Spring has sprung, and that means dusting off the sneakers and heading out with your dog for some fresh air and sunshine. But, wait; you remember that you still need to get a new leash for your fur friend. However, with all the products on the market, the decision can be ruff!

Thankfully, your friends at Union Lake Pet Services are here to help you find the best, safest leash for your dog.

Buying a New Leash for Your Dog

Buying a leash seems pretty straightforward, right? Well, not all leashes are created equal. In fact, poor design or dangerous features can set your dog up for a potential accident or escape, particularly if your dog is just learning to loose-leash walk.

When it comes to options, the following designs are the most common:

  • Standard straight leash – These are your typical dog leashes, between 4-8 feet in length. They’re available in several materials, including braided cotton, nylon, chain, and leather.
  • Adjustable leash – These are similar in design but can be adjusted in length, ranging from 3-6 feet. They’re great for meeting the needs of a growing puppy.
  • Retractable leash – This leash is often viewed as convenient because it allows the dog to have greater freedom; however, due to a number of injuries that have occurred, this leash is only recommended for certain dogs. It’s best suited for a dog who’s quite comfortable with loose leash walking and is very well trained.
  • Specialty leashes – These include hands-free leashes for tandem jogging with your dog, slip leads for training, and choke-free leashes that work with a torso harness.

Because of the wide range of leashes, the first few questions to ask yourself are about your pet and his or her needs:

  • Size and age – Toy or small breeds and puppies don’t need more than 6 feet of leash, whereas a well-trained adult would benefit from more room to roam. Likewise, dog size will help you determine the width and durability of your new leash.
  • Level of training – In those initial weeks of training, it’s best not to use a very long leash or one that could encourage choking if your pet happens to see a squirrel (“Squirrel!!”). In this case, a straight leash or a harness and 4-foot leash combo may be the best choice.
  • When you walk – If you plan on walking your dog before or after work, it’s a good idea to look for a leash made of reflective material for greater visibility at night and before dawn.
  • Where you walk – On busy streets and sidewalks, a shorter leash is safer for your pet.
  • Temperament – Your pet’s general disposition will play a key role in choosing a leash for your dog. For pets who love to chew through nylon or leather, a sturdy chain leash may be your best bet.

All of these factors should give you some indication as to which leash is the ideal choice for your four-legged friend.

Top-rated leashes you can find online or in your local pet supply store include:

For safe leash recommendations or for information about leash training, please contact our trainers. We’re happy to help!