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We Found The 7 Best Dog Head Halters For Pull-Free Walks

How does your dog behave when you’re out for a walk? Is he hard to control and does he always seem to pull on the lead? Ours, too! The good news is, investing in a head halter can mitigate the problem of pulling by minimizing the amount of force the dog can exert.

You need to make certain the head halter is the right size for your dog.

You simply loop your dog’s head halter over his muzzle right below the eyes. Whenever your dog starts pulling, the halter applies gentle pressure on top of the muzzle, and this will pull his chin downwards. By reducing the amount of force he can apply, you’ll stay in control without causing him any undue discomfort.

PetsWorld says that a halter can help provide safety, prevent injury, and help control your dog. Let’s break down the most efficient halters on the market now so you can find the right one the easy way. Here are our top picks!

  Product Details    
01 PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar  Best Overall:  PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar You can go wrong with this high-quality, durable, and effective trainer designer leader collar.  This collar is easy to use and highly rated. PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar uses a padded neoprene nose loop for control. Check Price
02 Halti Head Collar Best for Control: Halti Head Collar We like that this one includes a Martingale loop with the head loop for gentle, reinforced control. The leash attaches to a D-ring on the collar so you still have control even if the head loop slips off. Check Price
03 Dogs My Love Nylon Halter Best Budget Pick: Dogs My Love Nylon Halter Everyone is on a budget and if you’re looking to keep expenses in line this is the one for you!  With a range of sizes and padding, comfort doesn’t have to come at a high price. Check Price
04 PetSafe Chic Gentle Leader Best Fashionable Halter: PetSafe Chic Gentle Leader Cute as can be is this option and PetSafe makes it easy to train in a fashionable way.  Need help? Their customer service is top-notch. Check Price
05 Sporn Store Head Dog Halter  Best for Not Touching the Face: Sporn Store No-Choke Training Halter The Sporn No-Choke Training Halter uses two padded straps that go underneath the front legs for control, so nothing touches your dog’s face. Pressure is applied to the chest for control. Check Price
06 Sporn Store Head Dog Halter  Best for Multitasking: Sporn Store Head Dog Halter  This halter is not a unitasker!  This halter easily converts to a regular collar for those owners who like to minimize clutter. Check Price

How We Narrowed Down the Best Dog Head Halters

We considered some of the top brands known for their durability, sturdiness, comfort, and ease of use for this review.  

We started with PetSafe, a known leader in the pet industry. This global company has been manufacturing pet products for 30 years. What distinguishes PetSafe is their trainer-designed, pet behaviorist-created, and vet recommended products that keep owners and dogs happy.

We also looked into other pet boutique retailers like Sporn Store, who made our list twice. Joseph Sporn founded the first dog daycare in 1986 and designed the first ASPCA recommended dog harness. This company is a leader in non-choking pull-control harnesses. 

We also considered dog head halters suitable for all life stages from puppy to senior. You can stop your dog from pulling and lunging without interfering with his normal mouth movements. He’ll be free to pant, yawn, or yap while you teach him to walk with good manners.

We searched for highly-rated dog collars from Amazon, Walmart, and Chewy and compared ratings and reviews of 30 dog head halters. Finally, we chose to test 10 dog head halters. We sorted them into a list of our 7 favorites and 2 runners-up. 

Best Dog Head Halters

1. Best Overall: PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar 

01 PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar 

Product Ratings

Easy to Use5/5

Dimensions:  1.25 x 5.25 x 8 inches | Weight: 4.48 ounces | Brand: PetSafe | Material: Nylon | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • A very affordable option from a reputable brand
  • Comes in 9 beautiful colors
  • Highly adjustable to fit the dog’s face

What We Didn’t Like

  • Some issues with clasp lifespan, though we didn’t have trouble during testing
  • May be too thin for some dogs
  • Can twist easily, making it unsafe for especially stubborn dogs

We love PetSafe products! PetSafe has a good reputation for producing affordable, durable, and highly effective accessories and dog equipment.

