As a dog owner, you'll probably take your canine companion to the veterinarian, pet store, park and other locations in a typical year. However, you should follow these safety tips to reduce the risk of injury while promoting a positive and enjoyable experience.
#1) Don't Allow Your Dog to Roam Free
While it may seem harmless, you shouldn't allow your dog to roam free in the car. There are simply too many things that can go wrong with an unrestrained dog: he could distract you, get underneath your feet, or sustain serious injury in the event of a collision.
#2) Restrain Your Dog
Rather than allowing your dog to roam the car, use a safety harness or crate to restrain him. Safety harnesses are designed to work with your car's existing seat belt. Once your dog is secured inside the harness, you can connect it to the seat belt; thus, preventing him from moving around. Alternatively, you can use a crate to restrain your dog, although you'll also need to secure it in place.
#3) Stop Frequently
When driving long distances with your canine companion, stop frequently as pet-friendly rest areas so your dog can walk around and do his business. Forcing your dog to ride for long periods of time without stopping may lead to car travel anxiety. And if your dog becomes anxious of car travel, he may hesitate the next time you want to travel with him.
#4) Bring Food and Water
Regardless of how far you are driving, bring a small container of dog food and some bottled water. You never know when your car will break down, leaving you and your dog stranded. If you have food and water, though, you can rest assured knowing that your dog is comfortable until help arrives.
#5) ID Tag
If your dog doesn't have an ID tag, you should get one before taking him on car rides. Hopefully, this doesn't happen, but if your dog escapes without an ID tag you may have trouble finding him. If it has an ID tag, however, the two of you will have an easier time reuniting.