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377493 tn?1356502149

Baby Leashes?

I am curious as to what others opinions are when it comes to baby leashes.  I have started using one is certain circumstances.  My 18 month old hates being stuck in the stroller..and I mean hates it!  He also does not like to hold your hand and like most healthy children his age is curious about everything.  So when we are in crowded places (a busy airport last week for example) or walking our favorite paths by the river, I strap it on.  It's a backpack in the shape of a monkey, and the monkey's tail is the part I hold on to.  He has no problem with it at all (in fact, the monkeys head peeks over his shoulder and he thinks it is the funniest thing ever!), and I feel it keeps him safe.  I do not tug on it or pull him with it..he still takes his time, but it allows me to sort of keep him close as I follow.   I have had one or two nasty comments about it.  I really don't think it harms him in any way, and as I said, I feel it keeps him safe.  However, I do value the opinion of the regular posters here, and am curious as to your thoughts on them?  Thanks so much.
18 Responses
134578 tn?1614729226
I used a fuzzy dog one, with the dog head peeking over my son's shoulder, about ten or twelve times when he was at the stage when he wanted to walk but he was really pretty little for constant hand-holding when walking (his hand would get sweaty, and slip out of mine).  We were walking into our HMO once and a man saw this setup and said, "You might as well just get a dog," in a snotty voice.  But what the heck, it kept my son safe when we were crossing the street, and I didn't give a hoot what some old misanthrope thought anyway.  It's not like I had a Flexileash and was yelling "Heel!  Heel!"  Most of the time we held hands when he was wearing his backpack as well as me having the end of the fuzzy leash around my wrist.  I liked the safety it provided.
377493 tn?1356502149
That is almost exactly the comment I had.  A women said to me "your child is not a dog".  I actually managed to stay calm and replied that I was aware of that, but we were in the middle of a major International Airport.  I had him, the stroller and our carry on (my husband didn't travel with us this time) and this made me feel he was safe.  He could explore, but not get to far away from me.  Another women actually  jumped in and stuck up for me, but I hate being singled out and I hate public scenes in a way you can't even imagine.  I still think that in certain circumstances it is best.  For safety. And he doesn't mind at all.  Thanks Brooke. You made me feel way better about the whole thing.
Avatar universal
Personally, I hate baby leashes.  But, when the safety of a child is utmost, then you do what you must do.  One of our sons always behaved and was where he was supposed to be and we did not worry - ever.  The other - just the complete opposite.  Again, safety is always first and foremost.  And if anyone says anything - agree with them but add - "I couldn't live with myself if something happened; safety must come first".  You'll find most will agree (at least those of us who have been blessed with the more active child).  All the best ...
377493 tn?1356502149
If he hated it or fought it, I would rethink it.  But he has no problem with it at all.  Hand holding however is a very different story..lol.  He won't hold your hand for more then a minute or two.  This just seems like the best option, at least that I have found so far.  He gets to walk and explore and is therefor happy.  I can make sure he doesn't dart away suddenly and something awful happens like he falls in the river or something.  We don't use it all the time, just in certain circumstances and it really does give us a stronger sense of safety.  I just hate the rude comments...it makes me feel like I am doing something awful to him or something.
127529 tn?1331840780
As far as I am concerned safety harnesses are appropriate, when necessary, in order to allow our children who have yet to understand road safety and stranger danger a certain amount of freedom and exercise when we are out and about.
As far as the comments likening them to dog leashes I always ask people; so, if I put my child in a crib to keep him safe when he is sleeping would you liken that to putting him an a cage then?
A child harness is just another tool given to parents to help us keep our children safe in what is quite frankly a dangerous world.
13167 tn?1327194124
I wish I had the courage to do that.  The funny thing about children's leashes is to a lot of people,  it's unthinkable not to put their dog on a leash in that situation -it's simply not safe!  What if the dog stepped into traffic?  What if the dog fell in the river?  These same people think our children I guess are fine risking falling in the river or being in traffic.

Europeans have a great attitude about it - I spend my toddler months in England,  and was on a leash for my own safety.  I wish I had done that with my first child,  who scooted off and went missing countless times in his early months because he was quick and curious.
377493 tn?1356502149
Thanks so much.  I am going to ignore the rude comments and continue to use it when appropriate.  It really does keep him safe, and as Anniebrooke said, it's not like I am yanking on it or dragging him around on it.  It's funny..he tries to put it on himself sometimes.  He likes it..lol.
535822 tn?1443976780
I know its late but having had a bit to do with leashes in the past wanted to say ..I like them, now sometimes the children fight them being on but they get used to them ..it gives you control in a shopping mall and on the street and that's the main thing,does'nt matter what others think you are keeping the child safe and near you I noticed that after a few times most kids accept them on their wrists, and actually dont care ..
Avatar universal
I hated baby leashes until I had a rambunctious toddler who hates to stay in the stroller!  I went from someone who said "I will never put my child on a leash" to someone who bought one of the monkey leashes and I call it her "backpack." We don't use it very often, but it does come in handy and it keeps her close to me but still allows her to feel somewhat independent.  I say, screw the people that have a problem with it or give you crap about it, they are probably like I used to be and had no children but had an opinion about how people should treat their kids!

