Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Product Review: Collar Direct Rolled Leather Harness for Fluffy Dogs

The Collar Direct Rolled Leather Harness is a Norway-style harness. It is intended for long-haired breeds like the Chow Chow, Samoyed, and even Australian shepherds. The thin rolled leather gives it a minimalist look, and on longer coats it blends nicely. The rolled sections are 10mm in diameter, and the harness comes in brown and black. There are three sizes available, small fits dogs 24.5-28" around the chest, medium fits dogs 28-31.5" around the chest, and large fits dogs 32-35" around the chest.
Photo by Erin Koski
This is currently Brisbane's favorite harness. Putting it on does not require touching his feet or ears, and nothing on it jingles. There is no velcro like on the ComfortFlex harness, and the front strap is nice and long, unlike the EzyDog QuickFit.

Like a rolled leather collar, this harness slides through fur smoothly, and is less likely to cause mats when worn for extended periods of time. It is gentle on delicate hair, and does not choke the dog.

I bought this harness on eBay for $15, Brisbane is wearing a small. Collar Direct is a huge factory in Ukraine that primarily produces leather collars and leashes. Their products are available directly from the website as well as on eBay and, inexplicably, Etsy.

Pros: Lightweight leather and metal with no plastic. Gentle on coats and nonthreatening for nervous dogs. Easy to put on without manipulating ears, head, or legs.

Cons: Comes in a limited range of sizes and it the least adjustable Norway harness I've tried. There are three sizes, they either fit or they don't. Mass-produced in eastern Europe, so leather source and quality, as well as labor issues are possible. Featherweight construction may not hold up to large, strong dogs.

Bottom Line: I am slightly grumpy that Collar Direct floods Etsy with mass-produced goods at cheap import prices, undercutting artisans who actually make their own goods. That said, nobody else seems to make a rolled leather harness. It's a unique harness that can solve problems for dog owners dealing with sensitive, fearful, or mobility-limited dogs, plastic allergies, and dogs who just plain don't like harnesses.

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