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Patent Searching and Data


Title:
Lead Attachment
Document Type and Number:
WIPO Patent Application WO/2019/063982
Kind Code:
A1
Abstract:
LEAD ATTACHMENT FIG. The present invention relates to an attachment for a lead, the lead having a handle at one end and a clamp located at the opposite end for attaching the lead to a collar or a harness being worn by ananimal, wherein the attachment comprises a slide buckle and a clasp for retaining the handle of the lead.

Inventors:
CUFF CHARLES BRUCE (GB)
Application Number:
PCT/GB2018/052712
Publication Date:
April 04, 2019
Filing Date:
September 24, 2018
Export Citation:
Click for automatic bibliography generation   Help
Assignee:
CUFF CHARLES BRUCE (GB)
International Classes:
A01K27/00; A44B11/00; A44B11/06
Foreign References:
DE8409393U11984-10-11
US2615218A1952-10-28
US2099398A1937-11-16
US20160066541A12016-03-10
GB341345A1931-01-15
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
WILSON GUNN (MANCHESTER) (GB)
Download PDF:
Claims:
CLAIMS

1. An attachment for a lead, the lead having a handle at one end and a clamp located at the opposite end for attaching the lead to a collar or a harness being worn by an animal, said attachment comprising a slide buckle configured to slide along the lead and a clasp for retaining the handle of the lead, wherein the slide buckle comprises a frame and a cross bar and the clasp is attached to the cross bar.

2. An attachment according to claim 1, wherein slide buckle comprises a rectangular frame having parallel side frame members, a top frame member and a bottom frame member.

3. An attachment according to claim 1 or claim 2, wherein the cross bar is moveable along the side frame members.

4. An attachment according to claim 3, wherein the cross bar is moveable along grooves formed in the side frame members. 5. An attachment according to claim 3, wherein the ends of the cross bar are looped around the side frame members to enable the cross bar to slide along the side frame members.

6. An attachment according to claim 3, wherein the side frame members are received in holes formed in the cross bar to enable the cross bar to slide along the side frame members.

7. An attachment according to claim 6, wherein the clasp comprises an attachment portion for attachment to the cross bar.

8. An attachment according to claim 7, wherein the attachment portion is U-shaped.

9. An attachment according to claim 7, wherein the attachment portion is D-shaped.

10. An attachment according to claim 7, wherein the attachment portion is oval. 11. An attachment according to claim 9 or claim 10, wherein the attachment comprises a sleeve for securing the attachment portion to the cross bar.

12. An attachment according to claim 9, wherein the sleeve is the straight part of the D-shaped attachment portion.

13. An attachment according to any of claims 7 to 12, wherein the clasp is rotatable with respect to the attachment portion.

14. An attachment according to any of claims 7 to 13, wherein the attachment portion is attached to the cross bar via a strap.

15. An attachment according to claim 14, wherein the strap is formed from leather, a polymer, a metal or a combination thereof. 16. An attachment according to any preceding claim, wherein the clasp and/or clamp is formed from a polymer, a metal or a combination thereof.

17. An attachment according to any of claims 1 to 16, wherein the clasp and/or clamp is a snap hook, a swivel snap hook or a trigger snap hook. 18. A lead comprising the attachment according to any one of claims 1-17.

19. A lead according to claim 18, wherein the attachment is movable along the length of the lead between the handle end and the clamp.

20. Method for tethering an animal to an object comprising the steps of: a. providing a lead comprising the attachment according to any one of claims 1-17, said lead having a handle at one end and a clamp provided at an opposite end for attaching to a collar or a harness being worn by the animal; b. passing the handle end of the lead around or through an object, and thereafter c. securing the handle end to a clasp of the attachment to tether the animal to the object.

Method according to claim 20, wherein the attachment is secured to the lead by passing the handle end of the lead through the slide buckle of the attachment.

Description:
Lead Attachment

Technical Field of the Invention

The present invention relates to an attachment for a lead, to a lead comprising the attachment and to a method of tethering an animal to an object. Background to the Invention

Animal leads have been in existence for many years and typically comprise a length of material having a handle at one end in the form of a loop and a fastener at the opposite end for attachment to a collar or harness being worn by the animal. One method of tethering an animal to an object includes wrapping the handle end of the lead around an object and then tying a knot with the handle end of the lead to tether the animal to the object. In the event the knot is tied poorly or if the knot becomes loose then there is an increased risk that the animal could escape. On the other hand if the knot is tied too tightly, or if the knot is pulled tight due to movement of the tethered animal, then such knots can be difficult and time consuming to untie which is undesirable.

