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Buckle Up The Pup | GBGV

January 18, 2013
Seatbelts on - Let's go!

Seatbelts on – Let’s go!

Do you buckle up the pup when you travel? I posted on seatbelts last spring but this is a very important subject that humans are just not taking seriously, so I have decided to write another post on it.  Some of you may ride in a kennel in the car, in that case you are restrained and this post is meant for dogs that are not properly restrained.

We were cruising down the highway with mom the other day when we passed a pickup truck that had a beautiful white German Shepard in the bed of the truck completely unrestrained. Mom about flipped out! If there is one thing mom is serious about it is safety. When she was little she used to drive adults nuts making them fasten their seatbelts in cars and then she was a flight attendant for 11 years after college where safety was her job.  How can anyone in their right mind let any living creature ride unrestrained down any road in the open bed of a pickup truck? This is not only a danger to the dog or other animal but to other drivers!

Ever since we were puppies, we have worn our doggie seatbelts whenever we ride in the car. Mom’s rule is that if she buckles up, we buckle up whether it is for 1 mile or 100 miles.  Some people think she is extreme, but really it is not extreme, seatbelts should be the law for people and pets.

Sure I only weigh 38 lbs but how much force will I have if we crash? According to an online crash force calculator, me at 38 lbs traveling at 30 mph would be a force of 1140 lbs which is like a fully grown cow! I could not only injure or kill myself but perhaps other occupants in the vehicle or outside of the vehicle.  I would become a dog projectile!  If I survive the impact and am able, I may run away out of fear or I may guard the vehicle occupants and not let help get to them.  There are so many reasons for dogs to be buckled in.

I know lots of people think it is cute for their little dogs to ride on their laps while they drive or they let the dogs hop all over in the car but that is NOT ok.  The dog becomes a distraction to the driver and therefore a hazard that could easily cause an accident and that would lead to another dog projectile resulting in injuries and/or deaths.

Another problem – don’t let your dog ride with his head or half his body hanging out the window. You may think the dog enjoys the wind and he may, but it is dangerous! Not only could he hit something outside the vehicle, the wind is very bad for a dogs eyes!  Sure YOUR dog would never do it, but dogs do jump out of car windows because they smell another dog in heat, see a squirrel, who knows why. It is not cute, it is downright dangerous. I enjoy a ride in Gramma’s convertible when the weather is nice, but I always have my doggles on to protect my eyes and of course I wear my seatbelt.

Putting a seatbelt on the dog every time you get in the car does take a few minutes, mom has two dogs so it is double the work but is it really worth the risk to not buckle up your dog. If you start doing it, it will soon become a habit and you will not think of driving off without the dog buckled in.

Yes, this is a bit of a rambling doggie bark out rant but it is an issue that humans need to really consider and do something about.  You buckle up, your kids buckle up, so why not the family dog? There is really no excuse except for laziness and is laziness a good excuse for a dead or injured dog or human?  Please, buckle up your dog and keep his head inside the moving vehicle!


I would also like to thank my friend Kirby for nominating me for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. If you don’t know Kirby’s Dawg Blog stop by and check it out, he is a sweet little fellow!

32 Comments leave one →
  1. January 18, 2013 06:18

    We too find people driving around with pickups (bakkies here), with dogs loose in the back = drives me nuts.

  2. Elizabeth Bergesen permalink
    January 18, 2013 10:10

    Very great and important post! We travel a lot with both dogs, so we always make sure to buckle them up.

  3. Will and Eko permalink
    January 18, 2013 11:53

    Eko loves buckling up because he knows it means he’s in for an adventure! The other nice thing is that he still has enough slack to move a bit and find a comfortable place to lay down.

    • January 18, 2013 12:09

      Very true, if we couldn’t move at all that would be bad but we have some room too 🙂

  4. January 18, 2013 15:11

    When I was little mummy used to sit in the back with me and hold me, but it didn’t work very well and I used to get sick alot. So they got me this hammock thing to stop me falling in the seatwells plus I wear my harness and am buckled in. Now I love riding in the car, I just settle down and sleep most times, much more comfortable and safer too:-)

    • January 18, 2013 15:54

      We have one of those too for regular cars, and the liner for the SUV. Glad you are a safe rider 🙂

  5. January 18, 2013 17:38

    Great post! Mom always gets upset when she sees people driving around in their trucks with their dogs in the bed of the truck. It is so dangerous and because we live in cowboy country, there is a lot of that going on:(

  6. goldenwoofs permalink
    January 18, 2013 23:22

    Woof! Woof! There are different ways to travel safely with your dogs in the car and wearing a seatbelt is one of them. It hurts us to see dogs in the back of the truck. This is a very frustrating topic to my mom and we plan to talk about it in one of our blog post. Golden Thanks for sharing this topic. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

    • January 19, 2013 06:33

      I know that mom and I are not the only frustrated ones. In some countries it is the law to buckle or restrain pets in cars, but not here. I think NY was considering such a law but it has not happened. All we can do is keep reminding people!

