Road trips are always better when your four-legged furkid comes along. Unfortunately, not all vehicles are as great for pooches as they are for people. We want your pet to be safe and comfortable on your adventures together, so we compiled a list of the features we think every dog-friendly vehicle ought to have.
Tinted windows reduce heat and UV rays, and can definitely keep your pet cooler and comfier on rides. SUVs commonly come standard with tinted rear glass. However, in other types of cars, you may have to specially request them. Be aware that tinted windows do not make the car cool enough to safely leave a dog in a parked car on a warm day.
A level cargo floor
Level flooring makes loading dog crates, beds, and supplies much easier. Plus, if your pet travels in the cargo area, he will be much more comfortable lying on a level surface versus an incline. If you’re buying a car with a smaller cargo area, look for a model with second-row seating that folds down flat.
A low cargo area
Low cargo areas are ideal for small dogs and older dogs with mobility issues. If you do need to buy a vehicle with a higher cargo area, there are a number of steps and ramps that can bridge the gap if you must have a vehicle with high ground clearance.
Rear air vents
Rear vents allow fresh, cool air to circulate around your dog for comfy skin and easy breathing.
Cargo area tie downs
These tie-downs are essential for holding down crates, as well as securing harnesses, pet barriers, and baggage, keeping your pup safe from injury and your items safe from damage.
Leather or cloth seats?
This is a big debate, leather or cloth? One of the big pros of leather seats is that they are less porous than cloth, so they’re easy to clean and care for, and they resist damage fairly well. Still, pets can scratch the leather if you plan to have them travel on uncovered seats. On the flip side, when the fur starts to fly, it doesn’t stick to leather seats!
Cloth seats on the other hand are very porous, making muddy paws and doggie drool tougher to clean up. In addition, pet hair loves to stick and almost weave into cloth seats. On a positive note, they offer more traction, so your pup is less likely to slip and slide when the car stops or turns. In addition, cloth is softer and stays warm in the winter and cool in the summer, giving it a comfier feel. So, this one really depends on your individual situation. Keep in mind that any time your pet rides in the back seat, he should be kept safe with a properly-secured harness.
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