Keeping your dog safe while out walking or running is a top priority for any dog owner. One of the best ways to do this is to invest in a leash that meets your individual needs. But, with so many different leashes on the market, from retractable leashes to training leashes, and those with additional features, such as bungees, it can be hard to know where to start. Our panel of dog loving experts have compiled a list of the best dog leashes to point you in the right direction.
The Best Dog Leash
The 5ft Strong Dog Leash from BAAPET has a comfortable padded handle and highly reflective threads to help keep your dog safe and secure even during low light walks. The heavy-duty leash is designed for medium and large dogs and is made from half inch rock climbing rope. It includes a durable metal clip to safely and securely connect to your dog’s collar or harness. The padded handle provides a comfortable, anti-shock grip for you and protects your hands from rope burn. The leash is ideal for walking, training, and running, and provides the perfect balance between freedom and control.
5ft strong dog leash made from half-inch rock climbing rope
Highly reflective threads included for safe walking in low light
Padded, shock resistant grip provides comfortable handling and protects from rope burn
Designed for medium and large dogs
Available in black, blue, green, red, and hot pink
- ModelDog Leash-1
- Weight4.8 oz
The TUG Patented 360° Tangle-Free, Heavy Duty Retractable Dog Leash comes with an anti-slip handle and 16 feet of strong nylon ribbon to make dog walking safer and more comfortable. The retractable leash is available in three sizes so you can choose the right one for you, depending on the weight of your pet pooch. The leash includes a quick lock and unlock feature, which is easily controlled with the roll of your thumb. This means you can limit your dog’s range quickly, stopping them from getting too close to roads and other potential dangers.
The comfortable, ergonomically designed non-slip handle means you can focus on enjoying your walks with your dog, while the heavy-duty internal coil provides consistent retraction, so you can be confident that the lead will always return.
Patented 360-degree tangle free design
Heavy duty retractable leach with consistent retraction motion
Easy lock and unlock function; controlled with the roll of the thumb
Available in small, medium, and large
Suitable for dogs up to 110lbs
- Weight1.05 lbs
If you are looking for an easy, safe, and tangle free way to walk your dog while you cycle, then the Walky Dog Plus Hands-Free Dog Bicycle Exerciser Leash may be just what you are looking for. The hands-free leash has a TUV SUD Product Service Certification Approved Mark for ‘German Quality’ and has been carefully safety tested. It includes high carbon stainless steel for strength and it can be installed on virtually any bike. Attachment takes less than five minutes to install.
A quick release feature is included for when you are walking your dog without your bike or taking the bike out without the dog. Military grade paracord is used to create the leash itself, giving it a pull strength of 550lbs. The cord is also rot and UV fade resistant. The leash system also includes an internal shock absorber and the length of the lead can be increased by 6.5 inches by removing the two springs inside the steel wand.
Allows for tangle free and hands-free dog walking from your bicycle
TUV SUD Product Service Certification
Attaches within five minutes and comes with a quick release system
The leash is made from military grade paracord with a 550lb pull strength
Can be used without bicycle attachment for usual dog walking
- BrandWalky Dog
- Weight3 lbs
The TaoTronics Retractable Dog Leash is suitable for dogs up to 110lbs and provides 16 feet of the leash to give your dog freedom while helping you maintain control. The tangle-free design includes a one button break and lock, an anti-slip ergonomic handle, and a bone-shaped dog waste bag dispenser. The leash is made from durable nylon and the clip joint is reinforced with a plastic sleeve. The leash clip itself is chrome plated. The system includes a smooth retracting action so that your dog is not surprised or jolted when the leash is pulled in.
Strong and durable retractable dog leash; suitable for the dog’s up to 110lbs
Strong nylon leash provides up to 16ft of roaming space for your dog
Ergonomically designed anti-slip handle for comfort and safety
Plastic reinforced leash clip joint
Available in black, blue, and orange
- Weight12.5 oz
If you are looking for a versatile, hands-free leash that can be used with multiple dogs, then the SHINE HAI Hands Free Waist Dog Leach could be just what you are looking for. The leash has an adjustable hands-free design that you wear around your waist like a belt. This makes walking your dog less restraining, giving you more freedom when walking or running. The dual bungees reduce shock, reducing injury risks for both you and your pet, especially when you need to stop suddenly.