Another method of tethering an animal to an object involves disengaging the fastener from the collar or harness to which it is attached, passing the end comprising the faster around the object to which the animal is to be tethered, feeding the fastener through the handle and then re-attaching the fastener to the collar or harness being worn by the animal. However, the downside of this approach is that the user must hold on to the animal's collar or harness while passing the end comprising the fastener around the object to which the animal is to be tethered. This is not only awkward, especially when tethering the animal to larger objects, but it also means that there is a significant risk that the animal could escape during the tethering operation.

In light of the drawbacks associated with conventional animal leads and their use in tethering animals to objects, it is an object of embodiments of the present invention to provide a device that can be fitted to an existing lead that reduces the risk of animals escaping once tethered or during the tethering operation. It is also an object of embodiments of the present invention to provide a device that can be fitted to existing leads that enables animals to be easily and quickly tethered to objects. It is a further object of embodiments of the present invention to provide a method of tethering an animal to an object that is quicker and easier than the conventional methods for tethering animals to objects.

Summary of the Invention

According to a first aspect of the invention there is provided an attachment for a lead, the lead having a handle at one end and a clamp located at the opposite end for attaching the lead to a collar or a harness being worn by an animal, wherein the attachment comprises a slide buckle and a clasp for retaining the handle of the lead.

Unlike conventional methods for tethering animals to objects, by using the attachment of the present invention it is no longer necessary to unhook the lead from the animal's collar or harness and therefore the risk of the animal escaping during the tethering operation is significantly reduced. Moreover, because the lead is not unhooked from the collar or harness being worn by the animal, the user no longer has to hold the collar or harness while trying to feed the lead around the object to which the animal is to be tethered. Thus, the tethering operation of the present invention is much simpler and less awkward relative to existing methods for tethering animals to objects. Further, because the handle end of the lead is retained by the clasp the risk of the animal becoming untethered reduces significantly. In an embodiment of the invention the slide buckle may comprise a frame and a cross bar. The slide buckle may comprise a rectangular frame having parallel side frame members, a top frame member and a bottom frame member. The cross bar may extend between the side frame members to define two slots. The width of the slide buckle, i.e. in the direction of the side frame members may be between 20 mm and 32 mm. The length of the slide buckle, i.e. in the direction of top and bottom frame members may be between 25 mm and 40 mm. The width of the cross bar may be between 2 mm and 4 mm. The depth of the slide buckle may be at least 3 mm deep. In an embodiment of the invention the slide buckle has a width of at least 20 mm, a length of at least 25 mm and the cross bar has a width of at least 2 mm. When the attachment comprises a strap the width of the strap may be 16 mm or less.

In another embodiment of the invention the slide buckle has a width of no more than 20 mm, a length of no more than 32 mm and the cross bar has a width of no more than 4 mm. When the attachment comprises a strap the width of the strap may be 32 mm or less. The cross bar may be moveable along the side frame members. For instance, in some embodiments the cross bar may be moveable along grooves formed in the side frame members. In other embodiments the ends of the cross bar are looped around the side frame members to enable the cross bar to slide along the side frame members. Alternatively, the side frame members may be received in apertures formed in the cross bar to enable the cross bar to slide along the side frame members.

The clasp may be attached to the cross bar. Alternatively, the clasp may comprise an attachment portion for attachment to the cross bar. The attachment portion may take any shape or form that will enable it to be connected to the cross bar.

In some embodiments the attachment portion may be U-shaped. Each end of the U-shape attachment portion may be looped and configured to receive the cross bar of the slide buckle. The cross bar may be fixed to the ends of the U-shaped attachment portion by any suitable means which includes but is not limited to welding, soldering or by using rivets or the like.

Alternatively, the attachment portion may be D-shaped.

In one embodiment the D-shaped attachment portion is connected to the slide buckle by passing the straight part of the D-shaped attachment portion through apertures that have been formed in the side frame members. In this way the straight part of the D-shaped attachment portion acts as the cross bar of the slide buckle. The straight part may be secured to the slide buckle by any suitable means which includes but is not limited to welding, soldering or by using rivets or the like. In one form, the slide buckle side members may be provided with elongate apertures that extend between the top and bottom frame members since this will permit movement of the D- shaped attachment portion along the side members once attached to the slide buckle. In another embodiment each end of the straight part of the D-shaped attachment portion may extend beyond the curved part of the D-shaped attachment portion. This allows the ends to bent and looped around the side frame members of the slide buckle. In this configuration the D-shaped attachment portion will be moveable along the side members and the straight part will act as the cross bar.

In some embodiments the attachment portion may comprise a sleeve for securing the attachment portion to the cross bar. In particular, the sleeve may be in the form of a tube. The sleeve may be formed to receive the cross bar of the slide buckle and the attachment portion. For instance, when the attachment comprises a D-shaped attachment portion the straight part will extend through the sleeve together with the cross bar of the slide buckle. It will be appreciated that the sleeve can be formed of any suitable material, including but not limited to metals, polymers, leather or a combination thereof. The sleeve is also able to receive attachment portions having a substantially oval profile.

