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Flexi-lead rant

This is a place to gain some understanding of dog behavior and to assist people in training their dogs and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. This can cover the spectrum from non-aversive to traditional methods of dog training. There are many ways to train a dog. Please avoid aggressive responses, and counter ideas and opinions with which you don't agree with friendly and helpful advice. Please refrain from submitting posts that promote off-topic discussions. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other dog owners and lovers... not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
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Lenny

Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
 
 
Barked: Fri May 10, '13 4:55pm PST 
If people can use them and keep their dog out of trouble then I am all for it. But I too have seen them used lazily, like owners just dawdle behind letting their dog go 16ft ahead of them or beside them into the road doing whatever they please. One of those arguments where it's not the tool itself that's the problem, but how it is being used.

I do have a 20ft line like Moose I use for my boys on the trails, easy enough to reel in when I need to but lets them go off and smell and bound around me lol. It can get tricky sometimes since Crash is still learning a lot of his obedience and such, but Lenny is decent enough that I can rely on him to be where I need him to be while I reel in Crash. But anywhere else, 6ft leashes and like another poster I usually have it shortened (especially in crowded areas or small spaces).
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Bosley

Will Work For- Food
 
 
Barked: Fri May 10, '13 7:04pm PST 
Yes, many people use these leads incorrectly but I do not agree with all the statements made. I use a flexi all the time and have a large (100 pound) dog. I have no issues with control on the flexi because my dog is .... wait for it .... trained! I like using it so my dog has some freedom to sniff and wander when we are in places that he cannot be off leash. If I call him, he comes back to me - no reeling in needed. When we meet up with other people/dogs on the trail he walks at my side until we pass by - no one would even know he is on a flexi. So, blanket statements about all flexi owners being lazy or all large breed dogs incapable of being able to be controlled on a flexi is a bit offensive for those of us who train our dogs and use the leash responsibly. And yes, I do know other who use their leashes the same way. Maybe it's because you only notice the ill mannered dogs on a flexi and never notice those of us who actually know how to use this leash.

Edited by author Fri May 10, '13 7:05pm PST

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Kris

1293986
 
 
Barked: Fri May 10, '13 7:48pm PST 
My neighbor has a Jack Russel and I will say one thing, he does walk the dog EVERY day, summer and winter. He walks it on a flexi and we do not have sidewalks where he walks. One day I was walking down the other side of the road and he let the dog run across to say hello. It was right on a curve of the road and he would not have been able to get the dog back in time if a car had come around the curve. I would have felt so badly if it had been killed.

I have a couple of flexis that I use occasionaly when we are somewhere the dog is not allowed off lead but can safely wander around, like in the park.
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The Boys

The Three- Stooges.
 
 
Barked: Fri May 10, '13 9:58pm PST 
I have to say I'm not a fan of flexis either.
I think they are fine if you are in a park or the woods or something like that. But I've mostly seen them used in neighborhoods with sidewalks where imo you're dog should be walking at your side.
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UCH Onyx TT,- CGC

Do you even- lift?
 
 
Barked: Fri May 10, '13 11:10pm PST 
That's a good point about rest stops, Toto. I'd never really considered the cleanliness aspect of using a long line in an area lots of other dogs had been. Actually went and found the Flexi I bought several years ago for another purpose and then forgot about. Summer road trips coming up and I think I'll use it for the rest stops.

Agree with those saying they can be used safely for large dogs if you don't buy a cheap knockoff or one made for a much smaller dog. The problem with retractable leashes is there's so much room for error. Obviously a 100 lb dog running to the end of a 20 foot leash and hitting it full force is going to be much more disastrous than a 15 lb dog doing the same thing, so I can understand being wary of large dogs on them. I avoid any dog I see on one just because, in my experience, the owner never seems aware there's a lock function.
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Augusta,- CGC, RN

Such a Good Dog!
 