The leash can be adjusted to meet the needs of two dogs and includes handles for additional control if needed. The bungee effectively absorbs pulling power for dogs up to 150lb, so is ideal for larger dogs. The reflective stitching makes walks in low light safer, while the whole construction is durable and weatherproof.
Hands-free, adjustable waist design that can be used with one or two dogs
Durable nylon leash with two bungee ropes to reduce shock and injury
Can absorb the pulling power of dogs up to 150lbs
Handles provide additional control if needed
Metal clips included for connection to collars or harnesses
- BrandSHINE HAI
- Weight11.2 oz
If you are looking for a two-handled long dog leash, then the six-foot Dog Leash from Primal Pet Gear might be just what you need. The leash is made from high-quality soft nylon and features two handles, one that is six feet from the clip and the other at one foot from the clip. The two-handle design gives you greater control, particularly when training, it also means you can give your dog more freedom to explore when it is safe to do so.
The leash is ideal for medium and large breed dogs but can also be used with smaller breeds. Both handles have additional padding for comfort, meaning you can enjoy walking your dog without getting sore hands.
6ft dog leash featuring two handle points
Additional padding added to both handles for comfort
The leash is made from soft but durable nylon
Available in blue, orange, pink, purple, and blue-black
Ideal for use with medium and large breed dogs
- BrandPrimal Pet Gear
- Weight6.9 oz
The Flexi Neon Leash offers a retractable 16 feet leash with neon color components and reflective stickers for safer walking in low light situations. The single-handed design includes an easy to control brake button and permanent stop feature. The leash is available in three sizes with the medium leash being suitable for dogs weighing up to 44lbs.
16ft fully retractable dog leash
Features neon colors and reflective elements for greater safety in low light
One handed design with easy to use brake button
Available in small, medium, and large
- ModelPN2.266.S NEO.15
- Weight6.9 oz
The Fairwin Braided Leather Dog Leash is specifically designed as a training leash for German Sheppard dogs. The 5.6 feet leash is made from genuine leather; it is handmade to be durable and with strong tensile resistance. The metal clip for connecting to your dog’s collar or harness is made using copper alloy casting, which gives outstanding appearance and a strong tensile resistance that can manage 500lb of pull force. While designed for German Sheppard dogs it is available in three sizes, making it suitable for other strong dogs.
5.6ft genuine leather braided training leash
Copper alloy clip for connecting to your dog’s collar or harness
Can manage up to 500lbs of pulling power
Available in small, medium, and large, to suit most breeds of dog
- Weight6.1 oz
If you have multiple dogs to walk, then the Peteast Double Dog Leash might be just what you need. The well constructed, durable, weave design leash is made from polyester and nylon to give it strength without weighing it down. The no-tangle design includes a swivel clasp that auto adjusts if your dogs cross over each other. The lead is 50 inches in length, giving you the perfect balance between freedom and control. It comes with a soft foam handle, which provides comfort and protection from rope burns.
The leash is suitable for running, walking, and training. It is available in three different colors and can be safely used with a combined dog weight of up to 110lbs.
Dual dog leash with swivel clasp for tangle-free walking
The leash is 50 inches in length and made from nylon and polyester
Soft foam handle protects hands and provides comfort
For use with dogs with a combined weight of up to 110 lbs
Available in black, blue, and pink
- Weight8 oz
The Max and Neo Double Handle Traffic Dog Leash is one inch wide and is made from 2mm thick heavy-duty nylon webbing. The 6 feet long strong and durable leash is designed to handle even the strongest and largest dogs. The handles are padded neoprene, with one handle situated at the end of the leash, the other is 18 inches from the clasp. This gives you perfect control for training or when close to traffic. The top handle includes a D-ring for clipping on accessories or poop bags to make walks that little bit easier.
6ft, double handle dog leash made from heavy duty nylon webbing
Strong and durable, ideal for training and walking close to traffic
Includes collar/harness clip and additional D-ring
Available in black, blue, pink, purple, and red
- BrandMax and Neo
- Weight2.4 oz
The Heavy Duty Rope Leash from SparklyPets is designed for medium and large dogs and incorporates an anti-pull bungee into its design. The leash is chew resistant and made from braided nylon to make it tough and durable. It includes a metallic hook, elastic bungee, and leather joints, making it the perfect leash for stronger dogs. The bungee helps to eliminate the stress on your neck and arms that can be caused by sudden movements and pulling.
