Sometimes I use a small carabiner or just sneak the loop under the dog's collar and use it to walk around town.  This works great as a leash. I'll also frequently have another carabiner attached to my belt where the handle end can attach to my hip.  Then I can stroll around in stores completely hands free.

And of course if an occasion to use the whip were to come up it's pretty quick to detach the carabiners. And if you're dog is the hero type then you've got a sidekick when you go to Save the Day.