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Extending Leads – Friend or Fo

Extending leads have their pros and cons.

My worst injury came from using one but then again they give freedom to dogs who would otherwise not be allowed off the lead, so used with care they are a good tool.

extending dog lead
Extending dog lead

This doesn’t account for accidents though. I was walking the smallest dog in the kennels, similar to in the image below. He darted out to full length and caught me unaware pulling me over awkwardly resulting in a very badly sprained ankle. We thought I’d broken it but I said let’s leave it till the morning. The ankle wasn’t broken but was very sore for a few weeks.


I’ve written up a few tips for using extending leads:

  • Use with care next to roads and keep them short.
  • Hold on to them tightly
  • When walking a boisterous dog, keep the arm holding the lead at a right angle (elbow bent) so you have some give in your arm.
  • If your dog pings to the end of the lead, hold lead as above but also cup your free hand around the front of the plastic bit to help when your dog reaches the end of the lead.
  • It is not recommended to use any type of head collar in case your dog pings to the end of the extending lead causing injury to its neck.
  • The same applies to collars with boisterous dogs.
  • Harnesses are useful but make sure it is properly fitted as the harness can come off.
  • Any collar designed to choke is not suitable for example full chain chokers and even half checks
  • As above all, learn how to use them, I find that the brand name ‘Flexi’ are the best ones, not the cheaper alternatives

Overall, take care, be aware and stay safe.

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