It also provides additional stability, while the reflective stripe that is incorporated into the leash helps make walking in low light safer. The leash is 43.3 inches in length, not including the extended length of the bungee, and is available in three different colors.
Heavy-duty, chew resistant, braided nylon rope leash
Includes a bungee to reduce stress on your arm and neck
Suitable for stronger breeds and includes leather joints and metallic hooks
Reflective stripe included for safe walking in a low light
Available in black, blue, and teal
- ModelSoft Portable Running Dog Leash Kit L004
- Weight8.8 oz
If you are looking for a training aide, then the Dog/Puppy Obedience Recall Training Agility Lead by Downtown Pet Supply may be just what you are looking for. The long lead includes a swivel style bolt snap to reduce twisting, while the length gives your dog or puppy freedom without compromising your control or their safety. The lead is available in a range of lengths from 15ft to 100ft to meet your specific needs. It is made from nylon and the stitching is reinforced to give the leash durability and strength; this is supported by the nickel-plated clip.
Durable nylon training lead with swivel style snap to resist twisting
Available in six lengths from 15ft to 100ft all with a nickel-plated leash clip
Available in black, blue, green, orange, and red
- BrandDowntown Pet Supply
- Weight9.1 oz
The Paw Lifestyles Extra Heavy Duty Dog Leash is 3mm thick and 6ft long. It is ideal for medium and large dogs due to its tightly woven nylon design. The handle is made from neoprene and is padded for comfort. The leash includes two luminous reflective seams to improve safety during low light walks. The lightweight, yet durable, design also includes a large 2-inch heavy duty leash clip and D-ring for your walking accessories, such a poop bags or clicker.
Tightly woven nylon dog leash, ideal for medium and large dogs
The leash is 6ft long and 3mm wide
Includes two luminous reflective seams for low light walks
Includes 2-inch heavy duty leash clip and D-ring
Available in black/blue, black/green, and black/magenta
- BrandPaw Lifestyles
- Weight11.7 oz
The 6 feet Coastal Pet Products DCPR0216GRW Nylon Remington Rope Slip Dog Leash does not require a collar or harness and simply slips over your dog’s head. The leash is ideal for crate transfer and training; allowing for quick, yet gentle, correction. The leash is made from soft, braided nylon and is extremely flexible. The slider on the leash is made of leather, allowing for smooth movement up and down the leash.
6ft slip dog leash made from durable nylon
Does not require a collar or harness
The leather slider allows for smoother movement
Ideal for training and crate transfer
- BrandCoastal Pet
- Weight4.5 oz
If you are looking for a more traditional style dog leash, then consider the Nylon Dog Leash from PetSafe. The leash is available in two lengths and three different widths so you can choose the one that is right for your dog. It includes an easy on/off hook to attach to your dog’s collar or harness and the nickel-plated zinc alloy hook is securely stitched to the leash.
Traditional style flat nylon dog leash
Available in two lengths and three different widths to meet your specific needs
Includes nickel-plated zinc alloy easy on/off the hook
Available in apple green, black, deep purple, raspberry pink, red, and royal blue
- Weight4 oz
Best Dog Leash Buying Guide & FAQ
When you are looking for a dog leash for your pet pooch there are numerous things you need to consider. The age and weight of your dog, whether you like to walk, run, or cycle with your dog, and your own comfort are just some of the key issues you need to address. In this section of the buying guide, we look at these in more detail, as well as exploring the different types of leashes that are available, how to train your dog with a leash, and how best to introduce your puppy to walking on a leash. We also answer some of the most frequently asked questions about dog leashes.
Things to Consider When Buying a Dog Leash
While your pet pooch may be part of your family, they are still an animal that must be properly controlled for its own safety and for that of others. In many areas, it is mandatory for your dog to be on a leash when outside the home environment, so having a good quality leash that is comfortable to use and easy to attach is essential.
