Dog leads – choosing the right one for your pet

Just like our furry friends, dog leads come in all shapes and sizes and no one is suitable for every dog and owner. So, we’ve done the hard work for you and put together the different types of dog leads you can buy to suit yours and your pet’s individual needs and walking style…


Standard Lead


The most common type of dog lead, these leads have a handle at one end, a trigger hook clip at the other, and measure between 4 to 8-feet. Standard leads are usually made from leather or nylon, and are ideal for basic training and everyday walking as they offer you full control.

Retractable Lead


These leads are great if you want to offer your pooch more freedom but are nervous about letting them off the lead completely. Retractable leads have a handle for you to hold and can extend from 4 to 30-feet! Similar to a tape measure, these leads automatically collect up any slack in the lead but can be locked at whatever length you like. We recommend only using this type of lead with a harness, in rural areas and when your furry friend has good lead manners as they can encourage pets to pull.

Adjustable Lead


Adjustable leads are best for training, and when used with a harness, for dogs that have a tendency to pull. This type of lead gives you full control of your canine by allowing you to adjust the length using the loops along the lead. They can also be clipped around your waist for hands-free dog walking or used to walk two pets at a time.

Slip Lead


Although popular, slip leads are somewhat controversial as they can cause dogs discomfort and to choke. These leads are not suitable for longer-necked dogs and sighthound breeds. Best for pets that can walk on a loose lead or for those who do gun dog training and need to be let on and off the lead quickly.

Chain Lead


Very much the same as a standard lead, however these leads are made from chain. Best for dogs that tend to chew or destroy their leads, chain leads are pretty much indestructible but do keep an eye on your pet if they are persistent as they can damage doggie teeth!

Bungee Lead


These leads are best for those who run or jog with their dog as you can fasten the lead around your waist. Plus, they are shock absorbing so will reduce the strain on you and your four-legged friend. We don’t recommend using this type of lead if your dog is highly reactive or around stimuli they will react too – otherwise you may end up taking a detour on your morning run!


Leather – Leather leads are probably the most expensive but if cared for correctly, they can last a lifetime. They are also very comfortable for you to grip as they soften and mould to your hand. However, they aren’t completely chew-proof!

Nylon – This is the cheapest type of material but it is hardwearing, strong and very easy to wash. Ideal if your pooch enjoys muddy walks! Nylon also offers you and your pet the biggest scope for individuality. Leads made from nylon are available in a variety of colours and patterns so Fido can change up his look!

Reflective – Leads made from both nylon and leather can have an additional reflective strip running the length of them. These are best for walks at night or in the winter. They’ll make your furry friend more visible to motorists, cyclists and other dog owners.


– Shorter leads are best when walking your dog in urban areas. Save longer leads for country walks.

– Lead width is just as important as lead length. If your pooch is a strong puller or chewer, a wider lead is best.

– Regularly check your pet’s lead for wear and tear so you can replace or repair before a dog-on-the-loose scenario.

– Lead training does take time and patience. However, it is essential for ensuring your pet doesn’t harm themselves when you’re out walking with them.

– Always have a spare lead at home in case your pet’s regular one gets lost or damaged. Fido will not forgive you if you don’t take him for a walk!


  • You may also like
  • Most popular articles

A Family for Amelie

Sam Robinson of ‘The Cross’ boutique talks about life with her gorgeous Staffie-cross rescue dog, Amelie