Whether you’re headed across town or across the country, Fluffy and Fido need safety, too!
As the tourism season just gets started with spring breaks that will eventually lead into summer vacations, travel gadgets will once again become one of the hottest items being sold. With that in mind, it’s very important not to forget about the safety and comfort of your pets when you’re heading out on your next road trip.
While nobody wants to think of a disaster or a crash, the best thing you can do is prevent and prepare for one.
Many people think that simply allowing their pets to hop into the back of a pickup truck, the back seat of a car – or even sit in their laps in a front passenger seat – is perfectly acceptable. However, if you should ever be involved in an accident – or even be required to brake hard – you could be putting your pet’s health or even life in danger. That said, when looking at travel gadgets and accessories, it’s not always easy to choose the best ones to keep Fido and fluffy safe. Is a pet carrier your best shot? Or one of those weird-looking pet seatbelts?
The following are some of the best tips you can learn for travel gadgets and accessories for your pet’s safety.
• There’s no one-size fits all for animals – You need to think about your pet’s personality, size, and shape before you purchase your pet accessories for the car.
• Not all harnesses are created for the same purpose – some harness seatbelts are meant to keep your pet out of mischief and to stop them from distracting you. Others provide protection in the case of a crash. You want an option from the second category. Choose one that doesn’t have an extension tether. It may seem friendly to let your dog wander around the back seat, but that eliminates all protection benefits in the case of a crash.
• Leashes are not auto safety devices – always unhook your pet’s leash from his or her collar or harness while in the car. It does not work as a safety restraint and it can get caught on any number of things in the car both in the case of regular driving or a crash. Never connect an auto safety harness to a dog’s regular walking collar or harness.
• Choose the right crate size – if you choose to crate your dog in the car, the safest option is one that is no more than six inches longer than your pet. It’s enough room to be comfortable, but confined enough for protection against being thrown around. Small carriers should not be secured using a seatbelt, regardless of whether it is soft or hard-sided as the carrier may not be structurally sound enough to withstand the force of the seatbelt in the case of an accident. The seatbelt, itself, could crush the carrier.
• Maintain your vehicle – use a good quality digital tire pressure gauge as your favorite travel gadget to make sure you only take you, your family and your furry friends in a vehicle that has properly inflated tires, good tread depth and emergency tools on board.