One of the main considerations when buying a leash is the material it is made from. Nylon is one of the most common materials as it is durable and hardwearing. However, it can cause rope burns if it is suddenly pulled through your hand. If considering a nylon or nylon mix, then look for one with a comfortable padded handle. The leather is another commonly used material, however, leather leashes can be heavy and require regular cleaning and maintenance to stop them from becoming brittle and cracking.
The type or style of the leash is another consideration. Standard leashes are a length of material with a hook at one end and a handle at the other end. Other styles include retractable leashes, slip leashes, and bungee leashes. They type you choose will depend on the energy level of your dog, whether you want to be able to walk hands-free, and how your dog behaves on the leash. For example, bungee leashes are ideal for dogs who have a tendency to pull forward without warning as they absorb the shock of this movement and reduce the stress on your arm and shoulder.
Leash length is also important. If you want to give your dog freedom to explore or are agility training, then a longer leash is crucial. However, a shorter leash gives more control, especially near traffic, in crowded areas, and for dogs who are new to walking on a lead. Retractable leads give you a good balance of both freedom and control as you can decide how far away from you your dog can be and remain safe in any given situation.
How you want to walk your dog is also important when choosing a leash. If you like to run or cycle, then you might want to consider a hands-free leash or one that is designed to link directly to your bicycle. You should ensure that your dog is suitably leash trained before attempting these types of activities with them.
Types of Leashes
There are many different types and styles of leases available for your dog. Here are the most common types:
Traditional leash – A traditional leash comprises of a length of material with a hook at one end and a handle at the other. The length is often made from nylon, nylon mix, or leather, while the handle can be the same material or can have additional padding or neoprene to make it more comfortable. The hook that attaches to the collar or harness is usually made from a metal alloy for strength.
Retractable leash – A retractable leash is exactly that. The leash retracts into the handle, meaning you can vary the length of the leash and the amount of freedom you give your dog. The handles of these leashes are very sturdy and are usually ergonomically designed with a non-slip grip. The leash itself can be very thin on some models so it is important to check how much pulling weight it can take.
Slip leash – This type of leash does not require a collar or harness to be worn. It simply slips over your dog’s head. The design allows you to correct your dog’s behavior easily yet gently. The loop around your dog’s neck tightens as they pull, quickly teaching that pulling is an unacceptable behavior. This type of leash is not recommended for puppies whose necks or throats may be damaged as they are not yet fully developed. Care should also be taken with larger dogs because of the weight behind the pulling motion and the potential for this to cause damage to their neck.
Hands-free – There are several different versions of the hands-free leash, but the principle behind them is the same; to allow you to walk your dog without needing to hold the leash in your hands. A common version of the hands-free leash is the belt style leash. Instead of a traditional handle, this type of leash has an adjustable waist belt, allowing it to fit comfortably around your waist and giving you freedom while you walk your dog. If considering this type of leash, then look for one that has anti-tangle features built in, this should stop problems that could lead to you falling over your dog.
Bike leashes – The bike leash allows you to ride your bike while safely and securely walking your dog. Such leashes usually attach to the seat pole of your bike, via a high carbon tube. As with hands-free leashes, anti-tangle features are important on these types of leads.
Bungee leashes – As the name suggests these leashes contain one or more areas of bungee cord. They help to reduce shock and damage to both your dog’s neck and to your arm and neck when your dog pulls.
Dual handle leashes – This style of dog leash has a second handle incorporated into the design. This increases the control you have over the leash and your dog. It is very helpful for close work and road training.
Dual dog leashes – These are leashes that allow you to safely and effectively walk more than one dog at a time. The best dual dog leashes include anti-tangle features to reduce issues caused by your dogs swapping sides as they walk. It is important to note the maximum pull weight of these leashes and to check whether that is per dog or the combined pull weight of both dogs.
Training Your Dog With a Leash
Dogs are not born knowing how to walk on a leash. It is a learned behavior that must be taught by their human. Leash training is different for several reasons, including because it restrains a dog’s natural behaviors. The key to leash training is having a consistent approach from the beginning. If you allow your dog to pull, even once, then they believe that this behavior is acceptable.
If your dog is new to a leash or needs to be retrained to learn correct leash behaviors, then you need to start by considering all walks as training sessions. These should be kept short and made fun for your dog. Never set out on a training walk without plenty of treats.
