Several U.S. states have laws regarding how pets travel in cars, because if your pet causes you to crash, it could be seen as a violation of distracted driving laws. Other state laws do not allow pets to be left unattended in vehicles.
To make sure you and your furry friend have safe travels, we have compiled a list of the best ways to travel with your dog in the car.
Back Seat Is Best
Although it’s fun to have Fido up in the front seat, it’s not the safest place for him. Deployed airbags can cause serious injuries to your pet. Keep Fido in the back, away from airbags.
Not only is it safer for your pet to be in the backseat, it is safer for you, too. Pets in the front seat can often cause distracted driving. In the worst-case scenario, distracted driving can lead to an accident and cause serious injuries to both you and your dog.
If you have a small pet, do not let him ride on your lap. This is unsafe for your dog and also can be distracting.
Do Not Allow Your Dog To Roam Free
Although it’s tempting to allow your pooch to have free space to roam around, it is not in his best interest. If you had to stop quickly, Fido would go flying without proper restraint, like a crate or harness.
In his exploration of the backseat, Fido might also find the button that makes the automatic window go up and down. It is always dangerous for a dog to be riding with his head out the window. Flying debris could cut his face, and I have heard horror stories of people’s dogs jumping out the open window while in a moving vehicle.
Keep your precious pooch safe by keeping him restrained and locking the automatic windows.
Use A Crate Or Harness
One of the best ways to restrain your dog is with a crate that is firmly secured in your car by a seatbelt or other means. If you had to stop quickly or if you got into an accident, a crate would keep your furry friend safe.
Make sure the crate is big enough that your dog can sit, stand, lie down and turn around in. You also want to make sure that the crate has good ventilation so Fido can breathe easily and have enough space to move around.
A harness is another option. Harnesses will keep your dog restrained, but don’t necessarily provide the safety that crates do.
Bring Necessary Accommodations: Water, Food, Toys
Before going on any road trip, always make sure to have water, your dog’s food, a food and water bowl and maybe a few toys to keep your dog entertained.
It is not recommended that you switch your dog’s food, especially on a long road trip. If you are heading out for quite awhile and your dog will need meals, make sure to bring his own food. Another brand might upset his stomach.
Passengers in the back seat can also help keep Fido entertained if you bring along a few toys. This will make the car trip more enjoyable for everyone.
Take Breaks Often
Doggies need to go to the bathroom and stretch their legs just like humans do. Imagine a toddler on a long road trip. Your dog is like that toddler. He is going to need to go to the bathroom often and leave the car to get some fresh air.
Just make sure to never leave your dog unattended in the car. The temperature in the car rises much quicker than it does outside, and leaving a dog in an unattended vehicle is against the law in many states.
Follow these tips to have safe, fun travels with your pooch.
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