A Car For Your Dog

My friend Patti chuckled as she slid into the passenger’s seat. It was a knowing chuckle. Definitely an “I am laughing with you” sort of chuckle as opposed to an “I am laughing at you” sort. She is a dog person as well and as such understood inherently upon accepting a ride that a bit of dog hair would be involved.  It was worse than usual, however, as I had agreed to pick up a friend’s dog at the boarding kennel. He was very excited and “blew ” his coat as they are wont to do when excited. And for some reason when I chose my car I forgot how insidious those short little hairs can be. No one would guess that these are actually solid black fabrics seats.

Car Manufacturers Attitude’s Change

Has anyone else noticed that car manufacturers are targeting Dog Moms and Dads? They certainly hope so. If I had done my homework maybe I wouldn’t have ended up with rear doors that don’t quite open far enough for my chubby, slightly arthritic English  Bulldog with an enormously wide chest. It isn’t even a matter of sucking it in, he is simply too wide in the shoulders.

But it seems to me most Dog Moms and Dads take their dog’s needs into consideration and manufacturers are beginning to include features that appeal to the dog crazy among us who enjoy taking our dogs with us for recreation. According to Fido Friendly magazine, nearly 90% of their readers choose automobiles with Fido in mind. And Fido Friendly specifically targets people who travel with their dogs. If you can’t get there by car with Fido in tow, you might consider one of the agencies that specializes in moving your pets safely, be it across country or to a different country. One such business which is based here in Austin, PetRelocation.com, has been doing this for years and has an exemplary reputation.  You may think moving across country with your dog was no easy trip, but imagine the sorts of arrangements that must be made for, say, your favorite  poisonous dart frog.

Cars Built With Dogs In Mind

My favorite is the 2010 Honda Element which is probably every dogs “Dream Car.” From the materials used in the interior, to the built-in ramp,  it was specifically designed for canines without forgetting about the comfort of the bipeds who are buying it for them.

Top Five Features To Look For In A Dog Friendly Car

  • An interior that is easy to keep clean
  • Room for crates, which usually means seats that can be folded down
  • Interior configuration that is easy to change from dog friendly to people friendly
  • Tinted windows to help keep them cool as well as not easily visible
  • Good heating and cooling for your dog’s comfort and good ventilation for yours

With the growing trend to make this country more dog friendly expect to see more manufacturer’s offering automobiles with dog-enhanced features.

Image Credit: Terry Wha on flickr

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13 Responses to “A Car For Your Dog”

  1. Gayle Falkenthal 03. Jun, 2010 at 9:06 pm #

    I know it’s not the most practical thing, but both of my Boxers have loved riding shotgun in my sportscars. My nine-month old Boxer puppy Mario (@MarioABoxer on Twitter) loves my new Hyundai Genesis Coupe. Leather seats help, as does a really good car detailer.

  2. Elizabeth Deitz 04. Jun, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    Funny! I can just picture that. Someday, I will get a Mini convertible for my bulldogs. With leather seats of course. I can picture my girl riding shotgun with a chiffon scarf trailing in the wind.
    Thanks for the comment!

  3. Maryann Gee 04. Jun, 2010 at 3:52 pm #

    I got my Rav4 especially for my 6 yorkies….they each had to have a car seat and we have a double stroller that goes in the back end…silly mom and dad….

  4. Sugar 05. Jun, 2010 at 12:13 pm #

    Woof! Woof! Thanks for an interesting informative post. I LOVE car rides. My family have very fancy cars with specially made back seat cover for ME. We get lots of compliments. Happy BLOG HOP Saturday. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

  5. Carol Bryant 05. Jun, 2010 at 12:26 pm #

    Nice to meet you via BLOG HOP Saturday and thanks for the FIDO Friendly magazine mention. We’d love to have you come guest blog for us sometime! So important to keep in mind the canine variety with a car in mind…. and you wrote a great post here!

  6. Jennifer Perry 05. Jun, 2010 at 1:45 pm #

    Great blog and I love every comment. It shows the love of dogs and joy you share. My corgis and cattle dog/corgi want to go everywhere, ev-er-y-where we go. Each has their own seat or place. And it does make us feel better. Parker memorizies every route and if I make a wrong turn or deviate he gets up and looks nervous til I’m back on the proper route. I feel like Hans Solo with the Wookie co-pilot!

  7. Elizabeth Deitz 05. Jun, 2010 at 11:25 pm #

    You sound like great parents. Six car seats! I would love to see a photo of that! AND a double stroller! People sometimes look at me strangely, but I use one for my bulldogs as well. One of them actually gets motion sickness every single time though. Have you ever had that happen?

  8. Elizabeth Deitz 05. Jun, 2010 at 11:28 pm #

    Do you ever get to Austin? I would love to talk with you and also see the GoPetFriendly.com-mobile up close and personal. I think there might be one in my future. I did try to contact you through your website but had an issue. I’ll try again.

  9. Elizabeth Deitz 05. Jun, 2010 at 11:46 pm #

    Thanks for your kind words. All of my guys love going with me, which is a good thing, as I hate to go without them. Sometimes, I have to leave someone at home…ugh, the guilt! Usually they just sleep, but they do seem to know when we are going to see some of their special friends and always wake up in time. Not quite as astute as your though! But then again, you have Corgis!

  10. Elizabeth Deitz 05. Jun, 2010 at 11:57 pm #

    We really enjoy your magazine.The photographs are gorgeous and it is always informative. It makes me want to hit the road!
    I’d love to guest blog for you. Let me know what topics you would be interested in having me write about.

  11. The Road Dogs 06. Jun, 2010 at 12:34 am #

    You can imagine how much WE love road trips! When Mom bought her Jeep many years ago, the nice car salesman let her take her dog (an only child at the time) with her on a test drive to see if he would like it!
    The Road Dogs

  12. Elizabeth Deitz 07. Jun, 2010 at 4:04 pm #

    Good sales tactic indeed! If the dog doesn’t approve, it is definitely a no go. I should have brought mine along for a test drive. Then I would have realized it wasn’t a “good fit.”
    Thanks for the comment!

  13. Elizabeth Deitz 07. Jun, 2010 at 4:18 pm #

    Nice parents! You sound spoiled!

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