While in some embodiments the sleeve may be formed around the straight part of the attachment portion, in other embodiments, the straight part of the D-shaped attachment portion may itself be in the form of a sleeve that is adapted to receive the cross bar of the slide buckle. In this way the sleeve may be seen as being an integral part of the D-shaped attachment portion.

The clasp may be rotatable with respect to the attachment portion. In this embodiment the clasp may, at its base, be provided with an element for connecting the clasp to the attachment portion. The element may be in the form of a pin having a pin head and a pin body. The pin body may extend through a hole formed in the attachment portion for connection with the base of the clasp while the head, which is larger than the pin body, is prevented from passing through the hole. By virtue of the pin body having a diameter that is less than the diameter of hole through which it extends, the clasp and the attachment portion can rotate with respect to each other.

In some embodiments the attachment portion may be attached to the cross bar via a connector. For instance the connector may be a strap. When using a strap, the respective ends of the strap may be looped around the attachment portion and the cross bar and then fastened to the body of the strap using suitable fastening means, which in this case may include stitching, riveting, gluing or heat bonding. The strap may be formed from leather, a polymer material, a metal or a combination thereof. The connector could in one embodiment be in the form of a metal chain.

The clasp and/or clamp may be formed from a polymer, a metal or a combination thereof. In an embodiment the clasp and/or clamp is a snap hook. The clasp and/or clamp in certain embodiments can be a swivel snap hook. The snap hook may be comprise a trigger for opening the snap hook.

According to a second aspect of the invention there is provided a lead comprising the attachment according to the first aspect of the invention. Accordingly, the lead may, as appropriate, incorporate any or all of the features described in relation to the first aspect of the invention.

In an embodiment of the invention the attachment is movable along the length of the lead between the handle end and the clamp.

According to a third aspect of the invention there is provided a method for tethering an animal to an object comprising the steps of: a) providing a lead comprising the attachment according to the first aspect of the invention, said lead having a handle at one end and a clamp provided at an opposite end for attaching to a collar or a harness being worn by the animal;

b) passing the handle end of the lead around or through an object, and c) securing the handle end to a clasp of the attachment to tether the animal to the object.

In some embodiments the attachment is secured to the lead by passing the handle end of the lead through the slide buckle of the attachment. Detailed Description of the Invention

In order that the invention may be more clearly understood one or more embodiments thereof will now be described, by way of example only, with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:

Figure 1 shows a perspective view of the lead attachment of the present invention.

Figures 2A-2D show D-shaped attachment portions in accordance with the present invention.

Figures 3A-3B show a U-shaped attachment portion in accordance with the present invention. Figures 4A-4E illustrate how to fasten the attachment shown in Figure 1 to a lead.

Figures 5A-5B illustrate how to secure the lead to an object using the attachment shown in Figure 1. With reference to the drawings, and in accordance with an embodiment of the present invention there is provided an attachment 1, 100 for a lead 200 which enables a user to safely, easily and quickly tether an animal, e.g. a dog or horse to an object 300 such as a lamp post, a fence, a railing or a chair. As best shown in Figure 1 there is provided a three-piece lead attachment 1. The lead attachment 1 comprises a slide buckle 10, a clasp 20 having an attachment portion 30 and a strap 40.

The slide buckle 10 comprises a rectangular metal frame having side frame members 11, a top frame member 12 and a bottom frame member 13. The width of the slide buckle, i.e. in the direction of the side frame members 11 is 20 mm, the length of the slide buckle, i.e. in the direction of top and bottom frame members is 25 mm and the depth of the slide buckle is 3 mm deep.

The slide buckle 10 is provided with a cross bar 14 that is connected at either end to respective side frame members 11. The width of the cross bar is 2 mm. In this embodiment the cross bar 14 is fixed between the side frame members 11 in a central region of the slide buckle 10 to define two slots 15, 16 that are each 7 mm wide, 16 mm long and 3 mm deep. However, it will be appreciated that the dimensions of the slide buckle 10 and of the slots 15, 16 may be varied so as to accommodate different size leads 200.

As shown in Figure 1 the clasp 20 is connected to the slide buckle 10 via a nylon strap 40. In particular, the attachment portion 30 of the clasp 20 is connected to the cross bar 14 of the slide buckle 10 via the strap 40. This is achieved by passing one end of the strap 40 through the attachment portion 30, folding the strap 40 over on itself and permanently securing the two parts together. Similarly, the opposite end of the strap 40 is looped around the cross bar 14, folded over on itself and then the two parts are permanently secured together. In this embodiment the looped ends are permanently secured to the body of the strap 40 by stitching. In this embodiment the strap 40 is 10 mm in length has a width of 16 mm which corresponds with the length of the slot 15, 16.

