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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
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Has this happened to you? Leash failure.

We were at a park today and suddenly I was left holding a leash with no dog at the other end. Luckily Maiya came back to me after I called her a few times (and thankfully, no traffic or other dogs around).

This isn't the first time that I've had leash failure. I thought it was a fluke the first 2 times it happened and then after the 3rd time, I stopped using the older leash and started using a newer leash. This is at least the 2nd time it has happened with the newer leash. Normal leather leashes with the button that you push to clip to the collar. It has happened with both dogs and they were wearing pinch collars each time. I can't find a flaw in either the collars or leash. I've had pinch collars pop off but never had leashes come off with my other dogs.

I'm a little nervous now not knowing when it will happen again. Has anyone else experienced this? Any recommendations for sure-clip leashes?
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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 08:50 PM
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Is it a regular snap? I've seen collars fail but never leashes.
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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 09:13 PM
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I took Dreizehn into the city the other week to get some pictures taken (pictures to come). I got out of the car next to a busy street with dog-on-leash and a few seconds later the leash went super loose. I almost had a heart attack! Luckily he either didn't notice or didn't care as he was no more than 5 feet away from me after it happened.



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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 09:17 PM
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How about a picture of the snap that's on that leash. I've had a big male break an older rawhide leash (and they are practically indestructable) when the woman who was walking him made the mistake of letting him hit the end of the leash--hard--he was trying to get to me, and he did and she was left holding half a leash.

There are a couple of snaps that will fail under pressure--but they usually aren't on any of the better leather leashes. Did the snap actually fail or did the snap just come off of the ring on the collar? Couldn't tell for sure from your description of what happened.
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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 09:17 PM
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So what is failing? The snap opens? The ring on the collar?
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 10:19 PM
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I had the snap on a nylon leash break. As in, the solid metal, no moving parts part of it, broke as though the metal wasn't properly tempered or something. It was on the front porch (I wasn't the one taking her out) and she got to the porch steps, realized she was alone, and came back inside.

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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 10:33 PM
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This is the only style of leash clasp I have never had let go under one circumstance or another. I only buy leashes which come with these...
6 X TRIGGER HARDWARE SWIVEL CLIP SNAP METAL Clasp CA016 | eBay
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 11:03 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monicaei View Post
Is it a regular snap? I've seen collars fail but never leashes.
J and J Dog Supplies: Leather Training Leashes

It's a clasp like the one on the leash on the web site. I've used these types of leashes for all my other dogs and have never had failures like this before.

The clasp isn't broken. It just somehow comes unclipped (opens) when walking the dogs (on pinch collars). Pinch collar ring isn't broken either.

Last edited by R2reddobes; 01-07-2012 at 11:06 PM.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-07-2012, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R2reddobes View Post
J and J Dog Supplies: Leather Training Leashes

It's a clasp like the one on the leash on the web site. I've used these types of leashes for all my other dogs and have never had failures like this before.

The clasp isn't broken. It just somehow comes unclipped (opens) when walking the dogs (on pinch collars). Pinch collar ring isn't broken either.
Not the same leash/clasp but VERY similar to the one I lost Dreizehn with



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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 12:26 AM
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It's a clasp like the one on the leash on the web site. I've used these types of leashes for all my other dogs and have never had failures like this before.

The clasp isn't broken. It just somehow comes unclipped (opens) when walking the dogs (on pinch collars). Pinch collar ring isn't broken either.[/QUOTE]


This happened to me last winter when I was walking my dogs. I had the same leash on my girl and we were walking in the park. We stopped for a minute and I looked down and the leash had fallen off. I don't know how it fell off her pinch collar, I was nervous on the way home in case it happened again. I have other leashes with the same clasp and never had a problem with them. I got rid of the leash when we got home.
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 01:09 AM
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I can't risk a bad leash....I have police leads.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 05:10 AM
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I have had a few problems with those clips. I also had a 30' nylon training lead just snap about 3 feet above the collar when she ran to the end of the lead. There weren't any tears or rips in the nylon. One thing about these snaps is in the winter they will freeze open or something about the cold/wet does something that makes them unreliable.
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 09:40 AM
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I had a Flexi lead clasp break and also had a dog stand right beside me and chew thru a Flexi!

