Duo Technical Gear is a very cool company introducing innovative solutions for everyday problems. They tried out many harnesses and decided to develop their designs, addressing the most common issues they saw.
First it's easy to overlook this durable and well-made harness when browsing DUO Gear's harnesses, but this one deserves your attention as well!
The Eclipse harness has a Y-design with four adjustment points and two crack-resistant plastic buckles.
In the case of this harness, the devil is in the details. DUO Gear created a simple but practical harness with high-quality materials all around to ensure you can use it for a long time.
The first unique feature that someone would notice is the MilSpec Cordura™ fabric outer layer, an extremely strong and durable material.
The inside of the harness is made of a breathable mesh material that provides padding and is easy on the fur.
The chest plate has a ballistic nylon skid plate to protect the dog's chest when running through dense undergrowth.
The back panel features a large (1.5”) and heavy-duty ring that makes attaching the leash quick and easy. There is also a webbing/molle handle that's easy to grab but doesn't stick out too much.
The newer version of this harness is already available on the website and that also has a smaller O-ring on the front for no-pull training.
After adjusting all the straps, this harness fit Mia well. We haven't had any issues with the room behind the front legs, neither with the straps, sliders, or buckles loosening up.
We used this harness for many walks and hikes and got to like it more after every outing. After Mia was running around in the bushes with this for months, there is still no sign of a tear or wear on it. I'm sure the chest plate got scratched and poked many times, but you wouldn't tell it isn't new after a proper cleaning.
Mesh-style padding tends to soak in the mud and dirt and make the chest panel heavier, making the harness shift forward. This was somewhat noticeable with this harness, but I think the stiffer outer material helped keep it in place reasonably well, even when it was wet.
There was significant mud and hair stuck to the mesh after a hike, but it was surprisingly easy to clean. Most of the dirt was easy to shake off once the harness dried, and the fur is easy to remove with a lint roller.
The wide design of the chest plate is excellent to protect the dog when running through bushes, but it also makes it a little hard to fit narrower dogs. The width of the chest plate was slightly touching the inside of Mia's legs which is something to keep an eye on if your dog has sensitive skin.
In another article we talked about how to decide if the harness is a good fit for a dog, and we mentioned that Y-harnesses with wide neck straps tend to go over the shoulder joint of narrow dogs. When you go through the photos, you can see that this harness was borderline in fitting Mia's shoulders. This is not something I would be worried about in her case since she isn't pulling much on the leash, but if your dog does, this would be something to check when deciding on the fit.
There were only two features of this harness that bugged me sometimes. The back handle comes flattened to one side, I assume, because they are stored flat. The handle isn't too rigid, but ours always went back to this sideways tilt, making the leash get stuck in it every time. This isn't a big issue, you can just tug more on the leash to make it pop over, but that also makes the harness rotate a little. The big O-ring could make the leash handling so easy only if it wouldn't constantly be caught on the handle.
I had a similar issue with the sliders on the neck-straps. If we walk through a busier area, I like to attach the leash to the collar instead of the harness, but if you let the leash loosen, it will get caught in the buckles when you pull on it next time. This was a little more annoying because a thin leash can so neatly get stuck there that you can't just tug to free the leash but have to lean over every time to get it out.
You can try pushing the slider higher up on the neck-straps; it will depend on the dog's body shape how much that helps with this, and it will also leave more webbing dangling there. If you usually only attach the leash to the back ring, this is not a concern for you.
• No-pull correction: The harness we tested doesn't have a no-pull ring, but the newer version does. The front O-ring seems to be high enough on the chest to provide good steering power for no-pull training, but we haven't tested that.
• Running/Biking (as an irregular hobby, buy specific equipment if you want to get into it seriously): I would recommend a harness with the back ring attached farther back on the dog for better pressure distribution on the chest. You can use this harness to give running/biking with your dog a try before deciding to buy a more suitable gear.
• Hiking: It's a sturdy and durable harness that probably lasts long, even with frequent hikes. The handle on the back doesn't stick out much, but there is a slight chance it could get stuck on bushes. With the new version, the front ring might be a more significant risk of making the dog gets caught on something in the forest. The padded parts prevent chafing on the chest, and the broad chest panel is excellent to protect the dog.
• City walk: Works well. Having the leash attachment point in the middle of the back of the harness provides good steering power and control.
• Easy to put on/adjust: It only has buckles on the chest straps, so you have to pull the harness over the head and then use the buckles on both sides to fix the harness. Adjusting is easy.
• Visibility: it doesn't have any reflective stripes.
Altogether this is a well-thought-through harness made to handle any adventures and last you for a long time. The design of the front panel is great to protect the dog while running off-leash in the woods, and the durability of the materials seems outstanding so far.
The version we used is the perfect harness for any off-the-grid adventure! While we haven't tested the added O-ring on the new version, it seems to pose a risk of getting caught on something in dense undergrowth. If this is a concern for you, I recommend reaching out to DUO Gear. Since the harnesses are made to order; they might be able to offer you one without the ring!
As always, be sure the harness is a good fit for YOUR dog. If you need help deciding, read our article on harness fitting and utilize DUO Gear's 30-day return offer if concerned.
You can buy the American Eclipse Adventure harness on their website. For reference, Mia had a Medium harness.
Many of you asked Mia's measurements to better understand the different products’ fit. Your best chance of finding a good fitting gear is always to measure (and remeasure) your dog. Even we grab the measuring tape before getting a new product - even though we tested a lot of them, and have a good feeling of her size by now.
I share her measurements below, but don't go ahead and order the same size just because your dog is similar to Mia ;)
• Shoulder height: 19.5 inches (50 cm)
• Weight: 37-44 pounds (17-20 kg)
• Widest chest circumference (where the most harness would have the chest strap): 25-26 inches (63-65 cm)
• Neck circumference for collars: 15-16 inches (38-40 cm)
• Back lengths: 22 inches (56 cm)