Traveling with dogs can be a fulfilling and rewarding experience for both dog owners and their furry companions. However, it seems like most owners are unaware of the ramifications of keeping their dogs unrestrained in the car.

According to Pet Pro Supply, about 84% of dog parents keep their pets unrestrained while traveling with them in a car. In doing so, they are putting their pets in harm’s way if they were to brake suddenly or have an accident. 

There are plenty of options for keeping your dog safely restrained in the car. Utilizing one of them will decrease the risk of your dog getting harmed.

We will dive into these different options in this article.

Dog Harness Seatbelt

How It Works

A dog harness seat belt takes advantage of your car’s existing seat belt system. It has a harness that your dog wears and a short safety belt that connects to the locking mechanism of your car’s seat belt.

Another kind only consists of a harness with straps that you tether to your car’s seat belt.

Is it for your Dog?

Dog harness seat belts greatly limit your dog’s movement while in the car.

Using dog seat belts is not the best option for dogs who get anxious when restrained in one spot. It is, however, an excellent choice for dogs who remain calm even when restrained. Choosing crash-tested dog seatbelts with padded chest pieces will also make your dog’s car trip as comfortable as possible.

Plush Carry Box

How It Works

A plush carry box hangs from a seat’s headrest and is further secured by a belt that wraps around the back of a seat. It also comes with an internal leash that attaches to your dog’s harness.

Is It For Your Dog?

A plush carry box is best for smaller dogs. It is also ideal for pups who get nervous when on the road.

Its elevated design makes it easier for a dog to see its owner and the environment outside the car, which could help in reducing their anxiety.

Zipline Harness

How It Works

A zipline harness functions like a dog seatbelt, except that it allows your dog to have a little bit of movement.

It has a long leash that acts as a zipline and a short leash that secures your dog to the zipline. 

Is It For Your Dog?

Zipline harnesses are ideal for high-spirited pups since it lets them move around in the back seat.

It is also great for carsick dogs because it allows them to easily look out the window to relieve motion sickness.

Backseat Hammock

How It Works

A backseat hammock hangs from the headrests of the front and back seats, covering the entire space at the back. It creates a comfy space for your dog and, at the same time, forms a barrier that prevents them from leaping into the front seat.

Is It For Your Dog?

You can use a backseat hammock with dogs of any temperament.

It is especially beneficial for older dogs who need to lie down most of the time.

You can also use a zipline harness in conjunction with a backseat hammock to keep your dog more secure.


How It Works

Crating your dog is one of the most effective ways you can keep them safe while on the road.

It not only keeps your dog from moving around in the car, but it also shields them from objects that could hurt them in the event of an accident.

Tethering the crate also prevents it from lurching forward in the event of a sudden stop.

Is It For Your Dog?

It is not a good idea to use crates with dogs who are not accustomed to being restrained in a small space.

Keeping them in a crate while traveling may intensify their anxiety and create a commotion that may cause driving distraction.

Therefore, it is always a good idea to have your dog “crate trained” before utilizing one in your car for traveling. 

What’s Next?

Dog owners will never be short of options when it comes to keeping their pups safe while traveling.

Aside from taking safety precautions though, teaching your dogs good car behavior will also decrease the likelihood of distracted driving and make the journey safer and more enjoyable for you and your dog.

This article was contributed by Mike Skoropad. Mike is the CEO of automotive parts retailer United Tires.