The first episode of Maya and Pierson’s car travel video is finally done! My dogs Maya and Pierson ride in the car while wearing their pet car restraints and have interesting conversations. In this first funny video from Pet Auto Safety, Maya and Pierson talk about why they wear their dog seat belts. I tried to make it a bit humorous so that it isn’t the same old boring lecture. Watch it and tell me what you think.
So, how do you like it? If you enjoyed it, can you do me a favor and give it a thumbs up on YouTube?
Future videos will be less informative and more fun. Hopefully, the next video will not take 7 months to make. If you’d like to know what making this first video entailed, keep reading. It’s a bit dry, so feel free to skip this next part and leave a comment about the video at the end of the post. You can also leave a comment about the video on YouTube. Thanks everyone!
SEVEN MONTHS IN THE MAKING
I purchased a nice camcorder and video editing software at the end of March 2013. My camera is the JVC Evirio and the video editing software is the Movie Edit Pro 2013 from Magix. I started using the camcorder right away, but when I first downloaded the software I was greatly intimidated. How on earth would I figure this program out without someone to teach me? I don’t know about you, but reading the instruction manual did not appeal to me one little bit.
So I procrastinated on learning the video editing software. I wasn’t completely putting off this project, though. I started brainstorming video ideas, writing scripts, and trying to figure out how I was going to get a male Australian accent for Pierson.
Once I finally had these things ready, I started playing with the video editing software. I learned by playing with it, and only referred to the manual when there was something specific I really wanted to do but couldn’t figure out how. The first two videos I made with this software are of me drawing the dog Mos and of my dog Maya playing in a public pool.
The next snag in making the Pet Auto Safety video was how to mount the camera in the car. After trying various methods, I finally found a decent car camera mount. The video was now underway. Maya and Pierson wore their pet car restraints and cooperated very well as I drove around town with the video camera set to record. Now that I think I have a pretty good idea of what I’m doing, I believe Episode 2 will take a lot less time to make. Perhaps I can have it ready in January or February. I’d say sooner, except the holidays may hold me back.
Thanks for stopping by and checking out my video!
Dawn with Maya & Pierson
My lovable happy Labrador Maya turned six this month! If you don’t know Maya, she is our Pet Auto Safety CEC (Chief Executive Cuteness). You may have seen her in some of our product photos and reviews on both this blog and our retail website, Pet Auto Safety.com. Read more about her and see many more photos of her on my personal dog blog, AmericanDogBlog.Wordpress.com. In the meantime, here are a few recent photos of Maya hard at work:
Here is Maya from this morning. Still a puppy!
Also, if you have a chance, go vote for Maya’s photo in a calendar contest on HeartLikeADog. Visit and vote daily! It would be a great birthday present.
For more great pet photos, check out the Wordless Wednesday blog hop below:;)
Time for another edition of Follow Up Friday hosted by HeartLikeADog and SandSpringChesapeakes. Follow Up Friday is where we follow up with the events of the week. So check out what you missed, then go see what our doggy blogging friends are up to with the blog hop below.
Pet Safety Saturday – Outdoor Hiking Safety
I can’t believe I completely forgot to include first aid supplies in my list! Thankfully, all the bloggers talking about first aid this month reminded me and I added it on as an update. Jodi with HeartLikeADog.com suggested other items you should brink hiking – “a flashlight as well as an extra collar and leash.” And she also suggested a pepper blaster. I live in Kansas where the predators are not very big. So it never occurred to me to bring pepper spray. But it sounds like a fantastic idea.
Monday – My Car and Pierson’s Poem
It took forever, but I finally got my car back. I almost had it back last Friday but it died on me as I pulled into my driveway. I couldn’t restart it so had it towed to a repair shop. It was about 3pm so, of course, they didn’t have time to look at it that day. And they were closed on the weekend. They finally had a chance to look at it on Monday and guess what? The car started for them! They even drove it around. They couldn’t find anything wrong with it at all.
My car is home now and seems to be doing fine. It’s almost as good as new. Just look at that shiny new bumper! We’re ready to roll for the next pet event.
Also, Pierson’s poo poem was selected as one of the winners for the Bad Poetry Day Contest. If you haven’t seen the poem, go check it out on our other blog. The poem is titled, Roses Aren’t Edible, and is a blogging sensation – 30 comments!!! Apparently you all like poo too.
