Reducing Lead Tension – Sliding Connections




Tension in the lead is often a trigger for over reactivity. You can reduce this using a sliding connection to your dog’s harness or collar, rather than a fixed one. There are three ways to do this.

First you can use a Freedom Handle. This is a soft handle attached to a large metal ring that is used in conjunction with a double-ended lead and harness. Connect your lead to the back of the harness before passing it through the ring on the handle and attaching the other end to the front of the harness or collar. The handle will slide along the lead helping to reduce lead tension as you walk.

The Freedom Handle is particularly useful if you tense up when you see a trigger. Your dog will feel this with a normal lead, which can result in a reaction, but with a Freedom Handle they won’t notice.

Second, you can use a TTouch Connector. This is a piece of webbing that connects to the front and back of the harness. It has a sliding ring to attach to which makes it suitable for use with single clip leads and longer lines.

Third, you can use a soft rope. This should be at least 15 foot long. Pass one end through the ring on the back of your dog’s harness before tying both ends together to form a continuous loop. This is important so that you can’t accidentally drop one end of the rope and lose your dog!

Hold the rope in both hands, a hip distance apart, and allow the line to slide through the ring on the back of the harness as your dog moves.

An added benefit for sound sensitive dogs is that there are no noises from a metal clip.

Practice with these at home until you get used to how they feel. Then you can venture out with your dog for a tension-free walk!

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