Getting a leash is probably the only way to get your dog to calm down and behave when you’re taking it for a walk. But why buy any good old leash when there are retractable dog leashes that put you in better control of your pooch?
Not only do retractables offer you increased flexibility and freedom, but they’re also easy to use to create more exciting and fun walks together. If you’re interested in getting one of these but are unsure about the decision, read on as we unpack all you need to know before you purchase a retractable dog leash for your furry friend.
Allows leash to retract while in locked position, Dogs up to 120lbs
Removable Garbage Bag Disposal – Fluorescent, Glow-In-The-Dark Material – Up To 110 Lbs
Dog Waste Dispenser and Bags included
One button brake/lock
One button brake/lock
Dog Waste Dispenser and Bags included
For Dogs up to 110 lbs
One button brake/lock
Can be accessorized with the Multi Box and/or the LED, for dogs up to 26 lbs
Overview of the Top Products
The Petmate K9 Dog Walking Leash is a rather popular product and definitely worth considering if you are thinking of buying a quality dog leash. If you need a dog leash which will allow you more control over your furry friend when you take a walk together, this product will provide that.
The Zero Slack technology will keep the dog from moving forward when in a locked position, while you will be able to roll-up to him. This seems to be the most popular and beloved feature found in this product.
Dog owners who have bought this love the fact that it stops their pets from suddenly running or lunging - which is definitely an important factor to consider.
Owners with large dogs almost always have difficulty when purchasing products for their pets as a great number of products don’t fit their sizeable furry friend. The Extra Long Premium Quality Retractable by Petter aims to make it easier for you to control your large dog when you take a walk, while also allowing enough freedom for your dog to explore the surroundings.
What is really useful about this product is that it features a removable garbage bag disposal which simplifies things and many dog owners find this to be an appealing feature. In addition, this dog leash glows in the dark which makes it easier and safer to take night walks with your dog.
The TaoTronic Retractable is popular among dog owners because it fits perfectly for small, medium and large dogs, alike. It gives your dog the freedom to explore while providing you the control you need.
You don’t have to worry about the handle slipping from your hand with this product - which can occur with other dog leashes. Its durability is what dog owners appreciate the most, as the product is made of quality materials.
The Flexi Neo Leash comes in a variety of sizes from small to large so you can choose the one that’s best for your dog. The feature that most people seem to notice when using this dog leash for a while is its durability - you can use it for years without worrying it will suddenly break.
The yellow neon color makes it impossible not to spot this dog leash at night which makes things a lot easier if you prefer night strolls with your dog. The product features a smooth, pulling and locking system which simplifies leash usage, as well.
If you have a large dog, you need a strong, durable dog leash - and this product is it. This retractable leash by Latitop features a sturdy nylon ribbon which can support pets up to 110 pounds.
It is a very durable product, which you would expect from a dog leash meant for large-sized dogs, but this product is not limited to that - you can use it for any type of dogs. The product is very lightweight which makes it easier to manage your beloved pup and that is something that the dog owners appreciate.
This leash by Pet Neat is a smart choice if you want a strong, durable leash to manage your dog - whatever size he or she may be. If your dog is quite large and likes pulling the leash and running, this may be just the perfect choice for you.
There is a lock and release mechanism so that you are able to control the length of the leash, although it may take a while to get used to managing the lock. The free waste bag that you get with each purchase is a nice addition to this great product, too and the pet owners love that the leash feels solid for such a great price.
Cadtog has manufactured a great product that features an anti-slip handle so that you don’t lose control of your pet while you’re out taking a stroll. Made of quality and durable material, this dog leash is quite popular among dog owners.
A bonus you get when you purchase this dog leash is a free roll of plastic bags which is pretty practical, we must admit. The leash can manage a dog of up to 110 pounds, so it’s suitable for your dog regardless of its size.
The few features that dog owners love about this product is the handle because of how ergonomic it is and also because of the fact that it has padding so that your hand feels good and comfortable while gripping.
The WENFENG Retractable is one great product and for multiple reasons, at that. The handle is sturdy and comfortable so it’s not a problem if you hold it for too long, the leash is made of thick nylon so you won’t have to worry that your energetic dog may break it and it’s also long enough so the dog has enough space to explore the surroundings without going too far.
The dog owners who have bought this product love that it’s extremely sturdy and comfortable for both the owner and the dog. What’s more, it’s appreciated that it comes with a manual and is made of high-quality materials.
