Toddler leashes? For or against?

Emelina - posted on 09/10/2012 ( 252 moms have responded )

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My husband and I have plans for a family vacation to Disney in December, I am a stay-at-home mother of a one year old.

She's been walking for about three months now and is the queen of this house.! She's used to being free and the idea of restricting her to a stroller for four days, I think is torture! She does'nt deal well with walking while holding our hands. She'll throw herself on the ground, so to avoid the embarrasment of a trantum in public, Ive thought about one of those toddler leashes?. Ive NEVER liked the idea of kids on leashes but would really appreciate the opinions and suggestions of other moms who have used them or thought of it.. Pros? Cons?

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Firebird - posted on 09/10/2012

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Yea, leashes are for animals, but so are cages. Bet that doesn't stop you from using a crib. They are safety tools, and if you think you daughter can benefit from using one, who's to tell you otherwise? I went to Disneyland once, it was huge! I can't imagine losing a kid in that place. You would not believe how many harnesses I saw being used there. You'll fit right in! lol

Johnny - posted on 09/10/2012

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If you feel it is what will work best for yourself and your daughter, then that's what you should use. Just ignore those silly "but leashes are for animals" people. Leashes are for safety and allowing children (and animals) to walk on their own under close control.



I did not use one with my first daughter. I'm pregnant with my second and while I have no plans to do so, I never say never. The new baby could be a bolter, who knows! My daughter twice dislocated her elbow (apparently so common it's got it's own term - "Nanny Arm"- in the emergency). Once walking with her grandpa and once at daycare. She had decided she didn't want to walk, threw a tantrum and went limp. She healed up very quickly and it really wasn't a big deal. But if she'd been doing this kind of thing all the time, I would have rather put her on a leash than in a stroller all the time or repeatedly dislocating her elbow.



The kid across the street from me has autism and was prone to bolting off very suddenly when he was young. He got hit by a car once when he suddenly just darted out into traffic. Slippery little kid. His mom was all "morally opposed" to leashes... until the car accident.



My parents used on on me when I was a kid and I've got no issues from it. I'm not in "leash therapy" for some sort of animal complex. I don't even remember it, I only know from pictures. Frankly, I think safety and comfort are most important. Just practice your haughty glare for the imbeciles who give you dirty looks.



Also, how many of those "leashes are for animals" people put their kids in cribs or playpens, which are really just like topless dog crates when you think about it.

Gale - posted on 09/10/2012

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We have one, but never use it, also I find it sad that so many mom judge other moms for do WHAT WORKS FOR THEM! Each child is different and needs their own way of learning, leashes works for some and don't work for others it is not treating them like animals, making them pee outside and eating of the floor and not giving them clothes then is that treating them like dogs, but putting a backpack on with a tail is not putting them on a leash its giving them freedoms but keeping them safe, if you don't like it fine don't like it but don't look down at other moms for using them, plus disney world is supper busy and lots to look at and do its so easy for a toddler to twist free in 1 second and be gone forever, I would rather have a leash then to risk losing my son plus why should she be miserable in a stroller while everyone else gets to walk around and have fun she not even two, she not going to understand the logic of safety, and fun at that place, some will but not all toddlers will.

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I have one thing to say, if you need it.. use it. Better to have your child safe and alive in a harness and receive a few disapproving looks than to have your child lost.. or worse still, run over by a car.

Jessica - posted on 09/11/2012

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Even if you never use them again, I highly recommed you use them at Disney. Loads of kidnappings happen there. Never leave her in the stroller unattended, and if you can manage packing her on your back it's even better. Take turns and know your kid isn't going anywhere. It's easy to walk off with a kid in a stroller, but not if she's buckled to your back/chest. And if you are thinking that a leash is for animals, then call it something else. Your daughter is more valuable than any animal, and you protecting her shouldn't be an issue. It's only four days, but you can lose her in less than a minute.

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Taryn - posted on 10/09/2012

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I always hated the idea of using "putting a leash on my child," and I didn't use one with my daughter. But when my son was almost 2 years old we went hiking with some friends on a ridge top and, knowing how my son has no fear and likes to take a running jump of nearly anything, I decided to buy one verses watching him free fall of the side of a cliff. I was so grateful that I did and it was certainly not the last time I used it. When I walked with him I would put the handle around my wrist and and then I would hold his hand. If I just let him walk freely he would pull on it like a dog - not really an impression I wanted to give - and I wanted him to learn how to walk with me, holding my hand. But the harness gave me the piece of mind knowing that he was safe and that he couldn't disappear in an instant (or jump off any cliffs!). Now I wish I had used it with my daughter - those early years would have been so much less stressful!