Pet Travel Destination Tuesday
No comments for the post on Seattle, Washington. But I forgot to mention one made by Lindsay with ThatMutt.com from the previous Tuesday. She says, “Our favorite pet friendly travel destination has always been the north shore area of Lake Superior in Minnesota. We can always find dog friendly trails and cabins or hotels. Plus, lots of places for dogs to go swimming.” This sounds like a lot of fun! Tell us more, Lindsay.
Because I own my own business, I pretty much work it seven days a week and our family seldom gets to do much traveling. So, Lindsay and anyone else who’d like to talk about their favorite pet travel destination, feel free to email me with more information and photos for a guest spot.
Question of the Week
How can I keep my dog from wiggling out of the dog car harness?
This is such a common occurrence that we include a tip sheet with all our pet seat belt orders. The fact is if a dog is not used to wearing a harness and hates to be restricted in the car, he is going to try to wiggle his way out of it. And a very determined dog might just be able to do so. How can you keep him from getting out of it? Not by tightening it. In fact, this may make your dog even more determined to get out of it because it makes him uncomfortable. And if it is too tight, he could hurt himself when he tries to wiggle free.
Is there a brand that is escape-proof? Not that we have found so far, though some are more difficult than others. If anyone ever makes the claim that theirs is escape-proof, I can almost guarantee that some dog somewhere will prove them wrong. For one, consider the design of a dog car harness. With safety in mind, the neck of a pet seat belt has to be wide in order to prevent choking. This means it can’t be snug around the neck like a collar.
So what can you do? Our tip sheet suggests training. If you use a Halti or Gentle Leader on your dog for walking, then you probably already have an idea of what to do to get your dog used to wearing a dog car harness. Check out an article we wrote on HubPages for more extensive training tips.
That’s all for today. Thank you so much everyone for stopping by. If you have any questions on pet travel or on any of our products, just comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, feel free to share information on photos on your favorite pet travel destination.
Dawn with Maya & Pierson
There weren’t as many questions this week so I’m going to talk about other stuff that has happened on my other blog, AmericanDogBlog.Wordpress.com, and things happening for us on other dog websites.
My Dog Pierson is to be on a Calendar!
I’m so happy that my dog Pierson is to be featured in the That Mutt calendar! Thank you to everyone who saw my post on Facebook and voted.
That Mutt Talks about Pet Auto Safety
Lindsay with That Mutt also talked about pet auto safety on one of her blog posts. Go check it out – Do Dogs Need Seat Belts? The article is well thought out and covers pros and cons. Feel free to comment.
Dogs Trapped in Cars After Accidents?
One of the questions Lindsay asked me prior to her post threw me off. She said she knew some people who were concerned about a pet car harness or pet travel carrier causing a dog to get trapped in the vehicle in a car accident. Can you believe that in all my years of running this business, no one has ever brought this up before?
Certainly, it can happen. I think this was a concern when seat belts for people first came out. But after years and years of research, statistics have shown that this risk is small and the likelihood of a seat belt saving a life is much greater.
If anything, I would be concerned about an unrestrained dog escaping from the vehicle after an accident. I get Google alerts for dogs in car accidents on a regular basis and so see a lot of news stories about dogs that went missing because they escaped the vehicle and ran off in terror. Think about it, after a car accident your dog is likely to be completely freaked out. His instinct is going to be to get as far away from the terrifying situation as quickly as possible. When a dog runs in terror, he runs blindly. This means he could run into the street, cause another car accident, and possibly get struck and killed by another vehicle.
Here’s a story with a happy ending. The video automatically plays, so I’m sorry about that. I don’t know how to keep it from doing that.
I understand we all have our different fears. The thing about a car accident is that it is unpredictable. You never know when you will be in a collision, let alone what kind of collision. What may be perfect for one situation may not be for another. Just consider the odds. While the above situation happens all the time, heroes like this aren’t always around to help.
SleepyPod’s New ClickIt Pet Car Harness
Sleepypod is coming out with the new ClickIt pet car harness soon and this design is also based on recommendations from the Center for Pet Safety! They are going to be expensive, but worth it. Keep posted here on this blog and I will let you know as soon as they are available.
My Interview with the Radio Pet Lady
I had an interview about pet auto safety on the Radio Pet Lady Dog Travel Experts show. Paris with Dog Tipper was there too! The show aired last night but will be archived at this link soon. Be sure to check it out. I think Gizmo with Terrier Torrent will be interviewed next week to talk about the fun of geocaching.
