Our dog Porter is a big boy…at his last vet visit he weighed in at 95lbs! Before you start fretting about his weight, though, mid-90s is about the right weight for him, given his height and breed (labrador/chesapeake bay retriever mix). It does mean he can be a handful on his leash though. 90% of the time he is docile and happy to trot alongside us, but if he encounters a squirrel or one of the dogs he has decided are his nemeses, it requires lots of leash pulling and wrangling to keep him in line. We used a simple nylon leash for quite a while, but it was painful when he pulled, plus it started to get old and smell a bit funky. Our neighbor (who also has large dogs) was telling us how much he loves using his climbing rope as a leash, praising the strength, durability, and versatility of the material, so I hopped on Amazon and discovered Krebs Recycled Climbing Rope Leashes.
We had seen other, more commercial brands of rope leash before, but Krebs was cheaper, made by a small family owned business, and best of all, used recycled rope and materials. Sold! So I ordered a 6ft silver leash for Porter, and now that it has arrived I am thrilled at our choice.
Aesthetically, the leash is fantastic. The silver and blue rope is in perfect condition, and while Porter may not care much how he looks, I am pleased that it matches his brown fur nicely. The stitching is solid and strong-looking, and the ends are melted to prevent fraying, making the leash even more durable. On one end is a clip to attach the leash to Porter’s collar or harness, and while I would prefer a locking carabiner (for both looks and durability), the clip seems solid and secure. The handle end is a nice big loop, and its comfortable to grip securely without fear of rope burn if the dog pulls too hard. Best of all, climbing rope is a TOUGH material, and doesn’t kink easily, so we can tie it into knots to shorten the lead if we need to keep Porter close, and undo those knots easily without ruining the material.
What I really love about the leash is the idea that it has been “up cycled”. What does that mean, you ask? According to the folks at Krebs:
Krebs Recycle collects both pre-consumer and post consumer recycled climbing rope from guide services, climbing gyms, and rope manufacturers in the U.S. and Canada.
Krebs Recycle inspects the rope, washes it, if necessary, and then cuts it to length for dog leashes. This process is known as upcycling, since the rope is used in its original form. Rope that is not suitable for commercial use is set aside for a secondary recycler that can re-process the rope for commercial uses such as furniture stuffing.
Krebs Recycle sews the climbing rope into dog leashes. We are a family owned business that operates out of our garage in Seattle, WA. After the leashes are finished, we ship them to retail locations, typically to retail locations in the Pacific Northwest.
One other neat factoid: As you may know from reading Gear Diary, many of us are big fans of Tom Bihn bags, also based out of Seattle. Well, according to the product page, Krebs gets the fabric they use to secure the ends of the rope from Tom Bihn‘s scraps! So not only is this a family owned pet supply company that recycles, they are recycling from gear we all likely know and love! How cool is that?
I offered Porter the chance to give his take on his new leash:
Be sure to check out Krebs on Amazon or at their website. They sell leashes in 1ft, 2ft, 4ft and 6ft lengths, with various colors available. For just a bit more than a generic leash, you can get your dog one that looks great and functions far better than a plain nylon style, AND feel good knowing it is recycled as well!
MSRP: $17.50 for the 6ft leash, available at Amazon or on Krebs website
What I like: Stylish leash; family owned business; uses recycled materials; durable; comfortable to hold
What Needs Improvement: From an aesthetic and security perspective, a locking carabiner would be preferable to the regular clip.