I bought the kind with an animal backpack (monkey) so that it looked less like a leash and he could stash a little toy or something special in it. He didn't always like to wear it because he know he could not run free, but we gave him the choice between the monkey-pack and holding my hand or being confined to a stroller. I still taught him the basic safety rules: not to wander off, street safety, etc. But I just liked having that extra bit of security.

So I say as a mom you just have to do what works for you and what you feel is best.

Stacey - posted on 10/09/2012

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I have four children all of them those leashes, I believe its one of the best things because as they got older and no longer used them, they never strayed to far in front of me or behind me. Those leashes taught them to stay close. Alot of my family members didn't like it, but when we went out their 5 year old is running around like crazy even lost their kid a few times in the street/store, mean while my 5 year old was 2 steps ahead of me, never lost my kids anywhere...it gives her the freedom she wants and give you a peace of mind because you have have by the hand so to speak ...

Deborah - posted on 10/08/2012

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safety first. It gives her a chance to feel independent. I have children ages 29 to 6 and can assure you they are great tool.

Susan - posted on 10/08/2012

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Use it!!! They are wonderful, not only for adventuresome toddlers but for those that are developmentally delayed. My almost 6 yo was extremely delayed due to severe neglect by the birth parents and while she is just about caught up to age level if we are going somewhere extremely crowded or traveling I still use the backpack puppy as she still has a tendency to wander off at times. My almost 3 yo tho not exposed to the conditions of her older siblings is in 20 different directions at once and knows no strangers and I use a backpack elephant for her. Both of them love having their backpacks on and I have the peace of mind of knowing they can't wander off in a crowded place as no matter how closely you watch your children anything can happen in a split second.

Shari - posted on 10/08/2012

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Embrace the leash!!! It can be your saving grace, especially when you have a little toddler, loaded for bear and enthralled with all the new sights and sounds. Babies walking free or even riding in a stroller are easy marks for predators. A leash keeps YOU in control and gives your toddler a sense of some independence! God Bless You!

Susan - posted on 10/08/2012

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Emelina, I sympathize.



I have four children, ages 20 years, 17 yrs, 7 yrs and 4 yrs. I USED to be one of "those" people..you know, the judgmental one who would just never ever treat my child like a dog and humiliate them by putting them on a leash, OH the horror! (haha) That was until my youngest came along. She is by all accounts a beautiful, happy, normal looking child, who just happens to have Autism and developmental delays.



At four years old, she is non-verbal, she cannot respond to commands such as "Stop!" or to her own name. She has no concept of danger, whether it is strangers, fire, a lake, a cliff or a busy road. She is also what they call a bolter and a wanderer; she looks for the opportunity, such as a door left unsecured or the adult in charge not looking at her, and in a second, she can be gone. She runs SO fast and is so quiet about it. I have had nightmares of her being lost in a huge city and having no way to communicate and tell people who she is, where she lives, etc. Because of this, we have avoided so many opportunities to take her places that we know she would benefit from and love, like amusement parks, the zoo, trips of all kinds.



There is only so long you can expect a child to be content riding in a stroller once they are able to walk, and likewise, there is only so long you can expect a child to be content holding your hand. But you cannot ever trust a child like mine, or a 1 year old like yours, to walk freely without being held onto in some way every second, especially in a place like that.



I finally bought an adorable little stuffed puppy dog backpack whose tail doubles as a tether. My daughter LOVES her little puppydog, and when the tether is not necessary, it tucks neatly into the pocket of the dog's belly. It has taken me a long time to work up the courage to use it with her because I know firsthand how judgmental people are. I still don't use it very often, only when we are in a crowded place where we absolutely need that security, and even then, we usually hold her hand even with the tether until she shows that she is getting restless and needs to let go, but inevitably, every time, we get the dirty looks from "those" people, and sometimes they even make nasty comments. We used it at the Zoo last summer and she had a blast. It made the day so much better for all of us, until as we were walking across a bridge over some water and a young couple with no children with them walked past, gave us the look and the woman loudly remarked to her partner, "Looky there, they caught themselves a kid!" And when I pretended not to notice, she said it again, louder. We kept on walking as though we never heard them, but I choked back tears for some time afterwards and kicked myself for not having the perfect zinger response ready for an ignorant person like that (probably best that I didn't have a response).



