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I went out to the bank, food store, etc. earlier and I saw a man driving with his window down and a small dog hanging way out of the driver's side front window. If he had stopped short I have no doubts the dog would have been flung from the vehicle. I hate seeing this. Small dogs especially need to be in a secure carrier in the car but minimally all dogs should be wearing a safety harness and restrained in the back seat.


One of my stops was at the nursery/feed yard where I get chicken feed. They have a small poodle mix (think yorkie poo) who hangs out in the office building where the animal feeds are stocked. He came over to say hi to me when I walked in and I ended up telling the owner's wife about the dog I had seen earlier (which was also maybe a yorkie poo) and she ended up telling me a customer had pulled into their parking lot earlier with two large hound mixes who both promptly jumped out of the vehicle. One ran back into the nursery area and the other into a four lane road. Thankfully traffic was quiet at the time and people were able to stop, but seriously what is wrong with these folks?
 

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I hate that, was following a pickup and Lab in back of truck, had to slam on is breaks for a deer, through the dog out of the truck. The dog was hurt, and I stopped and gave him a gone over, and said get him to the vets, lungs could be puncture or anything. I knew the guy, later ran into him, and he said the dogs skull was cracked and a broken leg, but he got him fixed, but changed his personality for getting in a car. I almost hit the dog before I could get stopped . They I think on the shore are in the process or have outlawed a lose dog in the back of a truck
 

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The other really stupid thing I have seen a number of people with small dogs do is drive with the dogs on their laps. Dangerous for all kinds of reasons, but particularly if they get in an accident and the air bag goes off. That small dog is going to take the brunt of it and it's most likely not going to be a good outcome........
 

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The other really stupid thing I have seen a number of people with small dogs do is drive with the dogs on their laps. Dangerous for all kinds of reasons, but particularly if they get in an accident and the air bag goes off. That small dog is going to take the brunt of it and it's most likely not going to be a good outcome........

Exactly the little dog had his back legs on the driver. An air bag deployment would have killed this dog. Eclipse you will appreciate that the little dog was traveling on Jericho Turnpike in Commack and the two dogs who ran out of the vehicle were on Deer Park Avenue in front of Prianti Farms. On a busy Saturday to boot...
 

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Noelle rides in a Pupsaver. This car seat acts like a catcher's mitt, and looks a bit like one, too.



It's rear facing to spread forces in a crash and passed crash tests.


Noelle snuggles in there and chews her toy fox on every trip. It can also go in the front seat. Noelle is only 20 pounds and doesn't trigger the airbag switch. I can't imagine driving with my dog unrestrained.

Another thing I do for safety is demand sustained eye contact before releasing Noelle from the car. My brother's toy poodle jumped out of the car in a parking lot and was unfortunately killed by a car. So, that sustained eye contact, while I make sure I have the leash loop wrapped around my thumb is a life saver, too.

Be safe out there! Yesterday two cars ran stop signs one after the other while I was in the middle of the intersection. One flew toward me and only my video game playing reflexes saved me. It never even slowed down. The other car slammed on the brakes before broadsiding me. It can be really scary out there. Take good care.
 

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Have to admit Oliver is such a poor car traveler in a crate that his shrieking made it unsafe for my driving. I've no idea how he was introduced to car travel early on, and not owning a car now have no way to gradually help him be more comfortable.

We recently took a huge step of renting a car and traveling out of town up to the hills over his tenth birthday weekend. Huge because I had not driven out of town for pleasure in ten years :(.

He has a harness I bought him several years back, and it screws into a seatbelt connection. I set up a pet bed and blanket so he could sit high enough to see out while wearing the seatbelt (front passenger seat so I could reach him). And to tell the truth, I took along some calming treats in case. A shrieking, terrified dog does not add to driver safety in my case. We ended up doing well, and he enjoyed himself and did not shriek or cry.

This approach may not have been the best, but it surely added to safety for both of us. My last dog loved car travel, so this has been a very different situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Streetcar I hear you on how unsafe shrieking and barking would be, but you still took steps to restrain Oliver's movements to prevent him from climbing onto your lap.



Click I love that Pupsaver!
 

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The Pupsaver is for dogs under 45 pounds, so it won't protect a spoo, unfortunately. Dog crash test videos are quite scary as nearly all the brands of dog car harnesses fail, sending crash test dummy dogs flying. Not for the faint of heart, here's a link.

The Pupsaver without the bottom straps failed the first crash test. https://www.centerforpetsafety.org/test-results/pet-seat-pilot-study/#C1

It's been redesigned and has straps across the bottom of the seat now to hold it more securely in place. It also has sturdy metal anchors that attach to child seat latches in the back seat. I really like the design of this seat. They have a tiny one for toy dogs, a medium one for dogs under 30 pounds, and the big one is for dogs under 45 pounds.

If I had a spoo, I'd be looking at Sleepypod Clickit Sport.
 

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That Sleepypod is the harness I have for Lily and Javelin. Lily weighs under 40 pounds, but I am not sure that I could expect her to make a big change in how she rides at this point.
 
