Every dog needs a leash–it’s right up there with food and water bowls as a necessity for dog owners. While it is easy to grab the first leash at the local pet store, there are a variety of different types of dog leashes available, and each has a slightly different purpose. It is worth considering your options and your dog’s personality before purchasing a leash.
Standard Flat Lead
When you think of a dog leash, chances are that you think of the standard flat leash–just a basic leash that clips to your dog’s collar. The flat lead works well for all dogs and comes in a variety of lengths and materials. Typical lengths run from four to eight feet and materials range from nylon to leather or even to a metal chain. Choose a length based on your dog’s size, personality, and obedience level. It is a good idea to start with a shorter, four foot leash that allows you more control. As your dog demonstrates good behavior and obedience, you may try a longer leash.
As for material, nylon is the cheapest and offers a wide selection of color, but is less durable than leather. Dogs can chew through nylon or it can wear out from dragging on the ground. Chain is the most durable, but can damage dog’s teeth and is the least popular option. Leather is a great option because it is both durable and attractive, with no drawbacks to your dog.
A slip leash looks like one long leash, but actually combines a leash and a collar into one piece. The leash ends in a metal ring. Looping the leash back through the ring creates a collar that can easily slip over the dog’s head. Slip leads are great for training.
Of the different types of dog leashes, this leash allows your dog the most freedom–and that is not necessarily a good thing. Retractable leashes expand and retract with your dog’s movement, giving him the chance to rove as much as 30 feet away from you. While the handheld portion of the leash gives you the ability to lock the length in place at any time, you may not be able to react quickly enough to prevent your dog from darting into the street or becoming entangled with another dog.
Gentle Leaders and Harnesses
A gentle leader is a type of head collar that loops around your dog’s muzzle. The idea is that when your dog pulls away, his head will be pulled back and to the side, redirecting his attention to you. The drawback here is that the gentle leader can leave decidedly less gentle markings on your dog’s face. A harness leash combines a harness and a lead into one device. The harness portion goes around your dog’s chest, with the leash attaching in either the front or the back. For dogs that pull, this prevents them from placing pressure on the trachea every time they pull. At Woofwerks, we feel that these devices fail to address the true issue: a need for stronger obedience training.
The Woofwerks Recommendation
While there are a variety of different types of dog leashes out there, Woofwerks recommends either the standard flat lead or the slip lead. They are the standard for a reason! These leads provide you with the most control over your dog while keeping him safe and comfortable. All of our leads are made of English Bridle Leather, so that they are both stylish and sturdy. We also sell a variety of styles of Leather-Nylon leashes for flexibility and comfort. We use solid brass clasps and nickel-plated hardware that will not corrode with time or exposure to the elements. Our leather leashes will last for years to come!