To the person on this thread who made the comment to you that putting a child on a tether is humiliating, I would tell her, no, a child on a tether (mind you, it is NOT a collar around her neck!) has the feeling of FREEDOM! A tether is not intended to be used to drag a child around behind you as you force them to make their little legs try to keep up with yours, and if you have your little one on a tether, it doesn't mean you ignore them and let them cry behind you while you are busy shopping or doing things that don't have to be done right at that moment. If a parent is doing those things with their child on a tether, then that is a whole different story and is not OK at all. But that isn't what you are trying to do to your child. You want your child to have a wonderful experience at Disney, and you are a good parent to be planning ahead and realizing that your little one has limitations in what she can be expected to handle and that she is a normal toddler who is excited over her newfound mobility and needs some sense of freedom while you are keeping her safe. This is what children that age want from the moment they become mobile.



My daughter is perfectly happy and does not mind one bit having her little puppydog backpack. The ONLY humiliating thing to a child like that is when they see people's dirty looks and hear them make nasty ignorant comments to her mommy and daddy as they pass by. So be prepared, take courage, your child is THE most precious thing you have ever had and ever will have and as hard as it is, you have to learn to either ignore the haters or have a few well rehearsed responses prepared for times when it seems appropriate.



If you are still having trouble with the idea, think of it a different way. Look at how short your toddler is. Notice when you are walking with her and holding her hand, what position is her arm? For most of us, even those of us who are not very tall, when we hold our little one's hands, our hands are hanging down at our sides pretty comfortably, but they are not so lucky. Their little arms have to reach up to hold onto your hand. Now, try putting your arm up as though you are holding hands with someone who is far taller than you so that your hand is at least as high as your own shoulder, or even higher, on your head. How long are you comfortable keeping your hand held up like that? Even if you're holding onto something, it gets uncomfortable and at some point, your hand and arm would start to fall asleep or become achy. Who can blame a child that age for throwing herself on the ground when she feels like that? She does not yet have the verbal capacity to communicate to you that her little arm feels like it's gonna fall off, and she isn't being naughty, she is being a normal 1 yr old. Why do we expect our tiny little toddlers to be fine with holding their hand up over their heads for any extended period of time, especially while we walk the mall or even at the funnest place on earth? Using a tether resolves that issue. It fosters a sense of independence in a child when they don't feel constantly restrained and held back and when they are permitted to take the lead sometimes.



Of course, you wouldn't want to make a habit of using it everywhere you go unless you have to, and it does NOT take the place of your responsibility to set boundaries and teach your child to obey you (at age appropriate levels), but by all means, in a crowded place, or a place where you will be walking and exploring for the day, it is not only OK to use it, but it is the responsible thing as a parent, and you will have a much less stressful and more enjoyable day for your entire family. Take the stroller along because little ones do get tired of walking with short little legs like that.



Good luck, I hope all goes well and you experience only kindness and understanding.

Valerie - posted on 10/08/2012

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its a child safety harness. i see nothing wrong with it. i like the ones that look like backpacks. i haven't used one yet but after reading some of these comments especially the ones about dislocations i might just buy one and use it for when i'm shopping alone with my son. when my hubby is with me my son rides on his shoulders. sometimes we will manage to put him in the basket without a problem but not all the time and i really don't like to discipline my son when we're out and about because then i get unwanted advice from people who don't know me. also i've seen the ones with a monkey or a lion that have a detachable leash. once a child is old enough to stay by their parents side they can still use the backpack part to carry their favorite toy or something small.

Alison - posted on 10/08/2012

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We used one on a trip to Yellow Stone when our daughter was two. She loved it and we felt more secure knowing she was safe. After the trip we used it a few times when we would be in crowded situations and we concerned about her running. It worked for us.

