Most working dogs usually wear a special kind of vest that lets other people know their specific tasks. Generally, service dogs under the SAR team wear search and rescue harness for dogs. Wearing that kind of doggy gear helps people in identifying that dog is a working dog having a particular task as a search and rescue dog.
In this blog post, we listed and reviewed 5 of the best search and rescue dog harness available in the market. Personally, I already tried some of those in our previous SAR training with my doggo. See which one is highly functional.
Dogs for Search and Rescue Operations
It is obvious that dogs have broad numbers of capabilities of which some tend to be advantageous in our everyday living. In fact, dogs are classified under different working categories from therapy dogs, to K9, to service dogs. The search and rescue field is another workforce where this four-legged animal also excels.
Generally, the search and rescue dogs function in locating missing people in the middle of the wild, after a disaster, and in any other kind of environment. Here are some of the characteristics of canines that make them a perfect candidate for being a part of the SAR team.
*Having an amazing olfactory system
The fact that dogs have 115 million to 300 million receptors in their olfactory system, that part of their body also has the ability to find out individual scents. Aside from that, they can excellently determine a single component of a compound odor. They can also find out the exact location of where the odor is without going on top of it.
*They are excellent hunters
Basically, dogs do not learn how to hunt. But, still, they have all the physiological characteristics that allow them to locate and catch their target. Because of the ability of their ancestors to travel miles, this characteristic runs on their blood. With that, dogs can travel distances while having sufficient stamina to run after their prey.
*Bred to work collaboratively with people
Among all of the creatures in the kingdom of Animalia, dogs are the only ones who can make a connection and communicate with us. They can generally learn socially as they can able to watch the activities of their human buddies and replicate them as much as they can.
Getting the Dog Involved in Search and Rescue Training
It is actually not difficult to train your dog in search and rescue activities and be a part of it. Getting your dog involved in SAR training includes the following options.
Training for Private Search and Rescue
If you want to make the training fast and effective, you may generally consider hiring a professional dog trainer that can help you and your dog learn the SAR tasks. Those professional dog trainers basically give an assurance that the canine in training gets excellent instruction. Moreover, those trainers will teach you in becoming the best potential SAR dog handler.
It is actually important to talk with the trainer and inform him about the type of SAR tasks that you are highly interested in. Also, inform them if you want to have a certification in this field. Let them know the organization that you what to get you certified as well. Normally, the setting of the private search and rescue training involved a one-on-one system or the “in kennel” training.
Have a collaborative work with the K9 SAR team
Searching the internet, you will land on finding a search and rescue team working within your state. However, keep in mind that not all SAR operating groups use K9s and not all of them are generally equal. In case the SAR team in your area also needs K9s in the group and they seem to be active, most likely, they will be an excellent training source.
Moreover, involvement in a local search and rescue team is also a great avenue if you aim to be an operational SAR staff. On the other hand, this training option is not for you if you only want to learn the basic ways of trailing with your doggo.
Attending group lessons
Another best way to learn search and rescue tasks is by attending group classes. If you are just a starter here, this is an excellent way to go. A big advantage of it is that you don’t have to invest more of your time or money with it. Yet, depending on the facility, the content of K9 SAR training will generally vary.
Moreover, involvement in search and rescue operations necessitates you to provide your dog with the appropriate equipment needed for their new tasks. One of the most essential pieces of equipment that they should have is the search and rescue harness for dogs.
The List of Search and Rescue Harness for Dogs
OUR TOP PICK: Doggie Stylz Search & Rescue Comfortable Harness
Bragging for its excellent features, this Doggie Stylz Search & Rescue Comfortable Harness is our number one choice on the list. With good ratings and reviews from its users, this search and rescue harness for dogs is really worth buying.
When you have to observe its design and appearance, you will see that it contains 4 reflective strips. These strips are located on the side, chest strap, and on the vest’s trim. With this, your eyes have kept the focus on your SAR doggie regardless of the visibility.
The neoprene material is one of the materials that made up this SAR dog harness. Usually, you can see it around the base functioning as a cushion so that it provides protection from abrasion. In terms of fitting, the double adjustment straps and snap release should be highly creditable for this.
Doggie Stylz Search & Rescue Comfortable Harness gives comfort and safety for your SAR doggie. The reflective straps in it provide the handle to have a safe control in all kinds of situations. With its easy to put and take off, this dog vest is a highly exceptional search and rescue harness for dogs.
