Ray – Car Traveler

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!

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41 thoughts on “Ray – Car Traveler

  1. I would hate to think an accident happened because of a dog. I know people who actually put their dogs in car seats and buckle them in. Do this with dogs and children and leave the phones in the back seat or trunk of the car. Stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dogs love to ride in cars (usually), but I agree that it needs to be done safely. I had to drive my son’s English Bulldog to the vet once, and I didn’t have a seat belt for her since he had just adopted her. All was well until the trip home when it started to rain and I turned on the windshield wipers. Turns out, she doesn’t like windshield wipers. REALLY doesn’t like them. First she tried to attack them, then when that wasn’t allowed, she tried to hide from them, by settling herself on my feet. I had to pull over until it quit raining and told my son that the next time his dog rode in my car, she needed to be in her crate.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Cats are not different. I used to have two that I took to a vacation house. One rode in a carrier but the other would sleep on the passenger floor until we came to a trick merge section of a multi lane highway. Then she would wind her way under my feet. I bought another carrier. It was cheaper than smashing a car.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Einstein rocks 👍
    When I had my large akita and a Mazda Miata 2 seater, I had to be creative also.
    I had a box that filled the floor (like your idea), carpet custom cut to the area, and she had a seat belt harness. On top down days, she’d often pick her head up and howl! We got many smiles from fellow drivers.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. They do enjoy being pampered a bit – and views out the windows.
    For the past couple of cars, we alway check out the backseat configuration to make sure it will work/be safe for large dogs. Crates may be the safest transport, but if the crate is too big for the car….
    Really hate to see small or medium dogs driving – dogs may think it’s a treat to sit in the lap, but in a crash the dog becomes a cushion for the human behind it.
    Always enjoy that Einstein quote!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I have written about the need to restrain dogs in cars in my column in NZ Dog World magazine. Thre are still too many dogs riding un-restrained in cars where I live (Christchurch). What is even more concerning is the dogs of pet professionals like trainers and vets who are not restrained. It’s an issue needing leadership by example, I say.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A relative of mine used to rip on me for having harnesses and safety belts for the dogs and scoffed that I worried too much / was too soft etc.

    Told him to jump in the back of my car and not put his belt on.

    “Why?”
    “Just do it”
    “OK.. God don’t know what this all about but – SHIIITT!!”

    I hit the brakes and had to grab the back of his jacket cos he was halfway towards going through the windscreen at just 20mph.

    Liked by 2 people

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