Traveling with your dog can be a fun and exciting adventure. However, there are a few important details to keep in mind before you depart.
Safety for you and your pet should be your top priority before every trip. According to Emmanuel, Sheppard, & Condon, one of the most common accident causes is distracted driving. A loose dog in the car is not only distracting to drivers, but they can become a dangerous projectile in an accident. This can result in severe injury or death for both pet and owner. There is a wide range of products designed to keep dogs safely contained in a car so owners can pay attention to the road.
A crash-tested crate restrains your dog comfortably, protects your pup from impact, and prevents them from being flung around the car in an accident. A nice bonus to a roomy, safe crate is that you can easily attach food and water dishes and line it with a favorite blanket. Think of a crate as your dog's own VIP cabin. There are many styles to choose from. Be sure to check the safety ratings, size requirements, and installation instructions to get the most out of your travel crate.
If you have a small car, a lot of stuff to transport on your trip, or your dog suffers from separation anxiety, a travel crate might not work for you. But don't despair! Many companies have developed comfortable car safety harnesses for dogs of all sizes. These products come in a range of styles, but they all function in the same way. Simply put the harness on your dog, then attach the harness to your car's seatbelt. The device will hold your pup securely in place, providing stability and safety, while allowing your dog the freedom to look out the window and be close to you.
Considering your dog's comfort can go a long way in making your car trip go smoothly. It's almost as important as your dog's physical safety. Be sure to bring a clean water dish and some bottled water, enough dog food to last the entire trip plus an extra day's worth in case of delays, and don't forget your pup's favorite blanket, toys, and treats.
These small reminders of home will keep your best friend calm, happy, and comfortable, while the safety precautions will keep you both safe and secure while you explore the world together.