to leash pressure. Obviously, you know yourself better than me and Goldens can pull hard, but using a no pull in combination with pressure yield + positive reinforcement training would be key
 

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I’ve been using the Rabbitgoo harnesses on my 10 month old his whole life. They are easy to get on, have a nice handle on the top when you want direct control, and have a bit of stretch built in, they also adjust. It will never keep the dog from pulling, but it is safer when they do because of where the pressure is applied. I credit this harness with saving his life when he was about 4 months old and got accosted by a very grumpy male adult golden. The harness on his chest kept the other dog from actually biting him directly around the throat for the spilt second I needed to pull that lady’s dog off of my puppy and pick him up to safety.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Here is the thing with no pull harnesses: they require you to not actually train your dog. I am a huge fan of training TOOLS, but these no pull harnesses do a disservice to dog and owner.
I think you might be just a tad "over the top" with "require you to not actually train your dog". I'd be more inclined to agree with "some people attempt to use harnesses as a substitute for training their dog". In our case, it is being used "in addition to", as we're working on leash manners, as well as working towards "loose leash".

Dog: can actually do joint damage. These front clasping harnesses (less with rabbitgoo? maybe?) work by constricting the movement of the front legs and if you're not training as well as letting the dog pull against the harness, you risk serious damage to joints, as you would risk damage letting a dog pull on a flat or buckle collar.
Do you have anything you can point me to to read up on this?

SoCal, I do not mean any of the above accusatory to you as you say you're working on leash manners, however, in a young growing dog, I recommend avoiding harnesses that put excess pressure on the joints and work on yielding to leash pressure. Obviously, you know yourself better than me and Goldens can pull hard, but using a no pull in combination with pressure yield + positive reinforcement training would be key
No ill intent taken. We use a combination of restraints, depending on the situation. A martingale collar for "quick jaunts", and a front-connect harness for longer walks. My better half does most of the walking, as my knees don't work too well anymore. Our trainer recommended the harness because she noted that dogs "get used" to pulling (which we were noting as well), and then it is difficult to convince them not to. But, she also stresses leash training over "just strap on a harness". The front connect harness has the effect of not allowing them to do a "straight pull", which both helps to defeat the intent of the pull and lessens the felt force.

If there are alternatives, we're open.
 

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I think you might be just a tad "over the top" with "require you to not actually train your dog". I'd be more inclined to agree with "some people attempt to use harnesses as a substitute for training their dog". In our case, it is being used "in addition to", as we're working on leash manners, as well as working towards "loose leash".


Do you have anything you can point me to to read up on this?


No ill intent taken. We use a combination of restraints, depending on the situation. A martingale collar for "quick jaunts", and a front-connect harness for longer walks. My better half does most of the walking, as my knees don't work too well anymore. Our trainer recommended the harness because she noted that dogs "get used" to pulling (which we were noting as well), and then it is difficult to convince them not to. But, she also stresses leash training over "just strap on a harness". The front connect harness has the effect of not allowing them to do a "straight pull", which both helps to defeat the intent of the pull and lessens the felt force.

If there are alternatives, we're open.

Your trainer sounds great!


Here is a paper I'm thinking of that while fairly nonconclusive and with its own sets of limitations, does bring up the restrictive nature of harnesses and their potential for damange :)

I know I get over the top, but its so frustrating for me when people (not you again) ask for help regarding their pulling dog and then don't actually want to train their dogs. And so many people telling ME to use a no pull harness on a dog I'm training.

Anyway, off my soapbox (again). I genuinely know they have use, but I see them misused all the time and as a substitute for training.
 

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Here is the thing with no pull harnesses: they require you to not actually train your dog. I am a huge fan of training TOOLS, but these no pull harnesses do a disservice to dog and owner.

Dog: can actually do joint damage. These front clasping harnesses (less with rabbitgoo? maybe?) work by constricting the movement of the front legs and if you're not training as well as letting the dog pull against the harness, you risk serious damage to joints, as you would risk damage letting a dog pull on a flat or buckle collar.

HOWEVER, if you're actually leash training in conjunction with the harness, it is then being used as a tool and okay. I need to get off my soap box, but there are so many people around me who suggest a no pull harness for a dog as opposed to asking the person to train the dog it shocks me.

SoCal, I do not mean any of the above accusatory to you as you say you're working on leash manners, however, in a young growing dog, I recommend avoiding harnesses that put excess pressure on the joints and work on yielding to leash pressure. Obviously, you know yourself better than me and Goldens can pull hard, but using a no pull in combination with pressure yield + positive reinforcement training would be key
From what I understand these harnesses make the dog turn twords you instead of restricted movement it turns them around
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks to comments, I did some more Google-foo into harnesses and potential issues (it's "what I do" :rolleyes:). What I found was quite interesting. I won't say "definitive", but there's more to harnesses than "buy a harness and put it on the dog".

