Dog Seat Belts

Dear Liz – Please help settle an argument.  My co-worker thinks that seatbelts for dogs is stupid but I say it’s a great idea.  What are your thoughts?

Signed, Debating in Darien.

Dear Debating:  My thought is that any flying missile in your car is a baaaaad thing.  If you ever had to hit the brakes hard, anything that isn’t glued down or strapped in has the potential to become a flying missile.  Including your pet.

A friend of mine is an EMT and he has told me many times that PETS have actually CAUSED some severe injuries when they fly through the air during a car crash, EVEN a MINOR one.

Tell your co-worker that next time there is a “simulated crash” at a county fair; I want him to try that ride.  It’s usually run by the State Police and it has a person sit in a seat, much like a car seat, and it simulates a 10mph car crash by sending the person in the seat forward and then suddenly stopping them.  The person then feels what it’s like to have a crash at 10mph.  THEN have him tell you that an unrestrained passenger – whether it’s a child or a pet – is not a good idea!

So – how do you restrain them?  Some use pet seatbelts, which is great!  I’ve actually used one on Bandit, my dog of long ago.  However, I found that she sometimes had issue with it and fidgeted.

I’ve also used dog crates.  This method seems to work best, at least for me.  I use the wire crates as the Vari-Kennels (the plastic ones) tend to block my view out of the windows.  Wire kennels can either open on the end or on the side and I do find that these are the best.  I’ve also found that when my dogs are not with me, the crates make GREAT holders for grocery bags!!!  Keeps everything from spilling around the car!

So that’s that.  I do say you’re right and keep up the SAFE work!


2 Responses

  1. I have a 7 month old pup and from the first day we brought him home, he’s used a seat belt. He knows his ‘seat’ in the car and isn’t bothered by the straps. I love the idea that should we get involved in an accident, he won’t become a flying projectile and he shouldn’t sustain severe injuries as a result. He gets more excited to see his seatbelt than to see his leash!

  2. last year my husband had to go the emergency room, in the next cubicle a couple had been brought in after a car accident…their dog, was ejected through the sun roof and the poor elderly couple had to make the decision to euthanize the dog. It was one of the saddest things I had to witness. Our dog, always rides with a harness attached to the seat belt…

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