Bad Poetry Day
Hop on over to the AmericanDogBlog.Wordpress.com for Pierson’s Bad Poetry Day contest entry. Seriously, it will make you laugh! Maya will feature her bad poetry tomorrow.
Where is the Pet Auto Safety Car?
As you may have read, Maya and I were in a rear end collision on July 25th. It was bad enough that the insurance company considered my car as totaled, but not bad enough to cause serious injury. Even though the car is considered totaled, I am working with the repair shop to still have it fixed. Hopefully, they can get used parts instead of new and be able to fix it for the check amount the insurance company gave me. But as of today, I still don’t have my car back!!!
How is it that a car can be considered totaled for just a fender bender? First of all, it is a Ford. That should be enough explanation, but in case you’re wanting more… My car is a 1998. Why in the heck would I want to keep such an old car? Believe it or not, it only has 87,000 miles on it and it is still running well. Also, it was more than just the bumper that was damaged. It turns out the frame is bent too, and other stuff.
K9 Car Fence
A lot of you commented on what a great idea the K9 Car Fence is. Pierson didn’t think so, but I thought it was brilliant too! I wish I had thought of it.
Questions or Comments?
As always, if you have any questions about pet travel, feel free to ask them by commenting below or by emailing me at email@example.com. I’d love to hear from you!
Join the Blog Hop
Thank you for stopping by and reading my long-winded post today! Follow Up Friday is hosted by Heart Like a Dog and co-hosted by Flea with JonesNaturalChews so be sure to go check them out. Other dog blogs participating in Follow Up Friday can be found in the blog hop links below.
One of our favorite bloggers, All Things Dog Blog, hosts a blog hop every Monday called Mutt Monday. A blog hop is where other bloggers get to share their posts under the blog hop topic. This Monday, we are joining the blog hop for Mutt Monday and the topic is “A Day in the Life of a Pet Blogger”. Would you like to know what it is like to run an online business and blog?
First off, let me explain what Nature by Dawn, Inc. is. My name is Dawn and I started Nature by Dawn, Inc. in 2006 with my art website, Nature by Dawn.com. I also started Pet Auto Safety.com in 2006. Today, my company Nature by Dawn, Inc. consists of a few retail sites, a couple informational sites, two blogs, and several social media sites. Pet Auto Safety.com is my primary focus. My dogs have been wearing canine seat belts for over 15 years and I am passionate and knowledgeable about pet travel safety.
Over the past seven years, I have learned a lot about running an online business. Let me tell you, it is not easy. But I love what I do so it is fun. Every Sunday, I start out by putting together a to-do list for the week. I have daily tasks, weekly tasks, monthly tasks, and ongoing projects.
The first thing I do every morning is fill orders. Sometimes this is quick and sometimes it takes half the morning. Then I look at my to-do list. Daily tasks include writing at least one blog post, checking emails, perusing the internet for pet news, reading and commenting on other dog blogs, and seeing what my doggie friends are up to on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, and others. These daily tasks take up most of my day.
Weekly tasks include checking and analyzing the visitor and other stats for my websites, checking and entering specific blog hops, making sure my own blog posts posted properly, and coming up with blog topics for the following week.
Monthly tasks include entering all business sales and expenses into my accounting program, completing the accounting statements, re-submitting my products to Google Merchant and other similar shopping sites, verifying inventory count, ordering more inventory, and adding new product information if I find new products I’d like to sell.
Ongoing projects are generally SEO activities. SEO is search engine optimization. I have to constantly make sure I am keeping up with Google and Yahoo search guidelines. I modify my website as needed (which is often and can be very time consuming). Other SEO activities include submitting my website to directories and writing articles for Ezine and other article sites.
Another project I want to do very soon is make car travel videos with Maya and Pierson. They are going to be funny videos… at least I hope I can make them funny. I have someone who is going to do the Australian voice for Pierson. I will probably do Maya’s voice. They will be riding in the back of the car and having silly conversations. I hope to have the first video done before the end of August.
In between all these tasks, I have the opportunity to take Maya and Pierson for a walk, play with them, and perhaps do a little fun dog training.
