|"Mom, Murphy wanted me to tell you not to embarrass us since it is OUR blog."|
We've used our Spileash enough times that we feel like we can give you an idea of how it worked for us. We already posted about the features, construction, etc. You can see that post HERE. The bottom line is that it is a very well made leash with a convenient pouch for carrying your supplies like phones, poop bags, treats, etc. It is sort of a minimalist design in that when you are running or walking with the dog you don't feel encumbered. You don't have a sensation of something thick around your waist and you don't feel the bounce of the pouch. But if the dog pulls at the leash, you're going to feel it pull the leash into your midsection. A hands-free leash isn't going to make up for a dog that needs loose leash training.
Being hands free is NICE! No more yanking at the shoulder. If the dog wants to pull the human, he has to pull the whole weight of the human, not just dislocate a shoulder. But the flip side is that dog and human are tethered. The better trained the dog is, the less of an issue this would be.
Leash length was a huge decision for us. I like the fact that this comes in two sizes. At first I thought the shorter one would be the best for Murphy (to avoid him getting entangled) and the longer one for Stanley. But after one outing (just a walk) with the shorter leash, I learned (the hard way) that having a little room to recover from a dog moving into the human's foot strike space is the difference between remaining upright and kissing the pavement. I kissed the pavement. OK, lesson learned. The longer leash worked out best for Stanley and after trying Murphy on the longer leash I was sold on it too. The additional 12" gave me a larger "recovery" area. Murphy was far enough away from me that if he started coming into my space I could just grab the leash and redirect him to stay on my left side. So my recommendation would be to get the longer leash for smaller dogs.
After you finish running, you can also take the leash off your waist and use it like a regular walking leash (using waist part as a handle). This allows the dog more freedom to "roam" (stop for sniffs, etc.) while walking.
We're taking the leashes with us on our upcoming trip to Zion National Park and intend to use them for running and hiking. We are still working on training issues with the Doods (staying on the left side while running is critical) but look forward to running many miles together. For anyone who wants to run with their dog, a hands-free leash is the way to go. The Spileash will secure your dog to you (without bogging you down with heavy apparatus), give you a place to carry a few essentials, and allow you a natural arm swing. It is possible to run with your dog and still feel "free"! We give this product a thumbs up!
Murphy & Stanley & Pawrents