Carey - posted on 10/08/2012

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I can't understand why anyone would be against them!?!?! What's the difference between that (which gives them some freedom to walk on their own safely in crowded places) and strapping them against their will in a stroller?? Come on people!! I had one that was a teddy bear backpack and my son liked his. I didn't use it a lot and mostly when at crowded places and there were times that he asked to have it ;).

It is SOOO.. quick to lose a small child in a crowded place (especially with so many interesting things to see like Disney) so is it really worth it? Especially since most of those who would (and why I don't understand) "object" don't have kids.

Shenna - posted on 10/08/2012

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If she us that young, I would suggest bringing a stroller anyways. There are very few toddlers that will have the endurance & stamina to walk around a place like Disney for hours without crashing and needing a power nap or two.

Shenna - posted on 10/08/2012

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Never used it. I would never humiliate my child like that. We taught her from a very early age the importance of staying with us. It's our job to watch our child at all times, not my child's job to watch us. And a crib is NOT like a cage, unless it is completely enclosed and has a lock on it. If your that worried, then wait until she is older to appreciate Disney and can be trusted to stay with you you or hold your hand.

Kimberlie - posted on 10/08/2012

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I have one and it works wonders I have a independent 2 yr. Old . She loves the fact she can walk on her own

Stephanie - posted on 10/08/2012

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Before I had a child, I thought those "leashes" were horrible and for lazy parents! Then I went to the Bronx zoo with my 18 month old. You would be surprised how easily a little one can slip between legs in a crowded area. They are like mopeds zipping along the shoulder while your in an SUV stuck in gridlock! At that moment I "got it" about the leash thing. Get one, take it - better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. There will be attractions where you have to park your stroller, at which point you will have to carry the child, or let them walk. This was exactly the case at the Gorilla exhibit, where I experienced the above situation.

Caroline - posted on 10/08/2012

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One of my daughters didn't like either the reins or the wrist-to-wrist strap until I used both together and that gave her more freedom. You can still hold the child's hand using either or both.



Some years ago, I heard that one parent had the child on reins in a supermarket. When the child disappeared, (the reins were cut), the parent alerted security who quickly stopped people leaving the shop. Someone was caught in the toilets changing the child into other clothes. If the child had been running around, it would have taken longer to find that the child was missing.



Hope you have a lovely time at Disney

Judy - posted on 10/08/2012

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I would much rather see you walking around with your child on a leash, then crying on the news because your child is lost

Kristy - posted on 10/08/2012

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Its really not as bad as it seems. I have three kids, a six year old, afour year old and an 18 month old baby. I used them for my older two from the moment they wanted to start getting out of ther stroller and walk. My oldest was a runner and would just run off as fast as he could in any given direction. Since we didn't want to loose him we got him a leash and started caling it his friend. So when ever we would go for walks or to the farmers markets or where ever, we would strap his friend to his back. It didn't keep him from trying to run off but it did keep him safe and out of trouble. By the time my duaghter was nearly two she wanted one of her won, even picking one out herself so she could be like her big brother. On occasion we still use them to keep from getting seperated in big corwds. We lost our oldest in the Bass Por Shop in Las Vegas back in December. He litteraly just vanished right under our noses. We didn't have thier friends on them that day, never thinking we would need them in a store. He was gone for a good 15 mintues before he was found sitting in the atv's. We thank God that he was ok and that the staff were trained to deal with lost children.



Thing is you shouldn't worry about having your duaghter on a leash. It only takes a second for a little one to disspaear and they are fast! In a place like Disney Land there are a hundred different things to see and its all super exciting. Do you really want to risk her dissappearing on you? Its scary and your mind starts racing you start thinking about all the bad things that could happen to your little one. You could take the stroller with you so that she has the option of walking or riding in the stroller. Don't worry about what other people think if they try to tell you are a horrible mom for putting you kid on a leash becuase you are doing it for her safety. Every parent who does the leash has run into the critics who are against it thinking its just mean. Think it through. If you want piece of mind knowing that she can't esccape and get lost and you want her tp have the option of walking then get her a little friend to put on her back. if you are still unsure about it then strap her in the stroller for four days. Just listen to your gut feelings. Have fun at Disney Land.

Kristin - posted on 10/08/2012

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What's worse...a toddler on a leash, or a toddler missing? Perhaps if you think of it as a safety strap rather than a leash, it might be easier to accept. I have seen ones that are nicely coloured and attach to a smal back-pack on the child,so they don't look so much like a leash.



