Joy of Riding with Dogs – G.W. Little

Joy of Riding with Dogs

Driving Miss Doggy

You're driving to work, and what do you see next to you, but a fellow driver too busy to pay full attention to the road because he's talking on his phone – one hand on the wheel, the other clutching his cellular. Seems unsafe, right? The same can be said for holding your little dog during your car travels. The only difference is that now, you're not only putting yourself and other drivers at risk, you're also endangering the life of your best buddy.

Getting a doggie car seat can give drivers true peace of mind, by allowing you to keep your hands free and your mind on the road, and also giving you the confidence in knowing that your pooch is safe and secure.

Dog car seats come in sizes that suit both your dog and the interior of your car. Choose from styles that seat one dog or several. You can even get a console-style seat that literally straps to the center console! Additionally, your darling should wear a comfortable harness so they are securely attached and will not budge if you happen to stop short. The seats are available in an assortment of fabrics; whether you want to match the color of your car interior, or be more whimsical, the choice is yours.

It's important to read the instructions that come along with the car seat — just as you would for a child's seat — to ensure it is properly attached (usually via a seatbelt). When using the seat for the first time, take it for a "test drive," to make sure it is nice and secure, and won't move around.

Sometimes, no matter how great the seating arrangement is for your canine companion, they may get the jitters — or in some cases, possibly even car sick. When it's time for a ride, some natural-based herbal remedies help soothe them, as well as placing their favorite blanket and soft toy in the seat. If you're unsure of how well your little dog will react in the car, avoid feeding meals close to travel time, but do remember to bring fresh water along, and, of course, a few healthy treats to reward good car-riding behavior.

-S. Athanasiou