You’re painting with a broad brush if you are trying to find the best leash for dogs that pull. That’s because there’s no one-size that fits all. Small dogs can be like livewires when they are outside and their delicate canine bodies need leashes that offer some amount of support, while trying to control the pulling.
Large dogs are a different ball game altogether. It can feel like you are trying to control a freight train.
In extreme cases, it can even cause serious injuries to you or your dog! That’s why, it is important to consider a few key variables before you narrow down on the best leash for your dog’s size.
We’ve provided a buying guide for dog leashes along with a few of our top picks.
Best Leashes for Dogs that Pull | Top 5 Picks
ThunderLeash is one of the oldest and most popular leashes for dogs that pull and definitely a top pick among dog owners. It uses a very gentle pressure on the torso that deters the dog from pulling. And it is so easy to use that you can put it on and get going in minutes.
No messy straps and pads to deal with.
Heavy-duty nylon construction
ThunderLeash is made of heavy duty nylon. It is waterproof and can easily withstand the pull from even the heaviest of dogs. Just ensure that you buy the right size for your pet.
It is available in three sizes, small, medium and large. The large one is for dog breeds above 25 lbs.
The hardware (buckles) are rust-proof stainless steel and remain impervious to everyday wear and tear.
The best part is that it can be used as a regular leash if need be. So, when your dog isn’t distracted by a chipmunk or overwhelmed by the surroundings, you can switch modes into the regular leash.
The ThunderLeash Buckle
ThunderLeash easily attaches to the D-Ring in any standard dog collar. Just wrap it around the torso of the dog and connect it to the ThunderLeash Collar and you are all set to experience pull-free walking.
If you still experience slight pulls from your dog, just adjust the safety buckle until its snug (not tight) and recheck.
ThunderLeash applies gentle feedback on the dog’s torso which is gentler than what a typical choke collar does. There is minimal pressure on the trachea and so far, it has worked for over 80% of the dogs that use it.
In case you are not satisfied, or if your dog manages to still yank you away to where they want, you can return the ThunderLeash for a refund. It comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
P.S. The manufacturer also offers a doggie vest called ThunderShirt that absorbs the feedback provided by the ThunderLeash and evenly distributes it across the dog’s torso. If the ThunderLeash doesn’t work for you as a standalone no-pull solution, you’d want to check this out.
Why we like this
- Proven performance
- Thousands of positive customer reviews
- Heavy duty nylon construction
- 3 sizes
- Easy to use
- Gentle feedback on the dog’s chest prevents pulling
- Can be used as a regular leash when needed
- 100% satisfaction guarantee
Things to watch out for
- Despite the design, ThunderLeash might apply some amount of pressure on the dog’s trachea. It won’t choke the dog. But if you have an old dog that finds it difficult to breathe (but still pulls), you’d want to speak to the manufacturer before you use this.
We first saw the Escape Resistant leash for dog that pulls in action a couple of years ago at a dog show in Ohio. It was around a 50 lb. terrier and she was trying every trick up her sleeve to get out of it. She tried backing out, squeezing her way through it, trying to chew it and even a few mid-air doggie somersaults that only dogs can do.
The leash just stayed put until she gave up, gently got up and behaved as calm as a toddler in her stroller.
We were quite pleasantly surprised by the design. Apart from the fact that it completely stopped pulling, we also liked that it uses a rounded strap as opposed to a flat one and this greatly reduces chaffing, for both dogs and owners.
Can stop a boat?
That’s what Harness Lead claims. We spoke to customers who have used this for their 130 lbs. dogs and they have had only good things to say about it. So we are believers.
The strap is hand spliced in the US.
It has a slightly cumbersome design, especially when you compare it with ThunderLeash. But once you wear it around your pet for a couple of times, you should get a hang of things. So, we wouldn’t call that a deal breaker.
On a positive note, there are no buckles and metal hardware that can potentially hurt your pet.
Two sizes, multiple colors
If you are finicky about color-matching everything canine, then you’ll be pleased to know that the Harness Lead Escape Resistant is available in two sizes and seven colors.
Excellent quality, USA made leash for dogs that pull.
Why we like this
- Rounded straps in place of flat one
- No chaffing
- Great customer reviews
- No metal hardware
- Does not choke the pet
- Easy to adjust
- Hand spliced in the USA
- Excellent tensile strength
Things to watch out for
- Is not chew proof. Hence, never use this to tie the dog around home. He will be back on the couch before you know.