This article, "To Harness or Not To Harness", addresses the affect on gait (more specifically, "shoulder extension") between collars, non-restrictive harnesses, and restrictive harnesses). Not surprisingly, collars had the least impact. A bit surprisingly, non-restrictive harnesses could have more impact that restrictive harnesses. This finding seems to be based on the performance and effect of an ill-fit non-restrictive harness. Importantly, this short article ended with a guide on how to fit/use the harnesses. Who knew?

This scholarly article (read "I didn't do anything, but here's my opinions on the efforts of others who did"), "A Systemic Review of the Biomechanical Effects of Harness and Head Collar Use in Dogs", echoed the general results of "To Harness or Not To Harness". One additional bit of information I found interesting was the thought that a larger non-restrictive harness (i.e., more padding, softer, etc.) may end up being even more restrictive than narrow (think 1" straps) would be. So, the "extra padding version" may be more of a market-to-the-owner than good-for-the-dog scenario.

I glanced over this article, "Biomechanical analysis of the kinematics of different dog harnesses", but came up empty. If anyone wants to read it and tell me if there was anything relevant in it, feel free to let me know. I think my big takeaway was; "don't exercise your dog on a treadmill".

This article, "The behavioral effects of walking on a collar and harness", had some possibilities, but ended up being a study in a lot of data collection with little-to-no real world value. I think the final finding was; "Decently behaved dogs out for a walk don't seem to be too stressed, irrespective of the type of restraint. But, someone should fund us to study this some more."

One thing I did note, though it was not explicitly addressed, was that there seems to be some distinction between harness use for "working dogs" (e.g., agility or field work, military/police, etc.) and "a pet out for a walk". There is also a differentiation between how much of a "puller" a dog is (or, how well trained they are to the leash).
 

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Thanks to comments, I did some more Google-foo into harnesses and potential issues (it's "what I do" :rolleyes:). What I found was quite interesting. I won't say "definitive", but there's more to harnesses than "buy a harness and put it on the dog".

This article, "To Harness or Not To Harness", addresses the affect on gait (more specifically, "shoulder extension") between collars, non-restrictive harnesses, and restrictive harnesses). Not surprisingly, collars had the least impact. A bit surprisingly, non-restrictive harnesses could have more impact that restrictive harnesses. This finding seems to be based on the performance and effect of an ill-fit non-restrictive harness. Importantly, this short article ended with a guide on how to fit/use the harnesses. Who knew?

This scholarly article (read "I didn't do anything, but here's my opinions on the efforts of others who did"), "A Systemic Review of the Biomechanical Effects of Harness and Head Collar Use in Dogs", echoed the general results of "To Harness or Not To Harness". One additional bit of information I found interesting was the thought that a larger non-restrictive harness (i.e., more padding, softer, etc.) may end up being even more restrictive than narrow (think 1" straps) would be. So, the "extra padding version" may be more of a market-to-the-owner than good-for-the-dog scenario.

I glanced over this article, "Biomechanical analysis of the kinematics of different dog harnesses", but came up empty. If anyone wants to read it and tell me if there was anything relevant in it, feel free to let me know. I think my big takeaway was; "don't exercise your dog on a treadmill".

This article, "The behavioral effects of walking on a collar and harness", had some possibilities, but ended up being a study in a lot of data collection with little-to-no real world value. I think the final finding was; "Decently behaved dogs out for a walk don't seem to be too stressed, irrespective of the type of restraint. But, someone should fund us to study this some more."

One thing I did note, though it was not explicitly addressed, was that there seems to be some distinction between harness use for "working dogs" (e.g., agility or field work, military/police, etc.) and "a pet out for a walk". There is also a differentiation between how much of a "puller" a dog is (or, how well trained they are to the leash).
Excellent! There is a lot to it and for me, it all comes down to: not having a dog pull.

Pulling on a collar has obvious effects: trachea impairment, increasing blood pressure in the skull

Pulling on a harness has much less obvious effects, but thankfully, some research has been done on the biomechanics. For our young growing dogs, more than possibly any, we take excessive measures to protect them. Carrying them up and down stairs, restricting forced exercise, etc. So naturally, we want them to stop pulling. It makes sense that while there is not study (at least nothing worth noting) that shows deleterious effects of long term harness use in hard pullers, ie, people who let the dog pull no matter what kind of harness, if we have a young growing animal and there is noted restraint of movement and the animal insists on pulling, it follows that there may be excess pressure on parts of the body where there shouldn't be at this age.

It is much more complicated than "front clasping harnesses hurt your dogs!" but it in the end all comes down to giving you a tool to help prevent the dog from yanking your arm off while you are training it to loose leash walk. Another tool that I find is often misused, is the head harness. Like the regular harness, the prong collar, the e collar, it is a tool to be used and can make training easier when used properly, but it is a fairly aversive tool for dogs.

My working dogs do not work on harnesses (or anything really), and they weight a grand total of 40lbs and the largest and 20lbs at the lightest and none of them loose leash walk. They never go anywhere on leash. When they do pull, its heavy and their gross heavy breathing of them choking themselves is awful. We just don't leash walk them.

