Do your little guys like the car? If so, do you do anything special so they can see out the window yet still be safe? 

I've been taking Four on short car rides but feel myself having to hold him while driving. Not easy or safe. I just feel bad that he can't breathe out the window like big dogs. Am I crazy :) Four is 6 months. We have an 8 hour car ride during Christmas. Maybe hell grow into it. 

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For a long car ride, I'd pack the dog in the hard crate.  Usually, they're clipped in tight with a harness in the back seat.  Sadly, they cannot see out the window.  They sleep.

You COULD clip him in with a harness to a climber's carabiner on a rear seat belt with a safety rope long enough to let him look out the window.  He'd fly around like popcorn in a crash, but this could keep him away from the driver

Fatal head-on collision on SR520 floating bridge; a loose dog distracted the driver.  A loose dog is no more responsible than driving on the cell phone.  Keep both hands on the wheel and both halves of your brain on the road.

My sis was with her boyfriend when when his dog fell off the pickup's tailgate on too long a leash and strangled.  Horrible.

My dogs don't travel without their crates...they love going and so they will gladly jump in and kennel up:) I know of a corgi that jumped out a car window...luckily she didn't get hurt!

Hi J, 

2009 crash

2010 crash

2011 crash

2012 crash

An August 2010 AAA survey found 31% of dog owners who admitted to driving with their pet said the dog was a distraction. A second survey last summer of dog owners by AAA and Kurgo, a company that makes pet travel gear, found:

  • 56% of respondents had driven with their dogs at least once a month in the previous year.
  • 52% of respondents said they had petted their dog while driving with it
  • 29% said they had been distracted by their dogs while driving
  • 84% of dog owners who drove with their dogs did not use some sort of restraint

Depending on the car your drive, weight sensor on the passenger seat may / may not activate the airbag. Airbag deployment depends on the weight of the passenger and the use of seatbelt. Just something to think about.

Lucy rode in a booster seat when she was smaller, allowing her to look out the window. She was harnessed to it and the seat itself was secured to a BACK seat. Now she is just harnessed to a rear seat belt. She can still see out, but she also just lays down to chew on a toy. There are different ways to keep puppy safe while you are driving (as you will read on this site)--and safety for you and any 2- or 4-legged passengers is the priority.

Four should be either in a crate or car harness.  Honestly dogs should learn to lie down and relax while traveling and should not be looking out the window.  Dogs who look out windows are more inclined to bark at dogs, critters, people, etc.  One of mine rides in a harness, the other in a crate and they both lay down and snooze until we reach our destination.  

I've never seen a dog looking out a window that looked truly relaxed and happy to me; most look over-stimulated and excited, but not content, to be honest.  Nose to the window is not the safest position in a crash, either.

I would put him in a traveling crate because his chances of death by car accident go up if your just holding him while driving.

We are having the "looking out the window problems also.  We have always had a SUV, if the boys sat up in the back seat (with harness) they could look out.  We just got a pickup for pulling a larger travel trailer. The back seats flip up giving them more room in the back.  We now can put their beds on the floor and still use the harness.  Problem is now they can't see out. I don't think they really care but it seems to bother Tenby the most.  He did enjoy looking out the window a lot. We are traveling to Michigan in a few weeks and that will be two long days on the road. Hopefully the more they travel they will forget about the outside.

I concur with the other respondents, either a crate or harness are best. Like a child, the dog should remain in the back seat. In fact some states have laws about having anything that qualifies as a distraction being in the front half of the vehicle- including but not limited to a dog (Illinois passed one of these laws this year). Additionally, a dog in the front seat can actually hit the gear shift, switching the car into neutral or worse.

I started with a booster seat, but now I use a car harness with Camden with an extension piece so he doesn't strain his back. He used to hate car rides; he would try to run off as soon as I opened the car door. Now he walks right up to the seat (he hasn't figured out how to jump in yet) and lets me lift him right in. He even stays still for the harness.

As for looking out the window, he's grown out of it. I think it's lost its luster. The only time the window is opened now is so we get some fresh air.

Thanks everyone! Do you have harness and crate recommendations? 

I use something like this

when I take my dog in the car.

here's my setup.

Yes a booster car seat allows them to see out but be buckled in for saftey This one is at Petsmart but you can find others.


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