Keep your dog secure in the car with the leading dog car harnesses

·11 min read

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Dogs can become nervous and stressed when riding in the car. Keep Fido safe and secure with a top-quality dog car harness for your vehicle. We all adore our furry four-legged friends, and when riding in a car it’s important to keep them secured in place. Dogs, like people, must take precautionary measures to stay protected in the event of an accident. The first preventive device that everyone (including canines) must use is a seatbelt, or in the case of dogs, a harness.

Dog car harnesses are a real thing, and they can keep your dog secured and unable to get into unintentional mishaps, reducing their nervousness and helping you keep them in one spot. We’ve reviewed the finest dog car harnesses which can help keep your furry friend buckled up and can also help teach them fundamental vehicle etiquette. Our detailed guide will help you explore some different options and find out the things you’ll have to consider to make a worthwhile purchase.

Also, here's a guide to dog safety equipment that has actually been crash-tested by the Center for Pet Safety, and a link to the CPS' own website.


What are the leading dog car harnesses of 2022?

BWOGUE Dog Car Harness

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This BWOGUE dog car harness can be fastened and fixed to the headrest, giving your dog the impression that nothing’s out of the norm. This dog car harness is strong and durable, made from heavy-duty nylon that allows you to drive worry-free while your dog remains in one spot. This harness lets your canine perform basic motions, ensuring that they won’t feel constrained in the car. The functional design of this dog car harness encourages innovation by letting you use it as a conventional leash as well as a doggy seatbelt, and it can be adjusted from 18 to 30 inches in length, allowing you to select a secure position to keep your dog on the seat. This dog car harness is available in a plethora of colors, giving you the freedom to choose the style that matches your tastes, or even your dog’s personality.


  • Durable, heavy-duty design

  • Multifunctional -- use as a car harness or leash

  • Many color options are available 


  • Only for small and medium-sized dogs

SlowTon Dog Car Harness: Another great option

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The SlowTon dog car harness has a breathable mesh chest strap with flannelette edges designed to absorb sweat. It’s made from nylon, ensuring durability and longevity, and it comes with a suitable “humanized” design that makes it a great fit for all kinds of car seats. This dog car harness wraps around your dog's body and neck, preventing them from roaming and being completely free in your vehicle. It has two buckles on its chest area, making the harness easy to put on and take off, and four adjustable loops on its harness strap ensure that it’s a great fit no matter how big (or small) your furry friend is.


  • Easy to put on and take off

  • Durable, long-lasting design

  • Various size and color options 


  • Not suitable for larger dogs

Kurgo Enhanced Strength Dog Car Harness: Versatile

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This Kurgo dog car harness features heavy-duty steel buckles that ensure strength and durability, and it comes with a double ring closure that will prevent your dog from getting loose. Its body is safe and crash-tested according to child car seat standards, and this enhanced strength dog car harness can be used to secure canines weighing up to 75 lbs. This dog car harness comes with five adjustment points for a customizable, versatile fit for dogs of all shapes and sizes, and it also has a seat belt loop with an attached carabiner that offers compatibility with all cars. You can also use this dog car harness to train your dog, and it’s suitable for medium-sized dogs with neck sizes of 16-25 inches and a chest size of 18-28 inches for maximum stability.


  • Provides maximum stability 

  • Crash-tested

  • Use for training as well 


  • Fewer color options than similar harnesses

IOKHEIRA Dog Car Harness: Also consider

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This IOKHEIRA dog car harness is a 3-in-1 multifunctional belt that comes equipped with two different types of buckles, each of which can be attached to the seat belt buckle and metal hook latch for maximum doggy security. This dog car harness is made from sturdy nylon fabric, with high elasticity and a top-quality zinc alloy carabiner for durability and toughness. This dog harness comes with an adjustable strap leash that can extend from 19 to 31 inches, and its strong elasticity protects canines in the event of sudden braking or sharp turns. It’s a breeze to install this dog harness, and you’ll only need to follow a couple of steps to get fido ready for the road.


  • Quick and easy installation process

  • Durable, strong, and stable 

  • Adjustable strap for comfort and freedom


  • Requires collar for connection

PETZANA Dog Car Harness: Another option

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This PETZANA dog car harness is designed to restrain your dog for extra peace of mind while on the go. It only takes a few seconds to attach this harness to the car headrest and your dog’s collar for comfortable and adjustable use. The harness’s bungee cord won’t tangle thanks to its 360-degree swivel feature, allowing your canine to move around in the car without getting all wrapped up. You can also attach this dog car harness to your pet’s collar when you’re not in the car, letting both you and your dog enjoy walks and other activities. There’s also reflective stitching included in this dog car harness for nighttime visibility, and it’s available in various colors.


  • Quick and easy to attach 

  • Does not restrict canine movement

  • Can also be used as a leash


  • Not suitable for small dogs

Buying guide: Dog car harnesses

Looking for help when it comes to purchasing a great dog collar harness for you and your pet? Check out our detailed buying guide for useful information and important things to consider.

Choosing a dog car harness 

There are several things you should keep in mind when picking a suitable dog car harness for your canine friend. 