Felix is now around 65lbs and when he first started pulling he was probably around 20 lbs. Around this time, I found a good resource for training a loose leash walk and my girlfriend and I stuck to it consistently for months. It was just a flat collar, but it was basically teaching him to yield to leash pressure. If he were pulling at this size and I needed to train him, I would probably use a tool of some sort to help me control him while I trained him.

Anecdotal personal experience aside, I can see where there would be a use for harnesses, especially in training of bigger dogs. I can also see where potential damage could iie in animals that persistently pull in harnesses. I regret being so harsh in my first post, but I just wish more people would take the time to research what they're doing to their dogs and understand before they do it.
 

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I think a dog could potentially get too hot in the rabbitgoo harness? I tend to not be a fan of any padded/mesh/jacket-type harnesses for that reason, but Kaizer is heat-intolerant so maybe he's just sensitive.

I personally have had good luck with the Balance Harness from Blue-9 products. It's all straps, looks a little confusing at first but it's easy to get on and off. They are super adjustable, the medium fits my 75 pound dog and fit my friend's golden as a puppy. There's two attachment points, one in the front and one in the back, and it's a y-shaped harness so there's less risk of inhibiting joint movement. The harness I have is a couple years old and has held up through water (beaches, rivers, lakes, creeks), mud, snow, and regular wear and tear. I use the harness for hikes - I feel better if he has a harness on vs a collar in case he gets caught on something.
 

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We have a Rabbitgoo harness for Twinkie (mixed breed). She gets so hyped when we go on walks and chokes herself. This harness works wonderful. She calms down after a few minutes and walks perfectly. Agnes
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I personally have had good luck with the Balance Harness from Blue-9 products. It's all straps, looks a little confusing at first but it's easy to get on and off. They are super adjustable, the medium fits my 75 pound dog and fit my friend's golden as a puppy. There's two attachment points, one in the front and one in the back, and it's a y-shaped harness so there's less risk of inhibiting joint movement.
Honestly, I had never heard of the Balance. All of the articles and comparisons focus on other brands. And, based on what I've been reading (the various studies I linked before, and interviews that I didn't link because they're "opinion" vice "research findings"), many of these harnesses are designed to appeal to owners vice meet the needs of the dog.

The more I read about the Balance, the better it sounds. It got a great review in Whole Dog Journal (no idea how reliable this publication may be, but it seems legit), which also has a decent (albeit short) guide on "what to look for". There is also a link to a separate article for collars/harnesses for puppies (vice "dogs"), but I wasn't too impressed with the information provided by that article.

After quite a bit of reading, I've decided to get a Balance, recognizing that this is an "aid" and not "the solution". The solution, as others have indicated, is to teach good on-leash manners. A good front-clip harness is just a quick reminder when the dog tries to push ahead, as it exerts a sideways pressure (i.e., not in the direction the dog wants to go) when the slack is removed, while avoiding putting direct pressure on the dog's neck/throat. The Balance does this, but appears to provide the best design for getting an optimum fit while avoiding putting pressure on joints, potentially altering the dog's natural gait and causing a new set of potential issues.
 

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I read the 'about us' section on the Rabbitgoo website. It sounds kind of invented to me? 'Jason' and his 'Golden Retriever - Lucky' didn't ring true. Is that just bad copywriting? Maybe they're real, but it's hard to tell from first reading.
What does Rabbitgoo mean? Goo made of rabbits? That's not exactly a clever brand name association.
The FAQs are all about the sales process - nothing about the products or actual dogs.
The blog looks scraped to me - nail trimming and kitty play?
On to the harnesses. They may be Rabbitgoo branded, but I've seen all these shapes before in other companies sites. For example, compare them to the ruffwear harnesses. Dog Harnesses | Ruffwear UK
They have very similar products.
Does anyone know of anything about the origins of Rabbitgoo?
Could be a new market leader with great products to challenge the status quo! - or just a cheap knock off copy site making basically copied products with a pretty internet shop? I dunno.... Seems to be more about shopping than dogs to me.
 

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I looked at Rabbitgoo two days ago when I posted, I was not familiar with this company or their products.

Now my antivirus program is blocking the site........ it's marked as unsafe, malicious
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Just wanted to provide an update on why I decided to get a Blue-9 Balance harness.

(Add Note: Just for HollyB, I've included a "Google-foo" link...😉😁)

First, please note that I did not say "decided NOT to get a 'X' harness". I'm not informed enough to say why one harness is better than another, or why anyone should be getting any particular harness.

But, I can share what I've read up on, and why that information made me go "aha!" when I saw the Blue-9 Balance harness. Without going into a ton of analyses (others have done it better, you just need to Google for "academic studies for dog harnesses"). The short version is that most of the negative observations in these studies focused on limitations to range-of-motion for the shoulder joint. And, counter-intuitively, a Y-shaped "non-restrictive" harness tended to result in more observed/documented range-of-motion constraints.

Pictured below is the Blue-9 Balance harness. I've added a circle to highlight what caught my eye.
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I'm including an image of a Y-shaped harness, just to emphasize my observation. YMMV
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