Pyrrha’s first softball game

Before we left on our beach vacation, I took Pyrrha to her first softball game.

As you can see from her ears, she was a little uneasy at first.
As you can see from her ears, she was a little uneasy at first.

The event was busier than I had anticipated, with lots of people, kids, and a few other dogs.

She is still having some reactivity issues.

Softball game | Doggerel

Can I just take a moment to complain again about irresponsible dog owners who walk their dogs on retractable leashes? UGH. This young woman had her mix breed on a retractable leash and the dog just started coming for Pyrrha. I get up immediately and start backing away from them, calling to the woman, “Please, my dog is shy…” but she does NOTHING to rein her dog in. The dog just keeps coming for us. Finally, Pyrrha lets out a HUGE warning bark, and that’s enough to stop the dog. The woman finally pulls her dog back, and I hear her mutter, “Jeez, we didn’t do anything!” Again: UGH! Ugh. The ignorance of some people…

Obviously, not everyone who uses one of these contraptions is irresponsible, but I see this behavior happen time and time again with retractable leashes. Unless you have great verbal control of your dog, just say no to retractable leashes. (Or, say no to them in crowded areas like a softball game on a Friday night.)

Anyway. Aside from that incident, Pyrrha did really well. She was nervous at first (as she still is in all new environments), but after about 15 minutes, she was sitting on my friends’ feet and even taking a nap in the grass. I’m always proud of her growing ability to overcome her fears. This event, though, was a reminder that I still need to be really vigilant about her socialization. She still has lots of room to grow!

Lovely leashes

Let it be known that I hold strong leash biases. I LOVE a soft, non-nylon leash, especially a rope leash or a leather leash. I DETEST retractable leashes in almost all walk circumstances. And I hate a nylon burn on my hand, which has happened many times at the SPCA.

Now that that’s out there, here are some great leashes that I like the look of from around the Web:

(Click on the pictures to shop!)

Mendota leash, $12.19 at DogSupplies.com.

This is the leash I’m pretty sure I want. After having used a Mendota leash with Dublin before, I was sold. After a few uses, it becomes very soft, and the braided rope is very strong. The leash is also quite affordable. I think it could probably qualify as a rope leash, too? They’re also sold in a slip-collar version, which is also appealing.

Zoey's reflective leash, $7 at DogSupplies.com.

I bought this leash in orange already, because sometimes I like to go running with Bo at night. I feel like both of us are so much safer with this leash, since we tend to run around a lot of busy streets when it gets dark. I do wish the tape was on both sides of the leash, but for $7, I really can’t complain!

Latigo leather twist leash, $18.29 at DogSupplies.com.

A nice, classic burgundy leather leash, which is also 6 feet long. It seems like a nice 6-foot leather lead is somewhat hard to find. And you can’t beat that price.

Hands-free runner dog leash, $35 at Olive Green Dog.

Look, ma! No hands! This could be a great option for those who like to run with their dogs.

Do you have a particular leash that you’re loyal to? Any that you’d recommend?