The Danger of Retractable Leashes

Mary Delaney, Billy G. Crutchfield, James Otis Umphries, and William Howard Brawner. Depending on who you ask, these are the people responsible for the retractable dog leash.

I’d like to give them all a stern talking to.

That’s hard with Mary Delaney since her patent was filed in 1908 so I’m guessing she’s not around anymore, but the rest of them have presented us with one of the single most useless, problematic and highly dangerous contraptions in the world of dog care.

We don’t allow them at Hydrant Club. If that’s an owner’s leash of choice, they are free to use it, but when they come to our facility all dogs must be restrained on a single, fixed-length lead.

Want to know why?

How about this … or this … or this … or this.

Yeah, gruesome.

Put aside the potential physical danger (and even death) that could result from this entirely useless piece of crap dog technology, and think about the fact that allowing your dog to wander that far out ahead of you – especially in an urban environment – reinforces dominant behavior (who walks in the front of the group? The leader does…), and undermines behavioral stabilization and training.

How? Good question. We talk in depth about proper leash walking, the best tools to use (spoiler alert: we already said it. A single, fixed-length lead of 5′-6′. Full stop), and how to actually do a walk that will give your dog the physical and mental stimulation it needs in our new private network. Join us there for detailed information, video lessons and connection with a community in which you can connect with like-minded dog folks interested in making their relationship with their dogs even better.

So do yourself (and your dog) a favor – get a fixed length lead. Your dog will be safer. You will be safer. And who knows maybe your walks will actually be productive sessions that help even out your dog’s behavior instead of your being dragged around the block.