Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

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Shutterwolf
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Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Shutterwolf » Wed Mar 14, 2012 6:45 pm

i see a lot of people say how much they hate flexi leads, but i seriously cant understand why.

If its a strength thing, my girl went charging full speed after my friends dogs (to play of course) before i got her unleashed and it went right to the end and stopped her in her tracks and the leash was just fine. (of course i made sure she was fine as well)

Anyway, i actually like using them at times to give her the extra freedom to wander if its a place where i cant just take her off leash completely. it has stood up to lots of abuse and shows no signs of breaking any time soon and she has good recall incase something ever does go wrong. it also makes a good short leash when needed as well when needed.

So my question is basicly what does everyone have against flexi leads? i wanna know if its some major serious problem i need to be aware of so i can act accordingly with the one i have now.

Also note i mostly use a typical leash, i believe its the 6 foot long one, fairly thick top dog one i believe. So the flexi lead isnt my primary leash, but i did use it a lot especially with the halti when i was training her not to pull so much.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby starrlamia » Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:21 pm

1 I've seen a chocolate break the hardware
2 the majority of people who use them think it means they don't have too pay attention to their dogs and have no idea how to control their dog on them.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby barefootxen » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:15 pm

IMO the one and only problem with them: Stupid people.

Most flexi users don't know how to responsibly use one or just don't care about being considerate of other people.

I've been using a flexi lead (tape version) with my very strong, block of an APBT so that she can swim farther when we're at the beach, and I have never had a problem. This is taking into consideration that I compulsively look around me when I'm walking my dog and have an obsessive need to be as aware of my surroundings as possible. So, if someone is coming toward us, I reel her in, lock the brake and keep it locked until the person has passed.

I'm not saying that it cannot be broken. If someone's walking their 150 lb mastiff on a cord Flexi that is rated for a 30 lb dog, that someone is an irresponsible idiot.

Actually, I amend my previous statement that I've never had a problem. I had a 26 ft Flexi lead that I used at the beach and Xen rolled around in the sand a bunch- the lead got clogged with a ton of sand so I got rid of it and use a 16 ft which is much more appropriate and manageable for our uses and haven't had a problem.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby starrlamia » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:26 pm

Chocolate = shih tzu lol

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Adrianne » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:37 pm

I don't mind flexi leads. I think they are a great tool when used properly by responsible owners in appropriate situations.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Shutterwolf » Wed Mar 14, 2012 8:55 pm

starrlamia wrote:Chocolate = shih tzu lol

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LOL i was thinking u meant a lab, gotta love censoring :P

Glad to see there not as evil as some people seem to make them. i usually keep mine locked, unless im letting her wander in a controlled area. use it at the beach when i cant let her off leash, and before i trusted her off leash. im considering using it more now because shes pretty much walking at my side the whole time now, and the 6 foot leash is just kinda dangling there. would be nice to have it all wound up nice and neat.

I agree about the weight to a point, my girl is on one thats rated for 44 max, and shes 50 pounds. she charged to the end a few times and it hasnt broken yet. also she doesnt charge anymore so i think its pretty safe. It was brand new at a thrift store for 3 bucks so cant pass up a deal like that when there 20+ in stores. If it wasnt for that, i woulda got a much larger one just incase.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Shearaha1 » Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:00 pm

Some of my issues are
1) Unless locked they keep constant tension on the collar/harness. This can teach a dog to pull and make loose leash walking difficult when not using a flexi.
2) The locks break often. My mother has a shih tzu mix, Maggie, she goes through at least 3 flexis a year because the lock breaks.
3) Cord burn. My brother has gotten several nice cord burns on his leg because Maggie has wrapped around him or run around him while on the flexi, or while trying to real her in when the lock breaks.
4) Irresponsible people who use it as a license to ignore their dog.
5) The handle. I can't tell you how many times Maggie has pulled the handle right out of not just my hand, but my mother, brother and sister. I can hold on to an angry 1000+lb bull and not loose my grip on the rope, but those flexi handles just slide right out.