The Gentle Leader Head Collar is a slightly different type of leash for dog that pulls. Instead of a conventional no-pull leash that applies gentle pressure on the dog’s torso, this one goes around the head of the dog in a loop.
Apart from discouraging pulling, it also stops a lot of other annoying doggie behaviors, like barking at passersby and lunging.
Completely safe no-pull solution
A lot of pet parents are skeptical about using a head collar because they fear that it might choke their pets. That’s far from it.
The PetSafe Gentle Leader Head Collar is completely safe. It does not choke your pet and the neoprene loop that goes around their head is heavily padded. There will be no skin-burns or chaffing.
Also, the pressure/feedback that it applies on the dog is very gentle.
Perfect for training dogs to heel
This head collar was originally designed to facilitate obedience training in pets. But it was so effective in helping control leash pulling, that many veterinarians started to recommend this as the best leash for dogs that pull.
If your dog has not undergone obedience training, then use the DVD included in the pack. It might take a couple of sessions for them to get used to the new leash.
The PetSafe dog leash for pullers is available in five sizes for dog breeds ranging from 5 lbs. to 130 lbs.
Why we like this
- Unconventional but very effective design
- Gentle feedback that deters pulling, barking and lunging
- Padded neoprene head loop that prevents chaffing
- Does not choke your pet
- DVD included for dogs that are transitioning from conventional leashes
- Great reviews
- Veterinarian recommended solution for obedience training
Things to watch out for
- Does not work for brachycephalic (short-nosed) breeds.
Remember us mentioning the ThunderShirt, an additional accessory available for purchase with the ThunderLeash? The Rabbitgoo no pull dog harness is a combination of the two.
It is a no pull leash and a no pull vest combined into one. That’s what makes it so effective.
Any pressure that the dog exerts is completely absorbed and evenly distributed on to the torso, thereby eliminating any chances of unwanted pressure on the spine or the trachea.
Dual Metal Leash Attachment points
The Rabbitgoo no pull dog harness features dual metal leash attachment points. There’s one on the back of the vest and one on the chest allowing you to choose the one that works best for your pet.
The vest and the strap itself are thick and provide ample padding to prefer soreness or chaffing.
When not on use as a dog leash for pulling, you can just leave the vest on. It is a breathable material that’s not the least bit uncomfortable for your dog.
This also allows you to quickly attach the leash for an impromptu walk down the neighborhood or an unplanned visit to the vet.
Reflective Straps for those late evening walks
RabbitGoo dog leash for pulling features reflective straps that keep you covered for those late evening walks.
It is available in seven sizes and five colors, including a black one with LED strips on it.
A well rounded package at a shoestring price tag.
Why we like this
- Vest and harness integrated into one
- Dual metal attachment points (One on back and one on the chest)
- Size adjustable
- Prevents choking and evenly distributes the pressure
- Reflective straps
- Easy to wear and remove
- Seven sizes, five colors including one with an LED
- Heavy, breathable material
Things to watch out for
- The leash is not the heaviest grade nylon that we have seen. It still is durable mind you. Just that we’ve seen heavier grade nylon and if you use this frequently for large dogs, you might notice some amount of wear and tear in a few months.
Not this ultra-soft harness from PetLove. It is as soft as it comes and the lush padding is perfect for doggies with all skin types.
You can be rest assured that this won’t hurt your pet one bit.
Mesh Lining with sponge padding on the inside
This is the only leash for dog that pulls, with a soft sponge lining on the inside near the back and the chest.
So, the actual nylon layer never comes into contact with your dog’s skin.
At the same time, the outer layers are as durable as you’d need. The tensile strength is top notch and the design keeps even the most ardent escape artist from breaking out of this.
Reflective straps and bright colors
The PetLove Soft Leash Padded No Pull Dog Harness is available in eight sizes and five bright colors that stand out and offer easy visibility from a distance.
For low light situations, there are reflective strips neatly embedded into the harness at vital points.
Overall, you’d be hard pressed to find a better package at this price point. Great reviews to back it up!
Why we like this
- No pull harness with a sponge padding inside
- Perfect for dogs with sensitive skin
- Eight sizes, five colors
- Reflective strips for easy visibility
- Excellent tensile strength
Things to watch out for
- The extra padding comes at the cost of added bulk to the harness. So, it can be a little uncomfortable for the dog if you leave the vest on at all times. On a positive note, it is extremely easy to put on and remove.
Best Leashes for Dogs that Pull | Additional Options
The Durable 1″ Nylon Material of the Leashboss Short Dog Leash is made to hold up any dog. The Padded Handle allows for added comfort and protection. You have the option to choose between a 12, 18, or 24 inch leash;with each length made in all sizes.
