By Kaitlyn Manktelow, Kurgo, the dog travel experts
What is better than riding with the windows down, feeling that nice summer breeze hit your face? How about riding with your favorite furry friend? You are not alone, according to the AAA/Kurgo Pet Passenger Safety Study, nearly 56% of Americans transport their dog in their car at least once a month! You know how to keep yourself safe while riding in a vehicle, but what about your pooch? Here are some tips on making sure your next adventure with your dog is one to remember!
Safety First-Why Your Dog Should Be Strapped In
Most of us put on a seatbelt in the car without giving it a second thought, we make sure that all human passengers are strapped in, but what about our animal family members?
In addition to being injured in a crash, a loose pet can also be a possible hazard for human passengers in an accident. An unrestrained 10-pound dog in a crash at 50 mph will exert roughly 500 pounds of force on anything it hits, while an unrestrained 80-pound dog in a crash at only 30 mph will exert about 2400 pounds of force.
A loose dog can also limit a driver’s ability to steer, use the gas and brakes as well as create blind spots.
One car safety solution is to use a dog seat belt with a crash-tested dog car harness. Now your dog is safely buckled up just like you.
Click it or ticket – did you know there are laws being put into place in the United States and across the globe making it illegal to drive with a loose pet?
Healthy Hydration and Heat Prevention For Your Pup
A dog should never be left in an unattended car, no matter the season. However, in summer heat, it is even more important considering that on an 85 degree day, car temperatures can reach up to 120 degrees within 10 minutes even with the windows open!
Fun Fact: Dogs can’t sweat like their owners, which means they are at a higher risk of heat exhaustion and other related illnesses. When traveling in this summer heat, bring a water bottle for yourself and a portable dog travel bowl for your pet.
Help Your Dog Always Find The Way Back Home
With all the travelling happening, many of dogs each year are injured or lost when they jump out of a car uncontrolled. Stopping in a crowded, unfamiliar area can cause a scared dog to take off into uncharted territory. Providing your dog with ID tags and a microchip with your contact information can give you a sense of relief and comfort.
Slobber…Hair…and Grime-Oh My!
For those of us that love their cars almost as much as their four-legged companions; traveling with a dog can mean hair, slobber, dirt, grime and muck covering the interior of an otherwise spotless car. We’ve all been there, apologizing when the only open spot for a guest is a seat covered in muddy paw prints and what seems like hundreds of strands of fur. Covering the seats of a car using a car seat cover that is waterproof and stain resistant ensures that Fido can continue adventuring into the great unknown, and you can continue having a happy dog and a clean car!
For more tips, check out this Pet Travel Safety Tips Video.
About Kaitlyn Manktelow – Kaitlyn is a writer and videographer for Kurgo, a dog travel and outdoor products company. She enjoys filming, traveling, and singing way too loud with her rescue dog Samuel Jackson.