On the day our lives turned completely upside down (i.e. the day we brought The Kaiser home), we didn’t have anything for the 9-week old pup. Before the dog aficionados burn me alive, let me clarify. Yes, we were first time dog owners, but we had done as much research prior to as we thought possible and were mentally preparing ourselves for a little Doberman puppy. When I had finally decided to pull the trigger and quit my job last June, we sold the condo (it was 5 minutes from work) and quickly moved back to the house. Since I was going to be off until school started back up in September, we figured it was the right time to bring a puppy home.
We contacted all the registered Doberman breeders in Ontario that we could find, but as we quickly discovered, most breeders have long waiting lists. Finally, we found a 9-week puppy that had just become available (he had been previously spoken for, but after the new owners’ decided to get a divorce, they forfeited their deposit), so we made the trek up north to meet him for the first time.
Although I had agreed to a dog and all the work it would entail, I was scared of dogs, and had agreed only on the premise that we get one as a puppy. But the Mr. had worked security and alarm response back in college and was adamant that dogs were the best deterrent, and now that I was going to be home alone a whole lot more, it was time we got one of our own. I figured he wouldn’t grow overnight (wrong) and that getting a young puppy would ease me into it (wrong – I fell in love with him within the first 24 hours).
Anyway, because we hadn’t committed to bringing the puppy home, we had a list of things we needed and had found a few things on sale in the flyers, but we hadn’t actually purchased anything yet because we weren’t sure if we’d be bringing him home with us. When we got there, we hummed and hawed (he was 9 weeks old, and I was hoping to bring home an 8 week old, plus he was almost 20 lbs, which is quite a bit bigger than what an 8 week old would’ve been) until the Mr. finally made the executive decision – we were going to be parents.
On the way home, we stopped by at Canadian Tire to pick up an expandable crate that had conveniently gone on sale, and we went to Dollarama to buy a few cheap things, including a leash.
Yes, we paid $1 for his leash, and over the last 14 months, we’ve probably bought 2 more as they got dirty or worn out. When the handle is brand new, it’s fine, but once it starts getting worn, it can start to feel rough, especially if the pup gets his teeth on them.
So yesterday, we stopped by PetSmart, and although it was such a splurge at $22.99, we sprung for a 4-foot Kong Traffic Leash. The leash has a secondary handle close to the collar, making it easy to keep rambunctious puppies close. We were hesitant at first – while we loved the idea of the traffic handle, we weren’t sure how we’d feel about that secondary loop just hanging around, and we were disappointed it didn’t come in black. Plus, the main handle, while nice and sturdy, is slightly oversized, and I wasn’t sure how cumbersome it would turn out to be. But the handles are so nicely padded and comfortable, we went ahead with it anyway.
We’ve used it twice now, and I am happy to say I’m so glad we went for it! Although the traffic handle does throw the balance off, it’s really not a big deal since it is SUCH a handy feature to have! Both handles are super comfortable, and the red really has grown on me.
Kaiser looking at me impatiently while I snapped my photos trying to show the traffic handle.
Final Verdict: Splurge!
If you take your dog out on long leashed walks or need to be able to be able to exercise leash control easily, this is a product worth splurging on. If not, save yourself the $22.99 and get a cheap Dollarama leash!