FAIRWIN SAR Dog Harness
Well, if you are thinking about what makes FAIRWIN SAR Dog Harness a great buy, it is none other than its wide padded straps that are highly adjustable. With that, this guaranteed comfort and safety of your doggo. The inside padding avoids the piercing of the strap within the dog’s skin. Because of that, this tends to be an excellent search and rescue harness for dogs.
Another good quality of this dog harness is its excellent fitting. The breathable mesh sheet that it contains allows your SAR dog to remain cool once the temperature gets high. In order to identify the location of your doggo, FAIRWIN SAR Dog Harness also has reflective strips. This harness is also lightweight and has a sturdy structure.
- Offers a highly comfortable design due to the breathable mesh lining and padded straps
- Made with premium quality nylon material making this dog harness a sturdy one
- With removable patches, a leash D-ring made of stainless steel material, and a standing handle with an upgraded top-mounted style
Dogline Unimax SAR Dog Harness
The wide choice of colors of Dogline Unimax SAR Dog Harness is the thing that attracts me the most. Typically, it is available in blue, red, cameo green, purple, and many more. That selection will generally make you think twice. The materials are robust enough and also feature water-resistant properties.
There is also a breathable neoprene mesh layer that acts to boost comfort over your doggo. Snug-fitting also tends to be easy and achievable with this excellent search and rescue harness for dogs. Well, give credits to the highly adjustable straps of this dog harness. The buckle closure that has a quick-release feature while also supports in controlling your dog will actually blow your mind.
- Offers long-lasting product use due to its durable and water-resistant materials
- With neoprene pads that gives comfort to your doggo
- Highly adjustable to guarantee comfort but snug-fitting to your SAR dog
- The presence of the top handle is good for controlling and assisting the doggo
- Comes with a chest plate that is generally removable and patches that can be changed off easily
- Hook and loop backing is present to remove the patches easily
X Not suitable for large dogs
ALBCORP Vest Harness for Dogs
The main purpose of ALBCORP Vest Harness for Dogs is to provide your doggo a safe and effective experience while having their SAR activities on the outside. There is a wide fluorescent reflective strip that makes this search and rescue harness for dogs on top of the line. Regardless of the time of the day, your SAR dog will be easily located because of the reflective strip that covers all over the vest.
Woven from rugged nylon and webbed polyester materials, the ALBCORP Vest Harness for Dogs is highly durable that may last for long years. There is also a highly sturdy snap-on buckle that makes the closure very easy. Aside from that, the neoprene handle generally offers excellent security and supports a convenient training session.
Not only that, but this SAR dog harness also brags for the attachment of a metal D-ring within its leash. Moreover, you will not also worry about its patches as a couple of the hook and loop panels highly secure it.
- Materials come from sturdy nylon and neoprene handle with a D-ring attached to the leash
- Highly prevents chafe due to the presence of mesh padding
- Generally recommended for different training sessions of dogs
- With hook and loop panels that attach the dog patch securely
X Inaccurate sizing
Voopet Breathable Dog Harness
When it comes to best-selling products, Voopet Breathable Dog Harness should never be out of the list. This outstanding search and rescue harness for dogs is made up of premium quality sturdy materials. Aside from that, you would never worry about those aggressive chewers as this dog harness can generally withstand those. There is also a breathable mesh that safeguards your dog’s overheating incidence, especially during hot weather conditions.
The design of the handle at the rear panel is also very attractive. It is available in a pull and choke-free feature making the dog feel comfortable during hard pulling. You can also assure the even distribution of the traction pressure around the body of the SAR dog so that choking is highly prevented.
Another feature that should also be credited for its comfort while having an intense activity is the soft sponge pad that it has. Moreover, for ease of identification, this search and rescue harness for dogs makes use of reflective straps. There is also a snaps-on present for a quick putting on and taking off feature. The convenience and protection of your dog are the responsibility of the safety locks present in this dog harness.
