How to Make or Tie A Dog Harness Out of Rope?

How to Make or Tie A Dog Harness Out of Rope

Is your dog a puller? Do you have a small or medium-sized pup that isn’t quite ready to wear a traditional harness yet but needs some guidance? If so, this is the perfect tutorial for you! I have been making my doggie harnesses out of rope for years, and they work great.

In this article, I will show you how to make one with as little as one piece of rope.

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How to Make or Tie A Dog Harness Out of Rope?

Rope offers up an adjustable, sturdy harness that you can make at home in minutes. I’ve made many of these over the years, and they work great on smaller pups or for training purposes, like learning to heel properly!

It is also helpful when teaching a pup not to pull while walking on a leash. This is especially true if your pup is a smaller breed or a young, energetic one! If you have a larger dog with a strong pull, this type of harness isn’t recommended as it typically doesn’t work well on dogs that weigh too much.

Here are steps to follow to make a perfect harness from a rope:

  • 1. Purchase rope at least 4 times the length of your dog’s body.
  • 2. Make sure the rope is as soft as possible. Of course, a thicker rope is more delicate.
  • 3. Fold the rope in half.
  • 4. Tie an overhand knot at the end of the folded section. To make a hole, pull enough loop through the knot to allow you to pull two ropes through it readily.
  • 5. Over the top of the front shoulders, tie a knot.
  • 6. Thread the rope around your dog’s neck and through the knothole on one end.
  • 7. Right behind the front legs, wrap the other end of the rope around your dog’s chest.
  • 8. To serve as a leash, hold the two rope ends together.

Using a Harness in Addition to a Collar

For most pups, it is recommended to use a harness in addition to a collar. For some dogs, the front part of their neck is susceptible. If you use only a collar, putting pressure on your pup’s throat can cause them pain. Some collars are more complex than others when put on over the head too.

Here are some things to think about if you plan on using both a harness and a collar.

  • Make sure the harness is snug against your pup’s body but not too tight.
  • Attach your leash to the ring found at the top of some harnesses, while others require you to attach it between the shoulder blades instead.
  • Some harnesses have a leash ring at the chest; some harnesses attach to your pup’s collar.
  • Check out my previous post on how to get more BARK for your buck when searching for a new harness!

How Tight Should a Rope Harness Be?

A basic dog harness should fit snugly but allow for some give. It should never squeeze your pup’s chest or dig into their skin. If you are unsure, ask a professional at your local pet supply store to help you out!

I recommend using the same rope threaded through the ring on larger pups to ensure proper sizing.

When you adjust the harness to fit your pup, make sure their legs can move around freely. You don’t want a harness that is too tight at the legs or chest!

If your pup loves going on walks but isn’t quite ready for a full-fledged harness, this may be a good option for them.

What Can Other Dog Accessories Be Made from Rope?

There are many things you can make with just one piece of rope, including dog harnesses! You can also use them for leashes and even toys.

For example, if you want to tie a toy together, so it is easy for your pup to carry around without swallowing anything harmful, try tying the pieces together with rope instead of yarn or string.

If you’re looking for a sturdy leash, try using your leftover rope to tie one together! This is particularly helpful if you teach your pup not to pull by putting gentle pressure on their back leg(s).

What Harnesses Are Good For?

Many pups do better with using a harness in addition to wearing a collar. However, harnesses are great for dogs that tend to be more aggressive or if your pup exhibits any of the following behaviors:

  • Pulling on leashes.
  • Barking excessively when excited or frustrated.
  • Any behavior that will make it difficult for you to walk them.

However, make sure to use the leash only once or twice a day because it can cause regression.

So why Make a Custom Dog Harness?

If you have a pup with certain needs or want to make a stylish harness for your pup, making a custom dog harness is the perfect solution!

I’ve seen plenty of handmade pet accessories on Etsy and Pinterest. Not only can you customize the design to suit your pup’s personality, but color options are practically endless.

What Situations Can a Rope Harness Be Used In?

Harnesses are helpful for puppies who are just getting used to being on a leash. It takes the pressure off of your pup’s neck and places it more towards the chest.

If you have an anxious or energetic pup, they may be less likely to run away if there is tension on their legs instead of their throat.


How do you put on a dog harness?

There are many different types of dog harnesses. I recommend figuring out how to put on your pup’s specific type before making it or if you plan on using one in the future.

What type of harness is best for a dog?

There is no specific type of harness that’s best for every pup, but some are more helpful than others.

If you have a puppy or a pup with anxiety or behavior issues, I recommend using a rope harness to help them feel less restricted.

Can you keep a dog harness on all the time?

It’s best to take any harness off after a while. If your pup is wearing one for extended periods, it can cause stress and anxiety.

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