Who really hasn’t cracked a smile at the sight of a happy puppy face in the backseat of a car? Those lolling tongues and happy faces are irresistible. They’re also appreciated by the dogs—It always makes me think of the Disney movie, Bolt, and this scene:
***Note, I do not claim to own any of the content in this video. Video via YouTube
Maybe it’s because many claim Bolt is designed to look like a White German Shepherd, but honestly, that’s freaking adorable. moving on to the facts of the discussion:
Arie loves car rides. I now live in Atlanta, but my hometown is in the upstate area of South Carolina, a good 2-3 hour drive. Arie goes home with me often; I even had to choose a larger vehicle when I got a new car last year to ensure that she and her crate, as well as the cats in their carrier, could fit comfortably for a road trip every few months. Arie usually stretches out across the back seat, with the cats in their crate in the very back of the car. After a few quick break-slamming incidents thanks to Atlanta drivers on a handful of these road trips, I came to the conclusion that started this discussion: Arie needs a seat belt.
My dad laughed at me when I mentioned pet seat belts. No joke. Still, such safety precautions are becoming ever more popular, present on the market, and encouraged for pet owners. My father grew up on my grandparent’s dairy farm (Remember Arie showing off next the tractor?), and they took a very casual approach to pets. Pets were to stay outside—dogs didn’t sleep at the foot of your bet, let alone in it, and their food sure didn’t cost what Arie’s does. With changing times, however, our approach to our pets is adapting. My parents even have a little dachshund now, who wears a sweater in the winter to deal with cold. Dad has come a long way.
People have done a great job of branching out into items for their pets, from fun and colorful toys and puzzles to designer pet beds and clothing, but our eye for design and our eye for health and safety seem to following slightly behind our more frivolous pursuits. I’m trying to play the catch up game now, adding grain-free, all natural kibble, vitamins, and more to ensure that my big girl has healthy hips and joints and lives a long and healthy life. Protecting her in the car is the next step, and pet safety belts are paramount for your pet’s safety in accident.
FACT: ” A 25-pound, unrestrained dog can become a deadly, 1000-pound projectile in the event of a 40 mph crash.” – Pet Travel Center
You only need to picture your shih-tzu bouncing around between the seats during a bump up or a golden retriever thrown into the back of your seat to understand the need. While that picturesque puppy face lolling out the window is adorable, having them smile safely from their belted seat in the center of the car is still cute and much safer, for them and you.
The New Problem
Now that I know that I want to get Arie a safety belt, I have to find one that I like and that works for her. Some of these items are more complicated than a brand new car seat, and if you’ve ever had to hook one of those into a car (years of babysitting taught me better than a sensei ever could) you know that is no easy feat. Others only come in tiny, petite, small, medium, normal, and large sizes, leaving out the “holy-crap-is-that-a-miniature-pony?!” size harness that Arie will need. I’m still on the search, scouring various stores and websites and reading tons of reviews.
Where You Come Into Play
During #Petchat this past Monday (Twitter chat, Monday nights 8 PM EST for pet lovers) we discussed pet products we love and hate. Upon learning that I blog about my life with my pets, a fellow chatter asked me if there were any go-to blogs I like to read for product reviews. Well my lovelies, that really includes all of you. Whether your new to this blog and wondering why this lady cares so much about a freaking dog seat belt or a long time reader that totally gets it, having your opinions on this is much appreciated. Do you have a safety belt for your pet in the car? Why or why not? If you do, what brand/style would you recommend? So far I’ve heard a lot about Kurgo, but I’d like to learn about other brands as well.