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Truelove TLH5551 Harness

About Truelove

They are a smaller company, but they deserve some more publicity! They have good quality products at a reasonable price and also fantastic customer service! They only sell a few types of harnesses, leashes, collars, and shoes but those come in different sizes and colors.

Truelove TLH5551 Harness Review

I had a tough time writing this review from multiple reasons. I deleted and rewrote many parts of it until I realized my main problem is that the small and medium sized TLH5551 harnesses are just so different that they would deserve two separate posts. I used these almost every day for 1.5 years while Mia grow up in the meantime so I have experience with using both on “different sized” dogs.

In general, it is a durable, sturdy harness with strong buckles, great colors and reflective parts. I wouldn’t say that they still look like new after 1.5 years, but they only have a few cosmetic issues despite using it on long hikes, summer swims, snowstorms, etc.

One important thing to start with is that the neck part is NOT adjustable. It only has a buckle which makes it easy to put on if you have a dog with a big head or one which doesn’t like to put their head into a harness. The chest strap has a wide range for adjustment, but the non-adjustable part between the legs will determine where the harness will be positioned - see my comments later about the different length of this part on the two different sized harnesses. It has a no-pull front ring and a back-ring which sits far back on the dog. The harness does not restrict shoulder movement - at least not on Mia, and they come in five colors and sizes.

About the two sizes

I first bought this harness when Mia was around seven months old. Since she was between sizes and was still growing, I ordered both a small and a medium to check them out in real life, and I’m happy I did so. The size chart only uses the chest measurements to determine your dog’s size: the small one is 19-22.5 inch (48-57 cm), while the medium is 23.5-28.5 inch (60-72 cm).

On the pictures below you will see the huge differences between the two harnesses. The yellow is a small one; the orange is medium:

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The small size only has a plastic front clip while the medium has a metal one.

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Back then the medium size was way too big for Mia even though the chest part fit her well. The pictures below show why you should consider the other parameters of a harness, not just the one which the sizing is based on. The fit was even worse when the harness got wet and the mesh material soaked in the water making it heavy.

Seven-eight months old Mia in the medium harness: Post-Image

Even if the chest is a perfect fit, the harness itself is still too big: the neck part sits a little too low on her shoulders restricting her movement if she would pull on the leash.

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After a swim you can see how it is sliding around on the dog: Post-Image

I started with using the small harness waiting for her to grow into the medium one but I kept thinking if the small one is too small for her. Sometimes it seemed the chest part sits too close to her armpits, but it didn’t seem to bother her.

Below is the ten months old Mia in the small harness - it’s getting a little too small at this point, but the part between the legs was still too wide if I used the medium harness: Post-Image

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The medium harness sits far behind her legs, which is comfortable for the dog when walking ahead of you but it is also causing the harness to slide up to the dog’s neck when you pull it forward with the leash. This just looks weird, and you get that uncomfortable feeling that it’s not supposed to be like this, but she never managed to slid out from it.

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As Mia grew, the chest part of the small (yellow) harness got closer to her armpits and the orange left way more room for her movement, so I preferred the orange for hikes or long walks but used the small one if I wanted to use the no-pull ring e.g. for a shorter walk in the city.

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The no-pull ring is great but will only work if the harness is a perfect fit because of the mentioned reasons. I wasn’t able to use it with the orange one even when she grew up because it just moves the harness to the side and Mia could even step out from it. I had the same experience with their TLH6071 harness harness later.

The no-pull ring worked great with the yellow one since that had no room behind her front legs to slide up or to the sides.

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The small one was a good fit and stayed in place well even when it was heavy from the water. Mia is probably 8-9 months old on these pictures.

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Review Summary

I love this harness, and besides finding it practical and convenient, I also get a lot of compliment from strangers who ask where I got it from. I like the wide straps and the heavy duty design of the medium size.

Before buying it, consider the body type/muscularity of your dog because you have limited options to adjust it. If you want to use the front-clip, be sure it is a perfect fit. I think the front-clip would work better on a muscular dog with a deep chest rather than on a skinny dog. Also, consider that the width of the part between the dog’s leg is 2.4 inches (6 cm) for the medium and 1.8 inches (4.5 cm) for the small - be sure it will be comfortable for your dog to walk with this between the front legs.

Mia is one year old on these pictures - the medium was still a little big for her, see how the part between her legs is too wide?

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Functionality Review

No-pull: Probably works if the dog’s body type is a better fit. Doesn’t work for me.

Running/biking (as an occasional hobby, buy specific equipment if you want to get into it seriously): every dog is different, be sure it doesn’t interfere with the shoulder movement. The medium size can be a good option with the wide straps.

Hiking: Great, we use it all the time. I find it smart that the handle on the back is parallel with the dog’s movement which makes it harder to get stuck on something in the forest while it provides an easy way to help up the pup on rocks/out of water etc. Good to know that the part between the legs will collect all the mud and the mesh material of the harness can take a long time to dry. On the other hand, I expected that I would need to wash it frequently, but it doesn’t look too dirty.

City walk: I can repeat the same thing: It’s great if it’s a perfect fit, otherwise be careful with the harness sliding up when pulling forward. A scared dog might be able to slide out from it especially if you are using the front clip.

Easy to put on/adjust: limited adjustability, easy to put on if your dog’s head can go through the neck part. If not, you can still use the buckle on the neck part; it’s just more time consuming to use all three buckles every time.

Visibility: great: bright colors and reflective elements all over. See below how visible it is in a snowstorm.

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Where to buy

I found this product through Amazon, here is the link, where you can find the size chart as well.

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