5 Best Leashes For German Shepherds That Pull (2021 Guide)

Finding the best leash for german shepherds that pull can be difficult. There are hundreds of different leashes you can choose from, so what one is the best?

In this article, you’re going to find out the best leash for german shepherds that pull, as well as what makes a great leash and the different types of leashes.

Short On Time?

The best leashes for german shepherds that pull are:

What To Look For When Buying A Leash?

When you’re buying a leash for your german shepherd there are a few key qualities all good leashes have. Without these qualities the chances are your leash will end up being uncomfortable for you and your german shepherd, as well as having an increased likelihood of breaking.

Just remember, the leash itself isn’t going to stop your dog from pulling. However, it can reduce the stress on you and your dog. Here are some of the things you want to look for:

Dog Safety

The number one thing that you should be looking for in a dog leash is that it’s going to keep your pup safe.

The main thing to look for is that there’s no way the leash is going to choke your dog. Some cheaper leashes don’t have mechanisms that favor your dog and may cause damage to their throat and neck.

As well as that, you should also favor leashes that are fluorescent. This way if your german shepherd gets away from you he’s going to be spotted easier in the dark.

Hard To Chew Through

Secondly, you should try to find a leash that is hard to chew through. While metal leashes are normally best for this, they’re not the only choice.

If you don’t pick a leash your german shepherd can’t chew through then you may end up replacing it often.

As well as this, there’s an increased danger that your german shepherd could chew through their leash and get away from you. They may end up on a busy road or another dangerous area they shouldn’t be.

How Long The Leash Is Going To Be

Apart from making sure the leash is going to be safe for your dog, one of the next most important aspects is how long it’s going to be. Too long and you’re not going to have control of your dog, too short and your dog isn’t going to have any freedom to move.

As a rule of thumb, a 6-foot leash is a good middle ground for your german shepherd. It gives them enough room to move around but also allows you a lot of control over them still. Especially if they try to pull.

Smaller leashes can be great if you need to keep your dog sitting still. Such as when you’re trying to groom or bathe them.

Whereas bigger leashes are a lot better at giving your german shepherd additional freedom.

You Want The Leash To Be Comfortable For Your German Shepherd

Lastly, you want the leash to be comfortable for your german shepherd. This mainly comes back to the leash length. Because if it’s too short, they’re not going to have enough room to move around.

Common Materials That Are Used

There are three common leash materials you’re going to find yourself looking at nylon, leather, and metal. Each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages.


Nylon is the most common form of leash available. It’s great because it’s waterproof and can come in a variety of color. A fluorescent leash, for example, will make your german shepherd much easier to spot in the dark.

However, the downside of nylon is that it can often be poor quality and prone to breaking. If you’re going to pick a nylon leash then make sure it’s made from heavy-duty nylon and isn’t too thin.


Leather is another great choice to use for your leash. It’s stronger than nylon and also a lot more comfortable.

However, there are also some downsides to leather. First of all, if it starts raining it’s going to absorb all the rain, which will cause it to become damp, heavy, and take a while to dry out.

As well as not being waterproof, your german shepherd is going to love the way it smells. It may end up trying to chew and eat it more often, which could obviously become a problem.


The last common choice is a metal leash. These are the strongest type of leash so if you have a particularly strong german shepherd they’re definitely going to be your best bet.

If you choose to get a metal leash then the chances are it’s going to last forever. However, if you buy a chain that’s made from cheap metal then it can often rust. As well as this, you should also pick a chain leash that has a leather handle. This way it’s not going to hurt your hand.

What Are The Different Types Of Leash?

As well as different types of material there are also different types of leash that you can use. The three main types of leash you’re going to see are retractable leashes, adjustable leashes, and fixed leashes.

Retractable Leashes

If your German shepherd only pulls occasionally then this is the leash you should get. Retractable leashes give you the best of both worlds. When needed, you can bring your dog in close and get better control of them. However, in other circumstances, you can give them a lot more room to roam free.

However, if your dog constantly pulls or he starts pulling when you use a retractable leash then they’re not your best option.

Adjustable Leashes

Adjustable leashes are similar to retractable leashes, however, they’re normally not as long and in most cases, they’re going to take slightly longer to change the length.

