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Discussion Starter #1
I have a regular short leash (6ft) and a long 20ft long lead for Axel (8months) as of now, however I notice that when I walk our dog it seems that 80 percent of people walking their dogs have these flexi retractable leashes, so I was debating on perhaps getting one for my dog, but first I wanted to hear what people who own Vizsla's think of these leashes?
Thanks, much appreciated.
 

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First, you need to let us know what it is you're looking to accomplish. If you want a V to walk at heel, start training with a 3-4' leash and keep the leash length constant and loose. There is allot more to it then that but, it's a place to start. :) A 20' leash is a checkcord, and should only be used as such. The problem I have with the retractable ones is that they are usually used to keep tension on the dog's collar. I believe that walking a dog should involve NO tension at all. IMHO.
 

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Linescreamer is right.
Personally, I think a retractile leash is for toy category dogs. Medium size dogs should have something more respectable.
Leash must always be loose and pressure is applied only when communicating direction or redirecting attention.

It is hilarious but I walk my 5 month old V on a cat leash,
with a small size prong collar (for control if needed when meeting other dogs, people, children because Sam jumps when excited and a quick sharp correction is all that is needed)
and a leather collar (it carries his tags).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yea, I use the short leash for walking in heel positon for most short walks, and I use the long cord for when we go on longer hikes so I can give him more space to run and explore, however it seems I have to wrap the cord around my hand and sometimes Axel can get tangled up in the long cord. I suppose I was just curious about the retractable for the purpose of letting him go without always wrapping the cord around my hand, thought it may be somewhat easier using the retractable. But I suppose its used for smaller dogs, however I seem to see many labs and retrievers using the retractable leash. Just curious, not a big deal, suppose I will just stick to what I have.
 

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If want to give your dog more room to explore on long walks, a flexi lead is probably a better option than your 20' long lead, but don't use a chain or prong collar because of the tension.

A friend of mine who walks his English Setter with a flexi lead uses a harness rather than a collar.
 

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Whatever you do, don't use a retractable leash near a busy street. They can be a real danger to your dog, i.e., hit-by-car, attacked by another dog, etc. Just my opinion of course, but I don't think they give you much control in an emergency and can be hazardous to your dog's life. If your dog is already out there at the end of the retractable leash, you can't reel him in. :-\ With just a plain, old regular leash, you can.
 

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raps702 said:
I use the long cord for when we go on longer hikes so I can give him more space to run and explore, however it seems I have to wrap the cord around my hand and sometimes Axel can get tangled up in the long cord.
A couple thoughts. If he is trained, why not let him off leash? If he isn't, he should be on a checkcord, and continue the training until he will return reliably when called. By the way, a checkcord will help with the tangling. :) Copper has been off leash since he was 4 months. We do have the e-collar on him, as a backup and training aid, if he doesn't feel like returning when called. ;D
 

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I'll add that flexi leashes can be dangerous with these hyper dogs unless your dog is well trained. We used to use one with Rosie to let her get a little more exercise but still be able to reel her back in. One day, we took her on a walk with my sister in law visiting from out of town. Rosie (who was still a puppy at this point) saw a bird and went tearing off after it, yanking the handle of the leash out of my mother's hand. She then proceeded to run around in circles at lightning speed, the cord of the flexi leash still flying behind her, where it wrapped around my sister-in-law's ankles several times and gave her the most dreadful rope burn I have ever seen.
 

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http://redbirddog.blogspot.com/2009/06/importance-of-mastering-art-of-walk.html

I owned one and threw it away. Do not buy a Flexi Leash for a Vizsla.

I have a 20 foot check cord for bird training, a standard 6' long leather / cloth lead and a short 2' lead with split 6" hooks to walk two dogs close together or when biking with a Springer bike attachment.

On-leash heeling at your left and a little behind your knees. I hold the end of the lead in my right and flow the lead for both dogs through my left hand. Keeping it loose 99% of the time but if I am distracted in one direction and the dogs see a squirrel going the other, then I have "reaction time" in the lead. Keeps the shoulder socket in place when a 43 pound Vizsla and a 65 pound Vizsla make a dash after something.

Even after 3,000 miles of walking on lead over the last 4 years I keep them right on my left side.

They are comfortable there. I choose when and where we stop (not them). I am the pack leader and not just the guy who goes along while they "explore."

Hope that makes some sense.

Walking with dogs on lead is an art. But our best walks are always off-leash. This is where the dogs are in the general vicinity and check in every once in a while. Otherwise they are free to explore and "hunt."

Rod

http://redbirddog.blogspot.com
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Ok, first of all what the heck is a check cord? Yes, absolutely I let Axel off leash when appropriate, however living in a big city with some very beautiful outdoor parks for hikes, sometimes seem saturated with runners and I am not yet comfortable with letting him walk beside be without a leash, also lots of dogs on the trails and we have strict laws unfortunately about letting dogs run free, and the runners kinda get upset if the dogs get in their way. That is why it is great when I visit my inlaws who have 100 acres of farmland and Axel can just run free....
Redbird you are obviously a serious hunter and trainer for your dog and I admire you for your hard work ethic with regards to training. Thanks for the insight. Thanks again everyone else for your input.
 

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Ok, first of all what the heck is a check cord?
Usually about 5/8" nylon rope with a hook on one end to attach to the collar and about 20 foot long with a knot at the other end.