This leader collar is trainer-designed, so you’ll find your dog’s natural tendency to pull is neutralized without causing pain. In fact, the collar is perfectly humane and is even recommended by vets! We found a wide range of sizes and the PetSafe sizing allowed us to take charge of dogs all the way up to 130 pounds. 

We felt that the adjustability was first-rate. The nose loop also comes in padded neoprene, so you can guide your dog without causing him any discomfort. Along with keeping our dogs from pulling or running off, this halter allowed for a full range of motion so we could keep them safe without detracting from fun and games.

The crowning bonus of this halter is the responsive customer care and ease of returns. We ordered two of the same size and were able to swap it out fuss-free.


2. Best for Control: Halti Head Collar 

02 Halti Head Collar

Product Ratings

Easy to Use5/5

Dimensions:  1.18 x 5.31 x 8.07 inches | Weight: 2.08 ounces | Brand: The Company of Animals | Material:  Nylon | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • Durable nylon material
  • Noseband is padded neoprene
  • Securely clips to collar with a D-ring

What We Didn’t Like

  • Webbing could be more robust
  • Colors limited to only red and black
  • Not fully adjustable

We love that Halti has been around since 1979. The firm is an industry legend when it comes to collars and leaders. This halter is the classic that many imitate but few manage to beat. 

The first thing we noticed when we started using this halter was its ability to steer our dog without causing him too much discomfort. The noseband comes in padded neoprene, which is hardwearing and soft.

The best part about this collar is the Martingale loop on the nose loop. When the dog pulls, the Martingale loop closes gently, adding pressure around the muzzle to discourage pulling without causing any pressure on the neck or head.

The lead attaches to a D-ring on the collar, pulling pressure away from the neck. This is a highly effective and humane way to stop stubborn pulling. We also love that it comes with a free training guide, so you know that you’re training your dog the right way.


3. Best Budget Pick: Dogs My Love Nylon Halter 

04 PetSafe Chic Gentle Leader

Product Ratings

Easy to Use4/5

Dimensions:  3.4 x 2.5 x 1 inches | Weight: 2.4 ounces | Brand: Dogs My Love | Material: Nylon | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • Made with soft and strong nylon
  • Comes in 6 sizes
  • Lets your dog yawn and pant

What We Didn’t Like

  • Feels lightweight and possibly not robust
  • Sizing is problematic, product runs small
  • Some dogs can slip out of this halter

The Dogs My Love Store is brimming with equipment and accessories to liven up your dog’s life. We thought this halter was a great way to deliver comfort to your pup while ensuring you retain the upper hand when you’re out for walks.

You can choose from a half-dozen sizes to get the snuggest possible fit for your dog. Remember to measure the circumference of your pup’s snout roughly 1-inch from the tip.

We loved the rugged nylon and the padded neoprene nose strap, which is standard on these halters. This allowed us to exert the pressure needed to stop our dog from pulling without undue discomfort.

The only concern we had with this halter was the slightly delicate feel. We felt that it might not be robust enough for serious pullers. If you have a powerful or aggressive dog, you may want to scope out some of the other halters on our shortlist. For owners of more placid dogs, this collar is a smart bet.


4. Best Fashionable Halter: PetSafe Chic Gentle Lead 

04 PetSafe Chic Gentle Leader

Product Ratings

Easy to Use4/5

Dimensions: 1.25 x 5.25 x 8 inches | Weight: 6.08 ounces | Brand: PetSafe | Material:  Polyester | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • Comes in fun designs like donuts, poppies, and bones
  • Fully adjustable to the dog
  • Responsive customer service

What We Didn’t Like

  • Buckle felt flimsy
  • Some dogs can slip through the face strap
  • Sizing can be problematic so measure carefully

PetSafe delivers another winner with this adorable printed halter. Unlike many halters finished in plain black or brown, you can choose from an array of vibrant and fun designs to brighten your dog’s style.

This Gentle Leader collar comes in 5 sizes to suit dogs from less than 5-pounds to dogs over 130-pounds. We loved the simple snap closure that makes it easy to put on or remove this collar.

