Safest Way for Dog to Ride in Car

Are you planning to hit the road with your pooch? You should first learn the safest way for dog to ride in car.

It’s a traffic recommendation to restrain a dog in the car. Doing the opposite is throwing the middle finger to the law.

That aside, secure the dog at all times you travel with it for your safety. Yes, exploring the adventure with your family and your pet is more fun.

It isn’t uncommon to see dogs hanging their heads out of moving car windows on our streets. More so, jumping freely around the car. Or on the driver’s lap, which is riskier.

First, you violate traffic rules. And second, you risk your life and that of the dog. Everyone feels good to play with their pets throughout the journey but take caution.

So, what is the safest way to travel with a dog? Well, there are various ways you should apprehend and choose your best.

Safest Way for Dog to Ride in Car
Dog in car window

Safest Way for Dog to Ride in Car

We have compiled best ways for travelling with dog in car long distance and short trips.

1. Buy a Dog Harness

A dog harness is one of the best ways to restrain your dog. If you shop for the best dog car harness, you’ll have safety assurance.

The harness is secured around the neck and the chest. Straps are clamped at the back to restrain the dog firmly.

Harnesses are available depending on the dog sizes. The best choice is Rabbitgoo dog harness that is well tested and proven safe by many dog owners.

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How to Restrain the Dog with Harness

Step 1: Insert the harness on the dog’s neck and properly secure the straps at the back clasps.

Step 2: Slide the car seat belt through the harness belt loop.

Step 3: Let the dog get into the back seat or help it sit upright.

Step 4: Connect the belt loop clasp to the dog harness at the back of the dog.

Step 5: Adjust the loop until the dog is properly restrained.

Dog harnesses are used to secure well-behaved dogs that can sit calmly in the back seat. But always keep an eye on the dog because it may chew the harness belt.

Read: How to clean car seats stains

2. Restrain the Dog in a Crate

If you have passengers at the back seat, restrain your dog in a crate in the cargo area. It’s the safest place for dog in SUV because it’s spacious.

A Midwest homes icrate is the most comfortable restraining method for the dog if you choose the correct size. Dogs have a space to stand, sleep, and turn around.

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How to restrain a Dog in a Crate

Step 1: Find the right crate for your dog. It should be able to stand, turn, and sleep inside.

Step 2: Set your crate at the back of a van, station wagon, or other hatchback body style car. Sedans aren’t safe because of their enclosed trunk.

Step 3: Place the dog in the crate and close the door. It has quality mesh for air circulation.

Step 4: Ensure the dog is comfortable before starting the journey.

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How Do You Travel Long Distance with a Dog in a Car?

3. Cargo Area Barrier

The Cargo area barrier is best for SUVs and hatchbacks. If you’re traveling with multiple dogs, using a barrier will keep them more comfortable.

A barrier is mainly made of heavy-duty wire mesh or a net. The materials will not prevent the driver from using the rearview mirror. Second, you can keep an eye on the dogs while on the journey.

The dogs can stay active by looking through the rear windows.

How to Restrain a Dog with Cargo Area Barrier

Step 1: Find a specialist to install the barrier.

Step 2: Place the dog in the cargo area and close the door. The dogs will be more secure and free to move around the trunk.

Step 3: Drive around your home to test if your dogs are comfortable.

4. Back Seat Hammock

Dog back seat hammock is comfortable for all dog sizes to lie on. It protects the dog from falling off after braking. Secondly, it prevents the dog from jumping to the front seat.

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It offers the best cushion to absorb shock, especially for old or inexperienced dogs.

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How to Restrain a Dog with Back Seat Hammock

Step 1: Spread the hammock on the car’s back seat.

Step 2: Attach the anchors from the top of the seat and secure the base.

Step 3: Attach the fasteners to the front and rear seat headrests.

Step 4: Place your dog on the hammock and observe if it’s safe.

Is it Legal to Travel with a Dog in the Car?

It’s legal to travel with dogs in the car, provided you restrain them. An unrestrained dog poses several risks;

  • It distracts the driver by jumping of excitement.
  • It can be injured or killed by airbags in the event of an accident.
  • Debris can injure the dog’s eyes; it hangs the head on the window.
  • Emergency braking can injure the dog or cause injuries to occupants.

How Do You Travel Long Distance with a Dog in a Car?

Once you have restrained the dog, observe the following safety tips on long-distance travel;

  • Schedule several stops

Dogs need to stretch their legs and rest. Just like humans, they need to relieve themselves too. But the best idea is to consult a veterinary doctor before traveling with your dog.

  • First test the dog with short trips

Dogs experience motions sickness just like human beings. Try short trips to see if your dog can travel long distances without discomfort.

  • Don’t feed the dogs on the journey

Feed your dogs three hours before starting the journey. Dogs can get uncomfortable if fed on the trip due to car vibrations.

  • Have air conditioner on

Dog bodies get hotter than you may think. Drive with the air conditioner on or keep the windows rolled down to calm them.

Read: Best car audio setup for sound quality

FAQ on Restraining a Pet in a Car

Can a Dog Sit in the Front Seat of a Car?

It isn’t recommendable to restrain a dog at the front seat. It can get the driver’s attention and cause an accident. The safest way for dog to ride in car is by restraining it on the back seat or the cargo area.  

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