While leash training, you also need to ensure that your dog is still getting the exercise that they need. Leash training is more successful if you deal with a dog’s excess energy before you start the walk. Try playing fetch or driving to a dog park where they can be off the leash to play. Once your dog has burned off some energy you can attach the leash and get started.
The right starting point is important with leash training. If your dog is overly excited while preparing for the walk, then you will struggle to gain control. You should wait until your dog is calm before putting on their leash and then wait again before moving for the door or gate. If they start to bounce or jump at any point, stop and wait until they are calm again before proceeding.
Pacing is important when leash training. Dogs move quicker than us as a general rule, they also have heightened senses, so can hear and smell things that we easily miss. For this reason, it is important that you move at a swift pace during training walks. This gives your dog less time to catch the scent of something interesting and is more exciting for them. Of course, you still need to be comfortable and shouldn’t find yourself running or out of breath.
While walking, you need to continually praise your dog when they walk without pulling and stop immediately when they get overexcited or begin to pull. Do not start walking again until they are calm and by your side. As soon as correct behavior is shown, praise and reward them, and then set off again. Use your pet’s name and simple, single word commands to improve the effectiveness of your leash training.
Introducing a Puppy to Walking on a Leash
While you can get great results introducing your dog to a leash at any age, the sooner you start the easier the process is. Puppies should be introduced to a collar and leash before they are even ready to leave the home. This way they are second nature once they have had their inoculations and are safe to start walking outside.
Follow these tips to introduce your puppy to walking on a leash:
- Introduce the collar and leash, or harness and leash early. Let them wear it for short periods around the home and always interact with your puppy and give lots of praise once the leash is on.
- Teach your puppy a cue. It could be a word, a click, or a whistle, something that makes them look at you. Begin by giving a reward when they turn their attention to you. After a short time, on hearing the cue, they will come straight to you for the treat.
- The next step is to wait and walk a few paces before giving your puppy the treat. Use the cue, let them come to you, then walk a few paces, wait for them to come to you before giving the treat.
- Now try walking a few paces while holding the leash. Keep sessions short and always praise and reward.
- When your puppy is ready, move to the outside. If your puppy becomes distracted or starts to lunge or pull, use your cue word to bring them back to you. Remember to reward them and to take it slowly, keeping walks short.
Best Dog Leash FAQ:
Q: How do I know if my dog is comfortable with a leash?
A: If your dog is comfortable with a leash they are less likely to pull when walking. They will also come to you to have the leash put on as they see it as a positive experience. Signs that they are not comfortable with the leash might include them running off or hiding when they see it, or biting the leash when it is attached to their collar or harness.
Q: How do I know if a leash is durable enough for my dog?
A: The best way to judge the strength and durability of a leash is to check the pull weight recommendation of the manufacturer. Some leashes are able to withstand pull weights of around 550lbs, which is enough to accommodate even the largest dogs who continuously pull while walking. Read the guidelines carefully to distinguish whether it is the dog’s weight that is included or the pull weight / tensile strength that is noted.
Q: How do I clean a dog leash?
A: This depends greatly on the materials that are used in its construction. However, most leads can be wiped with a damp cloth to remove surface dirt. If your leash gets wet while out on your walk it should be air dried as soon as you return. Check manufacturer’s guidelines for specific cleaning requirements.
Q: What size of a leash do I need for my dog?
A: The length of the leash you use depends on the activities you are undertaking. If you are agility training or providing limited freedom to roam and play, then a longer lead is ideal. If you are leash training for walking in crowded areas or by roads, then a short one is more suitable. With shorter leashes, you should be able to hold the leash comfortably and without it pulling their neck when they are sitting, laying, or standing by your side. In terms of the width of the leash, this should be determined by the weight of your dog. It is best to check the manufacturer's guides to ensure you have the right size leash for your breed, size, and weight of the dog.
Our Top Pick
Out top pick is the 5ft Strong Dog Leash from BAAPET. It has a comfortable padded handle and highly reflective threads to help keep your dog safe and secure even during low light walks. The heavy-duty leash is designed for medium and large dogs and is made from half inch rock climbing rope. It includes a durable metal clip to safely and securely connect to your dog’s collar or harness. The padded handle provides a comfortable, anti-shock grip for you and protects your hands from rope burn. The leash is ideal for walking, training, and running, and provides the perfect balance between freedom and control.