Whether it’s for a wilderness walk in the countryside, a trip to the grooming parlor, or (gulp!) a visit to the vet, your Chihuahua will probably become your car companion at some point.
But the question is – how do we keep them safe during the journey?
People must strap in when they head out on the road, and the same should always apply to our cherished canines. That’s why we have created a list of top tips and product recommendations to help you and your pup feel more car-safe.
Driving with Dogs: The Facts
- 60% of dog owners have operated a vehicle while distracted by their pet passengers.
- 52% of owners will also continue to pet their dogs whilst driving.
- 13% have admitted to feeding their dogs while behind the wheel.
- 4% have admitted to playing with their dogs when driving.
Whilst there is nothing wrong with showing affection to your beloved pooch (on the contrary – the more cuddles, the better!), this does put yourself and your pet at risk when you are on the road. The kindest thing you can do for your canine is to get them safely from A to B with all eyes on the road!
When it comes to taking safety precautions, the stats speak for themselves with 84% of dog owners failing to use proper restraints for their pets in the car.
But never fear! Just follow these easy steps and you will never have to be one of these figures.
Use a Car Seat or Dog Booster Seat
Give your little Chi a BIG boost with a Dog Booster Seat. Easy to install and paw-fectly sized for your pup – with plenty of room for them to relax and enjoy the ride!
“Excellent, high-quality, comfortable chair for transporting small dogs in the car.” – Lempi Stracke, buyer
Available in a variety of colors (black, red, gray, blue, and pink), the booster seat provides sturdiness and ensures maximum comfort for your four-legged passenger, great for those longer journeys.
This stylish seat also features a short leash to attach to your dog’s collar or harness for that added sense of security and can be easily folded and tucked away in the trunk when needed.
Just strap in and away you go!
Strap Up Your Dog with a Seatbelt Harness
It’s not uncommon for Chihuahuas to get a little crazy in the car, and you may find your cheeky Chi trying to jump up at the window or lean across to you for a fuss. The key to safety is restraint and a harness is specifically designed for this purpose.
There are lots of harness options available for small dogs. These attach directly to your car seatbelts or to a tether that clips into the seatbelt buckle.
If you choose the right style of product, your furry pal will still have room to move whilst preventing them from straying too close to the driver’s seat!
When selecting your harness products, be sure to invest in quality. Look out for one that has durable webbing material and a heavy-duty belt buckle (try to avoid nylons and plastics). You must also check that your harness can be evenly distributed across your dog’s body for extra security in the event of a forced impact. Steer clear of cheaper alternatives as these will offer less protection.
For more information on safety harnesses, check out this crash test study conducted by The Centre for Pet Safety. This study tested the effectiveness of a range of popular harness products and shares the results.
Relieve Car Riding Anxiety
Some doggies will (literally) leap at the chance to be your travel companion, but others will need to be pulled along for the ride with their tail between their legs!
For tiny chows like the Chi, the noise and motion can sometimes create anxiety for them and a whole lot of guilt for you.
If your petite pooch gets shaky and restless in the seat, drools, or pants, here are some great tricks you can try:
- Limit their food intake a few hours before any planned travels, to relieve any potential sickness.
- Take them for a short strut before setting off, so they can stretch their legs. A little exercise will help them to relax in the car.
- Open the windows a little to allow some fresh air in (and keep the soggy doggy breath out, too!)
- Lower the thermostat to keep the little guy nice and cool
You may also want to consider spraying pheromones into their bed or crate, which can ease the symptoms of anxiety, so your pup can have a more pleasurable journey.
Invest in a Quality Car Seat Cover
We can all agree that as dog owners, we must always keep our canines safe in the car, but that does not mean that we can’t keep our cars safe from our canines!
Some dogs can get a little overexcited in the car, especially when they know they are heading to the park for playtime! However, this can sometimes take its toll on the upholstery, from scratches and muddy paws to the occasional accident.
Not to worry, you can now keep your car protected from those mucky paws with a Car Seat Cover. Say ‘goodbye’ to hair and ‘glitter’ and say ‘hello’ to a life of scratch-free bliss!
This durable nylon cover is waterproof and is oh-so-easy to install with adjustable straps that ensure the perfect fit for your vehicle. And yes, we have a selection of colors to choose from – because let’s face it, safety and style should always go hand in hand!
Thanks to its universal design, the cover will fit in most car and truck models whether it is a compact or SUV.
If you prefer to keep your Chi cage-free, this is a great alternative for you. But remember, always use a harness to secure them in – safety first!
The bottom line is that there are lots of safety considerations associated with driving with your chi, but fur-tunately for you there plenty of tricks and products you can use to keep them happy and secure for every ride. From seatbelt harnesses and comfortable car seats to taking small steps to prepare them for the journey ahead such as open windows, walks and pheromones. Simple measures such as these will make all the difference to your beloved pup!
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