A startup called Tomo has designed a line of Easy Connect Dog Gear, which they claim is an improvement on the typical fastening methods for dog gear. Rather than using a snap hook on the end of the leash and a D-ring on the collar, their system uses a male protrusion on the collar and a female connector on the end of the leash. The collar itself fastens the same way, rather than using the more common plastic side-release buckles.
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Here’s a look at the whole system…
…and how it’s meant to work together:
Because the designers envisioned leash, collar, nametag and dog bag holder working together as a system, they designed the latter two to fit snugly along the flat surface of the former two. I think this is a welcome improvement for the dog bag holder, which I used to connect to the leash handle with a carabiner, which was effective but janky.
However, I actually don’t want the dog’s nametag to not jangle, which is one of the improvements cited by the Tomo team. On this farm we have six dogs, two roaming, and I find the jangling nametag a welcome announcement of our dogs’ locations, as that information is occasionally very relevant.
Overall I am not sure Tomo’s system is an improvement over the incumbent system, and in fact I think it might be a little trickier to attach the leash and collar, because you must first cover the stud with the receiver, visually obscuring it, before clicking it into place.
Beyond that, replacing such an entrenched incumbent system is difficult for reasons of interchangeability. This may not apply to owners of single dogs, but because we have a half-dozen, we can use any leash we have with any collar; I’d never dream of switching one of their collars to a proprietary system, and switching all six would be too expensive. Furthermore, I carry a spare dog leash in the car, in case we encounter an abandoned stray on the road. (That’s the origin story of one of our dogs.)
However, I’m guessing you single-dog owners are more common. Does Tomo’s system appeal to you? Do you think whatever UX improvements it might confer would be worth the switch?