Retractable leashes: Why they are a bad idea.

retractable leash texas

02 Jun Retractable leashes: Why they are a bad idea.

I remember many years ago when I  first came across the retractable leash. The thought of my dog being able to explore out in front of me up to 20 feet yet still having control sounded like a good idea. I think this is what intrigues most owners when they purchase a retractable leash. However, most owners don’t know the bad behavior and lack of safety that ensues with this type of equipment. I always encourage clients and dog owners to use a standard nylon or leather leash.


Here are 5 good reasons not to use the retractable leash.


1. Strength of the Retractable Cord.

The cord used in the retractable leash is simply not as strong as a standard nylon or leather leash. The line can be chewed in half and frays much easier.

2. Getting tangled in the leash.

When the retractable leash is extended out and other dogs and people approach, it causes both parties involved to get tangled up. This may cause a potential danger if a dog fight occurs.

3. Not good for loose leash walking.

As a dog trainer we are looking to have our dogs walk on a loose leash.  The retractable leash always carries some tension, which promotes pulling. The dog never knows what a loose leash feels like. It will then be more difficult to teach loose leash walking.

4. Retractable handle.

As we know most things with moving parts wear over time. The same goes with the handle. I’ve seen them malfunction and it’s usually at the worst time.

5. Distance

It’s hard for some people to control their dog 5 feet away from them let alone 20+ feet. From that distance, it is very unlikely we could prevent our dog from getting into a dangerous situation.

Hopefully this article has been educational for anyone using or thinking about using a retractable leash. We would love to hear about your experiences or thoughts with the retractable leach.


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