Having a pet can no doubt bring much colour to your life. And every pet-owner would know that keeping their pets happy and safe is of top priority. So if you love to bring your pet for a ride in your car, are you doing enough to keep them safe on the journey?
In Singapore, it is not uncommon to see owners holding their beloved pets in their arms while in the car. The other popular option seems to be merely leaving them in the rear seats unrestrained. Think about it for a moment – if we emphasise having everyone in the car belted up, wouldn’t it make sense to do the same for your dog?
What’s more, keeping your pet safe in the car can also help you – passengers could be hurt too if they are seated in the path of a pet that is thrown forward in a collision.
If you intend to take your pet out for a ride or bring it to one of the many open spaces for a run, here’s what you can do to make your car a safer ride for it:
1.Clear your car of loose items
Some car-owners like to leave items in their rear seats – umbrellas, bags, extra slippers…crowding up your seat with these items not just give your pet less space, some smaller items can also be potential choking hazards.
2. Use a pet harness or crate
Think of a pet harness as a safety belt for pets. Fastened to the seatbelt with an adjustable strap, these harnesses are made to be worn around the neck and chest of the dog. Ensuring a snug but comfortable fit is key for the harness to keep your dog safe.
Using a pet crate is another solution. These crates have been designed to keep them comfortable for transport, and you can even find a proper crash-tested crate to keep your pet extra safe. The crate should be large enough to house your pet comfortably and allow it to sit up.
3. Car-train them
All pet-owners will know that you can always train your pet; and you can train them to train them to like your ride too. Most pets may react negatively to sitting in a car because it is essentially shutting them in an environment that they are unfamiliar with. So be prepared for them to act up the first few times they’re shut into the vehicle.
4. Lock your car doors and windows
You might have seen some movies or pictures of dogs with their heads hanging out of a car window, thinking how adorable they are. In actual fact, that’s pretty dangerous. Will you allow a child to do the same? Who knows what could hit them along the way! Similarly, please lock your windows and car doors when you have a pet is inside the car. Having said that, try not to leave your pet alone within the confines of a car. With Singapore’s hot and humid weather, it can cause them to overheat!
5. Make the necessary preparation for the ride
Depending on how long the ride is and how trained is your pet for the car, you might encounter car-sickness for your pet. Thus, be sure to have some sort of cover if this happens and don’t feed it with a heavy meal before the journey. If you intend to be out with your pet for a while, do prepare water and food for it.
Having a blissful ride with your pet in the car can be a great experience but it’s extremely important to heed these safety measures to keep you and your pet safe. If all else fails, there are always pet taxis available in Singapore that you can seek out for that necessary trip to the vet.