The Best Running Dog Leads Australia: Tested & Evaluated 2023
Like running and spending time outdoors? So does your dog! So why not make the best of it and bring your pooch along for a jog?
Of course, to do that, you’ll need a proper running dog lead. To make your search a bit easier, we joined up with veterinarians, canine behaviourists and dog parents to form a team of independent experts. We then tested the best products on the market, spending months sussing out the best from the rest before finally agreeing on the list below. Let this guide help you on your journey to find the perfect leash for running with your pooch.
Quick Picks - The Top 3
Our Number 1 Pick -
Rogz Airtech Belt & Lead
- Belay loop for reducing pull pressure
- Reflective stitching for nighttime visibility
- Adjustable lead length
- Safety release for emergencies
Runner Up -
Kurgo 6 in 1 Hands Free Dog Leash
- Can be used in six different ways
- Sturdy but lightweight
- Padded handle for comfort
- The carabiner doubles as a bottle opener
Third Choice -
Amazon Basics Dual Handle Bungee Dog Leash
- Two handles for easier control
- Very affordable
- Two lead lengths to choose from
- Adjustable belt up to 102 centimetres
Australia's Best Running Lead For Dogs Reviewed
Now that you know what to look for, here are some of the best options you can find nowadays. These dog running leads stood out from the pack when our team of independent experts tested them with our very own dogs. Let's check them out!
What sets this product apart from the rest?
The reason why this running lead by Rogz ranks so high on this list is that the brand thought of everything. This model checks all the boxes: it’s light and comfortable yet strong and reliable.
This lead allows you to enjoy running with your dog hands-free. I loved how the belt is padded and shaped to sit comfortably around my waist without cutting into your skin. The lead is attached with a strong, lockable carabiner onto a belay loop, so there was no way my pooch could accidentally be let loose. The belay loop reduces pull pressure and also allowed my dog to move left and right without dragging you along.
To prevent strain due to pulling, one part of the lead features shock-absorbing webbing. The other part of the lead is adjustable, allowing you to give your canine companion more or less room to roam. You can adjust it anywhere from 1.2 to 1.8 metres, depending on where you’re jogging.
The belt also features an emergency safety release. A member of our expert team found themself in a situation where their over-energetic dog pulled too hard in the wrong direction, which could have potentially injured them and their dog. In situations like this, you can release the belt in a single move. Finally, we also loved how there’s also a utility pooch for things like poop bags or treats, similar to our number six choice ahead.
Different occasions might require different types of dog leads. But this model by Kurgo is a 6-in-1 product. It can switch from a 1.8-metre lead to a hands-free option to a double dog walker. What more can you want?
At the first sight, this lead might not look much different from the others. But thanks to the heavy-duty carabiner, I was able to easily switch between different styles. Throughout the entire length, the lead features daisy chain loops that allowed me to adjust the length of the lead to better suit my dog's size. Speaking of, it's a pretty long lead and so better for larger breeds. If your dog is small, consider our number three pick ahead.
The Kurgo 6 in 1 Hands Free Dog Leash being tested by our independent expert team.
When it comes to jogging with your dog, our team of independent experts noted there are two ways you can use the lead. Around the waist is a classic option, which is great if your pooch is still learning to run alongside. The other option is the over-the-shoulder courier style, which is suitable for more experienced runners.
This dog lead comes in one size, but given it’s adjustable, it’s suitable for medium and large dogs. Made of nylon, the lead is pretty lightweight. Yet, it’s strong enough to withstand the toughest pullers. There are six colours to choose from, so you can match the lead with your dog’s collar or harness.
Pet products can be quite overpriced. And more often than not, the high price tag isn’t a reflection of quality manufacturing. Luckily, not all products are like that. This hands-free dog lead is proof that a great product doesn’t always have to break the bank.
This dog lead is made of polyester, a material that’s both lightweight and durable. It features two handles, one at the far end and the other right after the belt clip. Our team of experts appreciated that, in case we encountered other dogs or animals while jogging, these handles allowed us to control our dog’s movement in such situations.
The Amazon Basics Dual Handle Bungee Dog Leash being tested by our independent expert team.
The lead features an adjustable waist belt with a buckle for easier setup and removal. On the front, it has a sliding belt carabiner, which gave my dog more freedom of movement when you’re running. Between the handles, the belt features a bungee section, which eased the tension created by my dog's pulling.
The dog lead comes in two different lengths: 0.9 and 1.2 metres, smaller than our second choice. While the latter is suitable for medium to large dogs, the former is better for smaller pooches. But both are equally strong, so it depends on how much freedom of movement you want for your canine companion.
Don’t like wearing a dog lead around your waist? For some people, that’s not comfortable. If you’re one of them, then this running lead that’s worn around your hand can be a great alternative.
Unlike typical dog leads, this one by EzyDog is worn like a glove. It features a soft handle that wrapped around my wrist, giving me a steady grip over the lead. The handle is made of neoprene, the same material used for wetsuits. Aside from being waterproof, neoprene is also very gentle on your skin and very durable, which is just what you want from a dog lead.
The lead is adjustable in length from 91 to 120 centimetres, depending on how close you want your pooch to be. The middle section features a shock-absorbing bungee, which relieves stress from pulling. Similar to our number one choice, the lead has a reflective webbing throughout, which makes you more visible at night.
The most impressive part of this dog lead is the carabiner. It has been load tested to 500 kilograms, which practically means you could attach 10 Golden Retrievers to it and it wouldn’t break. So no matter how well your pooch is pulling, there’s no way the carabiner can break. Everyone on our team of independent experts loved it for their stronger large-breed dogs.
Going jogging with your furry friend can be challenging. But doing so with two dogs is twice as difficult. That is unless you have the proper equipment for handling both of your pooches, like this double lead by Pet Dreamland.
