We're headed over to Pender Island for our first road trip of the summer next week and we're bringing our dog Emmy Lou. Even though Emmy is super super old, she still perks up in a new place and it's always fun to watch her discover new smells and figure out how to defend an unfamiliar hotel room.
Planning for this trip got me thinking about traveling with pets in general - and keeping your dog safe in the car in particular! It's not illegal to let your dog have the run of the car while you're driving but it's certainly not safe - some police officers may issue tickets for careless driving if they see your dog romping around your vehicle.
Here are a few tips for those of you hitting the road with your furry friends this summer:
Secure your dog with a harness or crate. Emmy will NOT get in a crate but she loves her harness - it give her some mobility to change positions but keeps her from wandering all over the car. Worst case scenario, a harness will keep your dog from becoming a dangerous projectile in case of an accident; best case, it will keep your dog from distracting you while you're driving. If you're putting your dog in a crate, be sure the crate is well-secured.
Don't roll the windows all the way down. Enterprising pooches may leap out and hurt themselves trying to chase a squirrel.
Don't let your pup hang her head out the window. As cute as it is when Fido's ears flap in the breeze, flying gravel and other debris can cause injuries. Plus, wind and cold air can cause lung infections and inner ear damage.