My ex was violently opposed to our children being on leashes, so I never used one. Now I wish I had insisted. When my son was 2, we only had a single stroller, my 1 year old daughter had to be in that. To pay our rent I had to walk beside a busy interstate highway. L had a habit of running off without looking, so I was always yelling at him to "hold the pram, don't let go!" so he wouldn't run on the road. By the time he was a teenager, he was still holding my hand whenever we had to cross a road, I had to then re-train him not to hold my hand all the time. I'm sure all the yelling had a worse effect on him than a leash would have. And being made to stay so close to me all the time certainly limited his growing independence. I'd much rather see a parent using a leash than see them panicking that their child is missing, or mourning one who has been killed on a road.

Judi - posted on 10/08/2012

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I have 3 of my own kids and 2 step kids. All are adults now.When my 2 youngest ones were about a 18 months, I used wrist bands that had a coil cable connecting the wrist bands, I wore one and they wore one. There weren't any problems using them. I used them in malls, outside, etc. They thought it was fun wearing them. But when they start taking them off by themselves, I would stop using them.

Deborah - posted on 10/08/2012

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It only takes a moment for your little one to get lost or for someone to snatch her. My daughter was lost from me for 1/2 hour when she was 2 years old. I turned around for a moment to throw away the trash from our lunch and she was gone.

The mall closed the entrances so no one could get out, and fortunately a kind man brought her back to me after I was hysterically calling her name from store to store. From that day on she wore a leash, and it never seemed to bother her as long as she had plenty of lead.

Just remember to get one that isn't too restrictive, so your child feels comfortable. Actually in a huge place like Disney she will probably feel much more at ease being close to you.

Do what is best for your child, and let people think what they may, you're he Momma and that's your responsibility, not anyone else's (and none of their business, for that matter).

Enjoy your vacation !!

Heather - posted on 10/08/2012

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Definitely for them! A child's safety and them having the feeling of independence is definitely more important than how it "looks" or how others may judge. I used one w/ both of my kids - they hated to hold my hand for long periods of time and I am not one to take my eyes off my kids for a second which makes shopping difficult... especially at a crowded place like Disney!! Highly recommend it!!!

Cindy - posted on 10/08/2012

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I had one for my daughter when she was smaller and it was wonderful. She could run around at Disney World and have a little freedom It beats the alternative of losing her in a crowd. And they make them now that are little stuffed animal back packs. Don't worry about what other people think, they are not in your shoes. Get one and let them run and have fun safely!

Kahlia - posted on 10/08/2012

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I was 100% against child leashes. I always thought it was inhumane and treated a child as a pet. At the time, I only had one, very well behaved, preschooler. However, things changed when I had my 2nd and 3rd child; they were 18 months apart. It became quite difficult to manage the two younger children who were 2 and 3 years old, even with the help of my then 7 year old. I received the leash as a gift, and decided to try it out. I found that leashes made my life a lot more manageable. I no longer had to rent strollers, try and hold two hands at all times, and didn't have to worry about my kids running off.

Tomi - posted on 10/08/2012

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I'm personally not a fan of the leash (more from a visual perspective) but I understand the benefit especially in large crowded areas like Disney World/Land. Like others have stated, I would suggest bringing the stroller and the leash. As you stated you are going to be there for four days and that's a lot of walking. It won't be long on the first day that your daughter is going to get tired and she will be so happy to be in a stroller (and so will you) relaxing if not sleeping. One thing I would suggest, aside from the trip, is to work with your daughter to get her to hold your hand. Make a game out of it and increase the amount of time each time. It's important for your daughter to understand her role in the relationship and that the parent should be in charge and not the child. Good luck with the leash and have a great trip!

Fjola - posted on 10/08/2012

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I will tell you why I used this on my child. I was in Mex when my child was 4yrs. old. We stopped in one of the stores there. I was looking at a jacket and let her hand go for just a second and she was gone. I ran all over the place looking for her,then the clerk,said I will find her for you,and bless him,he did find her. Someone had tried to kidnap her.That is when I needed to do something.So ,if anyone out there thinks this is bad. Tough. At least I got my child back. These leashes keep them safe.