Honestly I prefer to get or make a long line. I can control exactly how much or little line my dog has, with out having to worry that my leash will malfunction. I have a nice 20ft that when it gets dirty I can just toss in the wash. I can check the entire length of it before and after every use to check for wear, and it's not that expensive to replace. My mentor has several that she made out of climbing web and climbing D-snaps. Best part she can get them in any length she wants. I love those things, water and mud just wipe off of them.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Celesteandthebullies » Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:11 pm

I agree that it's irresponsible users that make me dislike them. Granted mine got busted in one try, didn't stand up to Dakota and he didn't even stop on impact.

But what I hate seeing is a dog wondering out into other isles at the pet store, a dog coming around the corner out of nowhere.

Several times while biking, I was on the opposite side of the road and the dog saw me and Dakota, ran out after us and almost got hit by a car.

Stuff like that.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Shutterwolf » Thu Mar 15, 2012 5:07 pm

Shearaha1 wrote:Some of my issues are
1) Unless locked they keep constant tension on the collar/harness. This can teach a dog to pull and make loose leash walking difficult when not using a flexi.
2) The locks break often. My mother has a shih tzu mix, Maggie, she goes through at least 3 flexis a year because the lock breaks.
3) Cord burn. My brother has gotten several nice cord burns on his leg because Maggie has wrapped around him or run around him while on the flexi, or while trying to real her in when the lock breaks.
4) Irresponsible people who use it as a license to ignore their dog.
5) The handle. I can't tell you how many times Maggie has pulled the handle right out of not just my hand, but my mother, brother and sister. I can hold on to an angry 1000+lb bull and not loose my grip on the rope, but those flexi handles just slide right out.

Honestly I prefer to get or make a long line. I can control exactly how much or little line my dog has, with out having to worry that my leash will malfunction. I have a nice 20ft that when it gets dirty I can just toss in the wash. I can check the entire length of it before and after every use to check for wear, and it's not that expensive to replace. My mentor has several that she made out of climbing web and climbing D-snaps. Best part she can get them in any length she wants. I love those things, water and mud just wipe off of them.


Yea, i can see some of your points, and maybe ive just been lucky with mine, but its taken a bit of abuse and still works fine. its never slipped out of my hand, even when she ran full speed to the end of it, and as far as constantly pulling on her collar, i use the lock a lot to set it at the distance i want.

i love your idea about the rope, but the nice part about the flexi is that you dont have this massive bundle of rope to carry around. it winds up all nice and neat. i always wonder what people might think when i got my 6 foot lead on and its wrapped around my hand a bunch of times walking a pit bull.... like doesnt that make her look like she might get out of control and i need a tight grip...but if i let it just dangle there, barely holding onto it, it becomes a tripping hazard and thats not good either, but it shows that shes not pulling at all and that i dont need to have a death grip on it when we come across another person and or dog. (of course i do get a tight grip on it just incase anyway tho, but not wrapping the whole thing around my fist)

Also, back to the rope leads you say you can make, how do you make a comfortable handle for it?

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Red » Fri Mar 16, 2012 1:30 am

Shutterwolf wrote:So the flexi lead isnt my primary leash, but i did use it a lot especially with the halti when i was training her not to pull so much.


Do you mean the Halti no pull harness or the Halti head collar? For a reminder, Flexi type leashes ( or any leash that reaches a certain length) should not be used with a head collar.There is the potential for neck injury and muscle strains, if the dog can reach a certain speed and charge at full force at the end of the leash.

On top of these Flexi type leashes often being used inappropriately and in the wrong situations, which happens with other tools as well, there is the issue of how they are built. I usually make my own rope leashes and long lines and they have a certain thickness, and hardware. Just a couple of walking leashes:

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If I use leather leashes, it is generally one of these:

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So, steel clamps on rope and heavy duty stitching through leather or braided leather housing the snap, which is quite different than this:

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Once you pull the plastic cover, this is what you have, a few stitches on a tape leash that is less than a 1/2 of an inch wide:

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That was the strongest Flexi lead on the market, supposedly.Should have put something near by for comparison, to see the size of the snap and tape.

I have this Flexi lead (Flexi Comfort, for 110 lbs dogs, with my heavier dog barely over 50 lbs.).

