WARNING: This is a RANT post! Proceed with caution! But do not hesitate to comment for constructive conversation/debate.
I cannot stress just how much I abhor the retractable leash. To recap, here’s my original post.
All too often I see countless dog owners walking with their dog or showing up to the vet office with their dog on a retractable leash. The dog is 99.99999% of the time tugging at the leash (because a retractable leash teaches them to do so). This is not a habit you want your dog to think is OK. Especially if you have a very large, muscular breed dog. All dogs should be taught proper leash manners.
Not only do these leashes teach a dog poor leash manners, the mechanisms in these types of leashes are NOT foolproof! They fail more often than not. Of all of the clients I deal with that come in to the animal hospital with a dog on a retractable leash, more than 50% of the time the locking mechanism of the leash is not working. That potentially puts 1) the dog on that leash, 2) the other animals in the area, 3) the pet owners in the area and 4) the staff of the animal hospital at risk of injury. It doesn’t matter how friendly or social your dog is, retractable leashes that are failing or unmonitored are tripping hazards! Also, your dog might love cats, but that cat waiting in the lobby isn’t necessarily fond of your dog.
If you think that you are exempt because you never let your dog wander, your dog is well-behaved on the retractable leash, and you always make sure your leash is in good working order…my recommendation is…then why not just get a real, reliable, SAFE-for-everyone leash?!!