The best dog leash

Sian Babish

If your dog is your best friend, going for walks is probably the highlight of your day together. To keep walks safe and enjoyable, invest in a top-quality dog leash.

There are many dog leashes on the market: retractable, leather, and even jogging leashes. Choosing the right one means taking several factors into consideration, including their size and activity level. Of course, a dog leash needs to meet your needs, too, and it should feel comfortable and secure.

If it's time to upgrade your dog's leash, read our buying guide, which includes reviews of a few of our favorites at the end. Leatherberg's Leather Dog Leash is our top choice. Its rugged construction ensures it will last for many years of adventures with your furry pal.

Considerations when choosing dog leashes

Types of dog leashes

Standard leashes: Standard dog leashes have a clip and handle, and despite their simple design, they're the most common choice. Most styles can be used with collars and harnesses.

Retractable leashes: Retractable leashes, as their name implies, let you control how long the lead is. They're convenient if you take your dog on adventures in various landscapes: a shorter leash for more control on sidewalks, but a longer leash for more freedom in open spaces.

Double-ended leashes: Double-ended leashes have clips at both ends and are designed for use with front-clip harnesses. They offer more than one lead option, as they can be attached at the front of the harness or can be attached to the rear clip to function as a traditional leash.

Slip leashes: Slip leashes are made of soft materials like nylon and include a collar that goes around your dog's neck. It tightens if your dog begins pulling, so slip leashes are better for calmer dogs who can walk on a loose lead.



Nylon dog leashes are lightweight and affordable, but they might not be great for dogs prone to chewing. In fact, chewers do well with chain-link dog leashes. Leather dog leashes are well-liked for their long-lasting design. To keep them in tip-top shape, you need to maintain them with leather products.

Leash lengths

The average dog leash is between four and eight feet in length. They're best for everyday walks, as they give your dog enough slack to explore without becoming unruly. There are longer leashes, between 10 to 20 feet, which are most often used in training.

Leash clips

Leashes either have bolt snaps or trigger snap clips. Bolt snaps consist of a bar mechanism that opens the clip, whereas trigger snap clips simply open inward. Some canine experts cite trigger snap clips as the more secure, reliable option. However, bar clips -- if good quality -- offer comparable security.


If you're in the market for a standard dog leash, you can find one for $10 or below. Slip leashes and those compatible with harnesses or multi-dog leashes cost between $15 and $35. Leather and retractable styles can cost anywhere between $15 and $50.


Q. How do I know it's time to upgrade my growing puppy's leash?

A. During one of your puppy's growth spurts, you may find the lead is a bit too short. Your puppy's leash might also be too light to control them when they're larger and more rambunctious. When this happens, you need a thicker or heavier leash.

Q. My kids will be walking our dog often. Which dog leash will be easy for them to hold?

A. Kids have smaller hands than adults, so you might want to invest in a dog leash with an adjustable handle to tighten the grip. Another option is investing in a retractable leash, where handles are often ergonomically designed and feature non-slip detail.

Dog leashes we recommend

Best of the best: Leatherberg's Leather Dog Leash

Our take: Long-lasting leather leash with a simple design.

What we like: Rugged quality in a lightweight leash, excellent for active dogs. Flexible and soft.

What we dislike: It's expensive but will most definitely last for several years.

Best bang for your buck: Downtown Pet Supply's Dog Leash

Our take: Basic, budget-friendly nylon webbing leash.

What we like: Resists mold and mildew and is easy to clean. Comes in a wide variety of colors.

What we dislike: May not be best for active dogs or those going to training school.

Choice 3: TaoTronics' Retractable Dog Leash

Our take: Convenient retractable leash with a companion waste bag holder.

What we like: Extends to 16 feet and accommodates big dogs. Nonslip handle and reliable mechanism.

What we dislike: Might not be great for hyper dogs.

Sian Babish is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

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