  7. January 19, 2013 08:58

    Great information Emma! I don’t buckle the dogs in just yet but I know how important it is so we are looking into it. We don’t them hang their heads out the windows, they are in the back of our SUV, but I am concerned for their safety if we would ever get in a accident.

    • January 19, 2013 09:48

      Glad you are checking it out. There are lots of options for restraints in different kinds of vehicles these days.

  8. January 19, 2013 11:20

    Great post Emma. While I’d never allow my dogs to ride in the back of a truck, or with their heads hanging out the window, (or on my lap!!), I used to think it was “okay” to leave them free in the very back of our vehicles (we have an Element and a Jeep, both with a nice dog sized space behind the high back seats….

    This fall we went on a vacation and Toby had one of his panic attacks and climbed over everything, even the luggage, and tried to scramble in the front passenger seat with me. It was very scary, as he is 85 pounds, and I could barely get him into the back seat. He now rides in a crate. It is kind of small for a dog his size, but it’s for travel only, and it’s much safer than the alternative.

    (P.S. we don’t use harnesses with him because he is very determined and gets himself tangled.)

    • January 19, 2013 18:25

      Glad to hear you have it under control. We learned right off that we each have our half of the back and we pretty much just lie down and stay there, no tangling.

  9. January 19, 2013 15:06

    Very important Emma! I is a little dog so I has my own doggie car seat in the backseat. I also always wear a harness that hooks to my carseat. The harness protects me cos iffen we had a wreck and I was thrown my chest might get badly bruised but my neck won’t get broke. I always feel safe there and I can see everthing.

    Mama worked for a vet a long time ago an she never forgets the time a family brought in their young chocolate lab. He had been ridin in the back of the Dad’s truck an fell out an the mama ran over him with her car. Mama said she cried with the family when he died on the table. Mama tells people about the harnesses made for dogs who ride in the back of trucks since a lot do here in the country.

    • January 19, 2013 18:26

      Glad you a safe rider, some people just don’t get it and it is so sad for the poor dogs if something happens!

  10. January 19, 2013 16:11

    Rooo this post is very timely indeed as I was just telling my little sister Bella that she needs to wear a seatbelt in the car! *waggy tail*

    • January 19, 2013 18:27

      She better wear one or I will head back to the UK and get her buckled in myself 😉

  11. January 19, 2013 17:22

    We have a little something for you over here

    Have a great weekend!

  12. January 20, 2013 18:55

    We usually kennel our dogs when in the car. Not that long ago we saw a guy in a pick up pulling a 5th wheel trailer. He has a golden retriever in the bed of the pick up in the area in front of the hitch. The dog was tied in, but how dangerous was that? If that trailer shifted at all the dog could have been injured and the poor thing looked terrified. I know for our experience of having one of those that they can make loud clanking sounds. Some people are just stupid.

    • January 21, 2013 06:47

      Some people really just don’t understand. I am glad your dogs are secured, it is very important!

  13. January 22, 2013 15:11

    great information emma! as usual! we always buckle!! what kind of MORON would put a dog in a flat bed truck????

    • January 22, 2013 16:22

      Unfortunately, it seems that there are lots of morons in the world!

  14. January 23, 2013 11:49

    Emma, I’d be interested to know what type of seat belt restraints your mom recommends. Sampson and Delilah usually lie down while riding but they are not restrained. Hubby and I have been talking about this and we just don’t know which seat belting system works.

    I’m also of two minds to this, are there any studies of dog injuries from wearing the seat belt? I’d love to hear your (or mom’s) thoughts on this.

    • January 23, 2013 13:44

      I wish I had some tips. I just see them in the stores here but ours are from Germany, they are made out of seatbelt fabric with steel fasteners and then they have padding on our belly and underarms so they don’t rub and cause pain. There is no brand on them but here is the link (in German) to what we have. They are approved by the German auto testing dept.

      • January 24, 2013 17:19

        Thank you. I’ll have to see if I can find someone who can translate it! LOL

      • January 25, 2013 06:37

        Well, I can translate it but it is all about the specifications and the TUV approval which is like the Germany version of the FAA for automobiles.

  15. January 25, 2013 17:02

    Great post, Emma! I’m totally with you on the importance of buckling up our pets when we travel. Buster and Ty don’t go anywhere without their seat belts on and I really wish more people would that this issue seriously.

  16. January 25, 2013 17:23

    Woo hoo! Thanks to GoPetFriendly I just found this post. My dogs always wear their seat belts too. My Maya would especially be a handful in the car if she wasn’t wearing one. She would be all over the place!

    • January 26, 2013 07:03

      Thank you for finding my post and thanks to gopetfriendly! Seatbelts are sooo important for traveling pets, we have to keep spreading the word and hope humans will finally understand!

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