Road trips are a good time to be had. And, if you have a dog, bringing them along for the ride is non-negotiable. If it is, their puppy eyes watching you go without them will make you think twice. If it sounds too hard, you might be thinking too hard.
To make your journey as pleasant and safe as possible, there are certain guidelines that all dog owners should follow. We’ve laid out some of the top tips for dog car safety here in this post to help you and your pup have the best road trip ever!
Secure your dog
You’d never consider allowing your child to take a car ride without a seatbelt, and in this case, your dog should be treated similarly. It’s important to keep your dog secure in the car to give them a sense of safety and reduce distracted driving. Additionally, many states have implemented laws requiring vehicle dog restraints. There are several types of dog safety restraints that lessen chances of injury to your dog and prevent them from escaping and distracting the driver:
- Crate: One option is to put your pup in a dog crate, but this can become uncomfortable and overly restrictive.
- Seat Belt Restraint: A dog seat belt restraint keeps your dog in one place while still allowing them to sit or lay down as desired. Our seat belt restraint is a great choice, or try our Click Adjustable Car Restraint to give your furry friend additional backseat freedom. Just remember to use the car restraint along with a harness rather than a collar for safety purposes!
- Car Dog Harness: For another restraint option that offers the highest level of safety, try using our Drive Dog Car Harness. This crash-tested harness offers ultimate protection in the car and is able to be secured quickly by feeding the seatbelt through the harness.
- Back-Seat Barrier: A barrier keeps your dog in the rear seat if you have to break suddenly. It’s best to use barriers along with dog seat belt, safety harness or other restraint for additional safety during car travel.
Keep your pup’s head inside the car
We all know how much dogs adore sticking their head out of the car window during a drive. After all, it’s the best way to feel the breeze and smell all the different scents. However, this can be very dangerous. It exposes your pup to rocks and debris that can cause eye and head injuries. It can also cause ear damage from a prolonged period of their ears flapping in the wind. It’s better to be safe than sorry, which means your windows should stay rolled up during your drive.
Protect your seats
You want to bring your dog along with you on all your travels, but you don’t want them ruining your backseat. Whether you have a puppy working on potty training, a dog who sheds heavily, or a furry friend who likes to play in the dirt and mud, a Dog Car Seat Cover or Dog Car Hammock can help with those problems. It’s made to offer protection for your car seats and is easy to install, remove, and clean.
Get them used to car rides
Some dogs look forward to car rides. However, many pets get anxious about the experience. Before going on an extended drive with your pup, make sure they’re comfortable in the vehicle. Start with short trips and work your way up to longer amounts of time. Give your dog treats in and around the car. If needed, keep motion sickness medicine on hand to help Fido feel as healthy and happy as possible.
Never leave your dog unattended
The last point we have to mention is to never, ever leave your dog unattended in the car. Even if it’s just for a few minutes, it’s not a good idea. In warm weather, dogs become susceptible to dehydration, brain damage, and even heat stroke. Cold temperatures can cause hypothermia. And even if it seems like a mild day, the weather can change quickly. If you need to get out and stretch your legs, take your dog along with you! We’re sure they’ll enjoy tagging along.
Don’t Feed or Give Treats While Driving
Feed your dog a few hours before leaving. Eating in the car can cause motion sickness or choking.
Schedule Stops for Longer Car Rides
Give your dog some time to stretch, drink some water, go to the bathroom and burn off energy. Do a few quick laps around the parking lot to make sure your pup isn’t just sitting in the back seat for hours.
Keep Your Dog Safe in the Car with EzyDog
Here at EzyDog, we are all about empowering dog owners to take their pets on all their adventures. If you’re interested in perusing our collection of products designed for traveling with your dog, click here. In addition to the seat belt restraints and car seat cover we mentioned, you’ll also find portable food and water bowls, a car harness, backseat hammock, and more.