Car Safety Tips for Traveling with Your Dog

Many dogs love to ride in the car, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it is safe. Simply letting your dog hop in unrestrained can be dangerous not only to them, but to you and other passengers as well. If you should get into an accident, your dog may become a projectile and is at risk for crashing through a window or windshield and hitting passengers on their way.

Whenever your dog is in the car, they should be safely restrained. This keeps them secure not only while the vehicle is in motion, but if you get into an accident or stop, they won’t be able to run off or interfere with getting help. There are several ways to restrain your dog depending on your preference, vehicle, and the size of your dog.

Use a crate. One way to keep your dog safe is to secure them in a sturdy crate in the back of the vehicle. Make sure that it is large enough for them to comfortably stand up and turn around. You can add a soft blanket and a favorite toy inside. Consider a metal or heavy plastic crate as it may be more durable than a thin plastic one.

Get a seatbelt. There are seatbelts designed especially for dogs. Many are a harness that fits on your dog and then attaches to the seatbelt already in the car. Your dog will be able to move around and stand up or lie down, but if you should stop suddenly or get into an accident, they will not be thrown around the car. Look for a dog seatbelt that has been crash tested for your dog’s size.

Add a barrier. If your dog does not like being restrained, you can put up a barrier that keeps them from being able to get into the front seat. This can increase their protection by confining them to the back seat or back storage area of the car.

Keep the windows locked. Even though your dog loves to stick its head out the window, feel the breeze, and inhale all of the scents, it can be very dangerous. They can be hit by bugs or other flying debris, and it can dry out their eyes and nose. Crack the window just a bit to let fresh air in, but not enough that your dog can fit their head out. Then put on the window lock so they do not accidentally step on the window control buttons.

Don’t leave your pet alone. Never leave your pet unattended in the car, especially if it is hot outside. Even with the windows cracked, the temperature can rise quickly and be stifling. Your dog may also get into trouble, injure themselves, or disturb others with their barking.

If your dog doesn’t do well in the car, or you know they’ll be left alone, keep them safer by boarding them at Lake Wylie Pet Resort. Your dog can run, play, and relax while under the care of our experienced staff, and you can pick them up on your way home. Contact us today to schedule your dog’s next stay!

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