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Extendable dog leads(36 Posts)
Are they so bad?
My puppy is nearly 5 months old now. I have had her on a standard short lead (and have a long line too) for 'business ' walks and at the mo, before she hits her adolescence, we have lovely off lead romps in the meadows near us.
But just about everyone I see in the street has their dog on an extendable lead, which makes me feel a bit mean to my girl.
However the FB training group doesn't recommend then, neither does the puppy class trainer.
Her walking isn't perfect but it's not bad either.. first walk of the day is a quick wee/poo one before I got to work (she's at home with my son in the day) then I take her for a nice long off lead walk when I get home and he goes to work. Last thing at night is another wee walk and I thought it might be nice to let her have a bit more freedom on her sniffs.
I'm not sure why the trainers are saying they are bad...can anyone enlighten me as I'd like to try one!
No idea. I used one with my last dog.
They are awful. Can break. Can allow dogs to get into the road. Injure others as they wrap around legs. Don’t offer control.
Longline when needed. (Attached to a harness) and decent lead the rest of the time.
Did you see that awful Supervet episode where a dog ended up under traffic after it was startled and the owner couldn’t lock the lead quickly enough?
You have very little control over the dog, that's why trainers don't like them.
Dreadful things - google retractable dog lead injuries - and find out!
They are dreadful - especially when they slip out of your hand & fly towards your dog, giving him a massive clunk on his head. This in turn will make them run away from the unexpected & undeserved blow, possibly straight into traffic. Please don't buy one.
Lovely dog! Seriously those leads are a danger to the dog as well as the owner - please don't use one
She’s beautiful! I use an Ancol lead that’s quite long. Maybe look for longer fixed leads that are short enough to use by a road?
I've used one for years with my dog.
It very much depends on the dog, the type of lead and how sensible the dog owner is when using one.
If your dog pulls, don't use one.
If you are training your dog to walk properly on the lead, don't use one.
Unless you have complete control over your dog, don't use one.
Never ever buy one that is made with a metal strip, they're very dangerous and can cause injury to both dog and owner. So only ever use one that is entirely made from strong tape.
Buy one of only the best quality. A cheap one will snap.
Never use one attached to a collar, they should only ever be attached to a harness.
Also, if you have a big strong dog, especially if the dog is still quite young, even if they are pretty reliable with regard to pulling, you could still find the odd occasion that you're on the end of long lead being pulled by a strong dog, so would steer clear of them in those circumstances too.
My dog is small and is very reliable on the lead, she 8 years old now so knows how to behave.
A lot of our walks are in places where she could end up down a steep bank in deep water if she slipped, the extending lead gives her freedom in those places and removes the risk of her getting hurt.
I suspect a lot of trainers don't like them because they do have the potential to cause problems in certain circumstances if not used correctly.
They seem to be universally hated on MN.
Speaking as a driver, they fill me with dread.
I can't stand them, but then I've had friction burns to my e.g. when someone else's dog wrapped its bloody extending lead around me.
When I see a dog on an extending lead coming, I generally expect an owner who isn't concentrating and a dog with zero recall and few manners. Obviously there are exceptions: @pigsDOfly is probably one - and the advice in that post is sound, too: don't use if teaching loose lead walking or with a big dog, etc.
I think they're horrendous. My DH bought one for our beagle so he could "explore" on lead and I think it ended up in the bin after one walk!
They're heavy, offer no control over the dog and are so dangerous near roads. I often drive and see a dog I think is off lead and then see an owner standing several foot away totally oblivious to the fact that their dog is on the road.
So many people use them and let their dog wander and think they're safe because "they're on lead". We use a short rope lead clipped to his collar - gives me far more control and means I can grab the lead if there's danger ahead.
I use one and think they have thier place.
They can be dangerous because:
- attached to the dog's neck they allow the dog to have a greater run up before coming to a sudden stop and all that energy is then transferred to the neck, risking injury. Use it clipped to a harness only and if your dog is a run until the lead stops then don't give them the full length of the lead to do that.
- the thin, wire types can cause terrible injuries to dogs and people if they wrap around legs etc. Find one that is a tape as thick as the fixed lead you would use for your sized dog. They are out there.
- the locking mechanism can fail. Don't use the locking mehanism anywhere that will matter. I used a fixed lead on roads but if I have to use the extendy then I feed out enough length to hold it like a fixed lead (this is another reason using a tape lead is better than a wire). Use one rated for a weight well above your dog's weight; mine is double.
- they irritate other people walking near by because of the dog ca wrap around them and trip them up. Don't let them.
I find ours invaluable for situations such as walking around our local deer park, or across livestock land such as recently in the Dales where there are limited physical boundariesbetween us and livestock but the space we're walking on is huge.
I would consider a long line to be more dangerous in that circumstance because you need to be watching where to place your feet when on rocky, uneven ground rather than focussing on the lead. Plus, I've given myself more injuries with the long line than the extendy so I eye it with much more caution. Again, it has it's place but hill walking isn't one of them (for me).
I use them with dogs that for whatever reason can’t go offlead, but tbh I don’t think I’d be using either an extendable lead or longline in the situation you’re describing.
I only use them where it would actually be safe for them to be offlead if they weren’t onlead dogs.
All the reasons above not to use one are good reasons not to use one.
I have one for my small dog but I only use it in limited situations when there is no other person/dog around. I use a large one designed for an extra large dog and my dog weighs 9kg.
I would never recommend one to anyone else.
I would never ever use it as a daily lead for the reasons people already mentioned. That being said, we do own one and we use it in forests, on beaches etc where we are away from traffic and where there is enough space to see risks in time. We only started using it at all after our dog was already lead trained, because we though swapping from having that freedom to not could be confusing for our puppy.
In short, use it only in areas where you feel would be safe for your dog to be off leash. And only after your puppy has stopped pulling.
You're already well on the way to teaching your dog to walk nicely on the lead and allowing him nice, safe off lead runs. Getting a flexilead will just undo your work and honestly serves no useful purpose.
Another one who thinks they have their place. Walking by traffic is not one of them, obviously. But I will use ours eg in the forest during Spring when we can't let ddog off lead due to animals, or if we are going to a new place and don't yet know the walking area well.
In crowds, near roads, with other dogs - no.
We have a lead with a shock absorber in it (designed for running or biking with your dog) that allows the dog freedom (as it stretches out) but is strong enough for you to hold onto it in multiple places if necessary, and that you can use to lure the dog back without the risk of it snapping.
DH uses it when he takes the dog running at weekends and I often use it in places with lots of scents so the beagle can sniff under hedges but can't disappear. It feels much more secure to me than the extendable one did.
You cannot safely use them near roads, other dogs, people.
They can cause injuries to you or your dog.
They teach you dog to walk too far ahead of you, so when you revert to a normal lead they pull.
Cannot think of a positive safe advantage to them that at 1-1.5m training lead doesn't cover (other than the lead gets a bit wet sometimes)
I only use one for quiet country walks and never near roads.
They are great if used properly.
Around people and other dogs keep the lead locked on a short length.
When walking on the pavement keep it on a short length.
When no ones around let the lead out.
For some reason people keep them extended around people and dogs. They can cause friction burns and get tangled up.
I can get my dog from an extended length to a short locked length in about 5 seconds but I've got the technique sorted and my dog understands when I call to her I'm going to bring her in close to me.
I'm selling a used twice one if anyone wants it. My dog didn't like it.
@fuzzymoon it’s not enough to keep it locked on the pavement. They are prone to snapping or the lock failing. Extending leads should NEVER be used near a road.