One way to use it is during bird work in a field with a young dog you let the dog drag the check cord. When he comes upon a planted bird he holds. You come close enough to grab hold of the cord (rope) and if he chases the bird you check his run. This is for steady work.

I am no professional trainer by any means. Our first Vizsla is now not quite 4. I had never hunted before I got Bailey, now 3.

Got into bird hunting and also field trialing BECAUSE of the Vizslas. To watch a great Vizsla in a field trial competition up against GSP or other continential breeds such as the Britney or Pointer and see how they do what was breed in them to do is an experience everyone should have at least once.

Even if you never do it yourself, find an event to watch. They are amazing dogs.

Rod aka redbirddog
 

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raps702 said:
Ok, first of all what the heck is a check cord? Yes, absolutely I let Axel off leash when appropriate, however living in a big city with some very beautiful outdoor parks for hikes, sometimes seem saturated with runners and I am not yet comfortable with letting him walk beside be without a leash, also lots of dogs on the trails and we have strict laws unfortunately about letting dogs run free, and the runners kinda get upset if the dogs get in their way. That is why it is great when I visit my inlaws who have 100 acres of farmland and Axel can just run free....
Redbird you are obviously a serious hunter and trainer for your dog and I admire you for your hard work ethic with regards to training. Thanks for the insight. Thanks again everyone else for your input.
http://www.gundogsonline.com/check-cords/


In that environment he needs to be on a fixed leash or a check cord.
 

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Apart from what previous members have said (which I agree with) a retractable lead can also be a danger to your dog if you accidentaly drop it. It's very heavy and can come flying at a great speed, and if it landed on your dogs head it could cause serious harm. We had one when we first got Ebba but our puppy trainer told us to throw it in the bin!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Wow, all of you were correct with your advice on retractable leashes. I just came from walking Axel at a nearby park, where I sometimes let Axel off leash when nobody is around, and about 15 minutes later a lady walking two dogs appoached from a distance (golden lab/black lab) with retractable leashes. The dogs spotted Axel and bolted from the lady with leashes flying everywhere, the dogs wanted to play but obviously could not keep up with Axel, when the leashes looked kind of dangerous to the dogs I immediately told Axel down on command (which he did), and helped gather up the labs for the lady. She was not upset, kind of just said that the dogs were kind of hard to handle for her. (she was a dog walker) Anyway's I finally saw first hand how you have no control over these leashes if the dogs want to run, and also those handles were flying everywhere out of control. I will not be purchasing these leashes!!
 

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Wow, warnings even from the flexi manufacturer

http://www.flexiusa.com/operation/safety-advice.php

Finger amputations, leg burns ??? I keep seeing more and more of these miserable retractable leashes. German Shepherd on Flexi, wow. I know of only 4 or 5 of dog owners in my area that doesn't use these.
Even the 110 pound line break limit is easily reached by a 30 pound dog running full speed when the line is loose.
 

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Nobody has posted on this in a few months but ill take a chance and see if you respond. I learned a lot from this thread. I try to take my 13 week old out off leash (I don't have a fenced in yard) and she does better with pottying outside offleash. I think the tension of her retractable leash distracts her, she wont go while its on. Do you guys agree? I think I will gget a normal leash. Do you think this is best?
 

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Coris,

Give the Flexi Leash away and get a good 6 foot 1" wide leather or cloth lead.

http://redbirddog.blogspot.com/2009/06/importance-of-mastering-art-of-walk.html

Get your dog to walk by your side, a little behind your left knee. As a owner of a pointing breed, teach your dog to STAND by your side and not sit. The regal Vizsla looks correct standing by it's owners side like a hunting dog. Duck hunters want their Labs to sit but upland bird hunters want their field dogs to stand by their side.

Walk, walk, walk. At 13 weeks old the pup will learn quickly what is expected and you will have years of enjoyable walks with your buddy.

RBD
 

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Coris_FW said:
Nobody has posted on this in a few months but ill take a chance and see if you respond. I learned a lot from this thread. I try to take my 13 week old out off leash (I don't have a fenced in yard) and she does better with pottying outside offleash. I think the tension of her retractable leash distracts her, she wont go while its on. Do you guys agree? I think I will gget a normal leash. Do you think this is best?
The idea is to have them on a "LOOSE" leash until they respond to "come" reliably. Your job is to keep the leash loose. Read up on heel training. Gunner on this site posted up some good stuff.
 

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Ruby's never "done the business" whilst on a lead, but where we live it's not a problem as I rarely have to put her on a lead, apart from heel training. Even during heel training down some long country lanes she's always waited till I've slipped her before she'll arch her back.
 

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My husband BEGGED me to get a retractable leash for walking Riley. Biggest. mistake. ever. I hate that thing and we're trying to find someone to give it to now. It takes away your control over the leash and you can't do a decent heel with it. Plus, it always ended up getting wrapped around something/someone on walks.

As a side note, they are very dangerous when other dogs are around if you don't have the leash locked. My sister had her chihuahua on one at the beach and a dog went running by, but didn't see the line. The dog was running so fast it went straight through the line, pulling it with him and my sister's little chihuahua ended up literally stuck to the side of the dog because the leash was wrapped around him so many times. Thankfully, it was a friendly dog (pit bull, I might add!) and stood still while they untangled the line and rescued the chihuahua.
 
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