- Made with strong and sturdy fabric materials that prevent the tearing and chewing
- With the presence of a breathable mesh sheet and a soft sponge pad for added comfort and protection
- The quick snaps and safety lock closures offer an easy to use characteristic
- Comes with reflective straps that ensure high visibility of your doggo
- Highly perfect for everyday activities such as walking, training, running, outdoor adventures, hiking, and training
X Inaccurate sizing
What to Look for When Buying the Best Search and Rescue Harness for Dogs
Search and rescue dogs may, sometimes, risk their lives outdoor. With that, you must have to take some important features into account to have an excellent search and rescue harness for dogs. Take a look at those features below:
Generally, the most important feature that you must have to look for when you want to buy a SAR harness for your dog is its appropriate size and fit. Make sure that the dog harness you will be choosing is not that tight that may hinder the dog’s usual sitting, trotting, and lying down. Moreover, it should not also be too loose that might slip off during your dog’s normal activity.
Usually, the most company that offers SAR dog harness provides chart sizing for dogs along with their products. If that’s the case, make sure that you use those charts so that you will land on the appropriate harness for your dog.
However, it is also important to remember that various harnesses in the market involve different dog measurements. That highly depends on the way you like the harness would sit over your dog.
The harness for search and rescue activities basically has the purpose of using or wearing it all throughout the day during unusual conditions. With that taking into consideration, you must have to loom for a dog harness that gives a comfortable feeling to your dog once they wear it. Breathable mesh sheets, padded straps, and other comfortable features are great characteristics of the SAR harness that you should come after.
Keep in mind that those features will support your SAR doggo to stay highly comfortable while performing its jobs for long hours. Also, check for a dog harness that allows your shoulder to move freely. With this, do not buy a harness that comes with straps that crossed the shoulders or chest. It is also a no-no to buy a dog harness that has direct contact with your dog’s armpit.
Usually, dogs that wear a harness are those that are strong and have a powerful, aggressive desire to do what they want. So, this means that pulling the harness vigorously has a higher possibility. In case the handle or any part breaks during those conditions, the dog or the handler may possibly get injured.
Strong and durable materials are generally made off a good quality search and rescue dog harness. So, it is better to look for those. Also, don’t forget to check double stitching to guarantee the strength of the dog harness.
4-Premium Quality Handle
Since most dogs under search and rescue harness have aggressive and powerful characteristics, they need to be under control most of the times. In connection to that, the harness should have a sturdy handle so that the dog won’t able to detach it from the entire part of the harness.
Nylon is the best and highly recommended material for dog harness handles that boast a tough quality. Aside from that, it also offers double stitching. Moreover, in terms of the handle, always grab for something that is easy to grip or hold. Rubberized handles are great examples under it that have excellent grip features.
In terms of safety, the SAR harness for dogs should also contain reflective strips that usually grow in the dark. That generally aims for high visibility of your SAR doggo in a low-light condition or during walking within sidewalks. Also, a dog harness that brags for a quick release feature is a great one. With that, you will be sure that removing of the harness from your doggo is already a breeze.
The Modular Lightweight Load-carrying Equipment or MOLLE is a setting within the SAR dog harness that produces a modular set-up. This generally allows for single storage such as the pockets that can either be attached or removed within this doggy gear. In case your dog need some tools to carrying along the search and rescue operation, this MOLLE setting should be present on the dog harness.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: WHAT DO SEARCH AND RESCUE DOGS WEAR?
A: Usually, dogs for search and rescue operations wear orange vests for safety purposes as it allows the dog to be highly visible. Sometimes, bells are also attached to the dog so that the handler will track his dog by just hearing the sound of the bell. Moreover, a lighted collar worn at night is a great way to let the dog visible as well.
Q: HOW LONG DOES TRAINING FOR A SEARCH DOG LAST?
A: The training for a search and rescue dog officially takes from about 6 months up to 2 years. Yet, this depends on the time that both the handlers and the dogs are willing to invest in the training.
Q: WHAT ARE THE FOUR TYPES OF SEARCH AND RESCUE TEAMS?
A: There is a SAR team of dogs for mountain rescue and ground rescue. Generally, for the latter, it includes dogs under the search and rescue group, urban search and rescue that highly focus on looking for missing people within the cities. Combat search and rescue usually works on the battlefield. While the air-sea rescue are dogs concentrating over the water.
If you are proud of your dog’s specific task of being a working dog and you want the whole world to know about it, a search and rescue dog harness will help you do the job. You will generally find it convenient if your SAR buddy will wear it. Aside from that, this kind of harness for dogs highly guarantees your dog’s safety.
There are actually lots of good SAR dog harness available in the market. But, you really need to filter out the excellent ones. Just don’t forget to look for those important features that a dog harness should possess. That way, your SAR doggo will be more satisfied in fulfilling its job.