EQUIPMENT TIP: Harness breast plate fundamentals

SiberiansTeamIn this article I am going to explain which harness breast plate designs are superior and why. This information is essential to the overall well-being of your dog(s).

I bet most of you own harnesses with “single wide” breast plate (this means that the breast plate is constructed from single piece of webbing or from two pieces of webbing, which are overlapping). Did you ever stop your team (or your single dog) while running, gone up front, turned around and looked at the dog(s) from the front view? If you did not, I would STRONGLY RECOMMEND doing so! You will be amazed just how many harnesses will be rubbing the dog in the armpit (the harness will turn to a side and the breast plate will end up in the armpit of the dog). See the illustrational photo of the dog team (notice the breast plate sliding in to the armpit on every dog in the team causing discomfort and possible harness rub). This happens mostly (but not always) while traveling at lower speeds, speeds the dog is not comfortable with, speeds which will make the dog “crab” (=run sideways). If you are just a recreational musher or the owner of single dog doing canicross, you most likely never even noticed the discomfort of your dog being caused by the harness rubbing in the armpit. But if you are a more “serious” musher who puts many miles on the team during the season, you are probably ending up with many under arm rubs. This is all due to POOR HARNESS SELECTION! Harness rub can be prevented! Every dog can run comfortably!

The construction of breast plates on Howling Dog Alaska Harnesses will keep the harnesses centered nicely on pretty much any dog. We originally designed our harnesses to be as comfortable as possible for the use on our own dogs. Those include our Light Weight Harness, our Hound Harness, our Wheel Dog Harness, our Second Skin Harness and others. The fact that our harnesses will stay centered so nicely is all due to the special construction of the breast plate. We do not carry any harnesses with single wide breast plate (this excludes the Distance Harness, which does not fall in to this category). Our expertise gives us an edge over other manufacturers, which might not even own a dog (hint, hint!). As always, it comes down to years of working with top racing sled dogs and to our understanding of functioning harness design.

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