Being a dog owner means you’re going to get overwhelmed by a vast number of lead and harness choices. It can be quite a task to know you are making the right choice when it comes to essentials like harnesses and leads for your staffy.
You have to find a combo that is going to be comfortable for both you and your dog during walks. Both the lead and harness also need to be high-quality, which is especially important with dog with the strength that staffies have.
Fortunately, we have done the hard research for you; this article to provide you with the three best options in both the lead and harness markets. All you need to do is read our write-ups on each product and make the best choice for your needs.
Before you dive into the best harness and leads to get, there’s certain information about harnesses that’s important for you to know. The next few sections will cover the key areas to consider when selecting the best harness and lead. You can skip straight to the product recommendations, but these sections will help you make a much more informed decision.
Should You Use a Dog Collar or Harness for a Staffy?
Even though collars might be more traditional, they can more dangerous to your dog’s health than a harness. See, a collar puts more stress on your staffy’s neck, especially, when they pull on the lead during walks.
In contrast, a harness moves the support system to the chest and belly area to make controlling your dog easier.If your dog is likely to pull on the lead during a walk, buying a harness is the better approach. Also, if a dog has any breathing issues or problems, a collar around their neck could make things worse so a harness is a better choice here too.
How to Measure a Dog for Harness Size
Most harness are sold according to weight, however, to find your dog’s perfect fit it’s a good idea to know your staffy’s chest measurements. This combined with your staffy’s weight will give you a great chance at finding their perfect harness.
Get a flexible, tailor’s tape measure
If your staffy moves too much, you may need to get the help of another person. Two people makes it much easier to hold the tape.
Measure across your dog’s chest at the broadest point
Make sure that the measuring tape isn’t too tight. There should be a small amount of “wiggle-room”. You don’t want the harness to be skin-tight to your dog.
The broadest part of your staffy will be under the armpits, which is where you should measure
Once measured, manufacturers will usually have a chart you can use to determine which size harness is best for your dog. The chart below comes from one of our favourite harnesses, the Julius-K9 Powerharness.
Which Type of Dog Harnesses to Buy for a Staffy?
There are a couple different types of harnesses for dogs we should go over before recommending the perfect options for your staffy: back clip harness, front clip harness, and no-pull harness.
Back Clip Harnesses
As the name suggests, the back-clip harness is a harness that has the lead attach in the back. This type of harness is great for allowing a natural walking style similar to a collar without the potential discomfort a collar may cause.
On the other hand, it can be a poor choice for dogs that are very strong and prone to pulling, which may be the case with some staffies. This is because the clip in the back may not offer enough control over the dog's body when it pulls.
If your dog doesn’t pull on the lead much and you don't need maximum control over his or her body, this is the type of harness for you.
Back-Clip Harness Benefits
Extremely comfortable for your dog
Neither you or your dog will get tripped with the lead
Removes the stress a front clip or collar puts on your staffy’s neck
Allows for the dog to freedom and the ability to roam on their walks
Back-Clip Harness Drawbacks
Not as much control for heavy-pullers
Front Clip Harnesses
As with the back clip harness, the front clip harness is appropriately named with the lead attaching in the front. This type of harness is great for pullers with its ability to give you more control over where your dog’s going since you can direct them from the front.
However, it’s limited to its function because once you use this type of harness there’s no room for growth. In other words, your staffy will likely never learn the proper walking technique on a normal or loose lead. Instead, they will learn not to pull when wearing a harness, which is fine if you never intend to walk them without using a harness.
Front-Clip Harness Benefits
Gives you a lot of control over your staffy
Reduces pulling and other excitable tendencies such as jumping
Front-Clip Harness Drawbacks
Doesn’t really benefit your dog’s walking behaviour in any way
Lead is more likely to get caught on your staffy’s legs than a back-clip
As you would expect, a no-pull harness’ main goal is to stop your staffy from pulling. The features of a no-pull harness vary from brand to brand.
The idea of these harnesses are to enable you to gain maximum control over your dog's movements while walking. Commonly, these kind of harnesses wrap around the face of the dog in order to control their head.
No-Pull Harness Benefits
Stops your staffy from pulling by allowing a high level of control over their movements
Certain no-pull harnesses combine the best features of the front clip and back clip harnesses with a double lead attachment in the front and back
No-Pull Harness Drawbacks
Some designs can be uncomfortable for the dog (particularly ones that are designed to tighten when the dog pulls).
May not be as visually appealing. Some can look like a muzzle, which can make people wary of your dog when wearing one.