This dog lead features an adjustable belt with a heavy-duty buckle. On the belt, there are three D-rings, and you can use any of them to attach the leash. The belt is pretty basic, but the lead extender is what makes this product so great. It consists of a strong bungee cord and features a padded handle in the middle, which allows you to pull your dogs closer in certain situations.
The Pet Dreamland Double Dog Leash being tested by our independent expert team.
The lead extender has carabiners on both ends, one that goes onto the belt and the other on the dual dog lead. Our team of independent experts loved how the dual lead features a 360 swivel splitter, which prevents tangles and allows you to walk two dogs with ease. Both of the leads also feature a handle, allowing you to quickly close the gap between both dogs individually in the case of an emergency.
This lead comes in two sizes. The smaller is suitable for dogs under 15 kilograms, while the larger can withstand two dogs of up to 70 kilograms. Similar to our second choice, you can also choose from four colour options, so you can match the lead to your pooches’ collars.
When going for a jog with your furry best friend, you’ll need to bring a few things, like poop bags, a water bottle, your phone, etc. You can pack all that up into a backpack, or choose a multifunctional hands-free lead with pockets, like this one by Dogo Designs.
The waist strap features two side pockets and a middle zip pocket, where you can store your necessities, kind of like our number one product. The middle section has an audio hole for your headphone cord, but you can also use it as a poop bag dispenser. Our research team also liked how there are two D-rings, one on each side of your waist, where you can attach two dog leads.
Made of nylon and coated with polyurethane, the waist strap is durable and waterproof. This makes it suitable for use any time of the year, be it sun or snow. That also means anything stored inside the pockets will remain dry in wet weather.
The lead is 1.5 metres long and also made of nylon. The handle is padded with mesh and foam, so I was able to use it alone, without the belt. The reflective stitching throughout the entire length of the lead allows you to be seen in low visibility conditions so that you can jog safely with your dog.
What I Consider When Buying A Dog Running Lead
Not just any quality dog lead will do for a jog. Our panel of independents quickly discovered that there are a few features to keep in mind when buying a running dog leash.
Hands-Free Or Handheld
You’ll notice that a lot of products marketed as “running leads” are hands-free, meaning they’re attached to your waist or shoulder instead of held in hand like a regular lead. Now, they can be both a blessing and a curse.
If your dog is trained to run alongside you at the same tempo, then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t go with a hands-free type of lead. Hands-free leads are great because they reduce fatigue in your arms and shoulders from holding up your pooch’s weight when running.
However, this type of lead doesn’t give you the same amount of control over your dog as a handheld lead does. It makes it harder for you to direct your canine companion, which can potentially be dangerous in certain situations. If your dog is not the most well-behaved pooch when it comes to jogging, a regular leash would be a better option.
A retraction lead is a big no, as it can do more harm than good. Not only does it give less control over your dog, but can also get wrapped around you, potentially causing injury (1).
Related: How To Teach Your Dog To Loose Leash Walk.
Many running dog leads feature a bungee cord, which works as a shock absorber. They have a stretchy part that reduces the amount of jerk that makes it to you when your dog suddenly pulls.
A bungee cord can be quite useful when you’re jogging with your canine companion. But you don’t want it throughout the entire length of the lead. That would give your dog too much room to move around while you’re jogging together, which can potentially lead to dangerous situations. For the same reason, a bungee cord isn’t practical for busy trails and walks near the roads.
Related: The Best Rope Dog Leads Australia.
A standard dog lead is between 1.2 and 1.8 metres long (2). On some occasions, having a long dog lead can be handy. On others, you might want your pooch right beside you. Instead of buying multiple leads, it’s better to opt for a single product that can be adjusted.
This can be achieved with either a strap slider or multiple attach points. While the former simply allows you to change the length of the lead, the latter allows you to easily tether your dog to an immovable object when necessary.
Related: The Best Double Dog Leads Australia.
The majority of running dog leads have a length of one metre or more. But on certain occasions, you might want a closer gap between you and your dog, like when encountering other dogs on the trail. That’s when gripping points can be invaluable. You want a long leash to have at least one gripping point, at the middle or towards the other end, allowing you to have more control over your dog when necessary.
My Final Thoughts
Having a high-quality running dog lead is necessary to safely enjoy jogging with your pooch.
One thing every member of our team of independent experts was sure about is that you can’t go wrong by picking Rogz Airtech Belt & Lead. It’s comfortable for both you and your dog, very adjustable and features a safety release for emergencies. It’s slightly expensive, but it’s a product that will last you a long time.
There’s no single best option, as it depends on your dog’s behaviour. A harness gives you more control over your dog and it’s overall more comfortable for running. However, collars are a better option for training, especially if your dog is a natural puller.
Ideally, you want a running lead that can be adjusted in length. A lead should be long enough so that you’re not bumping or accidentally stepping on your dog’s paws when jogging together. At the same time, you don’t want it too long either, because it gives your dog too much room to move around.
If you want your dog to run alongside while you’re riding a bike, there are special leads that position your dog at a safe distance from the bike. You shouldn’t use a running lead as it allows your dog to come too close to the bike, which can cause you to lose control of the bike and even injure your dog.
- Coates, J. April 14, 2014. “Second Thoughts on Retractable Leashes.” PetMD. Retrieved February 8, 2023. https://www.petmd.com/blogs/thedailyvet/dr-coates/2014/april/second-thoughts-retractable-leashes-31573
- Schade, V. March 1, 2016. “Tips for Leash Training Your Dog.” PetMD. Retrieved February 8, 2023. https://www.petmd.com/dog/training/evr_dg_tips-for-how-to-leash-train-a-dog