- Material is sturdy and allows for slight give.
- Comfortable handle will make long walks considerably easier.
- Many sizes available, increasing the chance of a perfect fit.
The stretchy shock resistant material of the EzyDog ZERO SHOCK Leash reduces pulling, offers extra padding, lowers chafing and increases comfort. The leash is interwoven with reflective trim, it comes in a variety of colors with your choice of 25″ or 48″ leashes, both of which are compatible with any ZERO SHOCK product.
- Shock resistant material dissuades your pooch from pulling and keeps them at your side.
- Padded handle and reflective trim increase safety while out walking.
- Variety of colors and sizes to choose from, all of which are compatible with componies other products.
The front leading PoyPet No Pull Harness is softly padded for your dog’s comfort while still offering the same measure of control. Three buckles ensure its easy removal and adjustment, no complicated ties or snap ons. All of the pressure from pulling is evenly distributed through the harness, removing risk of choking for your pup.
- Soft and padded well for your dog’s comfort.
- Easy on and off access with three simple buckles.
- Pressure is evenly distributed over the harness, ensuring no choking.
The Raining Pet No Pull Harness Dog Leash Set has easy on and off access, two buckles with room for adjustments, severely cutting down time needed to get going. The cozy design of the harness distributes weight evenly, removing discomfort when pulling occurs. With two spots for the leash to connect to the harness, it gives the owner a choice how they wish to train.
- chew resistant and durable
- Weight distributed evenly means no choking hazard.
- Multiple leash connection places offer choices depending on situation.
The Primal Pet Gear Dog Leash sports two handles, one for leisure walks and the other for no pull training. The high quality of the material is guaranteed to withstand pulling. There is a one year warranty, so if your leash does ware down you can have another sent.
- Two handles for either leisure or training.
- High quality material, sturdy and long lasting.
- One Year Replacement Warranty
Vivaglory Short Dog Leash has a padded handle, the soft fabric reducing chafing from the leash. The clasp on the leash is 360 degree rotating, preventing the lead from twisting into knots. This product comes in 12, 18, and 30 inch length, allowing the buyer to decide what they want.
- Soft padded handle reduces pain in hands.
- A 360 degree swivel clasp that prevents tangling.
- Varied lengths to purchase for training, no pull, or leisure walks.
- Shorter leashes allow for greater control.
SparklyPets Heavy Duty Rope Bungee Leash is tough nylon, making it chew resistant for even the tenacious puppy. The shock absorbing bungee keeps your dog from choking by stopping the pulling and making them heel at your side. The company is so sure you’ll love it that they have a five year warranty.
- Chew resistant and durable
- Bungee quality stops choking and pulling
- Good choice for puppy training
- Five Year Money Back Guarantee
The Leashboss Traffic Handler is the perfect length for teaching your pup the proper position for heel. The material is strong while still being soft enough to prevent leash burn on you or your dog. This leash has a solid handle that makes it great for bigger dogs who press the leash painfully into your hand.
- Traffic handles helps with training.
- Chosen by dog trainers and professional dog walkers.
- Material is strong without being rough on skin/fur.
- Solid, plastic handle is great for gripping.
The Black Rhino Dog Leash has two handles for better control, one handle for training and one for leisurely strolls. The grip is comfortable for short or long walks while still having good traction, and it is made of sturdy, weather resistant material.
- Two handles for better control
- Comfortable grip while still having traction
- Weather resistant and sturdy
JIEPAI Tactical Bungee Dog Leash has comfort grip padding, good length to keep your pup at your side, and a handle that makes controlling your dog’s direction easier. It is elastic with a hook that can withstand the pull of Large dogs. A metal rotating clip makes the leash never tangle with your dog or you.
- All around great design
- Good stretch and elastic quality
- 360 degree swivel clasp, no more tangling.
Best Leashes for Dogs that Pull | Honorable Mentions
The lynxking Dog Leash is made of braided rope that does wonders for durability and grip. The slip resistant design reduces the possibility of your pup losing lead during a walk. The no pulling design allows you to adjust the size of the leash depending on your needs.
- Sturdy Material and good grip
- Slip resistant design to stop escape artists
- No pulling with the adjustable size for collar on leash.
The WINSEE Dog Harness has reflective material on the adjustable vest, allowing comfort and safety while on your walk. The front and back leash clip gives you options for where you would like your dog to heel. The vest is made from a sturdy fabric that evenly shifts the weight from pulling to stop choking.