I used to use the thinner less expensive prong collars and did have one come loose with Joe when he was about 8 months old. I added a second collar with the prong and both were clasped to the leash. Once I switched to the Herm Sprenger with a metal clasp, we didn't have any more problems with the collar.

My most favorite everyday leash and collars are the Timberwolf. I don't know if they use a heavier clasp or larger but I have never had one fail.

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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R2reddobes View Post
J and J Dog Supplies: Leather Training Leashes

It's a clasp like the one on the leash on the web site. I've used these types of leashes for all my other dogs and have never had failures like this before.

The clasp isn't broken. It just somehow comes unclipped (opens) when walking the dogs (on pinch collars). Pinch collar ring isn't broken either.
OK, That's a piston or bolt snap. Those are usually pretty reliable but you can have a couple of things happen--I've seen the piston (the part that slides) get bent enough to make it not seat properly at the outboard end of the solid part of the snap and if it gets caught and twists on the collar ring it'll let the ring slide past the piston and you've got a loose dog. And is is possible (but not as likely) to catch the button that controls the piston on something and pull it open and free the dog. Check for a bent or loose piston and replace it if tweaked or discard the leash.

mmctaq put up an E-bay link for a "trigger" snap.

Just took a look at the type of clip you are talking about. Even though I love them and use them on all of my tracking leashes they are in many ways the least reliable type to use on a dog leash. The extension that allows you to open the clip easily is also easy to catch on things (the leash itself, and parts of a prong collar) and it doesn't take much pressure to open it and it'll just drop off of the collar ring.

No leash snap is totally fool proof but the piston style is generally more reliable than than the other clip (which is called a trigger snap in the marine field) which was pictured on the E-Bay site that mmctaq provided a link for.

Many of the snaps used on nylon leashes (and a few very cheap leather leashes) are chrome plated pot metal (a very weak zinc alloy) and will break easily--not at the mechanism but at the stationary part of the snap--the zinc alloy often has big "blow" holes in it and in my opinion are disasters waiting to happen when used on any dog who does any pulling at all.

Brass is preferable but isn't terribly strong either. Ideally, either stainless steel piston style snaps or bronze piston style snaps are the strongest but you probably would have to ask if the metal is brass or bronze and if the snap is silver because it's stainless steel or if it's only chrome plated pot metal. Brass snaps and bronze snaps also sometimes come chrome plated. Chrome plated steel (which is used to make both piston/bolt and trigger snaps) is very strong but will rust as the chrome plating wears.

By the way--when the trigger snaps are used on boats (marine applications) they are usually taped across the trigger so that it can't get caught on anything and accidentally open.

The recommendations on prong collars (even the Sprengers with the snap attachment) is to always use a second collar also connected to the same leash as the prongs themselves can and sometimes do come apart.

Inspecting the snaps on leashes should really be done periodically to look for tweaked pistons, trigger snaps that don't close all the way (occasionally happens) wear on the leather or stitching.

Do I remember to do this? Oh, hell no--I'm just as brain dead as the next person when it comes to preventative maintenance.
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobebug View Post
OK, That's a piston or bolt snap. Those are usually pretty reliable but you can have a couple of things happen--I've seen the piston (the part that slides) get bent enough to make it not seat properly at the outboard end of the solid part of the snap and if it gets caught and twists on the collar ring it'll let the ring slide past the piston and you've got a loose dog. And is is possible (but not as likely) to catch the button that controls the piston on something and pull it open and free the dog. Check for a bent or loose piston and replace it if tweaked or discard the leash. . .
Great stuff! I finally know what to call the type of snap on Jack's leads.

Most of his snaps are brass, and we've found that they need frequent lubrication or they start to stick. We use a graphite lubricator, but others may have better suggestions.

