A while back, we wrote about retractable leashes and how they can damage your body and hurt your dog. Retractable leashes allow a dog to walk a good 20 to 30 feet (6 to 9 meters) ahead of you. But many times, the cords break or the whole contraption goes haywire. As a result, a person can suffer broken bones, shattered teeth, eye injuries and all sorts of lacerations. The leashes also pose a serious injury problem for dogs. They can bolt into a busy street long before you can react. Dogs can also hurt their necks if they run to the limit of the cord. There are many types of leashes that are safe to use, but not retractable.
Here's another tip that will keep you safe if you're thinking about getting a dog: Find the right one. If you're a senior citizen, it might not be the best idea to own a dog that always wants to run. Perhaps a less energetic dog is the way to go. Just an idea.