Adjustable leashes are better for a german shepherd you never want to far from you, or in circumstances where you’re going to want your german shepherd to be a lot easier control. Such as during training.

Fixed Leashes

As you can guess by their name fixed leashes stay at one length and can’t be adjusted. The benefit of fixed leashes is that your german shepherd will get used to them. They’ll realize once they’re a certain distance away from you they’re not going to be able to go any further.

Another benefit of fixed leashes is that they give you a lot of control over your german shepherd as well. Because they’re normally shorter than adjustable and retractable leashes it’s easier for you to constrain your german shepherd when they start to pull.

More Styles Of Leash

Different types of leash can also come in different styles that are used specifically for stopping your german shepherd from pulling. However, while different styles are good for different things, some styles are best to be avoided.


Some leashes can be doubled up as harnesses. The harnesses normally wrap across your german shepherd’s chest. Not only does this give you a lot more control over them, but it also stops them from damaging themselves.

If you’ve ever walked a strong german shepherd you know that they keep pulling, even when they’re struggling to breathe. When you use a leash harness, you dramatically reduce the risk of your german shepherd choking themselves.

However, harnesses, also have their downsides.

The biggest one is that you’re still pitting your strength against your german shepherds. If you’re strong enough then harnesses are going to be a great choice, however, if you aren’t as strong then it will be better for you to avoid them!

As well as this, some german shepherds find harnesses to be uncomfortable and may not ever want to walk in them.

And lastly, because they go across most of your dog’s body, they become dirty incredibly quickly.

Head Collars

As well as doubling up as harnesses, some leash’s can also be head collars. Headcollars wrap around your german shepherds head. They work by raising your dog’s head every time they try to pull too much.

If you don’t have the strength for a harness then head collars are going to be your best bet. The more your dog pulls, the more their head will be pulled up. So you’re not going to have to put in as much work trying to get them to walk properly.

And due to the location of head collars, it’s a lot harder for your german shepherd to slip out of them.

One downside of head collars, however, is that some dogs can find them uncomfortable. If you’re going to purchase a head collar, make sure you buy one which is comfortable for your german shepherd.

Prong Collars

Last on the list is prong collars. Let’s start by saying that you should avoid prong collars. The only time you should use a prong collar is under the supervision of a trained professional.

Prong collars are collars with small spikes pointing inwards. When your dog starts to pull the spikes will dig into their neck causing discomfort and getting them to stop.

What Are The Best Leashes For German Shepherds That Pull?

Now you know what to look for in a leash the next step is buying the best leash for a german shepherd that pulls! Here’s a list of the top 5 leashes you can get for your german shepherd.

5. Harness Lead (Escape Resistant)

While the Harness Lead (Escape Resistant) doesn’t have the best name, don’t let that decieve you. It’s still a fantastic leash to stop your german shepherd from pulling.

One of the first great benefits of this leash is the fact it uses a rounded strap, not a flat one. Flat straps can often cause discomfort and chafing for you and your dog, however, this isn’t the case with a rounded strap. 

Another great benefit of this leash is that it doesn’t have any metal on it either. If you’ve used leashes before you know metal can often hit or rub against your german shepherd. This can cause them discomfort and in some cases they even cause sores. However, you won’t have that problem with this leash!


While this is a great leash there are some downsides to it. First of all:

  • It’s less chew resistant than other leash’s on this list. While some leashes can withstand chewing for a while, this leash isn’t as good.
  • Secondly, the nylon isn’t braided tightly enough and in some cases it comes loose.

Get the Harness Lead Escape Resistant.

4. EWC INC Weiss Walkie No Pull Dog Leash

The EWC INC Weiss Walkie No Pull Dog Leash is next on the list. While it is a leash, it acts almost like a harness to stop your german shepherd from pulling. As they pull, the leash will become taut around their body making it more difficult for them to pull.

Don’t worry about it hurting them however, because it’s around their chest it’s not going to be uncomfortable or dangerous.

As well as being comfortable for your dog it’s also going to be comfortable for you as well. The handle is easy to grip and isn’t rough on your hands at all.

The leash itself is made from durable nylon which means it’s going to last a long time as long as you don’t let your german shepherd chew on it.


Unfortunately, while this a great leash for many, there are still problems with it. There is one glaring problem in particular which may make this lead unsuitable.

