Dog Safety Tips For Truck Owners
Dogs and pickup trucks seem like a natural combination. Dogs are easy-going, friendly, and they don’t mind getting dirty. Indeed, if dogs could be a type of vehicle, they would be a fun-loving pickup truck for sure.
Sadly, despite the fact that dogs and trucks have so much in common, trucks can represent a serious risk to a dog’s health…especially if the dog rides in the back of the truck. While there aren’t a lot of stats to prove it, a veterinary professional we spoke with suggested that dogs are more likely to get hurt in their owner’s truck than they are to get hit by a truck.
How pickups can be dangerous for dogs:
1. Far too many dog owners let their dogs ride in the bed of their trucks. Dogs aren’t cargo, yet many dog owners let them ride in the back as if they are a piece of lumber. Dogs aren’t watching the road, so they don’t know when you’re about to hit the brakes, and they don’t know how to brace themselves in the event of an emergency stop. Dogs can suffer broken limbs and injured joints when their owners hit the brakes in an emergency situation. Truck beds can be slippery as well, making it even riskier to ride in the truck bed in wet weather.
2. Dogs will jump out of trucks. Straight from the vet’s mouth:
When we get a dog that’s jumped out of a vehicle, a lot of the owners will say it’s the first time…and a lot of the dogs have to be put down.
Keep in mind this isn’t limited to dogs riding in the bed – dogs have been known to jump out of a vehicle’s window as well.
3. Dogs can go through windshields. Just like people who don’t wear their seat belts, a dog can go right through a windshield in an accident…it’s just simple physics. Dogs must be restrained.
4. Dogs riding in pickup beds can get hit by debris. You don’t need to know the specifics of the story we heard, but flying sheets of plywood can be deadly.
5. Dogs can be swept out of pickup beds by wind. In what might be the most surprising risk of all, dogs that ride in truck beds can be blown away in a gust generated by a passing semi trailer. Semi’s push a lot of wind, and they have been known to lift a dog out of a pickup bed and blow them onto the road.
6. Dogs can cause distractions, and distractions can cause accidents. Often times the most dangerous distraction is a dog that jumps into a driver’s lap or line of sight.
Here are Tips For Making Your Dog Safe:
1. If at all possible, do not put your dog in your truck’s bed unless they’re in a dog box that is bolted in place.
2. If you must put your dog in your truck bed and you’re not able to put them in a dog box, there are inexpensive bed restraint systems available that will keep your dog from jumping or getting blown out of your pickup.
In many states, restraint systems are legally required for dogs riding in the pickup bed. Keep in mind, however, that these restraints are not a perfect solution. Your dog will still be vulnerable to debris in an unprotected box, and unless they’re in a box, they’re still vulnerable to breaking a limb in a panic stop situation.
3. If your dog rides inside your truck, that’s a step in the right direction. Still, dogs should be restrained regardless of where they’re riding. There are simple and inexpensive restraint systems available for the interior as well. Amazon.com carries dozen of different interior vehicle harnesses for dogs.
Your dog might not like the fact he or she can’t stick their head out the window, but dog restraint systems can prevent injury and come highly recommended by the vet we spoke with.
If you’re already following these tips, good work! Your pet would thank you if he or she could.
Questions? Suggestions? Please share.
Filed Under: TundraHeadquarters.com