The clasp 20 in this embodiment is a self-locking connector such as a snap hook made of metal. The snap hook comprises a hook-shaped member 21 with a nose 22 and a gate 23 pivotally connected to the hook-shaped member 21. As shown in Figure 1 the snap hook is joined to the attachment portion 30 using a pin 50 having a pin head 51 and a pin body 52. The pin body 52 extends through a hole 31 formed in the attachment portion 30 and into the base of the snap hook where it is retained using a suitable retaining element (not shown). Since the pin head 51 is larger than the hole 31 formed in the attachment portion 30, the pin head 51 is prevented from passing through the hole 31. This in turn forms a fixed connection between the snap hook and the attachment portion 30. Moreover, since the pin body 52 has a diameter that is less than the hole 31 through which it extends, the snap hook and the attachment portion 30 are able to rotate with respect to each other. In another embodiment of the invention there is provided a two-piece metal lead attachment 100 comprising a slide buckle 110 and a clasp 120 having an attachment portion 130. The slide buckle 110 comprises a rectangular metal frame having side frame members 111, a top frame member 112, a bottom frame 113 member and a cross bar 114 extending between the side frame members 111. As best illustrated in Figure 2A, the ends of the cross bar 114 are looped around the side frame members 111 which enables the cross bar 114 to be slidingly movable along the side frame members 111. Figures 2A and 2B additionally show that the attachment portion 130 in this embodiment is D-shaped with the straight part 131 of the D extending beyond the legs 133 of the curved part 132. Further, it can be seen from Figure 2A that the straight part 131 of the D is formed into a sleeve that substantially encloses and surrounds the length of the cross bar 114 thereby fixedly attaching the clasp 120 to the slide buckle 110.

In another variant of the two-piece lead attachment 100, the attachment portion 130 has a D-shaped profile (Figures 2C and 2D). However, in this embodiment the straight part 131 of the D is not formed into a sleeve but is instead connected to the cross bar 114 of the slide buckle 110 by a separate sleeve 134 that substantially encloses and surrounds both the cross bar 114 and the straight part 131 of the D-shaped attachment portion (Figure 2D). In this embodiment the separate sleeve 134 is in the form of a hollow metal cylinder.

As best shown in Figure 3B and in another embodiment of the invention, the attachment portion 130 has a substantially U-shaped profile with two legs 135 depending from a central curved portion 136. The attachment portion 130 is connected to the clasp 120 via pin 150. As shown in the Figure 3A the ends of each leg 135 are fixedly attached to an upper surface of the cross bar 114, e.g. by welding. In an alternative variant (not shown), rather than the ends of the cross bar 114 being looped around the side frame members, the ends of the legs 135 are looped around the side frame members 111 so that the attachment portion 130 rather than the cross bar 114 is slidingly movable along the side frame members 111. The cross bar 114 can then be fixedly attached, e.g. by welding or soldering, to an inner surface of the looped connection formed by the legs of the U-shaped attachment portion 130.

Figures 4A-4D illustrate how to fasten the three-piece attachment 1 of the invention to a lead 200. As best shown in Figure 4A the lead 200 comprises a length of material having a handle 210 at one end and a clamp 220 at the opposite end for connecting the lead to a collar or a harness (not shown) being worn by the animal. As shown in Figure 4A, the clamp 220 in this embodiment is a snap hook. To fasten the attachment 1 to the lead 200, a user first feeds the handle 210 from a position below the attachment 1 up through a slot 15 in the slide buckle 10 (Figure 4A). The handle 210 is then fed over the cross bar 14 (Figure 4B), returned through the free slot 16 (Figure 4C) and then pulled tight to secure the attachment 1 to the lead 200 (Figures 4D and 4E).

The lead 200 comprising the attachment 1 allows an animal to be tethered to an object 300 such as a post quickly, easily and more securely than when using conventional leads alone. In a first step the user passes the handle 210 of the lead 200 around or through an object 300 to which the animal is to be tethered. In this case the user feeds the handle 210 of the lead 200 around the post 300 (Figure 5A) and then brings the handle 210 towards the snap hook 20 present of the attachment 1. As the handle approaches the attachment 1 the user applies sufficient pressure to the gate 23 to cause it to open. The user then passes the handle over nose 22 of the hook-shaped member 21 and releases the gate 22 to securely tether the animal to the post 300 (Figure 5B).

The above embodiments are described by way of example only. Many variations are possible without departing from the scope of the invention.