The Best Gear for Barrel-Chested Breeds
If you happen to be the lucky person belonging to a barrel-chested breed, you know it’s not easy to find gear that fits their unique physique.
It’s compounded by the size and strength of many of these dogs; you need durable products as well. Here are some of the must-haves for barrel-chested dog breeds along with our favorite products in each category.
For strong, stocky pups, a harness is a necessity. Even for perfect walkers, taking the pressure off your dog’s throat can only help him breathe easier. Finding a harness that fits around his chest, though, can be quite a task. Look for several adjustable points, notably around the chest. One great option is the Ruffwear Web Master harness, which allows for full size customization. It’s super durable, and it includes a handle on the top to help your pup over obstacles or as he ages.
A solid leash and collar
Even if you rely on a harness for walks, your dog needs a solid leash-and-collar set. Barrel-chested dogs often have thick necks and sometimes, like in the case of Boxers, a short snout. A collar, even if it’s secondary to a harness, should be wide and thick to diminish pressure on a single spot. The wide neoprene collars from EzyDog fit the bill while being super simple to clean. Pair it with a matching leash or a Zero Shock leash if your dog happens to be a puller.
The proper feeding dish
The veterinary jury is out about raised feeding dishes. There’s a range of studies that indicate that raised feeders may diminish risk of bloat, or they might not. If you choose to go with a raised feeder, pair it with a slow-feed bowl, like those from Outward Hound. You can also turn feeding time into a game and slow down your chow hound with an interactive and eco-friendly feeder like the new one from PAW5.
We all love our barrel-chested pups, of course. The sad reality is that not everyone else does. There is a lot of fear surrounding pit-bull-type dogs, in particular, and that often trickles over to fears of similar-looking dogs. Deck your dog in cute apparel, like a festive sweater. It’s difficult to find ones that are large enough to fit barrel chests, though, so look for one with a Velcro strap across the chest rather than arm holes. If a sweater isn’t right for your pup, or you haven’t found one that fits, consider a collar adornment, like a flower or bowtie. Search Etsy for one that suits your dog’s personality.