The Ruffwear Web Master Dog Harness seriously got me thinking differently on dog harnesses. I grew up using quality leather collars and harnesses, especially for training dogs not to pull. Though bulky, leather is makes for a strong and reliable training device, plus it weathers beautifully.
I wasn’t sure what to think when I had the Web Master Dog Harness in my hand. It’s very lightweight–no way this would be good for strong dogs, or even contain a dog when lugging them by the assist-handle.
To put this harness to the test, I basically took it for a technical hike in La Tuna Canyon. This particular hike requires me to lift Frisco over boulders and ledges he can no longer scale due to old age.
Design and construction
First off, as already mentioned, the Web Master Dog Harness is a lightweight piece of equipment. So lightweight, to the uneducated eye, this piece harness can come off as cheap. But the simple, ergonomic design allows dogs a full range of motion so dogs can fully engage and feel comfortable on any kind of activity. Add along the 5 point adjustable strap system and you have for a fully-customized fit. The Web Master also features a small, padded center plate, where as traditional harnesses have oddly large chest pads that make dogs look like they’re going into battle.
The most valuable thing about this harness was the useful assist handle. My hand fits perfectly for a full-fist grasp and is positioned in the center of the dog for even-balanced lifting.
Ruffwear also advertises the handle for assisting dogs out of surgery, or older dogs who need a little aid getting around. If it works for the things we did, I would imagine that it indeed does wonders for the less mobile.
The stitching and materials used for this harness are impeccable. There is no excess fabric, all straps tuck underneath a sheath, and the snap-clips are small, but durable for keeping an 80 lbs. dog strapped into the harness.
The chest and belly straps are surrounded by a softer, padded material, only making the harness more comfortable. Whether your dog is trotting along or in mid-air like the photo above, these padded straps (running under the chest and tuck) will make it an enjoyable experience for your dog.