We've experienced enough snap failures that Jack NEVER goes anywhere without two collars. The lead is attached directly to the main collar, whether it's the prong or the fur saver or the flat, and then we have a backup in place. We thread a looped tab through the ring on the leash snap, and attach the tab snap to the second collar (usually his martingale). This after one harrowing near miss that occurred when he was being walked just 20 feet between the car and the house.
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post #16 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 12:52 PM
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those clips are terrible for coming undone.. there was a huge thing on the internet a while back.. either the spring breaks or the pull down bit catches on something and dog is gone in a flash..

in my business making leather dog collars and leads i only ever use the trigger clips as listed before by mmctaq
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6 X TRIGGER HARDWARE SWIVEL CLIP SNAP METAL Clasp CA016 | eBay

these i have NEVER had fail....

if you need a fab lead with a great clip give me a shout !!!

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post #17 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 12:56 PM
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What about the Lockjaw snaps - Any experience with these? Snap Styles for Leashes and Leads
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post #18 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 12:56 PM
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I have had this problem a couple of times.

The first time the clip just came apart, literally, leaving me holding a leash with no dog on the other end, thankfully my dog was a sweetheart and just stood and looked at me as if to say, 'well what did you do that for?''
The second time it just opened and my dog again was left standing without a leash to her name so to speak.

I now use a K9 harness to which I attach one end of a police type leash whilst the other end is attached to my boys collar, I think it is what is known as 'belt and braces,' lol.
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post #19 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 01:51 PM
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Yeah this has happened to me before too. Now I use this kind and have never had a problem since




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post #20 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-08-2012, 01:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deathmetal View Post
What about the Lockjaw snaps - Any experience with these? Snap Styles for Leashes and Leads
The French style snap? I'm not crazy about them--the bigger they are the harder they are to manipulate--especially if your hands are cold and the smaller ones (Sprenger uses them as the snap style for the lighter weight Springer prongs that hook together with a snap rather than having to disassemble at the prongs) have been known to pull apart.

The more parts that a snap has the more places there are to fail. There was a thing called a Dutch snap (I think, it's been 30 years since I've seen one advertised)--it looked a lot like a "trigger" snap but without the trigger--instead there was a button at the hinge--in theory you pushed the button to allow the snap to open and since there was nothing to catch on stuff it was supposed to be foolproof and never open unless you intended it to open. But it was activated by an internal spring which was notorious for failing--and would either open when you least expected it or would lock itself closed and you'd get to either retire the leash and its non-functional snap or find a snap that worked and go to the nearest shoe repair shop and have them put the new one on and restitch the leash.

Hooligan--about lubricating snaps. Brass is actually a self lubricating metal and usually you can make it function smoothly by washing it in soapy water and rinsing it well.

Graphite (as locksmiths will tell you is not usually the best thing to lubricate stuff like locks (or leash snaps) with. It absorbs water and will trap and hold dirt--both of which will make the snap drag. What the locksmiths recommend is a silicone lubricant which doesn't absorb water or attract dirt. Not the easiest thing to find and fairly pricey but you don't use much. The silicone lubes can be found either as liquids or dry powders. Both work well.

And plain old three in one oil (the multipurpose around the home oil) works well too--but you do have to plan on cleaning the snap out with a solvent (paint thinner, kerosene, acetone etc) once in awhile and relubing it with clean oil occasionally.

Oops--I just realized that I'd looked at the wrong snap on the link, Deathmetal. The picture for the Italian lockjaw type didn't come up the first time I looked. I've never seen that type in a small size. I've seen it in a big size as a stock (cattle, horses) lead rope type). It should work but it's not one I've had any experience with.

Tobys'human--I don't know what a police type leash or the snap on one looks like. Can you put up a picture or describe it for me?

Last edited by dobebug; 01-08-2012 at 02:06 PM.
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post #21 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 03:23 PM Thread Starter
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Coincidently, I just found this on a web site that sells collars and leads. For 10+ years, I never had this issue with the same type of lead I'm using now and my other Dobes (on prongs). Odd.

