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August 31, 2013

Last Saturday, I talked about the reasons why a dog should be restrained in the car. The post mostly focused on the benefits of a pet car harness. But let’s face it, not every dog will wear one. Plus, there are a few legitimate concerns about dog seat belts. So here are some other pet travel products to consider:

Straps for Pet Carriers

This Pet Travel Carrier secured in the car with kennel straps.

Pet Carrier
Have your pet ride in a pet carrier. Make sure the carrier is secured in the vehicle so that if the car goes out of control, the dog crate stays in place. You don’t want it and your dog to be thrown about. Whether a secured travel crate is as safe as a pet car harness is not known. Not much testing has been done on pet travel carriers. However, I imagine that a secured crate is probably just as safe (strictly an opinion). Traveling in this way covers all the reasons discussed last week about why it is better to have your dog secured in the car.

Maya Behind Outward Hound Pet Car Barrier

This is a cloth barrier. A pet car barrier can also be metal or a pet net barrier.

Dog Car Barrier
A dog car barrier can help keep your dog in the back seat and from being a distraction. Depending on the barrier, it may keep your dog from being ejected out the front windshield. However, it can’t keep your dog on the seat and it can’t keep him inside the vehicle if someone opens the door, a window breaks and he jumps out, or he hangs his head out the window and jumps or is thrown out.

Maya Showing Off Her Favorite Pet Travel Products

Maya has more room to stretch out on those long road trips.

Backseat Bridge
I can’t tell you how much I really love the Kurgo Backseat Bridge. I have two big dogs and there is no way Maya can stay comfortably on the back seat, even with her pet car harness on. The seat is too narrow and Maya is too big. And she is too energetic to sit still. So covering the floor of the car helps keep her from being thrown onto the floor. If you’ve read some of the news about how dogs should stay on the seat when wearing their dog seat belts, you can see how difficult it would be to restrain a dog to such an extent that he wouldn’t get thrown forward or onto the floor. The Backseat Bridge can help because it covers the floor. The Backseat Bridge also has a barrier that covers the center console area. If your dog is not buckled in, at least the bridge can keep him from getting thrown onto the floor and possibly keep him in the back seat so that he is not a distraction. A dog car hammock has the same benefits as the Kurgo Backseat Bridge.

Dog Pierson K9 Car Fance

Pierson is testing the K9 CarFence.

K9 CarFence
This is a brand new product. There hasn’t been much testing on it yet. But it sure looks promising. The K9 CarFence keeps your dog from being a distraction and it helps to keep him in his seat.

Pierson Breeze Guard Car Window Screens

Pierson is looking out the window fitted with the Breeze Guard car window screens.

Breeze Guard Car Window Screens
This is another product I really love. I used to let my dogs put their heads out the window. After all, they really love it. But one time, Sephi yelped. I think she got hit in the face with something, probably a small pebble. Thankfully, it didn’t hit her in the eye or nose. She wasn’t injured. But it made me think that perhaps letting her have her head out the window wasn’t such a good idea. Also, a friend of mine on Facebook told me about how a friend of hers had her dog thrown out the car window. He was hanging out having a good time when they suddenly had to swerve their car. Their poor dog flew out and ended up getting run over by the rear tire. And, one final story, I had a dog years ago that actually jumped out the car window. Luckily, we were driving slowly down an old dirt road when Huckleberry saw some cows and jumped out to get at them. He was okay. It shocked us both. But all these incidents will never happen again because of my Breeze Guard car window screens. BTW, despite having screens on my windows to allow the breeze in, I never ever leave my dogs unattended in the car.

If you’re concerned about the safety of your pet but aren’t sure about the safety of pet travel products, there are a lot of alternatives to consider. A pet car harness and pet carrier have a lot more safety benefits, but every dog and every situation is different. Consider your various options and feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns.

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6 Responses to “Pet Safety Saturday – Alternatives to Dog Seat Belts”

  1. mollie and alfie:

    Some cool idea’s there, I have a seat belt harness :) Have a great weekend xx0xx

    Mollie and Alfie

  2. Jodi:

    We have a barrier that goes between the back and front seats, but we rarely use it. Sampson LOVES to ride shotgun, but when I got my new car about 4 1/2 years ago I made it a rule that he cannot sit there. He has gotten use to that, but when the car is stopped I still catch him trying to sneak in there. :-D

  3. Carol Bryant:

    Thanks for the variety of options. As a fellow dog traveler of over 20 years, this are all valuable. I am glad you are getting the word out about how important this is! Happy BlogPaws Wordless Wednesday!

  4. snoopy@snoopysdogblog:

    I’ll have to get Mum check out the back seat bridge, does it basically extend the depth of the backseat?

    Wags to all

    Your pal Snoopy :)

  5. Donna:

    Wow – I really like the idea of those breeze guard screens!

  6. MayaAndPierson:

    That’s right, Snoopy. :) It covers the floor from the back of the front seats and partially rests over the top of the back seats.

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