My daughter also puts hers on herself.  She will come up to me and motion for me to snap it in the front.  She loves it, it's cute, it's handy, so I feel there's nothing wrong with it!
1169104 tn?1303349638
I can see the convenience of the leash given the security in crowded areas etc...  but I personally hate them. I think.. and no offense to anyone who chooses this option but it's a "lazy" way of parenting. Although sometimes very difficult, teaching your children to stay by you, hold onto your hand or the stroller seems like a better option than putting your children on a lease.
377493 tn?1356502149
I am not taking offense, however, I can very much assure you that I am far from a lazy parent.  I have a child that was born with a strong sense of independance (which I think is a positive personally) and has never met a stranger.  He darts incredibly quickly, and given that he is only now 20 months old, we have not yet mastered the skill of 1. always listening to mommy and 2. what is dangerous and what is not.  Actually, not certain how you can say no offense when clearly stating that parents who use these are lazy is clearly an offensive comment.  My response is to be slower to judgement.  All children are different and do have unique personalities.
1169104 tn?1303349638
I say no offense because this post is asking for opinions on the subject of leashes. This is simply my opinion and not to be taken as a personal attack. If it works for you than I'm not one to judge other peoples decisions and more power to you. Again, we are asked our opinion and is the point of this post and I shouldn't get attacked either for answering a question on opinions...
377493 tn?1356502149
I don't think I was attacking you.  I just think that to refer to parents who use leashes as lazy parents is a bit judgemental.  All children are different, so I do not think it fair to lump all parents into one catagory.  Opinions are fine and welcome,  Comments like that are a bit over the top in my opinion.  In trying to find a comparision...let's say that for whatever reason you had to formula feed as opposed to breast feed, and as a result someone jumped to the conclusion that you didn't love your child enough to do what is right.  They don't know your situation but just made that assumption.  That wouldn't be ok with you I am sure.  See what I mean?  I wasn't attacking your opinion on use of baby leashes...if you choose not to because you don't like them, that's fine.  But to comment that it is lazy parenting is perhaps less then appropriate.
1006035 tn?1485575897
I don't have a problem with them. I especially like that the ones made today are more kid friendly. The ones my parents had looked like real dog leashes. On the other hand I hated using it because of the comments and looks from people. It's hard for me to keep my mouth shut if I feel attacked so we didn't use it very much.

On the other hand, when I was younger we went to the airport and my younger sister got lost. We couldn't find her for hours. I remember feeling sick to my stomach and very anxious. It was a horrible experience. I think I'd rather endure nasty comments than lose a child. Another option (especially since we all have cell phones now) is to put an ID bracelet on your child. That way if they are lost it's much easier to find them.
1035252 tn?1427227833
Lolololol....lazy parenting. Sorry, I don't mean to be rude, but that's a rich one. My daughter is..wild. Not that she's a bad child, she's NOT a bad child, and I've never actually used a leash on her...but if I took her to Disney World right now, today, would I? you bet. she's energetic, she would rather run circles around the stroller than walk next to me and while she'll hold my hand, every now and then she'll see something exciting and run towards it.

I spend most of my day running around the house keeping her (age 3) and my son (age 1) out of trouble because they're very independent and curious.

I own a leash for both of them. I've never used either leash, but I keep them just in case I'm ever in a situation where someone could snatch them. It's not about "will my child stay with me because I'm a good parent" for me, or "what's the laziest way to keep ahold of my child" it's more about "will someone snatch my inquisitive toddler if she stops to look at something and I don't turn around and catch her in time."

So..lazy parent? um, ok. if you think so! but I find my children's safety to be above and beyond in importance what someone might think of me for leashing them. When we go to the grocery store..my daughter gets to walk (my son still rides because he's not old enough to stay near me yet) because the store is spread-out and I can see when people are close to me and there are few chances for someone to separate her from me in a crowd....but if we were in a busy place, you bet I'd put safety over someone else's opinion.

I also have no trouble telling someone what I think of their opinion, so just WAIT until the first person says something to me about leashing my child if I ever have to..I honestly can't wait for that one.
377493 tn?1356502149
Diva and Ivy, I am getting better for sure about telling people to mind their own business when they comment..lol.  You know what is sort of interesting though?  The few people that have made negative comments?  Not a single one of them had a child with them, so I wonder if they have kids.  I don't think any of us knows what it's like until these little people are here, and with that, their own distinct personalities and ideas.  I love that my little man has such an independent personality and don't want to squash that as I think it will serve him well in the future.  But you know, this year alone we have had a few drownings in our rivers...they are fast flowing.  I just cannot risk it and won't.  So, I've decided, others opinions be darned.  My child will never be a casualty of that river, nor will an Amber Alert ever be necessary.  I feel good about that!  I know I'm not a lazy parent...far from it.  Just adding in an extra measure of precaution.  Overprotective?  Perhaps, but I'm ok with that.
1194973 tn?1385503904
I've been considering this for Kylie, as she's started to RUN when she's out instead of walk and it can be difficult to keep a hold of her. DH refuses (he says she's not a pet to lease) but I frankly don't care. You can never be too protective and if someone says it's "laziness" them I'll kick em in the teeth.
377493 tn?1356502149
DH didn't really like the idea at first either.  But he doesn't typically take Ryder out alone as I am home with him 1/2 the week.  So if there are the two of us, we rarely use it.  However, on those river paths he has changed his mind.  The drowings would make your skin crawl and Ryder is so darned fast.  He darts so quickly...all it would take is not paying attention for 2 seconds and he could be in that water.  
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