The dog training vest has become a symbol of the service animal. Rarely do you see a non-service dog wearing one and that’s unfortunate because they can be an effective way to train your dog and have other benefits as well.
I decided to use a dog in training vest for my Border Collie German because she suffered from muscle weakness and the vet recommended some light weight training to build her muscle up. The dog weight training vest is just one type of dog vest of course; there are training dog vest types that run the gamut from functional to merely aesthetic.
Because of the research that I was able to do and my familiarity with so many pet brands, I have been able to come up with some factors that you should look at when you are choosing the best dog vest, including the best for your budget and one that will work for your intended purpose.
Not every dog fits every vest, so you definitely want to check the breeds and sizes before you buy. But before we get to the things you should be looking for, let’s talk about the features that any good dog vest should have.
Remember, the task of choosing a dog vest starts with determining how you are going to use it. What that means is that the features that you are looking for may be different than the features that others are trying to get in a vest.
But there are some things that most dog vests have in common. For example, they are usually Velcro for easy fastening, have some sort of a sign and are often made of nylon. The signage on your vest may mean nothing to you as a trainer, but to a person that requires a service dog (one that is marked visibly) it is everything.
Using a vest has a number of advantages, particularly with smaller dogs. Because you are not able to put a collar on them without worrying about damaging the throat area, a vest is a great solution. This is why you see so many people putting vests on smaller dogs.
In addition, vests are great for walking your dog because they allow you to clip the leash on the back of the vest and this makes it unlikely to get tangled up in the dog’s legs. The disadvantage here is that you won’t be able to control the dog as well, which is why a vest isn’t recommended for large dogs, particularly those who have shown aggressive behavior.
So, to sum up, there are a lot of things that go into choosing a vest. You need to decide what it is you are going to be using the vest for before you can even look at vest products. If the vest is intended for a service animal then you may only want to look for vests that have signage.
On the other hand, if your vet recommended that you get a vest to increase your dog’s weight and muscle definition as mine did, you want to look at weighted vests. This makes it difficult to recommend which ones to buy. However, here are a few that I have looked at carefully and can recommend in good faith.
This seems like one of the more expensive options out there when it comes to training vests, but not after you see just what it comes with. You get saddlebags with this vest, as well as a full service harness and loops for your leash.
I really like this dog training vest for people on a budget. Not only is it a top quality vest, but it is less than half the price of the previous one. Of course, you don’t get the features like saddlebags, but you do get a vest in very visible colors which will keep your dog safer in traffic and easier to spot from a distance. This is a really good starter vest if you just want to try your dog out and see how he likes it.