  • Some people have found that when the leash goes slack it drops off their dogs chest down to their hind legs. As you can imagine readjusting this is time consuming, and it could hurt your dog if they suddenly decide to pull when it’s around their legs.
  • It’s not as long as other leashes and it often becomes restrictive.

Get the EWC INC Weiss Walkie No Pull Dog Leash.

3. Halti Training Lead

The Halti Training Lead is great for you if you don’t have a lot of money to spend, but still want a quality product.

And not only is it cheap, but it also comes with some great features such as being compatible with two dogs at a time (although you may not be strong enough trying to control two german shepherds at once).

Another great feature is that it also comes with a training guide that teaches you ways that you can train your german shepherd to walk effectively.

It also offers you a range of different ways to walk your german shepherd including a hands free option. But this should only be used when you’re confident you are completely in control.


However, like all leashes this leash also has a lot of cons.

  • The biggest problem with this leash is that it’s more effective when used in combination with other halti products such as the Halti Head CollarHalti Harness.
  • The lead isn’t very adjustable. While some leashes have great adjustment, unfortunately the Halti Training Lead doesn’t quite have the same amount.
  • It is only a training lead. It lacks style, and when your german shepherd stops pulling you’ll want to upgrade to a better looking lead.

Get the Halti Training Lead.

2. Thunderleash – No-Pull Dog Leash

The Thunderleash is one of the oldest and most well known leashes on the market. It’s most often used by positive reinforcement trainers (which is the best way to train a dog). And there’s a lot of reasons they love it so much!

One reason the thunderleash is so great is because it’s made from superb material. The heavy duty nylon which is the bulk of the leash combined with the strong metal buckle means you don’t have to worry about your german shepherd getting away from you.

But it’s not just the strength. It’s also comfortable for you and your german shepherd. The nylon itself is soft and the leash has been desgined in a way that your hands aren’t going to chafe and your dog won’t do damage to themselves when they’re trying to pull.

While you can use the Thunderleas as just a leash, it also doubles up as a harness for when your german shepherd is really pulling. And instead of hurting your german shepherd it’s only going to apply a light amount of pressure to their chest which prevents them from pulling too much.


The Thunderleash is one of the best known leashes but it also has it’s problems.

  • The first problem is that it doesn’t work with every dog. While 4 out of 5 dogs improve massively with the leash, 1 out of 5 don’t. (However, if you really want to train your german shepherd to walk properly, then you shouldn’t rely on just a leash. Proper training is essential, that’s why I’d recommend teaching your german shepherd not to pull.)
  • Some people have also noticed that if the leash is not attached properly then it can constrict around your german shepherds trachea. Which often causes strained breathing.

But even with the downsides, it’s still a great leash to get for your german shepherd! Find out more about the Thunderleash.

1. SparklyPets Heavy Duty Rope Leash

The SparklyPets Heavy Duty Rope Leash is great for anybody who’s tired of their german shepherd pulling them around.

When your german shepherd pulls suddenly it can cause you to jolt forward, hurting your arm and neck. However, the SparklyPet Leash has an elastic bungee which helps to absorb these jolts.

As well as this, it’s also made from a mix of durable nylon and leather. This means not only is the leash going to last you a long time, but it’s also going to be strong enough to stop your dog getting away from you. In fact, SparklyPets are so confident in this leash it even comes with a 5 year guarentee.

To top it off, the leash is also chew resistant. While you still shouldn’t leave your german shepherd on their own with this leash, it’s good to know it will withstand chewing from them!

Lastly, it also comes with a handy training guide which may help your german shepherd stop pulling.


Like everything, there are also some downsides to this leash as well. While they’re not enough to not consider it, they are something you should be aware of.

  • It’s two leashes that attach together not just one long leash.
  • Some people notice that the metal hook on the leash bangs against their dogs back legs occassionally.

Get the SparklyPets Heavy Duty Rope Leash.


As you can see, there is a whole range of different leashes you can choose from. And as long as you make sure that they have what you should look for in any leash, whatever you pick will be fine!

As well as this, oftentimes it’s not enough to pick the right leash. You should also make sure you teach your german shepherd not to pull on their leash as well!

Leave a Comment