This easy-to-use dog leash is very comfortable to hold, which is great for long strolls with your dog as you won’t feel tired from holding the leash - this fact is what the dog owners love the most about this product.
You can choose the length of the leash and when you decide it’s enough, just push the button and it locks down. In this way, you will be able to control how far your furry friend can go and you have your peace of mind.
This Flexi New Classic dog leash is made in Germany which speaks enough about the quality of the product and in addition, it’s perfect for smaller dogs. The leash is long enough for the dog to have lots of space and freedom to roam around, but all the control is in your hands.
With the Easy Lock phase which enables you to decide how far your dog will go, which, apart from durability, is probably the most important feature all dog owners seek in such a product.
Moreover, dog owners love the fact that this product is extremely durable in strength and that it has a significantly long leash, as well.
What Is a Retractable Leash?
First off, let’s start by explaining what a retractable leash is for those who don’t know because it is a fairly recent upgrade from the normal leash, after all. The design of a retractable dog leash usually features a comfortable handle, with a cord of about sixteen feet at the least.
Moreover, it has a break button to help you determine the length so that you can keep it short when you need to and elongate it when necessary. Retractable leashes are also compact and easy to store, as the cord retracts to the ‘housing’ design feature after you’re done using it.
How It Works
As mentioned above, a retractable leash comes with a button that you use to determine the length of the cord. So, a retractable leash works by either extending or pulling back the leash through the break button which is placed on the handle.
Once you have your hand on the handle and are able to control the length of the cord, you can then take a walk with your pup - it’s that easy to use.
Things to Consider
As with any purchase, it’s always a good idea to consider different perspectives when looking for your ideal leash. Here are just some of those pointers that you should keep in mind before buying to ensure that you bought the right one:
- How active or chilled your dog is when attached to a leash
- Your dog’s weight
- The amount of space that you prefer to have between you and your dog as you walk him/her
- The number of dogs that you’ll be tying to the leash - although it’s recommended that you use one leash for one dog and not try to combine two dogs on one leash
- The time of day or night at which you’ll be using the leash - some owners prefer to walk their dogs in the mornings, while others only have time in the evenings. Unless the retractable cord is neon colored, it can be a bit difficult to manage it during low light conditions
- The place where you’ll be walking your dog is another important consideration, as a retractable leash is often more effective in wide open spaces as opposed to congested sidewalks and pavements
Types of Retractable Leashes
Although they follow the same design principle, retractable leashes come in different sizes, colors and types.
Retractable leashes come in various sizes to suit different dogs and owner’s needs. For example, narrower leashes are more suitable for small dog breeds, while a leash with a wider width will work much better at controlling a larger dog.
In terms of color, that depends on the pet owner’s personal preference. However, most of the time, colors like pink or purple are snapped up by female dog owners, while male dog owners mostly purchase blue, green and red-colored leashes.
Each retractable leash comes with a weight limit based on tests that the manufacturer has done prior to putting it on the market. It’s advisable to purchase a retractable leash with weight specifications that complement those of your dog.
For example, if your dog weighs 75 pounds, then it would be wise to buy a retractable leash that’s able to handle up to 80 pounds of weight. However, in most cases, it’s better to buy a size up when it comes to retractable leashes, just to be on the safe side.
Retractable leashes are made from one of two materials: either cord/cable or belt/tape and the one you choose will depend on your preferences.
Cord or Cable
A cord or cable leash is made from twine, which is a delicate material that’s susceptible to snapping or coming loose on the dog’s neck. With frequent use, they could also cause minor cuts and burns around your dog’s neck. Dr Karen Becker warns against retractable leashes, but we've found them useful if your dog isn't great on the recall.
Belt or Tape
A belt or tape leash is more common than the cord ones because most dog owners actually prefer to use it due to its durability. Belt retractable leashes are usually made from organic materials like leather and canvas, or synthetic materials that make them hard wearing and long lasting
It's a pretty reasonably priced product, regardless of the type or size that you get. In fact, even the addition of extra accessories like buckles or hooks won’t hurt your bank balance, so it’s really not a hard purchase. However, it does require having background knowledge that’ll enable you to make an informed choice.
How To Use It Correctly
It’s important to first train your dog to get accustomed to using a traditional leash before transitioning them onto a retractable one - this will only make it easier for both you and you dog. Be sure to never wrap the cord around your fingers or hold it with your hands, as it might burn your hands - always use the handle to hold it.
When using a retractable for the first time, it’s advisable to expose only a short length of the belt or cord while you’re still getting used to working it. You can then extend the length as you start to feel comfortable, but your dog should always be within an acceptable walking distance and not too far; this is so you can pull them back when necessary.