Best Dog Harness for Staffordshire Bull Terriers 2019
For most staffy owners who require a harness instead of traditional collar, a high-quality body harness design is likely to be your best bet. As long as you select the correct one.Some harnesses combine both benefits of the front clip and back clip harness into one harness, which is great if your dog is prone to pulling; it allows you to both train your staffy not to pull as well as transition to a more natural walking style over time, which gives them the freedom to roam when they’re done training.
If your pup doesn't need the extra control offered by a front-clip, a body harness with the clip placed at the back will be just fine. In all honesty, I don't think you can go wrong with any of the suggestions below so pick your favourite based on your budget and dog's needs.
Julius-K9 Powerharness (Our Personal Favourite)
The Julius-K9 harness is an extremely popular and highly-regarded back-clip harness.
It is actually the harness we currently use for our staffy, Lenny and it has been an excellent choice.
The manufacturing quality is top-class with very sturdy stitching and water-resistant material.
The harness also benefits from a very heavy duty buckle as well as a handle that you can use when you need to keep your dog close by.
I also like the fact this lead is quite compact and doesn't feature too many different pieces of material. This helps to give it an overall rugged feel and makes it simple to fit around your dog.
The harness also comes in a number of different colours/designs and feature interchangeable Velcro panels that can be ordered with custom text as shown below.
The Ruffwear harness is great for stopping your rambunctious staffy from pulling you down the street. It features two lead attachments points: one in the front and one in the back.
This is beneficial to a staffy in training because the front attachment will allow you to have full control over your staffy’s ability to pull. Then, when you’re comfortable with their progress, you can switch to the back attachment without buying a whole new harness, which gives your staffy more freedom.
The Ruffwear harness has a padded chest and belly panel to make sure your staffy’s comfortable on their walks. In addition, the four adjustment points makes it easy to find the perfect fit for your staffy.
For practicality reasons, the Ruffwear harness offers a built-in pocket where you can put things like ID tags (must always be present on your dog) for collar-free activities. There’s no need for a collar for your staffy with this comfortable and affordable harness.
It features a reflective trim that gives you the option of safely adventuring out in the early morning or late evening darkness with staffy.
The Embark Active Dog Harness only needs to be adjusted once to find that perfect fit. As we all know, getting a harness on your staffy can be quite a challenge; this harness will make that difficult a task a lot easier.
This harness has a soft padded interior to further ensure your dog’s comfort. In addition, the harness is sewn with military grade nylon to ensure durability.
A lot of harnesses don’t account for comfort, but rather focus mostly on functionality. This harness accounts for both; making sure your staffy is both safe and comfortable.
Just like with the Ruffwear Harness, this harness has two lead attachment points to help prevent against pulling: one on the chest and one on the back. However, the front attachment isn’t meant for everyday use. Make sure to only use while training our staffy.
Has a handle on top of the harness that can be helpful to get your staffy out of dangerous situations by allowing you to hold them back.
Has reflective trim to keep you and your staffy safe during those night walks down a busy street.
Best Dog Leads for Staffies
After choosing the best harness for you staffy, you will also want to make sure the lead matches it in terms of quality. A lead may seem simple enough but you can most certainly make a bad choice here too.
As with the harnesses, there are a lot of leads to choose from for your staffy. It’s important to make sure you pick the perfect option for your staffy to ensure walking your dog is as enjoyable as possible for both yourself and your pup.
Below, are three excellent lead options that I think would be best for your staffy.
The HALTI training lead is available in two different widths: 15mm and 25mm. Depending on how much your staffy pulls, it important to decide if you need to keep them on a short lead or long lead.
Made with a soft padded material that makes it very comfortable for you to hold. After all, there’s nothing worse than getting a lead burn from a lead made with an uncomfortable material.
It can be used for both regular walking styles and for training since it has a double-ended attachment. There’s a diagram on the Amazon listing, linked above, that shows all eight ways this lead can be used.
The flexi VA30T8.210.AZ VARIO retractable lead has a soft grip that allows for comfort and security when holding this lead.
This lead has a braking button for when your staffy does decide to start pulling. Therefore, it’s really effective in breaking the pulling habit within your staffy, especially, with a harness that doesn’t have a front lead attachment point. This lead would work perfectly with Embark Active Dog Harness because it offers a way for keep training going even when you don’t use the front attachment point.
Offers your staffy freedom to roam in the event they do learn to stop pulling without you ever feeling like you’re not in control.
The Dog Leads Training Lead is made of strong nylon with a durable metal hook that offers you a sense of security and durability.
The 10-meter long lead will allow you to easily recall your staffy back from certain scenarios. This is an essential part of any type of lead training because you’ll need to get your staffy’s attention quickly.
Has a trigger hook that makes it easy to attach to any harness. In addition, the trigger hook rotates 360 degrees to make sure your staffy will be secure when they engage in play.