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How To Avoid the Dangers of Retractable Dog Leashes

How To Avoid the Dangers of Retractable Dog Leashes

There are some people who express concern over the use of a retractable dog leash. They tend to have a fear that a retractable dog leash is somehow less safe than a traditional fixed-length leash. This is not the case, and retractable leashes have advantages over their fixed-length counterparts.

In short, retractable dog leases offer more flexibility and allow your dog to roam freely in wide open spaces when there are less people around. This might not seem like a big deal, but letting your dog explore their environment builds confidence and reduces anxiety.

While retractable leashes come with unique benefits, you do need to shop for an option that meets certain standards.

When shopping for a retractable leash, pay attention to the following:


A durable dog leash is going to be one that’s made from quality materials and can withstand daily use, the elements, and general wear and tear. When you have a durable retractable dog leash that’s made with good materials and boasts a strong design, it’s also likely to be a safer leash than the alternatives.

If you have a bigger dog or one who pulls on walks, you want to make sure that you invest in a robust retractable leash that won’t break under load.

The Handle

You may not realize it, but the handle plays a big role in how safe your dog leash is. What’s great about a retractable leash is that they often come with comfortable, ergonomic handles.

This is going to give you a better grip on the leash, which will reduce risks. You might have to experiment with a few leashes to find the handle style that you like best, but once you do, you’ll feel confident in your dog walks.

Clip Style

The clip style of a safe retractable dog leash should be one that swivels. When the clip swivels smoothly, it prevents possible dangers such as tangling or knotting.

You also want a clip that’s easy for you to use, but once it’s attached to your dog’s collar or harness, you want it to be secure.

The size of the clip matters too. If a clip is too small for your medium or big dog, then it might not hold them securely. If you have a small dog and the clip is too big, it can be uncomfortable.

Leash Style

It’s unfortunate, but one reason there’s a misconception that retractable leashes aren’t safe is because people often think about the outdated corded leash style. A good, modern retractable leash should only be tape or ribbon-style. It should not be a cord, which is at risk of breaking.

Weight Limit

Even if you choose the best quality retractable leash on the market, if you don’t get the right weight limit for the dog, it might not be safe. This can be said of any leash. You should choose the leash that reflects your dog’s weight.

You might even want to go up in the weight limit anywhere from 10 to 20 pounds beyond your dog’s actual weight, especially if they are prone to pulling or lunging on walks.

Brake Control

Brake controls are one of the unique features of retractable leashes that make them such a convenient, safe, and comfortable option.

With a brake control feature, you can set a maximum length for your dog, which you can change in a few seconds depending on your needs at the moment. For example, if you’re in an open space or at a dog park, you can give your dog more freedom to roam. You can then reset the leash length using the brake control if you’re in a more crowded place.


A tangle-free retractable leash design will prevent not just tangles in the leash itself but also tangling around the internal mechanism of the handle. Reduce your risk when you’re walking your dog with a tangle-free design.

How to Use a Retractable Leash Safely

One of the biggest misconceptions we see when people are searching for a new dog leash is the idea the leash itself can overcome bad habits that you might practice when you walk your dog. This isn’t the case. It’s up to you to practice safe habits at all times when you walk your dog to ensure your safety, the safety of your dog, and the safety of others.

When you are a mindful and present dog walker, then a retractable leash is just as safe as a traditional fixed-length leash.

Benefits of using a retractable leash are significant and include the ability to provide your dog with more space to roam, and the leash controls its own strength, so it’s easier for you.

Remember the following tips when using a retractable leash.

Get the Right Weight Limit

As was mentioned, if anything, go higher than your dog’s weight with the weight limit you choose. If your dog isn’t well-behaved on walks, or maybe doesn’t have a lot of experience walking yet, you should almost certainly go above their weight with your leash.

Pay Attention to Your Dog and Your Surroundings

Don’t look down at your smartphone or the ground, and don’t let yourself daydream when you’re walking your dog. Doing so will make any leash more dangerous, even if that isn’t inherently the case. Instead, be focused and alert.

If you’re walking in an area with a lot of distractions or obstacles, keep your dog closer to you and right by your side.

Don’t Give Too Much Slack

When you’re walking your dog, watch the slack in the leash. When your dog is getting closer, make sure you’re letting the leash reel in. When there’s slack in your leash line, it can make it dangerous.

Avoid Tangles

Avoiding tangles is important; however, there are some situations where this is unavoidable.

There may be things that are beyond your control, but the best ways to avoid tangles are to first choose a great retractable leash. Then, watch for obstacles, keep an eye on your dog, and manage the leash.

Don’t Panic If Something Goes Wrong

If you do find yourself in a situation where something has gone wrong—the leash has tangled, for example—don’t panic.

Stay calm, realize it happens and the only thing you can do now is fix the problem. Stop and slowly untangle the leash. Then, set the brake and move away from any traffic, people or other animals while you get sorted out.

Which Safe Retractable Leash Should I Get?

You can absolutely avoid any potential risks of a retractable leash with the tips above. If you’re in the market for a safe and reliable retractable leash that will give you peace of mind and create pleasant experiences for your dog, browse the Pet&Cuddle selection. Pet&Cuddle specializes in a range of safe and affordable retractable leashes for dogs of all sizes. Pet&Cuddle offers the best retractable leash options that are durable, tangle-free and feature tape and ribbon leash styles.

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