 
Barked: Sat May 11, '13 8:29pm PST 
Agree with Iris, I bet if we go back in time, we might find an upsurge of flexi leash rant threads coinciding with warming weather! laugh out loud

I confess to be one of those who tends to be anti-, I know it's not rocket science, but for me, handling a leash--less is more. I don't like all that in my hand. My favorite leash add-on is my carabiner--I clip Gus to my belt a lot of times, so I'm hands free.

But, I have softened up my stance a bit, even the military uses them for working dogs, so they do have practical uses.

As always, it usually comes down to a lack of dog walking etiquette on the owner's part and lack of training.

Gus has weighed in personally on the flexi, she's attempted to chew through her walking companion's flexi cord more than once! "Here little buddy, I'll have you free in no time!" To my chagrin, she compromised it before I realized what she was up to the first time and I had to buy a new one for my friend! naughtylaugh out loud I've been more alert since then.
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Cobain ADC,- SGDC, CGN

More Bored- Collies
 
 
Barked: Sun May 12, '13 5:56am PST 
Yesterday at our agility trial I saw someone using a Flexi lead properly. Beautiful Golden Retriever applauseapplauseapplauseapplause

She of course was trialing.

Then I saw several others who stumbled into our area of the park and did NOT use them correctly. Luckily my dogs are not crazy in their crates so when this so-and-so allowed his Akita to approach my crating area, there was no harm done. But this dog did upset many others as the owner allowed him to walk closely to the crates. But then again, that could have easily happened with a normal leash the guy seemed so oblivious.

A friend of mine told me yesterday a really sad story about retractable leashes. The owner walking well away from the road, dog allowed to walk along the edge some 10ft or so away. 18 wheeler drives up, dog steps off the curb frown The truck driver didn't even notice. frown
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"Selli"

The Muddy- Princess
 
 
Barked: Sun May 12, '13 12:28pm PST 
I most commonly see flexies used in a trial (agility or obedience) environment where the dogs are required to be on leash but the dogs are all well trained. So when people potty their dogs they use flexies.

I have an amusing story about my first flexi and my heart-dog Dexy. We were returning to my sister's house after going to a park and we were crossing Huntington Blvd in San Marino Ca. The street is very wide and the time you had to walk across the street was short (nobody walks in LA), so we were running with Dex out in front of me. I tripped over the curb, went flying across the sidewalk and landed in the grass in front of a backup of cars. Dexy and I would have been safer if he had been off-leash.

As to long lines, they had their own potential calamities. Selli and I are learning to track and we are using a long line, which in tracking is let out behind you. My skill level at the long line is basic and I keep getting tangled in it. When Selli finds the sent trail and takes off, I am in danger of topplingsmile
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"Selli"

The Muddy- Princess
 
 
Barked: Sun May 12, '13 12:28pm PST 
I most commonly see flexies used in a trial (agility or obedience) environment where the dogs are required to be on leash but the dogs are all well trained. So when people potty their dogs they use flexies.

I have an amusing story about my first flexi and my heart-dog Dexy. We were returning to my sister's house after going to a park and we were crossing Huntington Blvd in San Marino Ca. The street is very wide and the time you had to walk across the street was short (nobody walks in LA), so we were running with Dex out in front of me. I tripped over the curb, went flying across the sidewalk and landed in the grass in front of a backup of cars. Dexy and I would have been safer if he had been off-leash.

As to long lines, they had their own potential calamities. Selli and I are learning to track and we are using a long line, which in tracking is let out behind you. My skill level at the long line is basic and I keep getting tangled in it. When Selli finds the sent trail and takes off, I am in danger of topplingsmile
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Dahlia

Gone, But Not- Forgotten.
 
 
Barked: Mon May 13, '13 6:22pm PST 
thinking I have found that there are many uses for flexi-leads: some good, and some are rather......"unique"! I recently read this article on the subject, and think you all could benefit from it's suggestions.

Think outside the box

What do you all think?
ETA: The authors also have a page on Facebook, where they offer up their expertise.

Edited by author Mon May 13, '13 6:31pm PST

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