- Reflective and adjustable harness is safer for your dog
- Front or Back clip is available for you choosing
- Made from sturdy fabric that stops choking from pulling
- Great option for smaller dogs
PHOEPET 2019 Upgraded No Pull Dog Harness is an adjustable vest that has easy on and off access with three buckles. The harness has reflective material lining it as well as double leash hooks for the owner’s convenience. The handle on the back is soft while still offering grip.
- Adjustable vest with easy on and off.
- Reflective material and double leash hooks for convenience
- Extra handle on dog’s back for more leverage in case it’s needed.
The BARKBAY No Pull Dog Harness is made from heavy duty materials that guarantee durability even for the worst of pullers. The handle on the back is reflective with a soft grip and the ID Tag pocket gives you a special place to keep your dog’s info just in case your pooch wonders off.
- Heavy duty and sturdy material is sure to be long lasting
- Handle on the back of the harness offers extra leverage.
- Reflective stitching increases safety.
- A specific pocket for the ID Tags, in the worst case scenario.
Big Dog Harness offers no choking safety your pet deserves while keeping them at your side in heel position. The vest is easy to wear and adjustable to ensure your dog’s comfort while walking. A leash hook and sturdy handle on the back give the owner easier control of their pooch.
- No choking or pulling from the harness
- Reflective threads for added safety
- Easy off and on, adjustable for easy access.
- Hook and handle combo make for better grip on your pooch when they are pulling.
How to Choose a Leash for Dogs that Pull: A Buyer’s Guide
When it comes to choosing a dog leash, there are a lot of options out there. In fact, when you look at the variety of materials, lengths, styles and functionality of the leashes on the market these days, there are probably thousands to choose from. That makes it hard to choose one even if you don’t have any particular limitations on what kind of leash to get. But what if you need a leash for a dog that pulls? This is a common problem that many dog owners experience, and sometimes, choosing the right leash can make a whole lot of difference. Let’s take a look at some of the things to keep in mind when choosing a dog leash and dog collar for a puppy that pulls.
How we reviewed the best dog leashes for pulling:
Like most pet parents, if you walk your dog on a regular basis, it is important that you either learn why your dog pulls and how to control it (speak to the dog trainer), or, you arm yourself with the best no-pull dog leash.
We will give you our two cents on the dog pulling behavior, which might be different from what you have heard so far.
Despite all the stories that you might have heard about dogs managing to slip out of no pull harnesses and leashes not being effective enough, your shopping decision still boils down to a few key variables.
Different Sizes | Size Matters
This is where most pet parents get it wrong. Buy a no pull leash that’s one size too big and it won’t be snug enough to provide the much needed feedback that deters the pet from pulling. So, it is crucial that you get the sizing right. Measure the girth of the dog’s torso around the chest and select the size accordingly. If you are still unsure, speak to the manufacturer about the right size for your pet.
There are normal no pull dog leashes and ones that have a harness/vest integrated into it. Both work equally well. If you already have a dog vest, then you might want to buy a leash that is compatible with it. The advantage of choosing one with a vest is that it will help distribute the pressure evenly as compared to leashes that tend to impart excessive pressure at one single point.
Look for straps, vests and harnesses that are thickly padded, even if this translates into a little extra bulk. It’s way better than selecting a flimsy strap that can bite into the skin and cause chaffing.
Last but not the least, read reviews to know about the quality. A no-pull dog leash will be used multiple times every day. You need something that can withstand the wear and tear easily.
Why Your Dog Pulls
The first thing that you have to understand is why your dog pulls. Whether a dog is in a collar or dog harness, they will still pull is the behavior is not corrected.
The first thing that you need to understand is that your dog doesn’t pull on purpose – in other words, he or she isn’t doing it to make you mad. The second thing to understand is that there are ways that you can use the dog treat method and various tools like automatic fetch machines and dog activity monitors to make sure that your dog is getting enough exercise while outside near their dog house rather than penning up all of that energy to make it more difficult for you to walk them.
You can also make sure that you are meeting their needs with things like interactive dog toys, a dog bowl that is situated nearby and more. But you still need to find the best leash for dogs that pull. The best leash for pullers is difficult to find, but this buying guide below will help you find the best no pull leash on the market right now.
