Sunday, 18 September 2016

Wildebeest Linden Harness | Wolves Of Wellington

Hey! Diego, being a Staffy, has the gift of a good pull on him. Generally after a walk my leash arm is aching in the bicep and over time I do think my right side is a lot more muscley than my left. I had been meaning to teach Diego to heel, but never found the best opportunity. When I had time to walk, I didn't want to be doing a dawdle along the road, I wanted to go adventuring and get all Diego's energy out. This is probably a lazy excuse, and I still do plan on teaching Diego a respectable heel (on a normal collar) sometime soon. In the meantime though, Joshua from Wolves of Wellington recommended I try the Linden Harness by Wildebeest. He has been using it with Willow ever since she was a puppy, and for such a large dog, she behaved amazingly on our walk. With that in mind, I purchased a harness for Diego, and mum got a harness for Chico.


After sizing both dogs, we got Diego an Orange Harness in Medium, and Chico got the Turquoise in Large. Diego and Chico vary in size quite a lot when looking at them, and so that is why I definitely recommend you measure your dog before purchasing because you could easily get the wrong size. If you live in Wellington, Wolves of Wellington offers sizing and fitting when you pick up, which could help with any concerns you might have. The colours are super vibrant, and you can chose from a range of four colours. If you are more keen on all black, all the harnesses are reversible which would only show up the black webbing.


The idea behind the Linden Harness is that you clip the lead at the front of the chest, instead of on the back like traditional harnesses. This prevents the 'Lean in, and pull with your chest' approach that a lot of dogs get when put on the traditional harness. Diego was definitely one of those dogs, and on a harness his pulling got even worse on my arm! With the lead clip up the front on the Linden, if the dog does pull, instead of him going straight forward, it would pull him sideways. The clip is also placed in a way that when the dog does pull, the harness slightly tightens around their chest making them not want to pull. Similar to a Halti, but around the chest area.


The harness has worked wonders for Diego's pulling! While wearing this, he is generally at a heel or slightly in front and I no longer have arm pain. It also works a treat if he is interested in something on a walk that I don't want him to be (another dog, dead animal etc) I can easily pull him away with a light tug. Chico had the reverse problem to Diego, he would often stop on walks and would dig his feet in if you tried to walk him any further. This was mainly due to new scenarios and situations. Now when he does this, instead of tugging on his neck, you can give him a gentle tug on the lead and he will follow along. I want to stress though, that this is merely a training aide, and does not fix the problem of leash pulling or stopping. If I walk Diego on a normal collar he reverts right back to his usual ways. This is just a great tool to use to help with the training approach to a heel, or like me, as a way to walk Diego for hours without my arm popping off while I train a heel at other times.


Wildebeest also has come out with a range of other products, all with similar colours and materials. This means that you can match the harness to other products if that is something you are into. They have a lead, collar as well as other little accessories like poop bag holders and water bowls. You can shop that all from Wolves of Wellington at the same time as purchasing the harness.


The Linden Harness sells for $54.99 which I know can seem like a hefty price for a harness, but when you take into account how much you will be using the harness I think it works out. If you compare it to other similar products you will find it works out to be most cost effective as well. For example, the Gentle Leader Easy Walk Harness is cheaper for the smaller dogs, but goes up in price depending on the size of your dog. It also does not look as hard wearing or up to the same visual standard as the Linden.


This has been a stand out product for me this year. It has really changed the way Diego walks on lead, making longer walks a lot more enjoyable and safer for him too. We have had tonnes of compliments on how well the two dogs walk on lead, and I make sure to inform them that walking both dogs at the same time is a horrible task without the Linden Harness. I definitely recommend this product, if you have a puller, or even if you just worry about your dogs neck when on a normal collar. It is well worth the money invested into it, and I can see from the quality that it will last a long time.


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