Julia - posted on 10/08/2012

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Yes, yes, yes! I am all for the leash. Some kids hate it, though, so be sure to try it before you go. My son loved it because it kept him safe while giving him more freedom. He would bring me the leash, like a puppy, when he wanted to go for a walk. He ran so fast I put bells on his shoes too so that I'd have a heads-up as soon as he started moving. My sister, on the other hand, was utterly offended by the leash. She sat down in the mall and, since she was a very big 2-year-old, my mom could not pick her up and had to remove the leash and cajole her into walking. They have some better options available now, too. My friend's daughter had a leash attached to a monkey backpack and she loved that. Disney is so big and so crowded with strangers, I would never bring a toddler there who wasn't attached to me in some way. A few words of advice, though: Keep the leash on your wrist so that you'll have your hands free, and never use it to control where she's going. It is there only to remind her to stay close and keep you aware of her location. Make sure to have the stroller with you anyway, so that she can sit down when she gets tired. And don't worry about public tantrums. All toddlers have tantrums, and everybody knows it. She's not just being ill-tempered, she's probably tired, hungry or uncomfortable in some way, or maybe she just can't express why something is so important to her. Try to respect her wishes and needs as you would an older child or adult, and you will all have an amazing Disney vacation!

Dolores - posted on 10/08/2012

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I am an older mom who detest the leash. I have a grown child of 30 that when I took her to Disney we held hands or in the stroller or someone held her hand. There are toooo many people and they are toooo quick to get lost. On several trips there, my sister would leash her and she felt secure doing it. It did nothing to her psych. I am now much older and God blessed me with twins that are 6. We are going to Disney and you better believe I will be using a leash on both of them. They have always gone in opposite directions from each other. My son is a typical boy that gets lost in his own train of thought and would be gone in a second. Therefore I will have him and her on a leash at Disney. The leash is for their protection but my peace of mind and to enjoy the environment while we are there. So to everyone who thinks I'm a bad mom- I don't really care because my kids will be safe!!!!

Maxine - posted on 10/08/2012

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I think its a good idea since a little one can get away from u so fast . but u might get one and use it before u go and get her used to it . wish u the best on your trip. i went about 4 yrs ago with my daughter, soninlaw & 2 granddaughters 2yr and 4 ,loved it and we used one for a while but also took a double stroller.

and remember there is a lot of sick people out there also . better to keep one close to you no matter what other thinks.

User - posted on 10/08/2012

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In this world today if you are somewhere very busy with small children who can get a little distracted, then its better to be safe than sorry. I like the backpack ones, or the wrist strap ones. It doesn't hurt them, And it could potentially save their lives if you think about it. If you get your little one a back pack with a strap and let her pick it out as they come in all diffrent stuffed animals now and characters she would love it and you would feel safer looking around in stores etc. And Disney Land is a busy place, you wil appreciate the extra security. Hope your family enjoys your vacation

Sherri - posted on 10/07/2012

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@Emilly you still have to teach your kids these things and even with the leash you still hold their hand. It is simply if they get away from you. Plain and simple it has nothing to do with not teaching it is just one more added measure of security for your child.

Michelle - posted on 10/07/2012

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As a parent that took a 5 year old to Disney then came back with a 8 year old and a 2 year old, I say bring a stroller. Kids get very tried walking all day and you don't want to be carrying them and all their stuff. With a stroller you can carry both, your child is safe from running away or getting stepped on by another adult and if she gets tried she can fall asleep awhile you are walking around. As about the leashes for kids I remember being one add a kid ( oldest of 3 kids under 4 when they didn't make triple strollers) and it was fun, we would run around stuff just to make our parents mad. Also I have used then a couple times when I have many kids over and we are going some place. It is a lot better too have people look at you funny then have you kid hurt or lost.

Maria - posted on 10/07/2012

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I am completely FOR toddler leashes. Honestly, when they first came out, I didn't have kids and thought they were cruel and had the same opinions as others who didn't understand them. I just thought that if you taught your kids to behave in pubic, 'leashes' would not be needed. Then we had our daughter. And although she was pretty well behaved, she didn't want to hold our hands every second when we were vacationing. Nor did she want to be in her stroller. I'm a bit paranoid, so when she was not holding one of our hands or in her stroller, I was stressed watching her every move, which was exhausting and I missed out on vacation time. A friend of mine loaned me her toddler leash and it was amazing. I could let my daughter have some exploring freedom, without sacrificing safely. I think it's the perfect solution.



