There are some pet owners who believe that a dog leash is an optional accessory, especially if they have a well-behaved, obedient pup. However, even if your beloved pet is the most well-behaved dog there ever was, it’s still a good idea to get them a leash. Here are five good reasons why.
For Your Dog’s Safety
Dogs may be smart animals, but they don’t have much of a road sense. They’re also pretty unpredictable even with all that training they have, and they can get distracted quite easily. You’ll never know when they will get an urge to chase a stray squirrel out onto a busy road, or perhaps get too friendly with a passing jogger or cyclist, causing your dog to get injured and the other person to trip or fall off their bike. An off-leash dog outdoors may also get in contact with sick strays or wild animals, thus exposing themselves to possible infection as well.
Simply put getting your dog a leash not only keeps them safe when you’re out and about, it also keeps other people and other animals safe.
Lower Chances of Getting Lost
This is one of the most important reasons for getting your dog a leash: to prevent or lower the chances of them getting lost. Without a leash, your dog could run away. If they’re free to roam around in the neighborhood, a well-meaning passerby might think your dog is a stray and pick them up. Someone with less than honest intentions could even steal your dog.
It will be a sad, distressing experience for you as the dog owner, even more so for your dog. Of course, there are times when everything works out and you’ll get your dog back in the end. However, there are cases when the worst happens and you might not be reunited with your pet. Keeping your dog on a leash will help prevent this situation from happening in the first place.
For Everyone’s Peace of Mind
Dogs are a man’s best friend, yes, but believe it or not, not everyone is a dog lover. No matter how lovable and friendly your pet might be, there are some people who just don’t like getting approached, much less chased, by a dog. Then there are those who are outright scared of dogs, perhaps because they’ve been bitten by one before (whether on- or off-leash). Some people may also not be ready or capable to deal with an over an exuberant dog, say a pregnant woman or an elderly person who may not be too stable on their feet.
You should also take into consideration other people’s dogs. While your own may be social and outgoing, other people’s dogs may not be as welcoming. This could easily cause a fight between the two pets and between you owners, as well. Dogs can also be easily spooked, but having them on a leash makes it easier to pacify them, especially when you’re around other people.
Training and Control
A leash is a simple yet effective training tool to help your dog be on their best behavior, whether in or out of the house. Along with a correctly fitted dog collar, a leash with the right length also enables the owner to manage their pets without having to chase them around the park or the backyard. Training a dog on-leash will also make it easier to transition to teach them manners and tricks off-leash.
Dogs are also known to sniff, eat, and drink things that they shouldn’t, like a dead animal’s carcass or a fountain in the park. Roaming dogs can also get exposed to poisonous plants or those with thorns and burrs. A leash makes it easier for you to gently pull your dog back from these hazards.
Being a Responsible Pet Owner
A leash is more than just a personal touch on your part, it’s a mark of a responsible, law-abiding owner. Depending on where you are, there are most likely leash laws that have been put into place by state, county, or city authorities to ensure not only the safety of your dog but also of the people in the neighborhood.
Having your dog on a leash also prevents them from trespassing onto private properties. What’s more, it’s also easier to clean up after a leashed dog when you’re outdoors, as you know exactly when and where he’s doing his “business.”
Having your dog on a leash is also a good way to encourage other dog owners of doing the same, too. It’s all about promoting good canine ownership.
Finally, a leash is a great way to show that your dog is part of the pack—your pack—and therefore protected. Simple as it is, a leash is a great way to bond with your dog and assure them that they are loved.