The material of a dog car harness is important in determining its comfort and longevity. Dog car harnesses are typically made of nylon, but there are some polyester and leather options out there as well. Choose something that will provide optimum comfort without having any negative effects on your pet's skin.


Although adjustable dog harnesses are available, anything between 16 and 32 inches is acceptable for medium-sized dogs. This may be too long or too short for other kinds of dogs, so if your pet doesn’t fall into this category then look for other sizes or read customer reviews to see how they fit your dog’s breed. Make sure to always choose a belt that allows your dog to make fundamental motions and not feel too restricted.


The flexibility of your dog car harness allows you to adapt it to the seat, allowing your furry friend to perform basic motions without feeling constrained or uncomfortable. With that said, you also need to ensure that the dog car harness provides sufficient support to keep your curious canine in place.


Dog car harnesses sometimes come in pairs, while others simply come with one belt per dog. What you pick should depend on the size of your pup, along with its breed and weight. Most owners prefer going with a double belt for better security, while others think that one is just fine. Two belts can be a great choice for medium to large-sized dogs, but this can be constricting for smaller breeds and puppies.

Cleaning a dog car harness 

Let's talk about how to clean a dog car harness. 

Reasons harnesses get dirty 

Dog car harnesses are prone to dirt and other debris because of dead skin, bacteria, environmental factors, and fur. This can lead to smell, visible dirt, and much more, so the first thing you can do to avoid this is to purchase a material that does not absorb odors. Polyester is a great choice, but remember that you can only maintain a dog car harness by cleaning it regularly. 

Impact of a dirty dog car harness

A dirty dog car harness can irritate your dog and leave them feeling grumpy, and it can even cause sores and infections. Irritated dogs are prone to biting or getting stressed, and this is why it’s essential to keep everything clean.

Cleaning a dog harness 

Start by filling a good-sized bowl with hand soap, baking soda, and vinegar. Soak the harness in it for 15 to 30 minutes to remove any visible debris, and after that, you can use a soft-bristle toothbrush to remove the dirt. Rinse the harness with hot water and let it air dry for a couple of hours until it’s completely free of moisture. Avoid putting your dog's car harness in a machine or dryer, as this can destroy its integrity. Another thing to keep in mind is that a strong detergent might destroy the structure of your harness, and fabric-based dog car harnesses might also bleed color. You’ll have to take extra good care of your dog's car harness for your pet's sake, and that’s why it’s a smart idea to handwash it. 

Dog car harness material

Dog car harnesses are usually made of steel, nylon, and polyester. 


Nylon dog car harnesses are great for energetic dogs. Nylon is a highly resilient material that’s not easily damaged or ripped, and it has low moisture absorption, making it ideal for walking in wet places. Aside from water, nylon will not collect external impurities such as oil or dirt, making it simple to keep a nylon dog car harness nice and clean.

An important thing to know is that nylon is combustible and should never be stored near a fire-- it’s made of unavoidable oil products, which contribute to the material’s flammability. Nylon is a lightweight, supple material with strong weight resistance, and it has a quick-drying finish and a smooth, low-friction surface, which won’t leave any impact on your dog's skin.

Most car harnesses are made from nylon because it comes in multiple colors and designs. It’s very simple to maintain and store, but exposure to excessive heat can cause discoloration.


Steel is one of the most durable materials available. It provides extra strength and durability and is mostly designed for larger dogs who possess a lot of strength. High-quality steel is weather-resistant and provides maximum stability, but you’ll still need to take care of steel to ensure that it lasts long without rusting. Steel doesn’t have much adjustability, however, and it can cause rashes and infections in some dogs, so it’s important to look for a dog car harness with extra padding. There are not many color options when it comes to steel, but this choice is more of a “function over fashion” situation. 


Polyester is a wrinkle-resistant material that’s easy to store after folding. It’s tough and resistant to stretching, wear and tear, and chemicals, but it’s a flammable material that can easily catch fire. Never place a polyester dog car harness near an active barbeque, fireplace, or heater.

Unlike nylon, a fire generated by polyester is easier to contain. Polyester offers a quick-drying and smooth feel with no rough areas, allowing your dog to sit without any discomfort.

It has a smooth look and a variety of colors, although they may not be as brilliant as nylon ones. Polyester is also UV-resistant, making it ideal for dogs with skin disorders.

Perks of using a dog car harness 

Dog harnesses in cars are great for instructing mischievous fur babies who can’t sit still in the car due to excitement or nervousness. These harnesses also provide comfort to your dog, as they know something is keeping them secure. Rescue dogs or little pups often get uncomfortable during car rides, which can be avoided by providing them with a little extra sense of security. Dog car harnesses are a reliable option as a behavioral protection measure, but make sure you look for the right size and weight tolerance for top performance. 

Dog Car Harness FAQs

Q: Which dogs should not be fastened with a car harness? 

You should avoid using steel dog car harnesses on dogs with thyroid issues, breathing issues, and skin problems. 

Q: What is the right fit for your dog's car harness? 

A dog car harness should not be too tight that the dog suffocates or too loose that it's able to get out of it. 

Q: When is it time to upgrade a dog car harness? 

Depending on how much your dog grows, or whether it’s fully grown already, you may or may not have to frequently purchase new dog car harnesses to accommodate your furry friend’s size.

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