Monday, July 25, 2016

Product Review: Howling Dog Alaska Tough Skin Harness

Howling Dog Alaska's Tough Skin Harness is an awesome piece of gear for dog-powered sports. This mushing harness conforms to the dog's body and distributes pressure to make pulling comfortable. It is made from super light, breathable mesh fabric This is a tougher version of the company's Second Skin Harness, these are commonly used by both recreational and professional mushers. It comes in two colors and five sizes.
tough skin mushing harness
Photo by Erin Koski

Want your dog to pull you on your bike/skateboard/hovercraft? A regular walking harness just won't do, you need something specifically designed to make pulling comfortable and effective.

Traditional mushing harnesses are designed to attach to a sled at a point near the ground, so they curve back over the dog's hips. The Tough Skin harness is intended for attachment points at the same level or higher than the dog's back, making it ideal for skijoring, biking, scootering, canicross, and all sorts of other dog-powered sports.
skijoring biking mushing scootering canicross harness
Photo by Erin Koski
Pulling is a great way to build more exercise for your dog into an ordinary walk. I've taught my dogs to walk nicely on a loose leash when wearing neck collars, but they are allowed to pull in a harness. Hitched to a nice supportive belt, a dog can pull all they like without hurting anyone's arm or shoulder. I much prefer this to using weighted backpacks to make my dogs work harder. Pulling in a proper harness builds muscle and is much easier on the joints than carrying extra weight.

Pros: Tough and durable. Very visible. Comfortable for pulling. Harder to back out of than a traditional mushing harness.

Cons: They don't really make these for small dogs.

Bottom Line: This is an awesome mushing harness! It's a very different style than Brisbane's Alpine Outfitters mushing harness. I can't decide which I like better.

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