***Also, if you are intending to use your lead from us on a prong collar, we strongly recommend getting one of our trigger snaps (whether it's nickel-plated, stainless steel, or solid brass, that is up to you). Something about those thin rings on a prong collar just make it easier for it to slip through a bolt snap and/or bull snap. Our trigger snaps, however, close on themselves so this is not an issue.***
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post #22 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 03:31 PM
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I've had one leash snap fail. It was made in China. I now use only made in America hardware. Smoother action and never had one break.

Flexileads.......last weekend all the doors leading into the trial had signs banning all flexileads from the site.
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post #23 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 04:43 PM
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I've never had a leash fail. I really like the lock jaw snaps: Snap Styles for Leashes and Leads

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post #24 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-09-2012, 04:51 PM
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The only problems I've had are with a carabiner style clasp on a leash I had. Several times she got loose when the clasp opened due to bumps & jostling, not sure exactly. I stopped using that leash and went back to the usual kind and haven't had any problems ever since.
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post #25 of 26 (permalink) Old 01-10-2012, 01:30 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dobebug View Post
OK, That's a piston or bolt snap. Those are usually pretty reliable but you can have a couple of things happen--I've seen the piston (the part that slides) get bent enough to make it not seat properly at the outboard end of the solid part of the snap and if it gets caught and twists on the collar ring it'll let the ring slide past the piston and you've got a loose dog. And is is possible (but not as likely) to catch the button that controls the piston on something and pull it open and free the dog. Check for a bent or loose piston and replace it if tweaked or discard the leash.

mmctaq put up an E-bay link for a "trigger" snap.

Just took a look at the type of clip you are talking about. Even though I love them and use them on all of my tracking leashes they are in many ways the least reliable type to use on a dog leash. The extension that allows you to open the clip easily is also easy to catch on things (the leash itself, and parts of a prong collar) and it doesn't take much pressure to open it and it'll just drop off of the collar ring.

No leash snap is totally fool proof but the piston style is generally more reliable than than the other clip (which is called a trigger snap in the marine field) which was pictured on the E-Bay site that mmctaq provided a link for.

Many of the snaps used on nylon leashes (and a few very cheap leather leashes) are chrome plated pot metal (a very weak zinc alloy) and will break easily--not at the mechanism but at the stationary part of the snap--the zinc alloy often has big "blow" holes in it and in my opinion are disasters waiting to happen when used on any dog who does any pulling at all.

Brass is preferable but isn't terribly strong either. Ideally, either stainless steel piston style snaps or bronze piston style snaps are the strongest but you probably would have to ask if the metal is brass or bronze and if the snap is silver because it's stainless steel or if it's only chrome plated pot metal. Brass snaps and bronze snaps also sometimes come chrome plated. Chrome plated steel (which is used to make both piston/bolt and trigger snaps) is very strong but will rust as the chrome plating wears.

By the way--when the trigger snaps are used on boats (marine applications) they are usually taped across the trigger so that it can't get caught on anything and accidentally open.

The recommendations on prong collars (even the Sprengers with the snap attachment) is to always use a second collar also connected to the same leash as the prongs themselves can and sometimes do come apart.

Inspecting the snaps on leashes should really be done periodically to look for tweaked pistons, trigger snaps that don't close all the way (occasionally happens) wear on the leather or stitching.

Do I remember to do this? Oh, hell no--I'm just as brain dead as the next person when it comes to preventative maintenance.
Thanks for all the good information. I didn't even know the various names of the snaps until I opened this thread.

All my leashes (tracking leash too) have the bolt snaps. Since the bolt snaps on two different leashes opened, you can see why I am nervous about using them - even though you said they are the most reliable. I did noticed that one of the bolt snaps on one leash seemed heavier/sturdier than on the other leash but can't remember if that one opened or not.

I'm looking at new leashes and perhaps a new coupler for backup.


Thanks to all of you for sharing your experiences and suggestions.
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