10 Reasons Not to Use a Retractable Leash
Pets certainly seem to enjoy a long, retractable leash, but it may be doing them more harm than good. Giving them that extra freedom of movement requires you to sacrifice bonding time with your pet, exposes them to hostile situations or aggressive dogs, and can even result in the pet harming himself!(http://news.petmeds.com/news/pet-training/study-leashed-dogs-more-likely-to-act-aggressively/) Here’s a few good reasons to stick with a traditional lead and create positive leash training.
1. Unless the dog stops, you talk to the cops. Know the leash laws in your city. You don’t want to pay a citation or deal with animal control just because your leash is too long.
2. When the brake fails, the canine bails. A lead keeps your dog under control. Machines fail over time, and the springs and brake inside a retractable leash see hard use. You could all of a sudden find yourself on the wrong end of a 26 foot lead with no way to control your dog.
3. When the dog bails, you chase that tail. There are better ways to exercise than chasing a dog that’s broken his lead and thinks this a game. Retractable leads must be thin and flexible to retract properly
4. Take a bad turn, feel the burn. Longer leads get tangled easily, and dogs have a tendency to dart after things like cats, cars, and squirrels. Injuries attributed to retractable leashes includes cuts, burns, and even amputations.
5. A running start will topple your cart. It’s a matter of leverage. Most dogs can accelerate to the full length of their lead well before you can apply the brake. When that lead plays out either the dog stops short, risking damage to their throat, or you go tumbling after!
6. Lose your grip, take a trip. Many retractable leashes automatically zip in when dropped, and all of them have a chunky handle that bounces along after the dog. You dog will see this as a chase and take off running, more intent on escaping pursuit that look for cars, kids, or tangling objects.
7. Too far away to monitor play. Lots of dogs like to socialize, but harmless play can quickly get out of control if a dog feels threatened by kids or other dogs. Keeping your dog close allows you to stop a bad situation before it starts.
8. Mistaken for mad, mistaken for bad. Dogs like to pull at the edge of their lead, and other dogs take this as a sign of aggression. The animals don’t see the lead, just a strange, aggressive dog with no handler in sight.
9. Stay well met, train your pet. Dogs want consistency in their training, and a lead that is sometimes short and sometime long can be a very frustrating thing.
10. In the end, he’s your best friend. Walking your dog is a time to bond with your pet and share exercise and adventure. Stay close to your pet by staying close to your pet!