Good luck with your decision

Jane - posted on 10/07/2012

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Having a harness doesn't have to replace holding hands or teaching your children how to do the right thing. IMHO it's a little safety net in case things go wrong.



Many parents will tut, roll their eyes and be judgemental about aspects of other people's parenting they don't agree with from bottle feeding, using pacifiers, to using reins etc. Go with what feels right to you

Candi - posted on 10/07/2012

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I would totally do the Harness! I believe they can keepyour child safe I'm one who has used them on both of my kids who are now 6 and 2 1/2 and they both have been using them since they Started walking. which was 9 and 10 months.my daughter doesnt use hersas much now but shes gonna be 6 on Friday but she has used one up til about a year ago. and I deffinitly would advise maybe using one if you are planning on going on a vacation to disney! I personally would ,for both of my kids even my 6yr. old. anddont think of itas aleash cuz theretechincaly not aleash they area harness and they can actually save a childs life. take the stroler too,but if she climbs out put the harness on her ,so there is less chances ofher taking off or getting caught in a crowd, without you! I love my harnesses for my kids to me there extra protection. and you can still have her hold your hand even though she has the harness on. annd if you get the one with alittle back pack like, you can put her drink in there and tell her your gonna put a cool backpack on her, andhold onto theharness and her hand. That's my opinion, Good Luck!

Emilly - posted on 10/07/2012

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Valerie Steffes- How do you teach a child something like holding your hand when you are holding on to them w/a "leash"? It's amazing to me how kids have been learning to hold hands & to look before you cross from their parents for 100's of years now by actually HOLDING THEIR PARENTS HANDS. I can remember like it was yesturday my mom taking me for walks simply to learn this. She'd get to an intersection, crouch down beside me & physically show me how to look all directions, to not be in a hurry & to let vehicles go ahead. I feel to many parents are in a hurry any more & to busy w/their own things to take time out & TEACH the simple things to their children. This may simply be my opinion & I am not trying to "slam" thosse that use these devices, but I do feel that parents need to think about the true reason they are using such devices & then proceed from there.

Chinthika - posted on 10/07/2012

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I've used a cute cow backpack containig a leash. My daughter loved it and was so happy to wear it. It's safer and less stressful knowing that she will not dart off into the road.

Rhonda - posted on 10/07/2012

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When my son was little.....we had bracelet leashes. He wore one and i did too. There was like a phone cord like thing attached. He loved it.

Jennifer - posted on 10/07/2012

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I myself don't like the toddler leashes they are little sponges and they want to see and touch everything. For the Mom that's taking her Toddler to Disney let her walk beside you she would enjoy seeing that way. I just don't use them and to be honest with you I talk about ppl who use them like if I'm in the mall. Lol ijs

Nora - posted on 10/07/2012

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We leashed my younger brother, especially at Disney land. He was strong willed and would not hold hands with anyone. It was necessary to prevent injury or loss. I leashed my daughter and am now with my son he just turned one yesterday. My daughter never complained and it was nice when I took her to busy stores she learned very quickly to stay close to mom and we never had a problem. My baby boy is a very early walker and I want to let him roam, but to learn to stay close enough to a family member that we can grab him and pull him away from danger quickly. My step son never had limits placed on him and it took me nearly two years of discipline (scolding and spanking) to keep him from running off in stores or in parking lots. I want to avoid that painful experience by creating easy limits on the new one

Selina - posted on 10/07/2012

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I luv mine its a puppy with the leash she dnt mind wearing it i have a 10 mth and a 3 yr old so my 3 yr old uses it not so much she runs of its peace of mind specially wen pushing pram on main road on a walk cant hold her hand and push she also likes to touch and look at tbings this way i can kerp her in arms length also safer cant trust noone and i dont hve eyes in tbe back of my head. They r safe at same time get their indeoendance

Julie - posted on 10/07/2012

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Do whatever you need to feel secure and enjoy your trip. My kids wouldn't stand for them. I mean literally they would sit on the ground and not budge.

