Since When Are Retractable Leashes Not Good for Dogs?
If you have a dog and take them for walks with a retractable leash some say you should stop doing it immediately! But why?
I've been lucky enough to have my dog Smalls for almost three years and ever since I got him I have always used a retractable leash for his walks. The leash I use every day is the same one I got when he was a pup and after sharing what happened to one of my neighbors with her leash I'm shocked to hear that a ton of dog owners in the Hudson Valley say that I should stop using my leash immediately! But why?
If you missed what happened, I was walking Smalls around my apartment complex in Poughkeepsie last weekend when I came across my neighbor who was also walking her dog. I've seen her a million times but this time when I saw her she was screaming really loud...like somebody shot her!! When I heard her I went over to make sure she was OK and when I got to her, she showed me that she was on the receiving end of a retractable leash burn. She told me her dog started to run and the leash was rubbing on her forearm and because the dog ran so fast the leash left a 10-inch burn on her arm.
If you have one of these leashes you already know that leash burn is something real but after I talked about this on the Wakin' Up with CJ and Jess Show I was surprised by how many people told me I should stop using those leashes right away. The reasons varied on why but most said that the leashes are bad for dogs especially if you use a neck collar because they could cause dogs to be choked. Thankfully I don't use a neck collar, Smalls has a body harness for walks so there isn't a chance of it choking him but after searching I did find some other reasons why a retractable leash could be bad for dogs.
Reasons Not to Use a Retractable Leash
Like what happened to my neighbor if someone gets tangled up in the cord of a retractable leash, or grabs it in an attempt to reel in their dog, it can result in burns and cuts. In addition, many people have been pulled right off their feet by a dog that reaches the end of the leash and keeps going. This can result in bruises, broken bones, and worse according to HART pets. They also say that retractable leashes give dogs more freedom to pull at the end of them, "which can look like aggression to another dog who may decide to fight back."
Another reason some say these leashes are no good is because the handles are bulky and can be easily pulled out of human hands, which could result in a runaway dog, and if the leashes happen to fall out of your hand while walking your dog, the sound of it hitting the ground could cause your dog to get scared and run away.
I understand the reasons to stop using one but feel like my dog has adjusted to being on the end of it, so I'm not sure if I'm going to change or not. What do you think? Do you use a retractable leash?