How do I choose the best length of lead for my dog?

Choosing the best length of lead for you and your dog is important. At The Showdog Company we will make your lead to whatever length you wish.

If you're not sure how long you need your lead read on and we'll tell you how to work it out.

The best way to determine the right length is to use a length of string or soft rope as a guide. Tie a small loose loop in one end of the string, approx. 1cm (3/8") diameter. Thread the other end of the string through the loop, to make a lasso or noose. Drape the lasso over your dog's head and shoulders in the manner which you prefer to show the dog. Some people prefer it very loose around the shoulders, others prefer the lead slightly tighter. Stand in your usual position for showing your dog and hold the string at the point where you want the handle to be. Don't worry about making a loop for the handle, we will do that for you. When you're happy that you have the best length to suit you and your dog, cut or mark the string at the point you want the handle. Now un-tie the lasso knot and simply measure the overall length of the string from end to end. Write this down so you don't forget.

Now just choose your colour, fill in the order form and you will have your lead within 10 days.

For more information see our Size-Guide

How do I care for my leads?

A full care sheet is enclosed with every lead purchased. Additionally, see the details below on how to care for your leads.

All show leads are designed for use only in the show ring or ring-craft training, not for general walking. To extend the life, I recommend removing the show lead when your class has finished to minimise wear and tear.

Leather leads
Thank you for purchasing a quality leather lead from The Showdog Company. Your lead is made from the highest quality pigmented leather, designed to give lasting performance and comfortable handling. To ensure your leather show lead remains supple you should treat it regularly with a good quality leather conditioner, such as 'Hessonite Leather Conditioner'. The conditioner moisturises the leather, which allows the metal ring or leather slide, depending on which type of lead you have, to slip easily and therefore reduces wear. Of course, after several uses the natural qualities of leather mean the lead will show some wear, but this should not affect the performance. A small amount of leather conditioner should be applied using a soft cloth, rubbing in gently down the full length of the lead. Allow the lead to dry before use after each application.

If you feel it necessary to clean your lead before conditioning it, I recommend cleaning with a cloth dampened with water and soap flakes such as 'lux', then wipe the lead with a rinsed cloth and allow to air dry. The lead should not be soaked or placed in a washing machine. Once dry you should treat the lead with leather conditioner as detailed above.

Braid leads
Braid leads should be wiped over with a cloth dampened with water and soap flakes such as 'lux', then wipe the lead with a rinsed cloth and allow to air dry. As the lead has a leather trim, washing in a machine is not advised.

About The Showdog Company Leather Conditioning Cream
Leather Conditioning Cream maintains the suppleness of your leather leads. It nourishes and moisturises the leather. The cream contains natural and synthetic waxes, and also contains around 5% lanolin. It is a predominantly water based substance, so when fully dried will not affect the coat of your dog and is safe to use. A full safety data sheet is available on request.
If the cream comes into contact with eyes or open wounds, wash the area thoroughly with clean, sterile water. If swallowed, seek medical advice from your doctor immediately.

Where can I buy leather conditioning cream?

The cream can be bought directly from The Showdog Company. Just go to our online shop and place the required number of bottles in the shopping cart. Alternatively, ring the Sales line (0208 1441440) to order over the phone. Hessonite sometimes has a trade stand at larger dog shows, where we will have ample stock of Conditioning Cream.

How do I contact The Showdog Company?

At The Showdog Company, we welcome any opportunity to communicate with our customers. Use any of the following methods to keep in touch.

UK Telephone: 0208 1441440
International telephone +44 (0) 208 1441440
Email: sales@theshowdogcompany.com
Write to: The Showdog Company, Limekiln Cottage, High Starlings, Banham, Norfolk NR16 2BS

See our Contact Us page for more information.

How long has The Showdog Company been trading?

We first started trading under the name Hessonite in 2003 by selling leather and braid leads at shows. Word of mouth soon had sales all over the south of England. A simple web-site then got us known internationally, with 30% of leads sold being despatched abroad. Throughout this time, our goals have remained the same - to provide our customers with the very best quality, hand-finished products at a sensible price. In 2012 we changed our company name to The Showdog Company and since then have traded under that name. Our office and manufacturing facility is located in rural Norfolk, England.

Is it safe to give you my credit card details over the internet?

In common with many small companies, we focus on what we do best - providing excellent service, superb quality products and good value for money. This is why, when it comes to security and internet trading, we simply partner up with one of the worlds biggest internet banks. At the point of sale, when we ask for your credit card details, you can rest safe in the knowledge that you have been moved to a very secure facility provided by our bank. Even we don't see your details online, it's all done direct with WorldPay or Paypal Bank's Trading Service.

Privacy Policy

We do not store credit card details nor do we share customer details with any 3rd parties.

Do I have to buy on-line?

The Showdog Company offers a variety of payment methods. You can call us, for advice or purchase, on 0208 1441440. Or, you can write to us at The Showdog Company, Limekiln Cottage, High Starlings, Banham, Norfolk NR16 2BS. Alternatively, send your query or place an order by email - sales@theshowdogcompany.com

I don't live in the UK, can I still buy from The Showdog Company?

Yes - approximately 40% of our leads are shipped to non-UK countries, all over the world. Of course, international postage costs are slightly higher than UK postage costs, but we don't seek to make any profit from postage, so we will just pass on the additional postage cost direct to the customer. Go to our Online-shop for more details.

Delivery Policy and what does delivery cost?

We usually use Royal Mail 1st Class delivery. See the table below for delivery prices to the UK and the Rest of the World. We aim to hand finish and despatch your item within 10 working days and will advise you by email when the item has been posted. If you need next day delivery we can sometimes offer this, please telephone 0208 1441440 if you need next day delivery - we will charge current Royal Mail rates for this service.


UK Postcode

Rest of the World

(Order Value of)

£0 - £49.99



£50 - £99.99



£100 - £149.99



£150 - £199.99



£200 - £249.99



£250 - £299.99



£300 - £349.99



£350 - £399.99



£400 - £449.99



£459 - £499.99






Refund / Cancellation Policy

If for any reason you are disatisfied with any of our products you can return it for a full refund within 7 days - please contact us to let us know you are returning an item and please include your name and address with the returned item. If you have changed your mind and wish to cancel please email sales@theshowdogcompany.com or call us on 0208 1441440 and we will refund any payments made within 7 working days.