Sebatian, a poodle who lost his leg to a vicious attack three years ago, now wears the spiky harness – created by two Vancouver veterinary professionals. (PredatorBWear)

Sebatian, a poodle who lost his leg to a vicious attack three years ago, now wears the spiky harness – created by two Vancouver veterinary professionals. (PredatorBWear)

Spike-strip harness created to protect small dogs from B.C. cougars, coyotes

Vancouver veterinary professionals designed the harness as a solution to dangerous predators

Veterinary professionals Alison Columbus and Janice Voth are no strangers to the current dangers facing small and medium-sized dogs in the outdoors.

Working together at a North Vancouver clinic, the pair has recently seen an influx of pets coming in with wounds from other coyotes and cougars,” Voth told Black Press Media.

Just this week, a three-month-old German Shepherd puppy was snatched and carried away by a cougar in the Tri-Cities area on Thursday night. It is now assumed dead.

The duo decided to do something about it.

They created PredatorBWear – a mesh harness fitted with plastic spikes meant to deter domestic and wild animals from preying upon the canine wearing it.

“They go for the neck, they go for the back and they try to carry the dog away to a secondary location,” said Columbus, a veterinary technician.

“We tried to make something that when predators bite down on the dog the spikes will hit the roof of their mouth,” explained Voth, who works as a veterinary assistant.

“It isn’t designed to hurt the other animal, the spikes are hollow and light. It’s meant to give the owner that couple of extra seconds to grab their pet to get away.”

RELATED: Hollywood actor’s dog nabbed in Vancouver by wily coyote at Stanley Park

The concept was first designed in Columbus’ living room with her 14-year-old Cavalier-Bichon cross, Abby.

Following its December 2019 launch, PredatorBWear was been met with mostly positive reviews. However, Voth said some dog owners don’t like the look of the spikes.

The pair have filled orders for people in Australia, Spain, and Israel.

They also donate harnesses to dogs who have come into their clinic having been seriously injured by larger canine breeds.

Toy poodle Sebastian lost his leg after being attacked three years ago. A few months ago, he was brought in injured again.

The pair outfitted Sebastian in a harness, “so he and his family can feel safer on their walks. He holds a very special place in our hearts,” Voth said.

So far, no dog owners have reported their pets being attacked while wearing the harness.

“That’s a good sign,” Voth responded.

PredatorBWear costs $99 and comes in four sizes, ranging from fitting a mini chihuahua-sized breed to one up to 45 pounds.

RELATED: Runners and pets fall target to coyotes, cougars in Lower Mainland



sarah.grochowski@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism? Make a donation here.

cougar attackVancouver

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Millstone River in Nanaimo. (News Bulletin file photo)
Regional district looks at value of Nanaimo’s natural assets

Report focused on the Millstone River could inform future decisions on corporate asset management

Protesters gather along the Pearson Bridge on Terminal Avenue in downtown Nanaimo last month as part of an event called Worth More Standing. (News Bulletin file photo)
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: B.C. hasn’t managed forests properly

Protesters opposing logging in Fairy Creek speak for many British Columbians, say letter writers

Nanaimo singer Victoria Vaughn recently released an EP with local producer Austin Penner. (Photo courtesy Taylor Murray)
Nanaimo singer and recent VIU grad releases EP about becoming an adult

Victoria Vaughn’s ‘Growing Pains’ recorded with local producer Austin Penner

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control has listed Harbour Air and Air Canada flights to and from Nanaimo, from April 3, 4 and 12, on its list of flights with COVID-19. (News Bulletin file)
COVID-19 cases reported for Air Canada, Harbour Air flights, says disease control centre

Nanaimo flights for April 3, 4 and 12 listed on BCCDC’s list of flights with COVID-19

Rebates through Clean B.C.’s Better Homes New Construction program are available, says the City of Nanaimo. (Vancouver Island University photo)
Energy-efficient home builds in Nanaimo eligible for up to $15K in rebates

All building permits issued on, or after, April 1, 2020 eligible, says City of Nanaimo

Pat Kauwell, a semi-retired construction manager, lives in his fifth-wheel trailer on Maxey Road because that’s what he can afford on his pension, but a Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw prohibits using RVs as permanent dwellings, leaving Kauwell and others like him with few affordable housing options. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Housing crunch or not, it’s illegal to live in an RV in Nanaimo

Regional District of Nanaimo bylaw forcing pensioner to move RV he calls home off private farm land

Noel Brown, Snuneymuxw First Nation carver, observes the house post he carved, which now is situated in front of the Kw’umut Lelum centre on Centre Street in Nanaimo. (Karl Yu/News Bulletin)
House post representative of work of Kw’umut Lelum in Nanaimo

Snuneymuxw First Nation artist Noel Brown’s carved red cedar house post unveiled Friday, April 16

(Black Press file photo).
Multiple stabbings at Vancouver Island bush party

Three youths hospitalized after an assault in Comox

A syringe is loaded with COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. to open up COVID vaccine registration to all B.C. residents 18+ in April

Registration does not equate to being able to book an appointment

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
Courtenay fossil hunter finds ancient turtle on local river

The specimen will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Selina Robinson is shown in Coquitlam, B.C., on Friday November 17, 2017. British Columbia’s finance minister says her professional training as a family therapist helped her develop the New Democrat government’s first budget during the COVID-19 pandemic, which she will table Tuesday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. finance minister to table historic pandemic-challenged deficit budget

Budget aims to take care of people during pandemic while preparing for post-COVID-19 recovery, Robinson said

Each spring, the Okanagan Fest-of-Ale is held in Penticton. This year, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival will not be held. However, beer is still available. How much do you know about this beverage? (pxfuel.com)
QUIZ: How much do you really know about beer?

Put your knowledge to the test with this short quiz

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions are against the new model, but B.C. School Sports (BCSS) and its board is in favour

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

Most Read