A leash is a leash, right? It attaches to your dog’s collar at one end and you hold the handle at the other end—how complicated could choosing one be? But a quick search for the best dog leash will lead you down an internet rabbit hole that may leave you more confused than you were before. The short answer is this: it really depends on you and your dog. If your dog is well trained and loves to roam, a long leash may be appropriate, whereas if your dog is a bit reactive or you live in a busy city you might want to look at short leashes.
And length is just the beginning—there’s so much to consider! You of course want your leash to be durable and to last for the long haul, but what makes a leash durable? Depending on your personal style, you might like a classic rope leash or even one made from incredibly tough climbing rope like the styles created by Wilderdog. These leashes can really pull their weight. Traditional nylon leashes from brands like Mimi Green, Sleepypod, and Dolan’s Dog Doodads (makers of the Wonder Walker) have really come a long way too. They can be super heavy duty and waterproof with biothane to boot.
If you're trying to train a dog to walk on leash or shopping for a puppy, it’s a good idea to avoid retractable leashes, especially for training purposes, since they can easily snap. For dogs who basically pull you along on every walk, consider an accordion style pulling dog leash like the ones made by EzyDog. They can absorb some of the shock when your dog spots a squirrel and suddenly bolts. Your shoulder will thank you for it.
More chill dogs and their owners (meaning your dog isn’t in the habit of chasing local wildlife) often enjoy hands free options like around the waist dog leashes that you wear instead of hold. These are also great for more athletic people and their pups who go running together. And if you’re out with your pup at night, be sure to look at leashes that are reflective to make you more visible to cars in the dark.
Dog leashes aren’t just about performance, however. Style counts too! We’ve curated a selection of leashes that don’t just function well, they look great too, from handsome leather leashes to totally cute designs too. You can even shop matching dog leash and collar/harness combos in classic colors like off white and black to more vibrant hues.