2017-02-21 / Front Page

Dogs in cars and trucks

Most dogs seem to enjoy riding in cars and or trucks, but there are things to be considered in their transportation. Letting the dog hang out the window can be a dangerous situation. A sudden swerve or stop could toss the dog out the window and into traffic, to be run over.

There are dog seat belts designed for using in the automobile. With a dog seat belt, the dog could not accidentally distract the driver and would prevent injury in case of an accident.

You may see, as you drive about town, dogs riding in the backs of trucks. Unfortunately it is not at all safe. According to the Humane Society of the United States, 100,000 dogs are killed each year in accidents involving riding in truck beds. Veterinarians see numerous cases of dogs being injured because they jumped out or were thrown from the bed of a pickup truck. If these dogs are lucky enough to still be alive, broken legs and joint injuries are among the most common types of damage that they sustain, and often result in amputation. There are many dangers of having your four-legged friend loose in the bed of a truck. This may not have even occurred to you, since dogs always have a tendency to stick their heads out the window of a moving vehicle to smell all those new smells on the open road. But being in the open air, traveling at high speeds, whether their head is out the window or they’re in the back of the truck, can likely cause damage to the delicate parts of their face. The swirling of the air currents in the bed of a pickup truck can cause dirt, debris and insects to become lodged in the dog’s eyes, ears and nose.

We’ve all had to slam on our brakes while we were driving at some point: it is inevitable. Now imagine slamming on your brakes with your beloved dog in the truck bed. He is going to get a serious jolt and it’s possible that he could fly right out of the bed, into the road.

And if you think that securing him with a rope or chain is any better, you’re wrong. There have been cases where dogs were thrown out of the back of the truck while still attached and being dragged on the road, while the unaware driver is still driving. It is best to have the dog in the cab of the truck, with you, restrained in the back, away from the windshield. For trucks, travel crates or safety belts designed for dogs is the safest route to go.

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