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I wanted a Sleepypod for our mini poodle, but for some reason my husband was against having him "stuck" in a seated or lying position (I'm not sure why, as he was perfectly happy being crated in the car the first couple months we had him). We instead purchased a backseat hammock with tether. The tether is a bit longer than I'd like so he can still stand up on the (closed) window which I'm not a fan of, but at least it does keep him restrained to the backseat.
 

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It makes me both angry and sad when I see pets not being transported safely. I've said things to people who I've seen making stupid choices when I've had the opportunity. Sadly when I've been driving I've seen the same sort of thing that you're posting about Catherine. Not much you can do except shake your head and hope nothing untoward happens.

I'm a huge fan of keeping your dog safe in the car while driving. This means not only keeping your dog tethered so they can't jump into your lap and start steering the car...... but also keeping them safe in an accident whether the car is hit and damaged, or you make a sudden stop.

I use the Sleepypod harness and I've posted many times about it. I'm not a paid spokesperson, just a satisfied customer. I love how my dog is closely buckled into the seat belt - she isn't going anywhere if I stop suddenly - she can't slip off the seat or be sent as a projectile through a car window. If we're in a serious accident, as long as the seat she is belted into retains it's integrity she will be safe. So many tethers are too long so dogs can be tossed around and thrown off the car seat. Many tethers are not designed to withstand the force of an accident - they may use a quality webbing but the attachments are not up to snuff. Most of the crates used fail to protect - they can't withstand the forces of an accident. Of course nothing is 100% guaranteed so we can only do the best that we can. But it's good to objectively assess what you are doing from time to time and researching what is available and what has been updated.

One resource of information is the Center for Pet Safety. Unfortunately they haven't tested every crate or harness and they recently made changes to update their website so many links don't work. https://www.centerforpetsafety.org/test-results/
 

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I was in a line of traffic and in the lane next to me, a car ahead, were two people in a 2-seater convertible with the top down. They had a tiny Yorkie with them who kept trying to crawl down into the seat with them. The passenger kept grabbing the pup and placing it outside the seating area on the convertible top cover behind them. There was nothing but a leash and collar between that dog and the ground. I was stunned at the complete lack of concern for the dog's safety.

I got their license plate number and pulled over to call a local animal control officer I knew. She was incensed as well and said that she would contact the folks and explain why what they were doing was a bad idea.

I doubt even that would change their behavior, but at least they would hear that it wasn't acceptable from someone with authority.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I was in a line of traffic and in the lane next to me, a car ahead, were two people in a 2-seater convertible with the top down. They had a tiny Yorkie with them who kept trying to crawl down into the seat with them. The passenger kept grabbing the pup and placing it outside the seating area on the convertible top cover behind them. There was nothing but a leash and collar between that dog and the ground. I was stunned at the complete lack of concern for the dog's safety.

I got their license plate number and pulled over to call a local animal control officer I knew. She was incensed as well and said that she would contact the folks and explain why what they were doing was a bad idea.

I doubt even that would change their behavior, but at least they would hear that it wasn't acceptable from someone with authority.

Good for you! I was not able to get the license plate for the guy I saw with the little dog on his front seat/hanging out the window. Traffic was too heavy and there was too much stopping and starting to try to take a picture or anything, but calling animal control if you can give some identifying information is excellent.


One of the other reasons I don't want my dogs hanging their heads out the window is that I don't want eye injuries from flying material.
 

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Okay guys, I finally splurged and got Luna the sleepypod clickit terrain which is their newest harness. I was going to buy one a month or two ago but they were all sold out everywhere. Plus I kind of wanted to wait until she was done showing and shaved down before using it. So I ordered it off of Amazon after contacting sleepypod and asking about sizing (she is 26”-27” around the cheat which is right in between the medium and large size.) The rep said that it is best to size down in that situation.

A clickit harness has been on my to-buy list since beforehand I even brought Luna home. However the show coat complicates things. This will be a great present for her when that hair comes off in hopefully a couple of weeks. For anyone wondering it was $87 on amazon. A few bucks cheaper than the sleepypod website. I don’t make large purchases like that for her too often but this is something that I don’t want to skimp on.
 

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Noelle rides in a Pupsaver. This car seat acts like a catcher's mitt, and looks a bit like one, too.
I embarrassingly need to admit that I drive with my 8lb pup on my lap in the driver seat. I've tried harness restraint and he gets twisted and I fear a choking hazard may occur. I've tried a travel bag, which he does stay in, but prefers to hop out of because he refuses for it to be zipped up (there's no way for me to secure a harness to the bag as it's meant to be zipped up - for airline travel).

He's not crate trained and will bark and whine in any enclosed space.

Reading this post only reinforces what I know to be true: I'm 100% wrong for letting Rocky ride in my lap unrestrained because I am really putting his life in jeopardy every time we get behind the wheel (which is on a daily basis). I need to stop giving into his habit of cuddling with me and put his safety as the #1 priority.

I will definitely get the pupsaver. I can't thank you enough for this post.
 

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With an 8 pound dog you can get the really little Pupsaver. I got mine directly from https://pupsaver.com. That way you know you are getting the most modern one. Glad I could help. If you run into any problems installing your car seat, PM me. It can be a bit tricky.
 
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