Many people like to use retractable leads because they feel it lets the dog have more freedom to explore. But these leashes can cause a host of problems, for the dog and his owner.
- If a dog never learned on how to walk with a regular lead, then he is not going to have the proper training when a retractable lead is used. A retractable lead lets him be in charge, but it can also have disastrous effects if he has not been taught basic commands that will keep him out of danger.
- If a dog sees something that excites him and goes to run off after it, his owner might be startled and not be able to hold onto the leash’s handle. The momentum of the dog running might also snap the cord.
- Retractable leads can cut you or your dog if it gets caught and wrapped around the arms or legs. In some rare cases dogs have received devastating injuries to their neck, throat or spine when they ran out the rope and their head was then jerked back
- It is harder to control your dog using a retractable leash when you need to take control of a situation quickly, such as a confrontation with another animal, traffic, etc. The owner must try to get him under control by frantically pressing the button on the handle to try to reel the cord in.
- When a dog who has been trained with a regular lead is walking, the lead feels loose and comfortable. If the owner tightens the lead, the dog then stops or follows the owner’s commands. But when a dog is on a retractable lead, he can keep going further and further even as his lead presses on his neck. The dog is in control, not the owner.
Walking your dog can be a wonderful thing for both of you. Set him up for success by only training with and using a regular lead. Your time together will be safer and more enjoyable.