Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Making your vehicle the best for your dog

According to AAA 80% of dog lovers take their dogs on the road with them frequently. A dog sticking his head out the window and letting his tongue flap in the air is an iconic American image that stands alongside baseball and apple pie. Dogs love to travel, and we love to travel with them. However, if you are going to take your dog for a ride, you should do so in a vehicle that is comfortable for him and convenient for you.
Dog lovers have made their desire for dog-friendly vehicles known to car manufacturers. Vehicles designed with dogs in mind will have features that a typical car cannot match. Features of a dog-friendly by design car can include a built-in kennel, spill-proof water bowl, stowable ramp and even a cooling system designed with your dog in mind. This type of vehicle is certainly one way to go…
Unfortunately, buying a new dog-friendly vehicle is often too expensive. A simpler solution may be to find a vehicle that suits your dog’s unique needs. Here are some key factors to consider when searching for, or driving, your dogmobile:

The Fur Problem

While some car seat materials resist dog hair better than others, the best way to keep dog hair off of your seats is to groom your dog. Brush your dog’s coat well before you take her for a ride, and brush her hair very well if you are about to take her on a lengthy road trip. Use a vacuum or lint roller to remove dog hair that does find its way onto your seats. You may also buy a dog seat cover to help protect your seats.

Potty Problems

Your dog may forget his potty training on the open road, especially if he is not used to riding in a car. Dog seat covers can help protect your seats from an “accident,” and most are machine-washable. If he does go on the seat, then standard cleaning products can handle the mess, and you should try to always have some in your car. Walking your dog before a car trip (and frequently during longer road trips) can be an extremely helpful preventative measure as well.

Doggy is not Happy…

Although most dogs are calm during car rides, this may not be the case with yours. She may not stop barking, may attempt to jump into your lap while you’re driving, or move wildly around the car interior. You should attempt to correct this behavior through training if possible. If all else fails, consider using a dog carrier, but only as a last resort.

Avoid the Dog Clown Car

Dogs come in all shapes and sizes, and luckily so do vehicles. Make sure that your chosen vehicle is large enough to comfortably accommodate both your dog and a dog carrier. You will be thankful that you can fit a dog carrier in your car when you need to get your sick dog to the vet immediately. Don’t forget that you can manipulate the seats of your vehicle to create extra space.
Cars designed to be dog-friendly are excellent conveniences for dog lovers, but they are not the only path to a satisfying driving experience with your dog. Take steps that are within your budget to acquire a vehicle that suits your dog, or to modify a vehicle that you already own. It may not have that new car smell, but when your dog sticks her head out the window you will still turn plenty of heads.

From Cesar's website

For more info and events, visit Pet Friendly North America!


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