Also stay aware of your dog’s movements, especially when the cord is extended, because your pup might easily start chasing small animals or roll in the dirt while you’re not looking.
Using the break button, elongate the leash to create more space between you and your dog as you walk and then slowly retract it when crossing the street or approaching other animals. This is so you can avoid having to yank your dog away just in case an altercation or the like occurs. Additionally, check the harness to make sure that it fits securely before you start your walk.
Over time, the break button or lead might start to deteriorate and not work as quickly and efficiently as before. At that point, look into purchasing a new retractable leash or repair it. Also, if you happen to wet the lead through rain or by accidentally splashing water on it, then leave it out to dry and only retract it back when it’s dry again.
Lastly, beware not to use the leash in a crowded area, as that might distract your attention and lead to your dog getting tangled up. What’s more, always read the safety information that’s provided to ensure that you don’t set a foot wrong in using it.
Like most things, retractable leashes have a few advantages, as well. Consider these few pros of the product that we have listed down for you.
When using a retractable, it’s easier for you to maintain a similar pace to your dog and yet it offers you the convenience to elongate the leash so that your dog can enjoy a quicker pace without dragging you behind him. Plus, you won’t be tugging him back anymore, as the leash will accommodate both your needs.
The leash gives your pet freedom of movement, with some even allowing the dog to walk up to 30 feet from their owner so that they can go around smelling new territories and exploring. In turn, this increases their overall confidence.
Retractable dog leashes are also very effective at training dogs techniques, such as the ‘heel’ ‘sit’ and ‘back’ while enjoying their walks. If your dog is unwilling to cooperate, then gently retract the leash towards you and bring him back to focus. Basically, they can make dog training even easier.
A retractable leash enables your pet to run around more, while still remaining within a safe distance from you.
The convenience offered by a retractable leash means that should your dog need to relieve himself while you’re still taking cover under a porch during the rain, you are able to easily extend the leash so that your dog can do his or her business without you letting go.
However, it’s not always fun and games – most things have disadvantages, too and so do retractable leashes. Weigh the pros and cons of this kind of leash first before deciding to buy one or two.
It Might Cause Injuries
The moment a retractable leash gets wrapped around a leg or on your dog’s neck, it becomes a risk to keep them on it. That’s one of the reasons why you have to be super aware of your dog’s movements when they’re on a retractable leash.
You might even hurt your fingers on the cord, an injury that may be so extreme that your finger ends up requiring an amputation.
It Requires Training
Before you start using a retractable leash, you have to dedicate time first in training your pet on how to use it. This is so you can both establish basic commands such as ‘stop’ or ‘sit’, which you’ll be using when you’re out and about with your new retractable leash.
You Must Maintain Awareness
Due to the risk factor, it’s important for dog owners to maintain a high level of awareness when walking their dog with a retractable. That’s because they can easily get entangled without you noticing, causing injuries to both the dog and you.
Also, a retractable leash doesn't feature the sensitivity of a normal leash, which means that there won’t be a tug when your dog moves. So, you have to observe it with your eyes in order to know in which direction your dog is going.
It’s possible for the leash line to get wrapped around other objects and dogs, especially when it has been extended - this causes a lot of painful friction burn. If it so happens that the rope gets tangled in someone else’s dog, then you might end up with serious problems of having to pay their bills.
The longer the retractable leash, the harder the visibility and the ability to view it properly. This is especially the case in areas with obstacles like steep hills, winding paths and super tiny roads that are frequented by runners and hikers who might find it difficult to spot it.
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Although it seems like using a retractable dog leash can be risky or dangerous, but with adequate practice, one can effectively use a retractable leash and exercise complete control over it to avoid any accidents. Training your dog is also essential in averting any mishaps like getting tangled in other dogs and pedestrians. So, be sure to do some training before you make your purchase.
Also, keep in mind that retractable leashes come in different types, colors and lengths so you have ample options to choose from. Make sure that you’re getting one that suits your preferences and meets your needs efficiently, as well.
That said, the most important thing about owning a retractable leash is that it makes your life and that of your pet much easier and it’ll help them to truly enjoy the walks you take with them because they’ll have increased freedom of movement and exercise. In addition, a retractable leash keeps you and your dog at a similar pace and allows your furry friend to run ahead of you if they want to without fear of being reprimanded.
We’d love to hear what your experiences are with retractable dog leashes, so feel free to comment and ask questions in the comments section below.