The halter is highly adjustable, allowing you to get a snug fit without causing your dog any discomfort. At the same time, you’ll remain the master of his movements, so you can take him anywhere with complete confidence.

We’d like to see a sturdier buckle, but in all other areas, the Gentle Leader is a powerful performer we can’t recommend strongly enough.


5. Best for Not Touching the Face: Sporn Store No-Choke Training Halter

05 Sporn Store Head Dog Halter 

Product Ratings

Easy to Use4/5

Dimensions: 8.5 x 2 x 5.5 inches | Weight: 14.88 ounces | Brand: Sporn | Material:  Braided cord with nickle | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • Easy to slip on and off
  • Lifetime guarantee 
  • The leg straps are heavily padded for comfort

What We Didn’t Like

  • Color can run if washed
  • Restocking fee with returns
  • Some dogs may be irritated by the feeling of the straps rubbing against their body

The Sporn Store produces many dog accessories like this head halter that are competitively priced, solidly built, and a pleasure to use.

We were amazed at how durable and sturdy this halter is. The cord of this halter is braided for extra strength and reinforced with steel fasteners. The nylon is also rugged, built to endure, and padded for comfort.

When our dog pulled on the leash, the padded straps put gentle pressure on the front legs, discouraging his behavior. We like knowing that we have firm control without hurting our dog in any way. 

Using the patented Sporn Effect technique, you’ll be amazed at how confidently you can steer your dog. Some dogs don’t like the feeling of the straps rubbing their body during walks.

If you’re still in any element of doubt, perhaps the no-quibbles lifetime guarantee will ease your mind and swing your decision. 

Some reviewers mentioned that the dye on this halter runs, so wash with care. We didn’t have this trouble with the Sporn halter, though note that we washed it by hand in cold water and can’t vouch for machine washing.


6. Best for Multitasking: Sporn Store Head Dog Halter 

06 Sporn Store Head Dog Halter 

Product Ratings

Easy to Use4/5

Color: Black | Material: Nylon | Brand: Sporn | Dimensions LxWxH: 8.5 x 2 x 5.5 inches

What We Liked

  • Vet recommended for safe walking with dogs who pull
  • Converts to a regular collar making it a multitasker
  • Made for tough pullers

What We Didn’t Like

  • Some report of difficulty in getting good fit
  • Some reports of sizing running small
  • Placement on the muzzle can be tricky

We have another fine example from the Sporn Store with this dog head halter, but how does it differentiate itself from the pack?

Firstly, this halter easily converts into a standard collar while remaining a highly-effective head loop collar. If you’re tired of the overflow of pet gear in your home, streamline things with this 2-in-1 halter.

As soon as we felt our dog pulling, the padded noseband applied firm but comfortable pressure to our dog’s muzzle. This was enough to stop him in his tracks and dissuade him from going where he shouldn’t.

Customer care at the Sporn Store is truly impressive. If you run into any problems, you’re covered by a comprehensive and generous lifetime guarantee. What more could you ask for?


7. Best for a Customized Fit: GoodBoy Coastal Pet Head Halter 

07 GoodBoy Coastal Pet Head Halter

Product Ratings

Easy to Use4/5

Dimensions: 5.55 x 2.6 x 2.24 inches | Weight: 5.86 ounces | Brand: GoodBoy | Material:  Nylon, Neoprene, Plastic | Dogs: All Breeds

What We Liked

  • Allows for full control of heavy pullers
  • Made with padded neoprene and reinforced stitching
  • Has reflective stitching for safe night walking

What We Didn’t Like

  • It’s possible to tighten the head loop too much
  • Some issues with fit, so measure carefully
  • Some customer reports of issues with durability, though we felt that the one we tested will hold up to continuous use

This traditional dog head halter from GoodBoy is designed to stop vigorous dogs from pulling or otherwise misbehaving when you’re out for a walk.

The classic head halter slips over your dog’s head and nose and is adjusted by a plastic clasp under the muzzle. When he starts to pull, the halter will restrict gently but firmly on his snout, enough to stop that unwanted pulling. You’ll find it easy to steer your dog, and he won’t suffer in the process.

