I would like to believe that safety is everybody’s No. 1 priority when driving and, as a dog in a car can be a serious distraction, it should be restrained securely and safely. Not only could a “free roaming” dog trigger circumstances that result in an accident, but an unrestrained dog will become a missile in the event of a sudden stop, a rollover, or worse. Having said that, I shake my head at the amount of dogs that I have seen who are sitting in the vehicle driver’s lap but then, these are probably the same drivers who talk on their phones while driving. Despite all the fatalities and serious injuries that have been attributed here in Ontario to distracted driving, there is an egotistical mindset that says “It cannot happen to me!”
Ray provided a bigger challenge than most, simply because of his size together with his attitude. He has never been a totally uncooperative dog, but he has regularly expressed desires that are contrary to ours! Getting him in a mutually acceptable place in the car when traveling was a significant challenge because his strength, and weight, made totally sabotaging our efforts to restrain him a simple task for him! We did eventually find a compromise, and how we got there is detailed in his book “Who Said I was up for Adoption?” (click book cover over in right side column for more information).
We did have to redesign the rear of the car a little (I made a wooden bench that would fill the gap between the front of the rear seats, and the back of the front seats – so he wouldn’t roll off the seat and onto the floor!)
He is now a very happy car traveler and, when coming back from a recent training session, Carol noticed him looking out the window and could not resist grabbing my camera!
He really seems to enjoy the “chauffeur driven” experience!