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and I picked it because the stitches are though a small piece of leather, that can be seen in the picture. I use it only with my foster at the moment, in very limited situations. By the way, the lock on it sucks.There are good uses for these kind of leashes, such as short distance work, in house work, recalls and so many others if they were built differently.

These leashes are not built for safety and strength, no matter how much one likes them.We see all kinds of owners walking dogs on these leashes and I cringe when I see a 90 lbs dog, or lighter but powerful dog, charging other dogs or just pulling forward like a freight train. Unfortunately it is not only few responsible owners with decently trained dogs that use them. Even then, it is silly to believe that we have full control of an animal in every situations, when taking dogs in public, so it is wiser to have a decent collar and leash as a back up, imo.

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Shutterwolf » Fri Mar 16, 2012 3:31 am

Red wrote:Do you mean the Halti no pull harness or the Halti head collar? For a reminder, Flexi type leashes ( or any leash that reaches a certain length) should not be used with a head collar.There is the potential for neck injury and muscle strains, if the dog can reach a certain speed and charge at full force at the end of the leash.

On top of these Flexi type leashes often being used inappropriately and in the wrong situations, which happens with other tools as well, there is the issue of how they are built. I usually make my own rope leashes and long lines and they have a certain thickness, and hardware. Just a couple of walking leashes:


Yes it was the halti head collar, but when that was on, she never had a chance to run. that was only for walking around the neighborhood and i would keep my hand on the button, or just use the lock, and adjust the length that i wanted to let her have. the only time she ran with the flexi, was with her harness or regular collar... yes i know the collar is bad also, but i didnt expect her to charge like that either... was one of the first times on the flexi.

Also, do you sell those leads? like in the first 3 pics... if so, how much for one? would be interested in getting a red one for her maybe. I also like that extra chain and loop on the collar. guessing a backup incase the collar comes loose?

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby starrlamia » Fri Mar 16, 2012 8:22 am

I dont think Val sells them but you can get them at Ella's Lead (i have a bunch from her) www.ellaslead.com

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby BabyReba » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:06 am

I do have one Flexi-lead that I use for Tucker sometimes, when we go to the park. He's not a particularly strong puller, he's very tractable, he's not dog aggressive at all, and he has a very nice recall ... I would not use one for Button, who gets spooked and occasionally tries to bolt, or for Doc, who can be highly prey driven and is not the kind of dog I'd ever feel comfortable seeing accidentally get loose and run amok. He's not that good with other dogs, he's definitely into chasing cats, and he's just one of those dogs who is attracted to trouble somehow ...

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby Adrianne » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:25 am

Shutterwolf, would you just like instructions of how to make your own? They're super easy, quick, and everyone can make them for cheap at home with a little help from home depot.

I made these because most rope leashes (including mine from EllasLead) are too rough on my hands
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However, I choose to mostly use leather or thin nylon now for my malinois. When I walk my pit bulls I use my horse rope leads usually.

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You can buy horse lead ropes at any farm and feed store, usually pretty cheap. Again, none of these rope leads are made to be easy on the hands. There is a saying that is you're getting rope burns from your horse you're doin' it wrong. That and there is a reason old cowboys wear gloves. ;)

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Re: Flexi Leads...whats soo bad about em?

Postby WackyJacki » Fri Mar 16, 2012 10:26 am

I'm okay with them for happy-go-lucky, well behaved, non-reactive dogs in areas where they won't be a bother to other people/dogs. I've never used them but I wouldn't be opposed to using one for my little Boston out in a field or something similar. Unfortunately, that never seems to be the case around here.

The majority of the dogs in my neighborhood are on flexis, some are even aggressive. When you're on a neighborhood sidewalk with your dog 15' ahead of you, your control is minimal at best. We have had many owners scrambling to get control of their dog who has zoomed out ahead of them coming at my dogs (who are on 4' leashes). We even have a lady who walks her friendly but out of control Golden on a flexi attached to a GL harness with the D on the back..... lol

And using a flexi with a head collar/control harness/prong is just absurd. Defeats the whole purpose of the tool and could be very dangerous (hitting the end of the line with a prong or head collar? Ouch!)


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