Choosing a dog lead
A good dog lead anchors you to your dog and keeps things safe and under control when out and about. Dogs can get confused in busy places, they don't understand the danger associated with roads and other hazards, they can get easily distracted by people, other dogs, cats, squirrels, livestock - you name it!
A leash is a crucial connection between you and your dog. The right kind of dog lead acts as a line of trust allowing gentle steering, firm control and encouraging restraint if necessary. So it is important to make the correct choice. Here are 3 things you should bear in mind when buying a dog lead:
1 - Is this a strong dog lead?
You want your dog to be safe and secure, so your dog lead needs to be strong and sturdy. Larger dogs usually require thicker stronger dog leads than smaller dogs do. But whether large or small, it is worth considering how the dog lead is constructed and what materials are used to make the various components. All dog leads should be able to hold significant weight under pressure. Check whether dog leads, or the components, have been strength tested and what their minimum breaking loads are. Pay particular attention to the clip - and how the various elements of the dog lead are joined together. Check that nothing is likely to snap, break, fray, fail under stress, deteriorate suddenly or over a short period of time.
2 - Is this dog lead appropriate for us?
Think about whether the dog lead is appropriate for you and your dog and the occasions in which you will be using it. Length is likely to be key. If your dog walks calmly to heel you probably just need a regular length dog lead about 1m long or so. Whereas if you dog is energetic and bouncy even when on the lead then you might want to consider a shorter lead that allows you greater control. Similarly, with a large dog living in an urban environment, with narrow pavements and lots of traffic, then you would be wise to consider a short dog lead for close control. Extendable or retractable leads should be used with caution: their handles usually seem awkward to grip securely and the long lines can get caught up with other dogs and people. Slip leads should be used with well trained obedient dogs in the correct way at the correct times.
3 - Is this dog lead easy to grip and easy to use?
Ask yourself whether the dog lead easy to hold - and if it is easy to use. If your dog pulls or tends to tug on the leash then you will definitely require something that is soft and non abrasive for you to hold. Even if this isn't the case, you should still consider a leash that is comfy to grasp, something that is soft to the touch that won't cut or burn your hand if your dog suddenly chases something. A bit of elasticity or give always helps too. Also worthy of consideration is how easy the dog lead is to use, particularly whether the clip is simple to quickly attach to a dog collar. For example, Hindquarters dog lead clips are designed to be easily and securely clipped onto a dog collar with a single action.
Here at Hindquarters we make a range of dog leads - all with our clever clip - and all that you'd be proud to sport around your shoulders as your best friend walks freely by your side.