I do most of these things myself, but I do get help from my family. And I have a couple of friends that help out from time to time. One such friend is Joanne. Joanne lives in the UK and she runs Fleece Dog Harnesses.co.uk. Joanne has helped me a lot with the SEO stuff and she is currently helping me with a new website for outdoor dog gear (website coming soon). Carrie with All Things Dog Blog has also been a great help to me on the social media side. I also have great relationships with some of my suppliers. The team at Kurgo and Bergan are fantastic. Susan with The Pet Net Brand is pawsome. And Sue with Mutt Managers for the Breeze Guard Window Screens is amazing.
I also have quite a few pet forum members and pet bloggers out there to thank for mentions and reviews. I love the cato- and dogo-sphere world and am very thankful to be a part of this wonderful community. ❤ ❤ ❤
You will never believe this, but my dog Maya was involved in her first (and hopefully only) auto accident. Thursday, July 25th, we were on our way to the Lawrence Humane Society for their Mutt Mixer event. I was to have a table of pet auto safety supplies set up and Maya was to model the new Kurgo Go-Tech pet car harness.
Before you get worried about us, we are both okay. I was at a full stop waiting for traffic when I was rear ended. It was on wet street going downhill. The impact was pretty jarring. My boxes of dog seat belts, which I was going to display at the event, went flying everywhere. My rear bumper was damaged. But Maya and I were wearing our seat belts and we were not noticeably injured.
I felt a little sore the next day, especially in the neck and shoulders, but Maya has been her usual happy-go-lucky self. Gotta love the resilient attitude of the Labrador! If it had been my Aussie mix Pierson involved in the car collision, he would have freaked out. And he would never want to ride in the car again.
Bad luck that Maya and I were in an auto accident, but good luck that it wasn’t too serious. Car collisions happen all the time with fender bender collisions being the most common. And even though you might be a safe driver, you never know what conditions or situations might arise that cause an auto accident to occur. This is why everyone in our family including my dogs wears a seat belt.
Be proactive, not reactive. And secure your pet in the vehicle now. It doesn’t have to be a seat belt. You can also use a pet trave crate.
Some of our favorite dog bloggers had great questions this week about dog safety seat belts:
The Center for Pet Safety
Gizmo from TerrierTorrent.com showed us another article about the failure of pet car harnesses as conducted by the Center for Pet Safety. This article understandably has a lot of people concerned. However, let me ease your fears. This study was conducted over two years ago. A lot of companies have made improvements since then. And a lot of companies are currently consulting with the Center for Pet Safety so that they can continue to make improvements. This is not unlike the development of seat belts for people. Our post on June 29th, 2013 covers the topic of the Center for Pet Safety’s study a lot more thoroughly.
Tangling from a Canine Car Harness
Donna from DonnaAndTheDogs.com mentioned how her dog Toby would get tangled in his canine car harness. Yep, this is exactly what happens to Maya when she wears the pet car harnesses that use the loop tether. Kurgo uses the loop tether. This tether is considered safer because it is shorter, but not if your dog likes to move around a lot. So while Maya wears the Kurgo harness, I switched out her loop tether for the straight tether from Bergan, which clips directly onto the seat belt housing. She still gets the tether twisted because she just won’t hold still, but she doesn’t get tangled in it.
Donna also mentioned how two of her dogs ride in pet carriers. This is a great way for dogs to travel, especially if the crate is secured.
Which Dog Safety Seat Belts are Easier to Put On?
Flea with DogTreatWeb.com for Jones Natural Chews asked if the new Kurgo Go-Tech harness is easier to put on than the one she received from us before, which is the Bergan. I do think it is a bit easier. But then again, I’ve been putting the Bergan and Kurgo for so long, that I can’t really fairly gauge the difficulty.
With the Bergan, you have to put both your dog’s front legs through, then pull it up to the dog’s chest, and clip it together at the top. With the Kurgo, you put the hole for the head over your dog’s head, then wrap the chest strap around your dog’s chest, and connect the buckle. The steel buckle can be a bit tricky if you’ve never used a nesting buckle before. But really, I think both dog safety seat belts can be difficult to put on for the very first time. But it gets easier the more often you do it.
Safest Pet Auto Safety Device?
We also had an email question from Shara. She asked us which is safer, a canine car harness or a pet travel crate? This is a very difficult question to answer since it really depends on the nature of the accident. Different situations can make one particular pet auto safety device more effective than the other. The Center for Pet Safety will also be conducting studies on the effectiveness of pet carriers in car accidents.
Do you have any questions about pet auto safety devices such as car harnesses or travel crates? Please comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you.
