It’s inevitable, as a dog owner, that at some point you will be taking a trip with your four-legged friend, whether it’s to the vet, to the countryside for a walk or on holiday. Comfort and safety is key to your travel companion’s well-being and there is a range of gadgets to help – including harnesses, crates, and non-spill water bowls – and even cars that are marketed to the dog-loving motorist. What would be your ideal car? A
SUV with fold-flat waterproof seats, underfloor storage, central divider, built-in vacuum, window shades and rear climate control? We have launched our dog-friendly car survey to help pet owners who are planning their next vehicle purchase or are looking for ways to make their journeys safer and more enjoyable for all.
P.S. Keep these tips handy for your board by pinning this! Thanks!
Make sure your dog is secure and comfortable on a journey, so he cannot distract you – he should be fitted with a correctly sized harness or within a travelling crate or container.
- Don’t leave your dog in a parked car – even if it seems cool, cars become hot very quickly. Parking in the shade and/or keeping the windows down does not make it safe!
- Make sure you keep your dog as cool as possible when driving: avoid travelling during the heat of the day, use sun blinds on the windows, and consider opening a window a little to allow a cooling breeze to circulate in the vehicle.
- Make sure you have a supply of water and know where you can stop off en route for water breaks and exercise.
- Allow your dog to become familiar with car journeys by ensuring he has positive experiences over a number of short trips before embarking on a long journey.
- Consider your destination. Busy environments, such as bustling city centres or loud carnivals and public events are not always suitable for dogs, as they can get distressed.
- Feed your dog no sooner than two hours before a long journey to ensure he does not have a full stomach when travelling.
- Take a supply of your dog’s usual food in the event that you get stuck in traffic or break down.
- Keep the dog’s harness and lead close to hand in case you need to get out of the vehicle.
- Dogs Trust advises that owners shouldn’t allow their dog to hang their head out of the window while the car is moving, as this could be potentially dangerous for the dog and distracting for the owner.
By Megan Chapple