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Best Walking Harnesses For Newfoundland Dogs

Deciding whether to use a walking harness or a collar on your Newfoundland dog can sometimes be a tough decision. 

Each walking device can offer pros and cons to the person and the dog so when deciding between walking harnesses and collars for your Newfie it’s important to take a look at each.

I prefer to walk my Newfies with a harness because I’ve had Newfs with neck and spine issues and I’ve had Newfs that needed more control when walking. 

My harness of choice is a Duo Gear Adapt Harness which has offered me the confidence and security of walking Odin. 

Why A Walking Harness Over A Collar?

Newfie’s are a breed that is known to pull.

A big dog pulling on a collar can put a lot of pressure on their neck, spine, and throat causing damage and pain to the dog. 

Due to their big size and heavy bone structure, Newfoundlands are prone to neck issues.

These neck injuries could be hereditary or from an injury such as jumping out of the car or from extensive pulling when walking. 

Not all Newfies will be big pullers so it’s up to you to decide if your dog would do best with a dog harness or a collar. 

Should You Use A Harness For Your Newfoundland?

If you’re going between using dog harnesses or a collar for your Newfoundland there are a few things that you should take into consideration. 

Collars and dog harnesses are training tools to be used in conjunction with a training program.

They are part of the training process and not THE training process. 

If you’re looking for a harness to stop your dog from pulling and not willing to implement the other parts of training your dog not to pull than you’re going to be disappointed and potentially cause injury to your dog no matter what type of tool you use. 

Some people believe that Newfies are supposed to pull which is not false, they are draft dogs that can pull carts, but they’re not supposed to pull people. 

But in my personal opinion,  a Newfie should know the difference between when they are supposed to pull a cart and when they are not supposed to pull.

Some people will say that a walking harness promotes the Newfie to pull because they wear a harness to pull a cart. 

Newfies are smart, they should know the difference between a carting harness and a walking harness.

duo adapt dog harness

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It’s work vs. play

They should know the process of putting on their carting harness and hooking up to a cart versus getting their walking harness on and going for a walk. 

When Sherman and Leroy briefly dabbled in pulling a cart, I didn’t see any change in their normal leash walk behavior. 

It is recommended that if your Newfoundland has any type of neck or spine issues that they use a dog harness over a collar to avoid further damage. 

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What To Look For In A Newfoundland Dog Harness

We asked several Newfie owners what they look for in a dog harness for their Newfoundland and here’s what they had to say:


A handle on the harness makes it much easier for an owner to grab hold of the talk when they need them to be near such as in crowded places or when in the water. 

Front and back clips

Many Newfie owners prefer to have the option to use a harness where you can clip the leash to the front of the back


Since many Newfies spend their time in the water, it’s important that dog harnesses be waterproof and hold up to a lot of wear and tear and dry easily. 

Machine Washable

Think of the hair, dog slobber, mud and everything else that your Newf attracts.


Breathable material is a must when you have a dog like a Newfie that can be prone to overheating.

You want the fabric to breathe and not hold in the heat.

Reflective Surface

A reflective surface is important, especially when walking your Newfie at night!

Before purchasing a walking harness for your Newfoundland

Before you purchase a dog harness for your Newfoundland make sure to measure their neck and chest area for a proper fit.

A harness that is too tight can impede a dog’s movement and be painful. 

A harness that is too loose can rub and cause skin irritation. 

How To Measure Your Newfoundland For A Proper Fit

To measure your dog for a walking harness you’ll need to measure two places on their body, their head, and their chest. 

You’ll need a flexible tape measure to begin.

When measuring the neck, wrap the tape measure just below the narrow part where they normally wear a collar.

When measuring the chest, make sure to fit the tape measure around the widest part of their chest.

You’ll want to measure from the bottom of your dog’s rib cage.

Weight can also be a factor in finding the correct size so make sure to always refer to the sizing guide provided by the manufacturer. 

For a harness that slips over a dog’s neck, you will also need to measure the circumference of their head.

This should be done at the largest section of their head.

Whether a Newfie is wearing a harness or a collar, never pull hard or force them to walk. 

Here’s a list of some of the most common walking harnesses that Newfie owners have reported using. 


Best Walking Harnesses For Newfoundland Dogs

For many Newfoundland dog owners, a dog harness can offer better control when walking their Newfie and it can also save the dog from getting neck and spinal injuries.



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Linda Lawton

Wednesday 28th of June 2023

I have a Chocolate Newfoundland and I like the Julius K9 collar the best. He’s 12 months old 140 lbs

Lisa Graziano

Sunday 13th of February 2022

I talked the duo harness about our one year old Jeb. He is sometimes a very heavy puller when we are in class with a lot of dogs and there is a distraction (female in heat). The recommended the direct . Do you think that is ok for a younger newf? He has not been neutered yet. We are waiting for growth plates to close. I mentioned you were how I found out about the company.


Tuesday 22nd of February 2022

Hi Lisa,

As long as the harness is not hindering his movement, it should be fine. You want them to be able to still have full range of motion with their shoulders.

Cheryll A Howe

Monday 4th of October 2021

Hi Jen

Janis has a 24.5 inch neck and a 37.5 inch chest. DUO said the xl adapt "may work". What do you think? Seems like a big difference in the neck to me. What are Odin's measurements?


Tuesday 5th of October 2021

Hi Cheryll,

Odin's last neck measurement was 23" around the neck but he's since gained a little weight and coat. I have the XL and the XXL and he fits in both but the XL was getting a little snug so he's wearing the XXL now. They are adjustable too! I would reach out to the owner Raj and he can definitely set you up with the correct size for Janis!


Wednesday 25th of August 2021

Hi again, funny question. My female Newfoundland just likes to lay down in the tub. My male is afraid of everything since the last groomer dropped him off the table and hurt him. Yes he will allow me to wash him brush him by get afraid. How can i help him. And how can i keep my lazy female from just lying there, it gets difficult to rinse her off. Cant understand why there so big, picky eaters love fruit veggies, will nibble at their food( fish, no grains) they have alot of allergies, female always has ear problems.if my daughter don’t get them there expensive food I MAKE THERE FOOD, and i have more allergies then them!! MINE IS ALL FISH AND ISM CELIACS!!! Suggestions for different food? And for there size they dont eat alot at all, they turn there nose away except for veggies. Thankyou everyone in the Newfoundland community. AND MY DAUGHTER RESCUED THEM BOTH FROM A HOARDER HOME AS BABIES?? SO I HAVE 2 NEWFOUNDLAND GRANDCHILDREN!!!!!!


Wednesday 25th of August 2021

Hi everyone, ihave to very large Newfoundlands, my male ( cooper) is landseer 145lbs, my female ( indie) all black is 140 lbs. iam trying to get them a harness. Any recommendations? Everything we try or look at will not fit these big fuzzy bears.

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