Follow Up Friday is hosted by Heart Like a Dog. Please join the blog hop and find other great dog blogs.
Generally, on Saturdays we feature a pet safety topic. But we have added so many new products this June that we decided to reserve today to show you some of our new and exciting dog travel accessories.
A couple of our new products are dog travel bowls. The weather is getting hot and even though I know you’re not leaving your dog alone in the car, your dog still needs a cool drink. So take that ride to the dog park, then open up a collapsible dog dish and add water. These bowls can be folded into a small compact shape and they are relatively inexpensive.
Our favorite new product is the Kurgo direct to seat belt tether. The Kurgo dog car harness currently uses a loop tether where the seat belt of your car goes through it. This restricts your dog’s movement, which is a good thing, but can be very uncomfortable for a dog that likes to move around a lot (like my Maya). The direct to seat belt tether buckles directly into the seat belt receptacle of your car and makes movement for your dog much easier.
Another new product we have from Kurgo is the mud dog towel. I don’t know about you, but sometimes when Maya goes to the dog park, she manages to find a mud puddle to play in. I don’t really want a muddy dog in my car, so this towel from Kurgo would come in very handy.
And yet another new product from Kurgo is the kennel straps. We used to have a similar product, but replaced it with this one from Kurgo. Kurgo makes some very high quality products and this one is no exception.
We have also added a new pet cargo liner. For the longest time, we’ve only had a choice between two different pet cargo liner brands. This one from Guardian Gear makes it three.
And for those of you who have dogs that are crazy in the car or that get stressed out about car rides, we have added a new dog anxiety treatment. It is some pet calming tablets from Total Pet Health. These are great for cats too, because sometimes your cat has to ride in the car.
And still another new product that we’ve added is another Bergan dog car harness. We’ve had all sizes in the aqua color available for some time now. A few months ago we added the medium and large mossy oak color. And now we’ve just added the extra-large size in mossy oak.
Look for even more new dog travel accessories in July. Some new products to look for are some single seat covers, a new bench seat cover from Kurgo, and some new colored dog car harnesses from Kurgo! So be sure to stop by our website and check them out. You can also keep up to date on our Twitter and FB pages (links to the left).
Do you know Maya and Pierson? The beautiful yellow Labrador pictured at the top of this blog isn’t just some random puppy. That is my Maya! She’s been pictured on this blog a number of times, along with my Australian Shepherd mix Pierson. They aren’t just models for pet auto safety products, they have other talents too. Check out some non-travel pet photos of them below:
Do you want to get to know Maya and Pierson even more? Sign up for our other blog - http://americandogblog.wordpress.com/. At the top right of our blog is where you will find the email sign up. We post about twice a week. Check out today’s post for Wordless Wednesday to see how Maya and Pierson help out at work. Then check us out on Saturdays where we post about dog training, Maya and Pierson antics, pet health, or other fun dog topics.
For more fun pet photos, check out the Wordless Wednesday blog hop below.
Sorry everyone for not doing a full post yesterday for Pet Travel Destination Tuesday. We have been redesigning our retail website, www.PetAutoSafety.com. Most of the major redesigning is done now, so take a look and tell us what you think. Does it look better? Is it easier to navigate? Are there things you don’t like? Are there things you would change or improve? Any feedback with constructive criticism would be most welcome!
The second thing I wanted to ramble about was the comments on the March contest giveaway posted on March 8th. One of the ways to enter the contest is to leave a comment under the post and click the Rafflecopter entry saying that you left a comment. Because spammers left over 500 comments the other day (yes over 500!!!), we accidentally deleted all comments made on that day. This means that legitimate comments were accidentally deleted along with the spam comments. However, if you indicated in the Rafflecopter that you left a comment, your entry was still saved in the Rafflecopter and it still counts! So please, if you don’t see your comment know that your contest entry is still there. If you left a comment asking a question, I’m so sorry that we didn’t see it. You can leave a comment again or email us directly at email@example.com. We sincerely apologize for this and thank you so much for stopping by!
One more thing to share… We had some great weather last week. It got into the 70s and even the 80s on March 14th and 15th so I took Maya to the dog park. She had a lot of fun!
Funny after this really nice weather, it got cold again. It even snowed yesterday. The weather is as crazy as my Maya!
Well, that’s all I have for now. See you later in the week for Pet Safety Saturday.