One of my favorite activities to share with Ace is hiking. Whether we take the bus to a hilly San Francisco park or spend a weekend crisscrossing the trails at a Bay Area state park, Ace is at home. When I’m hiking with Ace, I prefer to keep her on leash regardless of the trail rules, mostly because I want to help her avoid poison oak, rattlesnakes, and other dangers. I also like the peace of mind that comes with knowing she is connected to me; I can relax more completely.
When hiking, it can be an annoyance to keep my grip on the handle of Ace’s leash -– I want to use my hands for other activities. One solution is the Hands Free Dog Leash Belt ($19.99) by Squishy Face Studio. This company is based in Florida and makes sturdy dog toys and accessories that are built to hold up to their three large mutts. Also, its products are made in the U.S.A.
You might recall a Dogster giveaway last year for their tough Bow Wow Super Tug Toy. Like the Tug Toy, the Leash Belt is a product that seeks a simple yet elegant solution to a common problem. The Tug Toy allows a dog to play tug by herself without a human or canine partner. The Leash Belt addresses a dog walker’s need to be hands-free while strolling (or running, or hiking, or roller skating) with her leashed companion.
The Leash Belt is a simple black woven nylon belt that closes with a large plastic buckle, similar to the type used on dog collars. The belt is two inches wide, which I like because it felt secure around my waist. I think if I owned a larger dog I would feel more confident that the width of the belt would help me control the dog if she decided to pull. The belt is adjustable, and to accommodate dog walkers of all sizes, the belt is available in two standard sizes with the option to order a custom size. I really appreciate it when a company goes out of its way to make its product work for anyone who would like to try it.
To attach the belt to your dog’s leash, the front of the Leash Belt has a second piece of woven nylon that opens with another plastic buckle. You slip on the loop of your dog’s flat leash or plastic retractable leash, and clip it securely. I like this design because it is simple and efficient. Examining the Leash Belt, the piece that attaches to your dog’s leash is heavy duty and appears securely sewn. I also find the belt to be aesthetically pleasing –- you can choose one of four colors, all of which pop brightly against the black background and are accentuated by a tasteful and adorable logo. (I admit I might be biased because my little dog friend Ace has a squishy face.)
Other odds and ends I like about the Leash Belt: It is easy to clean, it is lightweight, and it is versatile. The loop that secures the leash could be used to attach objects other than a leash, such as a poop bag holder or a small light. While I’m not wild about the price of the Leash Belt, I appreciate that it is made in America by a small company, so I think the cost is worthwhile if you like the product.
I can imagine the Leash Belt would be useful for a variety of dog walking situations. I would be most likely to use it on a hike or when walking Ace on the beach. This would allow me to sip a drink, hold my partner’s hand, or rummage around in my bag for my camera. Joggers might like this product, too. If you were trying to juggle your dog, your children, and some shopping bags, it would probably be a great relief to know that your dog is attached to you securely. While I don’t recommend being engrossed in your smartphone while walking your dog, the reality is that many of us need to multitask during our busy days, so the Leash Belt could make that process safer and less cumbersome. The Leash Belt could also help with training. For example, you could tether your puppy to the Leash Belt while indoors to teach her to stay by your side.
Dogster Scorecard for the Hands Free Dog Leash Belt by Squishy Face Studio
- Quality: The Leash Belt’s woven nylon material and plastic buckles appear strong and durable.
- Function: The Leash Belt held Ace’s leash securely and close to my body.
- Style: I love the contrasting florescent leash clip against the black background of the belt –- very stylish yet very functional.
- Creativity: The Leash Belt is a unique yet simple solution for dog walkers who want to be hands-free.
- Value: For $19.99, you get a quality, American-made dog product.
The Leash Belt is a simple, functional accessory to help you walk your dog and use your hands at the same time.
Attention Dogster readers: Squishy Face Studio wants to share the Hands Free Dog Leash Belt with five lucky dog owners! Winners will be able to choose the size and color of their complementary Leash Belts.
Here’s how to enter the contest: In the comments section below, tell us how you would use the Leash Belt with your dog or dogs. Are you a jogger, a super mom, a texting fiend? Get creative, and I’ll choose my favorite five responses to win the prizes. Make sure the email address associated with your Disqus account is accurate so that I can notify you if you win!
Read more reviews by Ace’s Mama:
- We Review the Doggy Dozer Bed by Skydex
- Fluff & Tuff Dog Toys: Can They Stand Up to Ace’s Abuse?
- Dogster Reviews: Can Reviver Pets Freshening Swipes Handle This Stinky Dog?
- Ballistic Friends Toys from the Kong Wubba Line: Tough Enough for Your Dog?
- And Now, We Review a Sampling of Summer Dog Collars
- Man of Steel? Try Dog of Steel! We Review Marvel/DC Comics Clothes and Toys at PetSmart
- Can Dog Toys and Grooming Products by Hartz Withstand a Summer Day with Ace?
About Ace’s Mama: This East Coast transplant enjoys the bounty of San Francisco, including its microclimates, farmers’ markets, and secret stairway walks. When she’s not walking with, talking about, or kissing the face of her Boston Terrier, Ace, she blogs about Ace’s adventures. Product reviews writer and guinea pig at Dogster.