The Benefits of Good Leashes for Dogs That Pull
There are some pretty compelling benefits to getting a leash for dogs that that pull. Just like anything else that you get for your dog, like a dog bed or dog playpen, you want the best. Getting a good leash has lots of benefits. For example, you are able to train your dog much more effectively with a leash. In addition, many cities and towns have leash laws, requiring that whenever you are not using your dog crate or outdoor dog kennel, or letting your dog run loose in your yard or inside your house, you are required to have them on a leash.
Plus, you can prevent them from running out into the road when you are out for a walk, and people that are scared of dogs will not have as much anxiety over a dog on a leash. Plus, you can tie them to a street sign temporarily if you need to answer your phone or use the pooper scooper and poop bag.
The Three Types of Dog Leashes
There are three basic types of leashes that you want to know about. All of them can be useful for dogs that pull, but some of them are better than others.
- Fixed Length: The first type of leash is the fixed length leash. This is a leash that is always the same length no matter what. The benefit of this type of leash when it comes to being one of the best no pull leashes is that your dog will be trained to expect that length and will eventually stop trying to pull when they realize there is no more room.
- Retractable: The next is the retractable dog leash. Many experts recommend this as the perfect leash to give your dog the room to run and the best dog leash for pullers. The benefit of this type of leash is that you can give your dog room and then reel them back in when you need to. However, they will never get used to a specific length and may pull even more, so this may backfire.
- Adjustable: Finally, there are adjustable leashes that can be very short or very long. The benefit of these is that you have the ability to make them short for added control when you need it. For example, if you are doing a puppy shampoo, you may need to keep a tight grip on a very short leash. The dog shampoo is not always popular with dogs and they might try to run. Some dogs don’t even like when you use the dog brush on them so you need a short leash for these activities.
Now, let’s discuss some of the common leash materials out there. You should also be aware of the best dog collar for pulling when you are thinking about the material for a leash. You may not have a lot of choices such as if your dog has a flea collar or you are attending a special event and your pup is wearing a dog costume, but the collar material can be just as important as the leash material.
- Nylon: First up is nylon; which is one of the cheapest materials out there. It is also weak compared to the other two on this list, but the truth is, most nylon leashes are plenty strong. You can use nylon if you are looking for the best leashes for dogs who pull without worrying that they will break unless the leash is extremely thin and poorly made.
- Leather: Another common leash material when it comes to the best dog leash for pulling is leather. Leather leashes look really nice and they are stronger than nylon.
- Chain: Finally, some leashes are made out of chain – or a combination of leather and chain. Chain leashes are strong, but unless you have some part that isn’t chain to hold onto, your hands are going to get torn out pretty quickly if you have a dog that pulls.
Standard Leash Lengths
There are four main lengths that leashes come in and the one that you choose will depend upon the size of your dog, how much control you want to wield and how much you want to spend. Of course, these are not the only sizes out here, but they are the most common. Retractable leashes often can be up to 25 feet or more at their maximum length and can be as short as you desire.
- 4-Foot: The first is the 4-foot leash. This is the best leash if you need to keep control of your dog for a bath or other temporary event. However, you will have a difficult time walking your dog with a leash this small.
- 6-Foot: A 6-foot leash will work for walks for most dogs. The six-foot leash is the most common length of leash sold in department stores and pet depots.
- 8-Foot: If your dog needs a little more freedom, then an 8-foot leash might be appropriate. This gives them a couple more feet of room, but it does potentially put them in danger if the leash is long enough to reach a busy street with cars driving by.
- 10-Foot: Of course, you could always go with the 10-foot leash, but it is recommended that you buy an adjustable one if that is the case. You are not likely going to want a full 10 feet on every walk you take with your dog.
A Word about Leash Width
There are some things to consider when it comes to leash width – especially when looking for a leash for a dog that pulls. Leash width comes down to a simple rule-of-thumb: thicker is usually better. The thicker your leash is, the stronger it is. However, the disadvantage is that thick leashes can be heavy, unwieldy and they can cost more than thinner ones.
Style may not seem like a very important consideration when choosing a leash, but for those who enjoy style, getting a collar and leash for a dog that pulls that matches or is aesthetically pleasing doesn’t cost much more than standard, less attractive leashes. You can find lots of different leash styles online with plenty that come with matching dog collars.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that your leash keeps your dog with you on walks and prevents accidents. Leashes aren’t perfect, and you should definitely install something like a GPS tracker for dogs as a backup plan, but for the most part, leashes are a great way to keep your dog under control and getting a leash for a dog that pulls will allow you to train your dog and curb that behavior. There are a lot of factors to consider, but with this guide you should have a much better idea on what kind of leash to choose for your furry friend.
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