My Smart Puppy

with Dog Expert, Sarah Wilson

Decidedly Dangerous: Retractable Leashes

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More serious injury and death is caused by these products than another dog management/training tool, in my experience. Here is a true story posted by a pro trainer on our forums: Another Flexi Story! Be informed! Be careful!

Here are few of the ways accidents happen with a retractable leash:

Leash is dropped – Your dog, frightened by the plastic leash handle now zipping noisily toward him, bolts. The leash seems to chase him. Your dog runs into the street or races blindly away to be lost.

Cord/tape is grabbed – You grab the cord or tape as it plays out, the injury is immediate, your flesh is cut like meat.

Cord/tape wraps around you (or someone else) – Again deep wounds but also risk of amputation, especially of fingers.

Clip/collar breaks – When this happens, the leash retracts at full speed and the end of the line that does not go into the handle whips around at top speed. Injuries to eyes, teeth and face result.

These things DO happen! Here are a few real-life stories:

Dog runs ahead of her human into an elevator. Doors close, car goes. Dog dies.
Dog dashes into the road and under the wheels of a car. Dog dies.
Dog runs around his human then bolts after a squirrel. Owner goes to the ER with ankle wounds down to the bone.
Dog bolts after another dog, pulls person over, drags her along the ground, cord gets tangled in her hand. Finger amputated.
Dog walking on other side of road from person. Bicyclist comes around corner; to avoid hurting either dog or person or both with a tangle runs bike off to the side. Dislocates both shoulders and breaks a wrist.

Is a little “extra freedom” worth it?
Worth the risk of serious injury or death to you, your dog or someone else?

Please use a regular leash. It’s safer. For everyone.

FMI:
Product Warnings: http://www.flexiusa.com/operation/safety-advice.php
Consumer Reports: http://news.consumerreports.org/safety/2009/03/retractable-leashes-pose-…
Ask Questions/Learn Options: MySmartPuppy.com – post in the friendly forums, we’ll help

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