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Horse Leads

Horse Leads

Horse Leads - How To Choose Horse Leads for your Halter

Types Of Horse Leads & How To Choose The Right?

Lead ropes are a fundamental tack for horses. Similar to a dog’s leash, one end of the lead rope is attached to the horse’s halter (headgear) and the other end is held by the human to control the animal’s movements.

Horse Lead Rope Properties

Lead rope should be sturdy and thick. After all, it needs to withstand the force of a large animal pulling at it. The thickness also ensures that the rope material remains intact under pressure.

Much like a dog’s leash, the lead rope needs a buckle to attach itself onto the horse’s halter. Buckles can come in two varieties – ones that can open with a single thumb and ones that need the force of both hands to open. The former is quick to operate if there’s a danger of the horse dragging the human away. The latter is stronger and fit for more strenuous activities.

A horse needs room to move around. This means the lead rope should be long, sometimes extending up to 10 feet (3.05 m). It is important to note that the end of the rope, held by the human, should not be looped. In case the horse runs amok, a free rope can be easily dropped. Otherwise, the animal will drag your limp body all over the ground.      

Types of Horse Leads


Known for flexibility, a cotton lead rope is comfortable and simple to tie. In daily use, it results in less frequent rope burns.


A leather-made rope looks great and offers a good grip. It needs regular maintenance like cleaning and frequent oiling. Also, it is not safe to tie a horse down with a leather rope as the rope is prone to snapping. Rather, use this rope for impressive entries at horse shows.


Choose a braided webbing rope over a flat webbing rope. The braided nylon rope is thicker and provides a better grip. Due to its thickness and texture, a nylon rope is not easy to tie and untie. However, nylon ropes offer a variety of colors to pick from.

Final Thoughts When Choosing Horse Leads

Leading a horse properly is one of the basics of equestrian discipline. Whether it is walking the horse or tying it down to rest, choose the right lead rope to stay safe. 

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