Family Life, Pregnancy & Baby

The Kid On The Leash

April 1, 2015

Yes. That is my kid on a leash. Well, sort of.

They are actually called reins but before you judge me, lets have a little chat about this.

After these sweet babies reach one year old they hit a funny point in their small lives – they are too head strong and wriggly to sit still in a pram for long but you just know that if you let them out the carnage is imminent. Those wobbly little legs will run and run and it will always be in the direction you don’t want them to go.  I see this in shopping centres too often where the kids taking off at the speed of light and the weary parents shoot each other the look “well I chased him last time”.

My kid is no different. He is currently 14 months old and a pint sized nightmare. He can/will run off in the blink of an eye towards the nearest hazard.

Trying to do my best restraining him and practicing responsible parenting doesn’t stop the horrified looks from people and the “why is your kid on a leash?!” and “Awww, Poor baby!”

For Spencer’s first birthday I gifted him some snazzy baby reins from Little Life. It is actually a “toddler day sack with detachable rein”. It’s cute and fun, there is nothing harsh about it. They still allow him to toddle along happily at a safe distance but keep him out of immediate danger.


01 Reins in trolley

The safe “leash” rein concept has been around for donkeys years, I even wore them when I was a tiny tot, but this idea doesn’t seem to have caught on in the Middle East as people look at me like I am the worst mother in the world. This isn’t just for his safety, it is also for the safety and sanity of others. No one wants my kid destroying their shop or running out onfront of their car.



So please, if you see a parent trying to do their best then don’t judge, tut or ask why my kid is on a “leash”. I’m just trying to keep him safe and out of your way.

What is your opinion about the kid on a “leash”?

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  • Reply Lyndsey Deakin April 2, 2015 at 6:54 AM

    I completely agree, we wore them as kids back in the UK and came to no harm, they are a perfectly safe thing to use.
    More parents over here should follow your lead (excuse the pun).
    Let’s hope you start a new trend x

    • Reply Heather April 2, 2015 at 10:24 AM

      Thank you Lyndsey, perfectly safe and I’m pretty sure I’m not ruining his whole life like these people think that I am!
      I love the “follow your lead” I wish I had thought of that one 😛 x

  • Reply Ayshe April 2, 2015 at 8:36 AM

    I don’t have children yet, but I remember taking my younger cousins out using something similar, it was attached at each of our wrists and it gave me a lot of reassurance that I have to go home saying I’d lost a baby, and the baby had the feeling of independence. Win, win! Ignore the comments, as Lyndsey said, hopefully it will catch on!

    • Reply Heather April 2, 2015 at 10:26 AM

      Exactly Ayshe, they feel like they are big and cold walking around on their own but it’s a controlled distance and I know that he isn’t going to disappear with a stranger. That terrifies me!

      I don’t even mind if it doesn’t catch on, just the horrified looks and comments. I would hate my kid to be that obnoxious brat trying to run up the escalator when people are coming down. haha! x

  • Reply OPNO April 2, 2015 at 9:38 AM

    We used one on my sister as a kid (she had a habit of wandering off and going with strangers). I lose my daughter all the time (and she likes to run intoi traffic) so I am totally good with it.

    Omanis must think it is weird though;).

    However, my husband, when he was a kid, they used to tie the kids to rocks at night (so they wouldn’t fall off the roof of the house at night where everyone slept because it was too hot) and my Muscati Omani friend M recalls being tied to the gas cylander as a child so she wouldn’t touch the gas fire in the house while her grandmother was making coffee and bread so;) Omanis have a heritage of leashing their kids from danger too.

    • Reply Heather April 2, 2015 at 10:30 AM

      Oh jeez OPNO the thought of my baby wandering off with a stranger and I can’t find him terrifies me! These little tots just love to go wherever we don’t want them to go.

      Not even just Omani’s, we were in a mall in Dubai also and it was the same reaction but at the same time their kids were running around knocking things over and being little horrors. We can’t win 😛

      Oh wow, people slept on the roof to keep cool before AC’s? I never knew that, love it! haha.

  • Reply Natalie Mulcahy Karam April 2, 2015 at 12:48 PM

    Great post Heather, I’ll be buying some for Eden when he can walk. The little backpacks are adorable.

    • Reply Heather April 2, 2015 at 6:41 PM

      Thanks Nat!

      I would definitely recommend, practical and cute! Love the pics of you guys xx

  • Reply Ayesha April 2, 2015 at 1:48 PM

    Oh I absolutely endorse the idea. We had the ladybug leash bag for my girl n it saved us lots of hassle and worry at airports in malls, because we travel a lot. Now I want one for my one year old boy Cuz ladybug doesn’t look so appropriate on him

    • Reply Heather April 2, 2015 at 6:43 PM

      Hey Ayesha! Thanks for the comment.

      Haha yeah the lady bug isn’t so appropriate on boys you are right. One of my friends here in Oman is selling the turtle version of this back pack, let me know if you want her details.

  • Reply Sarah Cook April 3, 2015 at 10:50 PM

    Love these! When my children were little, about the same age Spencer is now, I used an extendable dog lead attached to their belt loops. I got plenty of disapproving looks but when we were somewhere they could have a little more freedom, but not total run amok style, I was able to let them go just a bit further. The old style reins were just too short.
    As they got older we used a wrist strap which meant I wasn’t bent over trying to hold their hands and they weren’t stretching their little arms up to hold onto me.

    These backpacks will want to be worn by the wee ones – I’m gonna check and see if they do adult size for my hubby!

    • Reply Heather April 5, 2015 at 10:52 AM

      Sarah you are too funny!! Maybe you deliberately hurt Ali’s foot so he couldn’t run away, just a slow drunken hop along so you can catch him?

  • Reply Natalie Linnell April 23, 2015 at 2:47 PM

    I actually have a great memory of having these reins on as a child but for another reason, keep them for when you child wants to ride a bike without stabilizers. My dad used to put the reins on me, and hold them as I practiced riding and if it looked like the bike and me would fall he would catch me with the reins and only the bike would fall. That way I got better faster as I never had the fear caused by falling and hurting myself.

    • Reply Heather April 23, 2015 at 3:26 PM

      That is a really good idea Natalie, I never thought of using them like that. I might need to start working on my arm muscles for then, he is a heavy kid 😛

  • Reply Shailaja June 8, 2015 at 8:39 AM

    Hey Heather,

    Totally with you. I use one and care a damn about the dirty looks I get. I have got the opposition even from immediate family and I have stood my ground. I know how boisterous my son is and will run way if given a single second of levy. So in case of a place which is crowded or unknown, he is better leashed than lost! And I follow this even today when he is almost 4 years old. I got one for my son when he was just 2 mo. Since I didn’t find any attractive one here or in India, I had to source from the US. I got a cute pooh one so he will happily wear it. Such bliss sply at airports and such places. I was also skeptical when I didn’t know the benefits, but when I heard from a very close friend how her 2 yr old went missing in a mall as she had forgotten the harness for that day, it left me cold at heart and decision was made. This was long before I was pregnant!

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