Jolie - posted on 10/06/2012

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Why not? Your daughter will be happier and safer with a leash. She'll feel the freedom of walking around "by herself" big girl style while safely connected to you! I used leashes on rare occasions like this. Once when we were at a crowded outdoor event in a large city that lasted an entire day, and once when we were hiking the narrow cliff-walled trails of the Grand Canyon. Don't worry about what other people think. Do what works best for your daughter. Go for it!

ASHLEIGH - posted on 10/06/2012

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I'm not gonna lie, before I had my dd I was very judgmental about moms who used them. Even tho I've never needed then for my daughter (now 7), I get it. Whatever works for you. Its not harming the child, its considered a safety device, its not illegal and chances are the kid isn't even going to remember wearing it soooo no long term psych effects that everyone is so worried about these days...

Ashley - posted on 10/06/2012

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The bad news is sometimes it is hard to keep track of children. The good news is people make products to help out with this. An interesting product I’ve stumbled across is the child leash. My first instinct would tell me to get the children off the leashes and hold their hands, but then again I have never had rambunctious twins running in opposite directions at the same time. If I were their mom, I would probably panic if they darted off when I least expected it. Or I might scream from the sheer shock of the situation. Screaming is always a close second to panicking. With a leash all of my wildest dreams might come true. Just think of all of the benefits. With a handy dandy leash, I could simply give a little tug and no matter how far the energetic twins have strayed they would boom-a-rang right back to me. With a leash I could ensure that my children would stay in bed at night. Simply attach the leash to the bed post to keep them from sneaking out for a midnight snack. Just picture how peaceful it would be to take a toddler for a walk through the back yard or down your neighborhood street. With a leash it would be a piece of cake. Just picture a teenager asking for the car keys, you could willingly toss them to him because you know he wouldn’t be unharnessed yet. The child leash is a bizarre parenting product that I’m sure many love and many hate.

Fjola - posted on 10/06/2012

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I believe in them. I used it on my child when she was small. I got many dirty looks. One lady said to me. You are cruel.She is not a dog. I said to her,it is better to be safe than sorry. My daughter did not mind it at all. Hats off to you mom. for keeping your child safe. Enjoy Disneyland.

Monika - posted on 10/06/2012

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For one thing a child that is used to being Queen of the house will forever rule the house and this is not good for her. Children NEED and desire boundaries.



I do think walking is a good thing, but Disney is a huge place, so walking and stroller should be an option. I would let her choose when to be in the stroller. When she is not in the stroller, yes, I would have something connecting her to me. I would get one of the backpacks that buckles around the front and tell her whenever she needs me all she has to do is pull (so it looks like the binding tie is for her, not you).



Another option is a backpack instead of a stroller. My son loved his backpack and he was in and out of it until he was 3 years old. I even went to the grocery store with him in it. Being closely bound to mom and dad in public will ensure that your young one understands that danger is out there and staying close to mom and dad is key. My son is a well adjusted 16 year old and he had all of the above, even though I scoffed at mothers with "leashes" BEFORE I had children.

Valerie - posted on 10/06/2012

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Thank you, April. I never thought I'd have one, but then again, I didn't anticipate having a runner, either. Things happen and I agree, it is better to have all of your bases covered :) The safety of my children, and even grandchild, is WAY more important to me than some judgmental person's looks or comments :)

Molly - posted on 10/06/2012

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I used to be absolutely AGAINST this idea, until I had my fourth child. She is a runner! She has run into the parking lot at school twice when I have gone to pick the others up at school, and quite honestly, I would rather have my kid safe and alive, than worry about what people think! I never saw myself purchasing one of these things, but I have had to swallow my pride on this issue. Never say never, and don't judge other people unless you have walked in their shoes!

April - posted on 10/06/2012

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Valerie - I so agree with you. Even when kids "know better" they do things without thinking. My child's safety is my number one priority. People act like we are putting dog collars on our kids and yanking them around. That would be uncalled for. But to keep your kids from running off or being taken in a busy place well that is just smart. It is always best to have all your bases covered when it comes to the safety and well being or your kids.

Valerie - posted on 10/06/2012

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Emily Davis - it is extremely presumptuous of you to imply that parents who use or rely on leashes aren't responsible, and that they don't pay attention to their children. Children aren't born aware of boundaries, and certainly don't know to hold the hand of a parent. These things are taught and rarely does anyone learn something the first time they are taught it. Think math, think spelling, think driving. Learning is achieved over time, as is being judgmental.

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