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the only people I know who use couplers on dogs of any decent size (or likelyhood to bolt) use them on the Webmaster harness. I know I mention it whenever harnesses come up, but it really is the most secure and comfortable harness that I or anyone I know has found.

You can also to a little link between the collar and the harness with a carabiner or a double ended snap. Hard to say how it would fit for smaller dogs. On medium/big dogs, I like a snap-wire-snap hookup (a farm store can attach snaps to the ends up a 6-inch or so length of coated wire)

I generally hold two leads, even if only in the same hand.
 

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Here's an example of what i'm talking about for hooking harness to collar:


One source for a pre-made one is Ella's Lead

Or here's one that attaches to the leash (so, leash to harness, attachment from leash to collar)


And here's the harness ( you can see why it is dang near impossible to slip)
 

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I was able to get mine on sale and bought a leash with it, plus shipping for $40.
It has gotten some real use and isn't any worse for the wear.

If someone is a big hiker and has a medium/large dog, it can be worth splurging for the backpack that has the webmaster as the base harness with detachable "saddle bags" for the backpack. Not cheap at all, but if you put in the miles, it is great. a few people I know use the full backpack combo (I just have the harness) and the packs stay nicely centered and balanced the whole hike.
 
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