The Hurtta Padded Y Harness 2 we received from Hurtta North America is a great alternative for walking your dog versus a traditional flat collar. The Padded Y harness comes in ten different sizes (ranging from 14″ to 47″ girths) and currently is available in three different colours. The outward facing side of the harness straps are covered with reflective fabric which is a great feature for added safety on evening walks (but it does cover most of the coloured portion of the harness). We tested the 32″ Juniper Y harness on River – our two year old Husky-Shepherd. We used this harness for daily walks around our neighborhood, trail walks, and for clipping a long line to for off leash trail fun.
The Padded Y harness is extremely easy to put on, having only one buckle, it can be slid over the head and then buckled around the girth. The simplicity of putting the harness on also means less opportunity for custom adjustment; the harness is adjustable around the girth but the size of the straps that go around the neck/chest are fixed/not adjustable. While the harness was JUST the perfect size for River’s 28″ girth, the chest straps of the harness were slightly to large for her, which allowed the harness to move around quite a bit (River has a deep chest and narrow neck; which may contribute to this misfitting – although a fellow Trail Tester found the same “too large in the chest issue” as we did). The largeness in the neck and the snuggest around the girth made choosing the correct size for this product difficult. And like some other Hurtta products, the Y Harness has no over lap in sizes, which aided in the difficulty of choosing the right size. Our recommendation would be to size up if in doubt. We suggest Hurtta adds an adjustment point along the straps around the neck to tailor the fit to each dog.
This harness is appropriately designed to create a more comfortable way to walk your dog on leash by equally distributing the pressure/weight across the chest. The straps are mindfully constructed with comfortable padding and round, smooth edges as to prevent any chaffing. Although the harness is slightly large, is has still undergone daily use for about 3 months with no signs of wear (unless you count permanently woven in dog hair).
The harness is designed with one intended connection point; a metal ring on the spine of the harness. We primarily used this connection point while on casual walks or when the dog was hooked onto a long line (which is dragged behind them). We actually also used the ring on the front of the chest to connect the leash to for more structured walks (where we wanted to keep River next to us in heel position). Although I don’t believe this is the intended purpose the the front ring – we were able to use it to our advantage nonetheless.
River wore the harness while trotting through plenty of mud, and of course she managed to take it on a few swims. We found the padded nature of the straps meant they absorbed water, which meant the harness stayed relatively damp after getting wet (while the harness remained on the dog). We actually didn’t mind the slow drying effect as we’ve been using it in hot spring (soon to be summer) days. Thankfully clean up was a breeze with a quick toss in the washer, and hung it to dry.
Overall, even with the large fit I would still recommend this harness. River did not seem to notice the harness moved around slightly on her chest, and ringing in at an affordable 30$ the harness makes a great alternative to walking on a flat collar.
Review by: Dogs That Hike Trail Tester @thenortherndogs