While we found this was highly effective for our dog, we also believe that some owners could tighten the nose loop too much, causing pain or distress for the dog. We prefer a Martingale loop over this style of clasp loop, but it did work really well, so we chose to recommend it.

The quick-release buckle lets you slip this halter on and off with ease. It’s highly adjustable, too. This halter comes in 4 sizes to suit small to very large dogs. That said, it’s not made or recommended for toy breeds or dogs with short muzzles.


Comparison Chart

RatingsOverall RatingComfortDurabilitySturdinessEasy to Use
Best Overall4.95/55/54/55/5
Best Runner Up4.84/55/54/55/5
Best Budget 4.64/54/54/54/5
PetSafe Chic Gentle Leader4.64/54/54/54/5
Sporn Store No-Choke Training Halter4.64/53/55/54/5
Sporn Store Head Dog Halter4.64/53/55/54/5
GoodBoy Coastal Pet Head Halter4.64/53/55/54/5

The Winner

We thought that the PetSafe Gentle Lead Collar was the clear winner in our best dog head halters review. We considered several factors like comfort, durability, sturdiness, and ease of use, and this halter exceeded expectations!

You’ll find it easy to steer your dog, and he won’t suffer. The American Kennel Club provides an easy tutorial on how to put on a dog harness.

READ MORE: Best Escape-Proof Dog Harnesses. Keep your dog by your side with these easy-to-use escape-proof dog harnesses – tried and tested!

Choosing The Best Dog Head Halters

Now, of all the equipment you’ll buy as a dog owner, a head halter doesn’t come among the most challenging buying decisions. The main things that count when you’re on the buying trail can be very easily summarized as follows:


You need to make certain the head halter is the right size for your dog. Most manufacturers give a suggested weight range. Other brands will quote dog snout sizes or neck sizes. You should also read some user reviews to ensure there are no issues with sizing.


Nylon and polyester are the most common choices for head halters. You should look for a material that’s hard-wearing, weather-resistant, and most importantly, comfortable for your dog.


Look for user reviews that mention any issues with a lack of control. All halters should allow you to take easy charge of your dog without hurting him. Make sure that the strap thickness is the right width for your dog to ensure that it stays in place on his muzzle.

Easy to Use

If the halter is complicated, it may be difficult to place properly on your dog. Other factors to consider are how easy it is to adjust and snap into place. The clip should be smooth and simple to clip on.

Remember that halters aren’t just for pull-free walks but are important for car rides and to help your older or injured dog into your car. 

When you get your dog into the car, it can become projectile in an accident. A car harness is the best way to keep your dog safe and secure.

Check out our top picks for the best dog harnesses for car travel and for the best dog lift harnesses to support injured or senior dogs.

Honorable Mentions

Here’s a quick look at the halters that didn’t make our best dog head halters list:

1. Walk ‘N Train Polyester Dog Head Collar 

The Walk ‘N Train Dog Head Collar is a high-grade halter with a padded noseband and a Martingale style loop for extra control. The no-pull halter lets us guide our dog without ever causing him any distress. 

We liked the way the Halti Head Collar worked and felt for our dog, so we recommended it instead of this one.

2. Dog & Field Anti-Pull Leash 

Dog & Field serves up a universally-sized anti-pull leash, but is it any good? We tried it and found that it works really well, but we didn’t like the look of the cotton rope design. We also didn’t like the way it slipped through the ring at the back of the neck to tighten at the muzzle. 

Finally, we felt it was pretty expensive for what you get, so we stuck with our overall recommendations for the Halti Head Collar and the PetSafe Gentle Leader Collar.

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Jesse Hopping, CCDT

Jesse is a natural-born dog-lover certified dog trainer (CCDT), dog foster, and former volunteer at Richmond SPCA and surrounding dog shelters for over 10 years. Her pack includes a Bernedoodle and 3 Boston Terriers. She’s sipping caramel coffee and watching her pack play in the sun when she’s not writing blogs. Jesse has her Certified Dog Trainer designation from CATCH Canine Trainers Academy since 2018 and and majored in English from the University of Virginia.

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