Dogs in cars – safety first

Dogs do need to travel by car these days, to go to the vet or to reach a favourite walk, some go to work with their owners. It’s important to make the journey safe and comfortable for both the dog and yourself.

Keep your dog secure

Dog guards exist for all cars and small vans, most are easy to fit and relatively low cost and will keep your dog safely in the rear of the vehicle.

If you prefer your dog to travel on the back seat there are specially designed pet seat belts and harnesses which prevent the dog being thrown about. Some dogs are happy to sit quietly on the back seat; others will jump around, an unwelcome distraction for the driver and a real danger in case of incident. A car braking sharply will throw the dog forward with enough force to cause injury to both itself and other occupants.

Road sense

The dog needs to behave both in the car and getting in and out. Always let your dog out of the car on the pavement side. When you reach your destination, train your dog to wait for your commend to leave the vehicle. If you are getting out near a busy road, it must be clear to other drivers that your dog is restrained, always use a lead.

Keep your dog comfortable

Your dog is more likely to become restless if he or she is hungry, thirsty or needs to relieve itself. Plan stops on longer journeys.

With a bit of preparation, your dog can enjoy his car journey and be safe.