How To Use a Slip Lead

This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

There are many reasons why you would use the simple slip lead when you take your dog for a walk to keep them fit. Using the right type of lead is important to make the walk much easier for you and your dog.

There is also a wide range of slip leads available for different types of dogs, so we will take a closer look at these types. This may seem like a simple lead for walking your dog, but there is much more to it than you would expect.

To learn how to use it properly, read on and see how to make it a bit easier for your four-footed friend.

What Is a Slip Lead

While most dog owners know what a slip lead is, we will take a quick look at what it is for those who don’t. This single piece of special rope can be quickly transferred into a collar and lead for your dog.

This means that you do not need a separate collar around the dog’s neck and a lead attached to it. At the rope’s end, there is a metal ring attached and you slip the other end of the rope through it.

This will create a loop in the rope that can be expanded to fit around your dog’s neck. When you pull it closed, the loop will become a collar, and you have a lead to walk and guide your dog.

The Different Types Of Slip Leads

Slip leads are available in a wide range of configurations and materials, and you can also have them in many different colors. You have two main types of slip leads available: one with a stopper tab and one without a stopper tab.

The stopper tab helps to keep the loop secured so it does not come loose unexpectedly to slip over the dog’s head. It is also available in different materials that have different strengths and can be used for different applications, and they are:

  • Polypropylene rope
  • Nylon rope
  • Metal chain
  • Nylon webbing

How To Use a Slip Lead

With the amount of control you have at your disposal with a slip lead, they are great to use when you train your dog. But, you need to know how to use it correctly to have the best benefits from a slip lead.

Fitting the Lead On Your dog

The following are the different steps to attach a lead to your dog:

  • Step 1: Put the end of the rope that does not have a metal ring attached to it through the metal ring.
  • Step 2: Expand or close the loop enough so it will fit easily over your dog’s head.
  • Step 3: Fit the collar loop over your dog’s head so it is around the neck just under the jaw line.
  • Step 4: Make sure the metal ring points up and towards you for a proper fit. Also, ensure that the rope is flat and not twisted for better control.
  • Step 5: If you are satisfied it is properly fitted, you can shift the stopper cap to keep the loop in place.
  • Step 6: With a proper fit, the rope should fit nice and loose with a smooth transition through the metal ring to make gentle corrections.
  • Step 7: To make sure the loop fits properly, you should have just enough space to put your fingers behind the collar.

See this Youtube video for a quick demonstration of how to fit the slip lead on your dog.

Releasing the Slip Lead

You can release pressure on the lead to create slack to remove or create a looser fit around the neck. If the lead has a stopper cap, you can slide it away from the metal ring and release the tension.

As soon as there is no tension on the lead, the noose will automatically be much looser to slip over your dog’s head.

Transforming the Slip Lead Into a Harness

Transforming the slip lead into a harness will take the pressure off the dog’s neck and make it feel more comfortable. This is great if you only want to use the lead to take your dog for a walk without too much pressure as with training.

Start by putting the loop around your dog’s neck as you would normally do for a collar loop. Now loosen the loop a lot so that it rests on the shoulders with a much larger loop in the rope.

Now wrap the long part of the rope around the chest so the rope loops around it just behind the front legs. Feed the rest of the rope through the loop that sits around the shoulders and secure it.

You will find very little pressure on the dog’s neck, but you need a rope with a decent length for the best results.

When To Use a Slip Lead

It is best to use a slip lead only if you have to, like when you need to rescue a dog. It is also a great tool to use for training your dog with greater control to force obedience.

When transporting your dog, you can use this as a quick method to load and unload the dog.

When Not To Use a Slip Lead

Slip leads are not a good solution for dogs that pull a lot because they can easily hurt themselves. Using a slip lead as a permanent solution to train or walk your dog is not a good idea.

Never leave your dog unattended when using a slip lead; they may hurt themselves, or they can come loose.

Dogs That Pull

It would be best if you had a lot of patience and time to walk a dog that tends to pull a lot with a slip lead. The best method is to stop walking as soon as the dog pulls and adjust the loop.

When the dog stops pulling you can begin walking, but you need to stop again as soon as they pull. As mentioned, doing it this way is time-consuming, but that is the best method to keep them from hurting themselves.

For the best results, use the slip lead, in the same manner, you would use a standard lead and collar. The safest method for dogs that pull a lot is to use a harness when you walk them and for some training exercises.

Important And Useful Tips

Here are some great tips to make it more fun and safe for you and your dog when using a slip lead.

  • Never put the loop around the throat of your dog. It should be high up around the neck, closer to the jawline.
  • When the dog pulls, the loop will go down over the throat; stop and put it back up higher, then continue walking.
  • Before using a slip lead, make sure your dog can walk with it.
  • Teach yourself the correct use of the slip lead before using it on your dog.
  • Keep just the right amount of tension on the lead to make your dog feel comfortable.


You can see that a slip lead is a useful solution in the right conditions for training and walking your dog. A slip lead can be safe, but that is only if you know how to use it properly, so take care, and be happy walking!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Special offer for our visitors

Get your Dog Supplies & Accessories Free Guide

We will never send you spam. By signing up for this you agree with our privacy policy and to receive regular updates via email in regards to industry news and promotions